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notfadeaway
Junior
Username: notfadeaway

Post Number: 28
Registered: 5-2012
Posted on Monday, June 18, 2012 - 5:17 pm:   Edit Post

Hi folks, I am in the process of getting an Alembic preamp. Do you pros recommend a power amp that pairs well with either the F1X or Superfilter? Any advice is greatly appreciated.
edwin
Senior Member
Username: edwin

Post Number: 1197
Registered: 5-2002
Posted on Monday, June 18, 2012 - 6:41 pm:   Edit Post

My favorites for sound are McIntosh and Crest. However, there are more portable options. These days I'm using the install equivalent of the QSC PL2 and it's great. I also used a Crown XTi4000 (see classifieds) which worked very well and is very versatile, in terms of the DSP.

In this day and age, most modern power amps that aren't the cheapest series in a brand do very well.
notfadeaway
Junior
Username: notfadeaway

Post Number: 29
Registered: 5-2012
Posted on Monday, June 18, 2012 - 9:05 pm:   Edit Post

Thanks edwin... Food for thought. I remember Crest from the old days. True lead sleds weren't they? Could you elaborate more on what using the install equivalent means. Not sure I understand that part. Thanks so much.
jazzyvee
Senior Member
Username: jazzyvee

Post Number: 2969
Registered: 6-2002
Posted on Monday, June 18, 2012 - 10:28 pm:   Edit Post

I've found QSC PLX2402 very good and clean with loads of headroom. But I haven't gigged with it a great amount or played at loud volumes and the sound quality is extremely good at low volumes and from a noise point of view i've found it very quiet.
I use it with F1-x and sf-2
http://www.qscaudio.com/products/amps/plx/plx.htm

Jazzyvee
dnburgess
Senior Member
Username: dnburgess

Post Number: 684
Registered: 1-2003
Posted on Monday, June 18, 2012 - 10:53 pm:   Edit Post

Jazzy - I tried an F1X with a few QSC poweramps over the years - and I never found them as loud as their rated outputs would seem to suggest. I put it down to switchmode amp watts being subjectively different to normal solid state amp watts in a similar way that solid state amp watts are different to valve amp watts.

The same might be said for the new generation micro bass heads. They just don't seem to be particularly loud for their rated output. e.g. An all valve 100W amp will take your head of - but a 300W switchmode, not so much.

I wonder whether others have the same experience?
edwin
Senior Member
Username: edwin

Post Number: 1198
Registered: 5-2002
Posted on Monday, June 18, 2012 - 11:58 pm:   Edit Post

The install version means that it came with screw terminal inputs and outputs and is designed to run at 70V or 130V for running long chains of transformer isolated speakers. A lot of amps set up for this won't really work that well for bass (or PA) work, but the QSC CX1202V is essentially a Powerlight 236 Series II. All I needed to do was drop in the Speakon output connectors and 1/4" inputs and I was good to go. The circuit boards in the amp were all set to install them. So, at 700 watts per channel at 8 ohms, it's plenty powerful and the low end is incredibly present. It's pretty close to the Crest CA9 lead sled I was using.

I have used a PLX 2402 in the past and it never felt like it gave me the bottom end at concert levels that other amps have. The CX1202V is a switch mode amp, but it seems to really deliver. I think there is a performance difference between the Powerlight and PLX series. Maybe the new PLX series are better.
pierreyves
Senior Member
Username: pierreyves

Post Number: 1071
Registered: 11-2006
Posted on Tuesday, June 19, 2012 - 12:29 am:   Edit Post

the best choice I never had: CARVIN DCML 3800 6kg (!!) et 2 X 1200 Watts @ 4 ohms and not expensive, about 900, sheaper in USA
http://www.batraciens-reptiles.com/rack3.jpg
light weight, no heat, no noise, perfect and great sound
cozmik_cowboy
Senior Member
Username: cozmik_cowboy

Post Number: 1229
Registered: 10-2006
Posted on Tuesday, June 19, 2012 - 6:34 am:   Edit Post

Your turn, Wolf.

