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PaulFenderJazz

Light and loud options?

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Hi, the age old problem of an ageing back means I need to look for a light amp/rig but I need to compete against a drummer and 2 enthusiastic guitars! I have a budget of around £600-750. I like the idea of the size and weight of the Markbass CMD121P but wouldn't be able to afford an extra cab: could an amp of this size hold its own playing punk, mod and rock? I also wondered about the Ashdown RM heads and associated cabs: does anyone have a view on these? Or alternative ideas? Thanks!

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I use a second-hand Markbass LM2 and Barefaced Compact (generation 2). Both together come in just on your budget.

[url="http://basschat.co.uk/topic/283823-24-hour-holdbarefaced-compact-cloth-grill-l325-pics-up/page__p__3040836__hl__compact__fromsearch__1#entry3040836"]http://basschat.co.u..._1#entry3040836[/url] http://basschat.co.uk/topic/284358-markbass-sa450-amp-head/page__p__3046323__hl__markbass__fromsearch__1#entry3046323

Very light and VERY loud! :)

Edited by Conan

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No idea where you are based, but there are a lot of options and not just on here.
Much more bang for buck buying used.
For example, on the following linked page (you will have to scroll quite a long way down) https://www.facebook.com/groups/689090051102626/
a chap called Steve Musgrove has a cracking rig for sale in Northampton. Markbass F1 and 2 x Eden 112's for £425.

Take your time, read as much as you can, and good luck.

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Neo 112 cabs at around 30lbs each and at least 2 of them would be my first suggestion for light and loud.

There are some Bergantino 112 cabs in the classifieds that would fit the bill and sound fantastic.

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I play in a punk band and have used Mark Bass and Ashdown in the past amongst other brands. Mark Bass tonewise seemed a little sterile to me but had plenty of volume and is obviously super lightweight. I moved over to Ashdown to an ABM, whilst I loved the tone I missed the portability of the MarkBass. Enter my current squeeze the Rootmaster EVO 500. Retains much of the characteristic of an ABM Ashdown sound I like but with added portability. I'm happy with it, haven't investigated the cabs as yet. Good luck.

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Where are you based? Some helpful Basschatters might be willing to let you try some of their gear before spending any money...

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What's your definition of light? A used 2x12 by one of the usual suspects (Barefaced, Bergantino, Vanderkley, TKS etc...) & a decent used head would be the most cost effective light/loud option but 2x12's are heavier than 1x12s (obv), 1x12s being a better modular set-up but more expensive.

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re the [color=#282828][font=helvetica, arial, sans-serif]Markbass CMD121P, I had one of these on it's own and I was drowned out by the drummer. I didn't like it one little bit, however, I now own a Markbass New York NY151 (400W) and a TC Electronics BH800 (800W). Haven't gigged it, but in practice it knocks yer socks off. Massive sound from the Markbass, nice warmth from the TC Elec, and I can carry this rig in one hand, gig bag over shoulder for amp, cab one handed too. i've had lots of rigs, light and heavy, but this set up works for me. Both came in at around £500 ish.[/font][/color]

[color=#282828][font=helvetica, arial, sans-serif]The GroovyPlucker[/font][/color]

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[quote name='PaulFenderJazz' timestamp='1462882537' post='3046561']
Hi, the age old problem of an ageing back means I need to look for a light amp/rig but I need to compete against a drummer and 2 enthusiastic guitars! I have a budget of around £600-750. I like the idea of the size and weight of the Markbass CMD121P but wouldn't be able to afford an extra cab: could an amp of this size hold its own playing punk, mod and rock? I also wondered about the Ashdown RM heads and associated cabs: does anyone have a view on these? Or alternative ideas? Thanks!
[/quote]

That combo alone... you'll be pushing it. I had one and it's great but it would be a bit short for what you want without another cab.

I'd go separates: I particularly like the MarkBass LM3 (same head as in that combo) and a capable single speaker. I love the TKS S112, it sounds great, it's light and it'll sound bigger than the combo, but one will not be enough, probably, for what you want. However they're not very expensive and they're so light and compact that carrying two is not an issue.
Otherwise, a Barefaced BigBaby2 or SuperCompact might be a good solution. Especially if you get a higher power head, as those cabs can take advantage of some extra power.

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I've just acquired a Markbass CMD 121P and like it a lot. For my main band, who are pretty quiet, it is fine on its own. Gain and volume both around 12 o'clock so room to spare, even.

I am in two other, rockier, bands with loud drummers and it wouldn't stand a chance on it's own. I have a Barefaced Supercompact (2, actually :) ) and would heartily recommend one of those to team up with your choice of class D. If it were me, I'd be looking for a GK MB Fusion 800 or TC Electronic RH750 - something with that kind of power.

