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What's the best class D bass amp head you've used?

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41 minutes ago, Dan Dare said:

Whenever I hear someone playing through a Markbass, I'm always impressed by the sound. They just seem to fill the space and also do warm/vintage tones very well. Up close/in the showroom, they don't audition any better than many others (no worse, I hasten to add), but they do have a certain something when used in anger. I have a Carvin B1000 which I really like tonally (nice preamp with 6 band eq). My meat and potatoes head is an AG700. I must A/B it against a Markbass one day (which will probably cost me money...).

I should also state that i play in a motown/funk / soul band. So the warm and vintage sound is what i aim for.
I dont know how these amps would stand up against the others for a different type of sound.
 

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7 minutes ago, FuNkShUi said:

I should also state that i play in a motown/funk / soul band. So the warm and vintage sound is what i aim for.
I dont know how these amps would stand up against the others for a different type of sound.

The LM2 / LM3 is going to be perfect for what you're doing (as you already know!). 

The EQ gap between upper mids at 800Hz and treble at 10 kHz (which is way too high) effectively gives a pointless treble control, is the key issue for me. But nothing that a half decent EQ pedal can't sort. I'd also personally prefer the low EQ at 40 Hz to be centred at 65 Hz to 80 Hz

MB have completely sorted these points with some of their current line up. 

Edited by Al Krow
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25 minutes ago, Al Krow said:

The LM2 / LM3 is going to be perfect for what you're doing (as you already know!). 

The EQ gap between upper mids at 800Hz and treble at 10 kHz (which is way too high) effectively gives a pointless treble control, is the key issue for me. But nothing that a half decent EQ pedal can't sort. I'd also personally prefer the low EQ at 40 Hz to be centred at 65 Hz to 80 Hz

MB have completely sorted these points with some of their current line up. 

Yup.

 

Just get a Marcus Miller model. Job done.

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I loved my Mk1 Orange Terror Bass. Had an amazing heavy, bluesy, rock tone. Regretted selling it for more versatility i.e. Mark Bass TTE500. Which was a lovely looking amp but lacked grit or bottom end punch even though it had pre amp valves too :( 

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Genz  Shuttlemax 9.2  - without doubt.  2  separate preamps with very versatile EQ, and plenty of headroom  ( 900 watts at 4 ohms )

Dial-able mid scoop at the flick of the footswitch.  Dial-able bass boost at the flick of the footswitch. Dial-able top end boost at the flick of the footswitch.  Combine both preamps at the flick of  the footswitch.

Thing only weighs 7lbs

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8 minutes ago, fleabag said:

Genz  Shuttlemax 9.2  - without doubt.  2  separate preamps with very versatile EQ, and plenty of headroom  ( 900 watts at 4 ohms )

Dial-able mid scoop at the flick of the footswitch.  Dial-able bass boost at the flick of the footswitch. Dial-able top end boost at the flick of the footswitch.  Combine both preamps at the flick of  the footswitch.

Thing only weighs 7lbs

and how heavy is the amp? 😂

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Thing is 2.5 tons.  Amp is 7lbs    :)

 

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4 hours ago, dave_bass5 said:

Pretty much how ive always used MB heads (ive had 3). I have used a preamp in front though.

Exactly my experience with MB heads (LM, LM Tube, etc) - I found the preamp I used was always on (for assorted tones, a fair amount of rock), which suggested to me I was simply using the wrong amp...

I did like the F1, tho - I was using my iPad with BIAS software as a modeller to get the core tone, and the F1 (filters off, EQ set flat) provided the amplification...and it's very, very small...

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4 hours ago, Al Krow said:

The LM2 / LM3 is going to be perfect for what you're doing (as you already know!). 

The EQ gap between upper mids at 800Hz and treble at 10 kHz (which is way too high) effectively gives a pointless treble control, is the key issue for me. But nothing that a half decent EQ pedal can't sort. I'd also personally prefer the low EQ at 40 Hz to be centred at 65 Hz to 80 Hz

MB have completely sorted these points with some of their current line up. 

4 hours ago, fretmeister said:

Just get a Marcus Miller model. Job done.

Just had a quick look on the MB website and the current line up spec sheet. There seem to be only two models of the current new range which deliver the improved EQ settings: the Little Marcus and the Stu Amp 1000. The rest of them still have the 'old EQ'.