Peter
notfadeaway
Junior
Username: notfadeaway

Post Number: 30
Registered: 5-2012
Posted on Tuesday, June 19, 2012 - 6:46 am:   Edit Post

Keep the ideas coming please. I gotta figure out something fairly quickly.
mtjam
Junior
Username: mtjam

Post Number: 37
Registered: 11-2011
Posted on Tuesday, June 19, 2012 - 7:18 am:   Edit Post

I recently bought an F1-X and found myself wondering what power amp to get. I read about how I could connect the preamp to my Eden's effects return, bypassing the Eden's preamp and just using the power section of the bass head I already owned. I have found this works great and it saved me the expense of buying a power amp in addition to the F1-X. This also gives me the option of using the Alembic preamp with either of my Eden heads, or my Carvin combo (which also has an effects return). This is the sound I have been seeking for many years! Furthermore, I put the F1-X in a rack bag, which keeps it lightweight and very portable.

Since I got the F1-X, I have used it every time I play my basses. It has really added to the tonal flexibility of my Alembics, and brought new life to the passive basses I have played less and less since becoming an Alembic owner.

You could give this a try, but if you are determined to go with a pre and power amp setup, the suggestions here are excellent. My ultimate setup would be, like Edwin recommends, a McIntosh or Crest power amp with the F1-X. I am assuming you are a huge Lesh fan like myself, and I'm sure such a setup would bring you closer to that sound if you wanted it. Enjoy that F1-X; I know I really like mine!
notfadeaway
Junior
Username: notfadeaway

Post Number: 31
Registered: 5-2012
Posted on Tuesday, June 19, 2012 - 7:33 am:   Edit Post

Yes, I am getting the F1X. Yes, I am a huge Lesh fan. Just look at my username! :-) Love your username too!
notfadeaway
Junior
Username: notfadeaway

Post Number: 32
Registered: 5-2012
Posted on Tuesday, June 19, 2012 - 7:43 am:   Edit Post

I am also going to be using the SF2, if that changes anything...
funkyjazzjunky
Senior Member
Username: funkyjazzjunky

Post Number: 781
Registered: 5-2007
Posted on Tuesday, June 19, 2012 - 8:10 am:   Edit Post

I second the Carvin recommedation.
notfadeaway
Junior
Username: notfadeaway

Post Number: 34
Registered: 5-2012
Posted on Tuesday, June 19, 2012 - 8:45 am:   Edit Post

What do you guys know about old Carver amps? I have read that they pair well with the F1X.
hammer
Intermediate Member
Username: hammer

Post Number: 157
Registered: 9-2009
Posted on Tuesday, June 19, 2012 - 12:07 pm:   Edit Post

I'm certainly no expert in this area but based on my personal experiences a lot of this is dependent on: (a) the venues at which you will be playing; (b) the cabs you are going to use and how much power they need;(c) how much $$$/Euros you have available; and (d) how strong a back you have (unless of course you have your own roadies to do the heavy lifting). I use a Yamaha 7000s which in bridged mode provides more than enough power to drive my Phil Jones cabs and I picked it up used for just under $500. Now I'm not going to playing in any stadium venues, but the Yamaha provides clean sound, it doesn't weigh that much, and is powerful enough for me to be heard in just about any situation. If I had to make one recommendation I'd say that it's a lot better to buy as much clean power as you can afford than to end up under powered and in search of another/additional power amp.
notfadeaway
Junior
Username: notfadeaway

Post Number: 35
Registered: 5-2012
Posted on Tuesday, June 19, 2012 - 2:47 pm:   Edit Post

Everything is in flux for me now. I got the Alembic bass, then preamp and superfilter. I have a decent cabinet for practice, but none for gigs anymore. Right now I want to aim for enough juice for small venues. I have played the Phil Jones stuff and loved it. Out of my price range for now. Just going to get some sort of power amp. Hammer's advice about buying as much clean power as affordable will be taken to heart. How much is overkill? I see some power amps with unbelievably high specs.
sonicus
Senior Member
Username: sonicus

Post Number: 2517
Registered: 5-2009
Posted on Tuesday, June 19, 2012 - 4:57 pm:   Edit Post

HI friends ,
This is a popular topic here and has been discussed a few times ; My comments are in these old threads. ( sorry , I am too tired right now to write any new reviews) http://alembic.com/club/messages/449/129915.html?1335704373

