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Al Krow

Hybrid amps...the best of all worlds?

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Cheers Al for putting up with my playing!

I am biased but a defo +1 for the Two Notes Le Bass for an addition to a board which may give you what you want if you have an existing amp.

It's a big footprint, will take 2 slots on your power brick as it's a 500mA draw, but it's really worth it with what sounds you can get.

If you don't like the numbers money wise, new it's about £250, I got mine second hand for £140, then check out the Hartke VXL, at under £100 new or I got mine for £40 second hand it does a pretty good job and has a DI and parallel output so that could be all you need in a gig

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Paul I would love to hear the Four:88 in action. It does sound wonderful (if not a little pricey!) Three Qs if I may - did you get from a UK supplier, what cabs are your pairing it with and at 250W does it give you all the headroom you need?



I've not had it long. Mainly used at home - not at band volume but not too softly either as fortunately we are detached and Mrs S goes out to work... I got it secondhand from obbm Dave who answered my plea! I use it with a Barefaced Supercompact and, for the first and only loud rehearsal I have used it for, had it switched to full power. I had the gain around 1 o'clock, master on about 1.5 on a scale of 0-10 and it was too loud. That was in a small gig sized rehearsal space where we set up and play as though at a gig. Next time (Monday night and all day Wednesday coming) I will try it switched to half power and see how far I need the master turned up. I don't think headroom is going to be a problem! I have a second Supercompact that I may or may not have to use for bigger gigs. I probably will, though :)

I see you are in East London - if you want to hear it in action I am gigging at a family fun day at Police HQ in Chelmsford on 5th August with my Bon Jovi tribute band (we re treating it as a 'dress rehearsal' for our first proper gig we have looming up quickly!) and The Miley in Rochford on 11th with my little band, also 12th at the Golden Lion in Hoddesdon. Edited by Dad3353

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Guest bassman7755


My HandBox R-400 sounds beautiful - like, really beautiful - not like any head I've owned before. I wonder what it would sound like entirely SS?

My guess is as they've gone to the effort of shoe-horning three valves into it, it's having some effect on the tone.



Or they put them in there because a certain proportion of their target market wont buy an amp without valves in. Really over the years I've heard countless hybrid bass and guitar amps with valves in the preamps and the best of them is no better than the best all-SS amps for example I used to own an SVT PRO all valve preamp and yeah it was great but you probably couldn't tell it apart from say a sansamp pedal/preamp with your eyes closed. Thing is there are scientific explanations as to why valve power amps are extremely hard to replicate but valve preamps - not really, they arnt doing anything that you cant do with a fet or a germanium diode.
. Edited by Dad3353

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There is also - correct me if I'm wrong - another approach used in the likes of the Walkabout, which runs the valves at a higher voltage.. is that right?

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I see you are in East London - if you want to hear it in action I am gigging at a family fun day at Police HQ in Chelmsford on 5th August with my Bon Jovi tribute band (we re treating it as a 'dress rehearsal' for our first proper gig we have looming up quickly!) and The Miley in Rochford on 11th with my little band, also 12th at the Golden Lion in Hoddesdon.



Be delighted to - August likely to be a little tricky with hols etc. But please feel free to pm me with your Sept dates and I'll definitely try to get along to one of your gigs. Living on a Prayer is a staple in one of my cover bands' set, so I look forward to hearing it done properly! :)

Edited by Dad3353

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I think the takeway summary is that having an actual valve in the preamp part of an amp makes no odds and wont make it sound any more "valvey" than and all-SS amp with a well designed drive circuit.



Can't really disagree with that. I think that I'd be going for the Mesa D800+ but IMHO their UK pricing policy fits neatly into the 'rip-off Britain' school of marketing. Not so with the Magellan 800 and it's likely that my hard-earned money will be going to that nice Mr. Genzler :) Edited by Dad3353

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Or they put them in there because a certain proportion of their target market wont buy an amp without valves in. Really over the years I've heard countless hybrid bass and guitar amps with valves in the preamps and the best of them is no better than the best all-SS amps for example I used to own an SVT PRO all valve preamp and yeah it was great but you probably couldn't tell it apart from say a sansamp pedal/preamp with your eyes closed. Thing is there are scientific explanations as to why valve power amps are extremely hard to replicate but valve preamps - not really, they arnt doing anything that you cant do with a fet or a germanium diode.
.



I really don't think a valve(s) in the preamp make a noticeable difference to the sound. I have four heads, one of them, my Mesa Walkabout, has three valves in the preamp although at least one is used in the MOSFET switching circuit, but I doubt that the Walkabout sound is due to the presence of valves at all.

I'm thinking about going all solid state and selling the Mesa. I can't believe I just typed that... :o :o :o

Frank. Edited by Dad3353

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Slight apology for gratuitously dishing out some victim's blood to resurrect this mummified thread (speaking of which @Dad3353, would you mind very kindly doing your refresh thing please?). It would interesting to in seeing if any of the posters on this thread ended up going down / staying with the hybrid route themselves.

But I've just come across this clip of the all British Laney SL and it's such a versatile and great sounding all-in-one amp loaded with some excellent very gig-able features. At 12 lbs it's also a very manageable weight and can deliver a ridiculous 1000W through a pair of 4 ohm cabs. My only 'gripe' is that I'm not sure that power can be bridged to deliver 500W to 600W through a single 8 cab, which would have been a really 'nice to have'. Hmmm...tempted to get in touch with them to see if this is something they might upgrade their amp to deliver.

I just love the touches such as a stand-by switch which leaves the tube section on and warmed up ready to use. 

 

Edited by Al Krow

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59 minutes ago, Al Krow said:

...would you mind very kindly doing your refresh thing please?...

Done. B|

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Great review by our very own Dood.

Comes with some useful effects: octave down gets down to an open E (24.30) without glitching, that easily matches the tracking of the best analogue octave pedals. 5th up plus reverb or chorus are also really neat.

Tilt control to weight things to the treble (useful for boomy venues) or bass.

Preset EQ in the form of the shape control in tribute to the Mesa M6.

Fully sweepable mids although not sure where the bass and treble EQs are centred.

A LOT of amp and given its versatility not outrageous in price.

Edited by Al Krow

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I've given Laney a little nudge on the Bridge Power function (a là the Eich 1000) and been told they're going to look into it, as it's a point that's been previously raised.

I'm going to blame @Dood if I end up getting this rather fully featured amp!

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19 minutes ago, Al Krow said:

I've given Laney a little nudge on the Bridge Power function (a là the Eich 1000) and been told they're going to look into it, as it's a point that's been previously raised.

I'm going to blame @Dood if I end up getting this rather fully featured amp!

I do rate the SL and the SLS. Some brilliant and forward thinking features! I would have loved to have seen the power amp sections also splittable with a stereo effects loop as well. This would have opened up the Studio/Live range to even more musicians, for example those running dual/parallel type rigs or even messing about in stereo alone which is great fun. :) I liked the tone of these too. 

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