Did you get a Marcus Miller Gold Line 800W @fretmeister? These are no longer appearing on the MB website from what I can tell, but still available from some retailers (e.g. Andertons). Although the Little Marcus heads seem to be identical in spec, other than being a bit less 'posh'. 

A new Little Marcus 800 is £525 new. My DG AO900 is pretty much literally double the price. And if I felt like pushing the boat out on power the Little Marcus 1000 is around £650 new from Thomann. Hmmm...

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7 hours ago, FuNkShUi said:

Markbass LM2.
I know!!! 
But i didn't know that's what i wanted until i realised i didn't want the other ones.
That's what i'm telling myself anyway!
I just find it really simple to use.
 adjust the VPL and/or VPF to suit.
It was an absolute bargain at 250 schmackers with a case.
Its extremely reliable. Never let me down and generally play about 40 or 50 weddings a year.
Extremely lightweight.
Whats not to love?

Special mention for the Puma too though, as i did really like that amp. Very similar in that it had a "taste" knob instead of the two filters
 

Just remembered one key point which actually disqualifies the LM2 from this thread.. 

... it’s not a Class D amp. 

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7 hours ago, FuNkShUi said:

I should also state that i play in a motown/funk / soul band. So the warm and vintage sound is what i aim for.
I dont know how these amps would stand up against the others for a different type of sound.
 

Orange Terror Bass and Aguilar TH series are great for that. The Quilter Bass Block too, or so I hear!

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11 hours ago, dannybuoy said:

 

VT500 has an awesome preamp, cos it's basically a VTDI with an added mid shift. But it struggled volume wise for me and lacked that elusive 'heft'!

Depends on the required volume

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I've been disappointed by most of the Class D amps I've owned.

I wasn't impressed by any of the three Mesas I've owned, after the honeymoon period I found the Genz Benz 3.0 characterless, the TC similar. I bought a Markbass on recommendation by a close friend - sold it shortly after - as he did with his when I pointed out what I thought were it's shortcomings. Don't even start me on the Darkglass...

Having said this I thought both the Glocks I had were very impressive - IMO a class above most of the competition - would highly recommend them for the warm tones and range. 

Surprisingly good was the Tecamp Puma brought along to one of the Herts Bashes by Ordep - not sure if it was the Class D or the valve model though.

 

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Another vote for the TecAmp Puma. A/Bed mine against an Aguilar TH and a MB amp (can't remember which) when I was amp shopping and the TecAmp just edged it over the TH. 

Cheap, lightweight and decent sound flat with a versatile set of EQ options. 

Edited by RichValentine

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4 hours ago, Al Krow said:

Just had a quick look on the MB website and the current line up spec sheet. There seem to be only two models of the current new range which deliver the improved EQ settings: the Little Marcus and the Stu Amp 1000. The rest of them still have the 'old EQ'.

Did you get a Marcus Miller Gold Line 800W @fretmeister? These are no longer appearing on the MB website from what I can tell, but still available from some retailers (e.g. Andertons). Although the Little Marcus heads seem to be identical in spec, other than being a bit less 'posh'. 

A new Little Marcus 800 is £525 new. My DG AO900 is pretty much literally double the price. And if I felt like pushing the boat out on power the Little Marcus 1000 is around £650 new from Thomann. Hmmm...

I did get the gold line.

 

They are different. Has a semi parametric instead of the Millerizer scoop control.

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Currently back on a Mark Bass kick with an LM2. Been using a Shuttle 6 for a couple of years with the LM as the back up spare but they've now changed places. Easy to use, no reliability issues and a tone for every occasion although the GB is better for EUB on the odd cocktail gig. 

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1 hour ago, TheGreek said:

I wasn't impressed by any of the three Mesas I've owned, after the honeymoon period I found the Genz Benz 3.0 characterless, the TC similar.

Maybe that is why I like the TC. I don't really want it to add any character.

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11 hours ago, fretmeister said:

I did get the gold line. They are different. Has a semi parametric instead of the Millerizer scoop control.

They both look like great amps to me! 5 band EQ with centre points pretty much where I would want them:

EQ1 level ±16 db.

Bass: 65hz: low mid: 180hz; mid 500 hz; high mid:1.4 khz; treble: 3.8 khz

EQ2  ‘Old school’: variable low pass from 20khz to 200hz (for Motown / vintage)

Differences:

LM800 Millerizer: 5-12 KHz band pass filter (mid scoop e.g. for slap)

MM 800 (for your extra £150): semi para mids & gold plated connections plus an Iron Man finish!