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[quote name='Paul S' timestamp='1462981576' post='3047552']
I've just acquired a Markbass CMD 121P and like it a lot. For my main band, who are pretty quiet, it is fine on its own. Gain and volume both around 12 o'clock so room to spare, even.
[/quote]

with an additional speaker, yes, it'll get louder... on its own, it really does not get substantially louder once to reach the noon position on the master volume, maybe 1 o'clock max... so there isn't really much more room left, I'm afraid. It's a great amp but it has its limitations.

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Interesting. I've only rehearsed with it once and didn't need to push it that much. In fact probably got to around 1 o'clock and was asked to turn back down again. Overall I have been impressed - my next gig with this band is at a small place where we play quietly, so I'll use it there and see. Maybe take a second cab and leave it in the car, just in case.

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[quote name='Paul S' timestamp='1462983981' post='3047583']
Interesting. I've only rehearsed with it once and didn't need to push it that much. In fact probably got to around 1 o'clock and was asked to turn back down again. Overall I have been impressed - my next gig with this band is at a small place where we play quietly, so I'll use it there and see. Maybe take a second cab and leave it in the car, just in case.
[/quote]

If you don't play loudly and you can take advantage of a back wall/floor to add with bass reinforcement, you may be ok. I've used mine (I only sold it a few weeks ago, so it's still very recent in my memory) by itself a few times in small bars and it worked. But anything a bit louder and it runs out of steam.

My comment wasn't so much about what it can achieve alone, but about the notion that because the master volume it's at noon there's lots left. There isn't. You pretty much reached its limit (through its built-in speaker).

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[quote name='mcnach' timestamp='1462985650' post='3047609']
If you don't play loudly and you can take advantage of a back wall/floor to add with bass reinforcement, you may be ok. I've used mine (I only sold it a few weeks ago, so it's still very recent in my memory) by itself a few times in small bars and it worked. But anything a bit louder and it runs out of steam.

My comment wasn't so much about what it can achieve alone, but about the notion that because the master volume it's at noon there's lots left. There isn't. You pretty much reached its limit (through its built-in speaker).
[/quote]

Yes, I was with you all the way, just added some musings :)

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so many light-weight options now, just a matter of a-b ing, trying a few to see what works best for budget and sound, all good suggestions above, markbass, GK, TC Elec, Orange terror bass, all weigh next to nowt, guys in the band think I've a handbag full of cosmetics when I walk in with my gig bag containing my amp.........I told em "I Keep my hairspray and sty pen in't car at all times"...........................

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It may be worth looking at a lower powered amp, but with a better, more efficient speaker. Something like a 250/350 watt head, but with a good speaker should be plenty. I`ve used an Aguilar Tonehammer 350 with my rather noisy band no probs, and have let other bands use my backup TC BH250 and it was plenty for on-stage and small venue volumes. Admittedly these were both through a Barefaced Super12T, so plenty of capacity there.

I`ve also had the CMD121P, great little amp, I never had to push it, even when using it on its own. Ashdown RM - well I`ve heard one and love the sound. For punk it sounds just awesome.

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[quote name='The GroovyPlucker' timestamp='1462887123' post='3046638']
re the [color=#282828][font=helvetica, arial, sans-serif]Markbass CMD121P, I had one of these on it's own and I was drowned out by the drummer.[/font][/color]
[/quote]

[quote name='mcnach' timestamp='1462974439' post='3047449']
That combo alone... you'll be pushing it. I had one and it's great but it would be a bit short for what you want without another cab.
[/quote]

[quote name='Paul S' timestamp='1462981576' post='3047552']
...I am in two other, rockier, bands with loud drummers and it wouldn't stand a chance on it's own.
[/quote]

Hopefully it's not too far off-topic to ask, but what kind of size venue and type of tone are you guys going for when finding the CMD121p so lacking on its own? Please don't think I'm doubting what you're saying, I'm just genuinely interested because I've been using mine on its own for a while now and haven't had it run out of steam on me yet. I have much larger and more powerful amps/cabs, but space is usually at a premium both in transport and on stage so I'd like to use the 121p solo as much as possible, but at the same time it'd be really useful to know at what point I might end up asking too much of it and could expect a refusal - after all, there's little more annoying than owning something that would have done the job but not having taken it with you!

I play in a two-guitar melodic/power metal band at nothing-like-sedate volumes but I've never had a problem with hearing myself on stage or being heard out in the room. Of course, FoH PA support makes a difference out in the room when you've got it in larger venues, as does foldback on stage, but I've played the 121p with all permutations of those two variables and in general the EQ stays 'flat' (all at-or-very-near 12 o'clock and cut the lows if it's a boomy stage), the filters stay off, the gain stays at 1 o'clock and the master volume varies between 8 and 10 o'clock depending on the setup in the room. Tone also makes a difference and mine is generally clean with no thunderously low component, plus I only play 4 string basses in Eb with this band, but we tune down to C for some of the songs in the set and even that doesn't seem to cause me a problem.

I have other Markbass gear and completely get what you're saying about the amp being pretty much maxed-out by the time you're at 12 o'clock on the master, but I've only ever been near there once and that was when I first got my LMII years ago and still had an old cab that just didn't have the sensitivity to make the necessary noise without the application of additional wattage.

Cheers in anticipation of your thoughts :)

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[quote name='Ed_S' timestamp='1463039003' post='3047935']
Hopefully it's not too far off-topic to ask, but what kind of size venue and type of tone are you guys going for when finding the CMD121p so lacking on its own? Please don't think I'm doubting what you're saying, I'm just genuinely interested because I've been using mine on its own for a while now and haven't had it run out of steam on me yet. I have much larger and more powerful amps/cabs, but space is usually at a premium both in transport and on stage so I'd like to use the 121p solo as much as possible, but at the same time it'd be really useful to know at what point I might end up asking too much of it and could expect a refusal - after all, there's little more annoying than owning something that would have done the job but not having taken it with you!

I play in a two-guitar melodic/power metal band at nothing-like-sedate volumes but I've never had a problem with hearing myself on stage or being heard out in the room. Of course, FoH PA support makes a difference out in the room when you've got it in larger venues, as does foldback on stage, but I've played the 121p with all permutations of those two variables and in general the EQ stays 'flat' (all at-or-very-near 12 o'clock and cut the lows if it's a boomy stage), the filters stay off, the gain stays at 1 o'clock and the master volume varies between 8 and 10 o'clock depending on the setup in the room. Tone also makes a difference and mine is generally clean with no thunderously low component, plus I only play 4 string basses in Eb with this band, but we tune down to C for some of the songs in the set and even that doesn't seem to cause me a problem.

I have other Markbass gear and completely get what you're saying about the amp being pretty much maxed-out by the time you're at 12 o'clock on the master, but I've only ever been near there once and that was when I first got my LMII years ago and still had an old cab that just didn't have the sensitivity to make the necessary noise without the application of additional wattage.

Cheers in anticipation of your thoughts :)
[/quote]

I'm surprised you get heard clearly out front without PA with the master between 8-9 and input gain at 1.
With PA, no problem. I bought that amp mostly as I generally only needed a stage monitor and it worked beautifully for that, and so easy to carry. But without PA... it sounds good on stage but get out in the floor (wireless) and you don't disappear entirely but there's no 'mass' to it at all. My experiences are largely with a ska(ish) band with a drummer, three guitarists/vocals, two trumpets and a sax. Lots of people but not necessarily very very loud. My EQ on that amp was generally flat (occasionally bumping/cutting something, a tiny bit), and filters off. In our music the bass is prominent and the little combo can't do it alone. I honestly cannot imagine any band except for quieter jazzy ones being able to pull it off. That speaker is pretty good, but it's a tiny enclosure (a great part of the combo is taken up by the amp, it's a lot smaller than the 'equal size' extension cabinet in fact)...

I needed an extension cab if I had no PA support and we were not playing but the smallest rooms.

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[quote name='mcnach' timestamp='1463042468' post='3047967']
I'm surprised you get heard clearly out front without PA with the master between 8-9 and input gain at 1.
With PA, no problem. I bought that amp mostly as I generally only needed a stage monitor and it worked beautifully for that, and so easy to carry. But without PA... it sounds good on stage but get out in the floor (wireless) and you don't disappear entirely but there's no 'mass' to it at all. My experiences are largely with a ska(ish) band with a drummer, three guitarists/vocals, two trumpets and a sax. Lots of people but not necessarily very very loud. My EQ on that amp was generally flat (occasionally bumping/cutting something, a tiny bit), and filters off. In our music the bass is prominent and the little combo can't do it alone. I honestly cannot imagine any band except for quieter jazzy ones being able to pull it off. That speaker is pretty good, but it's a tiny enclosure (a great part of the combo is taken up by the amp, it's a lot smaller than the 'equal size' extension cabinet in fact)...

I needed an extension cab if I had no PA support and we were not playing but the smallest rooms.
[/quote]

I guess that all kinda makes sense; the larger rooms tend to be the ones where we have PA support for the backline because the venue is expecting to need it, at which point the sound guy can add as much additional volume and bottom end as he sees fit without making me suffer it on stage, whereas the smaller rooms where the backline has to do its job and only vocals go through the PA are of a size that the amp can handle with just a bit of a push on the master volume, plus they usually have smaller stages so my rig is more than likely against a wall, which may help. I do usually play wireless and go walkabout in the room during soundcheck to make sure it's all coming through as we'd want, so I'm confident that on the smaller gigs I've not just been [i]hoping[/i] I was coming through ;)

So I suppose I'm looking out for 200ish+ capacity venues with weedy house PA systems as the warning sign that I might want to pack the Super 12 instead.