 

I think where my amp journey is taking me is: D class portability and meaty power amp with plenty of head room to drive a single 8ohm cab, so there is never a need to thrash the amp. Decent clean preamp (for me: warm / valve preferable to hifi) with usable EQ and job done. 

I'm finding that the additional bells and whistles on an amp are done with so much more versatility and variety by pedals. In particular, drive tone is very individual and often bass dependent so the chance of your amp providing exactly what you're after is going to be a lottery.

I've had a MB LM3 and couldn't fault its build quality and tone. I kinda feel that the LM 800 / MM800 have taken all the best bits of the LM3 and dealt with the EQ limitations to produce an outstanding amp and, in the case of the LM 800, very good value. Thanks to the OP for starting this thread, I think I may have found my next D class amp :) 

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Have you considered the Ashdown OriginAL head? it looks pants, but when i compared it to my Rumble, and mates MB Little Mark Vintage (through his cabs and my CN212 the Ashdown had so much punch and body to it i was a bit of a shock.

Then again the MB was very disappointing as well. in fact my mate sent it back

Edited by dave_bass5
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Clean, powerful response : GK MB800

Loud gritty rock tone: Orange Terror Bass 500w

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25 minutes ago, dave_bass5 said:

Have you considered the Ashdown OriginAL head? it looks pants, but when i compared it to my Rumble, and mates MB Little Mark Vintage (through his cabs and my CN212 the Ashdown had so much punch and body to it i was a bit of a shock.

Then again the MB was very disappointing as well. in fact my mate sent it back

Well it's not in your stack of amps from earlier, so no... 😄 

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It may be soon 🙂
Oh, and if you do want to borrow my MB800 you’re welcome to it  for a few weeks 

Edited by dave_bass5
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2 hours ago, Al Krow said:

They both look like great amps to me! 5 band EQ with centre points pretty much where I would want them:

EQ1 level ±16 db.

Bass: 65hz: low mid: 180hz; mid 500 hz; high mid:1.4 khz; treble: 3.8 khz

EQ2  ‘Old school’: variable low pass from 20khz to 200hz (for Motown / vintage)

Differences:

LM800 Millerizer: 5-12 KHz band pass filter (mid scoop e.g. for slap)

MM 800 (for your extra £150): semi para mids & gold plated connections plus an Iron Man finish!

 

I think where my amp journey is taking me is: D class portability and meaty power amp with plenty of head room to drive a single 8ohm cab, so there is never a need to thrash the amp. Decent clean preamp (for me: warm / valve preferable to hifi) with usable EQ and job done. 

I'm finding that the additional bells and whistles on an amp are done with so much more versatility and variety by pedals. In particular, drive tone is very individual and often bass dependent so the chance of your amp providing exactly what you're after is going to be a lottery.

I've had a MB LM3 and couldn't fault its build quality and tone. I kinda feel that the LM 800 / MM800 have taken all the best bits of the LM3 and dealt with the EQ limitations to produce an outstanding amp and, in the case of the LM 800, very good value. Thanks to the OP for starting this thread, I think I may have found my next D class amp :) 

What extra £150?

 

I ordered the original Marcus 800. The shop contacted me to say they didn't have any but they had spoken to the distributor and they would like to offer me the Gold Line version for the same money!

 

So I said yes!

 

My Sandberg is getting an upgrade this weekend (EMG preamp to go with the EMG pickups) so it will be interesting to see how it all works together.

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27 minutes ago, fretmeister said:

What extra £150? 

Check the online prices for a LM 800 vs MM 800 (gold line), they're about £150 apart. 

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Lovely to be able to meet up with fellow BC'er this morning and get a chance to A/B our D class heads.

Both amps sounded really good (using my Yammy BB1025 and BF SC). The key differentiator for me was the greater versatility of the DG AO900 with its 6 band EQ and ability to blend in anything from a touch of grit to full on AO drive. 

"You've got a LOT of usable sounds from that amp". Yup. 

Wasn't expecting that end from the A/B as the other amp has a great pedigree too, but good to be reminded of how good our existing kit is sometimes, and maybe the grass isn't always greener eh? 

@dave_bass5probably won't be needing a loan of your MB head just yet after all, a certain DG amp got withdrawn from fleabay earlier today and will likely be surviving a little longer in the crow household 😉

Edited by Al Krow
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