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I am new to mine and, other than home practice, I have only used it for one rehearsal with one band. But even so I can compare how it performed to other amps/cabs/combos I have used in the same situation as, with that band, we always rehearse in the same room in the same studio. So the CMD121P with volume at 12 o'clock was loud enough for this one band in that rehearsal room but, as indicated above, it will probably run out of steam very soon. To get the same presence in the band from the Fender Rumble 500 I had briefly I had the master on around 11 o'clock. Using my Trace Elliot AH-300 into a Barefaced Supercompact I have the master vol on the TE set at 8 o'clock, with tons more available on tap.

I may be wrong, but I feel I can then project that one direct comparison to how I need to set up the Trace Elliot/Supercompact at the various smallish venues I play with that band. Usually I turn up a little or leave it the same, so I think the CMD121P would cut it for those gigs - small pubs where 100 would be crowded.

But I also know how much I need to turn up the volume for my other bands and I know that the CMD121P wouldn't be loud enough. For example, in my loud 'classic rock' covers band I need to have the Trace Elliot to 1 or 2 o'clock. I had to use the Rumble with the master pretty much on full but it started to object and was better with an extension cab. Which is very loud but has to be because the drummer doesn't do soft. That is even with PA support and just using it as stage monitor.

I guess all this means that 'loudness' is a subjective thing right up until you start metering it, which would be a bit silly.

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[quote name='Paul S' timestamp='1463045395' post='3048001']
I am new to mine and, other than home practice, I have only used it for one rehearsal with one band. But even so I can compare how it performed to other amps/cabs/combos I have used in the same situation as, with that band, we always rehearse in the same room in the same studio. So the CMD121P with volume at 12 o'clock was loud enough for this one band in that rehearsal room but, as indicated above, it will probably run out of steam very soon. To get the same presence in the band from the Fender Rumble 500 I had briefly I had the master on around 11 o'clock. Using my Trace Elliot AH-300 into a Barefaced Supercompact I have the master vol on the TE set at 8 o'clock, with tons more available on tap.

I may be wrong, but I feel I can then project that one direct comparison to how I need to set up the Trace Elliot/Supercompact at the various smallish venues I play with that band. Usually I turn up a little or leave it the same, so I think the CMD121P would cut it for those gigs - small pubs where 100 would be crowded.

But I also know how much I need to turn up the volume for my other bands and I know that the CMD121P wouldn't be loud enough. For example, in my loud 'classic rock' covers band I need to have the Trace Elliot to 1 or 2 o'clock. I had to use the Rumble with the master pretty much on full but it started to object and was better with an extension cab. Which is very loud but has to be because the drummer doesn't do soft. That is even with PA support and just using it as stage monitor.

I guess all this means that 'loudness' is a subjective thing right up until you start metering it, which would be a bit silly.
[/quote]

I think you're definitely right that it's all very subjective, but the fact that you're talking about it doing ok with a 100ish capacity venue is hanging about right what what I've experienced, though I seem to have been getting away with running a little less on the master volume, maybe due to size and shape of room/stage, which I suppose might have given me a distorted view of how much the combo has left to give; in itself a useful thing to bear in mind!

As above, it's all still pointing to me potentially needing to take something bigger for backline-only gigs in bigger rooms, but on the back of this thread I might take the combo along to next rehearsal and see what it can actually do when you turn it up past noon.

Cheers both for your thoughts - appreciated!

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I use a Fender Rumble 500 with a T E 1x15 ext cab in a Punk Band with a very loud drummer never run out of steam (I have without the ext cab), in fact I get asked to turn down sometimes :angry:

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[quote name='PaulWarning' timestamp='1463048079' post='3048033']
I use a Fender Rumble 500 with a T E 1x15 ext cab in a Punk Band with a very loud drummer never run out of steam (I have without the ext cab), in fact I get asked to turn down sometimes :angry:
[/quote]

Was just about to mention the rumble 500 combo it's light and loud without the extension cab. I've not gigged one but plenty say it's loud enough on its own.

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[quote name='Twincam' timestamp='1463050562' post='3048059']
Was just about to mention the rumble 500 combo it's light and loud without the extension cab. I've not gigged one but plenty say it's loud enough on its own.
[/quote]it usually is, but like I said we've got a loud drummer and couple of times I've been near the limit so I take an extension cab now for a bit of headroom, I've also used a 200 watt GP12 Trace Elliot head using the Rumble as an extension cab and I would say that's even louder, T E watts don't you just luv em?

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