Wolf
sonicus
Senior Member
Username: sonicus

Post Number: 2518
Registered: 5-2009
Posted on Tuesday, June 19, 2012 - 5:01 pm:   Edit Post

More !
http://alembic.com/cgi-bin/alembic-club/show.cgi?393/74059
notfadeaway
Junior
Username: notfadeaway

Post Number: 36
Registered: 5-2012
Posted on Tuesday, June 19, 2012 - 5:04 pm:   Edit Post

Thanks sonicus!
sonicus
Senior Member
Username: sonicus

Post Number: 2519
Registered: 5-2009
Posted on Tuesday, June 19, 2012 - 5:21 pm:   Edit Post

You are welcome , There might be a local deal on an older gem just around the corner!
notfadeaway
Junior
Username: notfadeaway

Post Number: 37
Registered: 5-2012
Posted on Tuesday, June 19, 2012 - 5:28 pm:   Edit Post

I have sure been combing CL and trying to make some trade deals with folks on other lists I haunt.
hieronymous
Senior Member
Username: hieronymous

Post Number: 1129
Registered: 1-2005
Posted on Tuesday, June 19, 2012 - 6:44 pm:   Edit Post

I don't have much to offer - I don't have much experience using my Alembic pres live, though I've done it. In rehearsal I've used my F-2B with the power amp section of my Glockenklang Soul Head with pretty good results. One thing I don't like is that when you do it that, way all the controls on the Glock are diabled, so no master volume - it's controlled via the F-2B's volume knob. Not necessarily a bad thing, just catches me off-guard.

What I wanted to say is that when my band opened for Edwin's band Shockra back in the early-'90s, I was blown away by his sound. He let me play through his rig, and I thought, "THIS is the way it's supposed to be!" I'm almost certain it was an Alembic preamp through some power amp - blew me away! And I'm sure he has kept tweaking the rig through the present day! (Wolf's setup ain't bad either - he's kind enough to bring it to the Alembic Gatherings.)
essenceman
Member
Username: essenceman

Post Number: 73
Registered: 10-2002
Posted on Wednesday, June 20, 2012 - 5:58 am:   Edit Post

I've been using a Yamaha P5000s since 2006 with my F1-X SF-2 combination. It sounds great and has never given me any trouble. I use a couple of old, small EA cabs - the 1x10 and 2x8. Wonderful sound.
notfadeaway
Junior
Username: notfadeaway

Post Number: 38
Registered: 5-2012
Posted on Wednesday, June 20, 2012 - 6:03 am:   Edit Post

Thanks essenceman. I also have an EA Wizzy 12M right now... Love it.
davehouck
Moderator
Username: davehouck

Post Number: 10761
Registered: 5-2002
Posted on Wednesday, June 20, 2012 - 1:31 pm:   Edit Post

I use the QSC PLX2402, and it has been sufficient for my needs. You mentioned Carver amps, I have two PM-900s (that I would like to let go of) (manual pdf) and when Art comes over he plays through my F-1X into a PM-900. He hasn't brought his bass over in a while, but my recollection is he sounded great (but then he's playing an Alembic).
jbybj
Advanced Member
Username: jbybj

Post Number: 370
Registered: 6-2006
Posted on Wednesday, June 20, 2012 - 3:45 pm:   Edit Post

QSC amps have a rep of being very reliable and sturdy. I have no complaints for my PLX 1602, in service for about 4 years, casual use, with an F1-x and an SF-2. It has been driving a single Eminence 3015 and an Epifani UL-112 in mono bridged mode (4 ohms). This rig is LOUD, clean, simply delicious.

I just swapped it out of my rack for a Peavey IPR-3000 (7lbs under $500 new) and my rack instantly lost 14 lbs. This weekend will be my first jam with the Peavey. I'm hanging on to my QSC just in case, but I look forward to loading my new lighter rack.

Some times though, I choose to leave that stuff at home, and drag out my old Traynor YBA-1A, when I'm feeling manly........
notfadeaway
Junior
Username: notfadeaway

Post Number: 40
Registered: 5-2012
Posted on Wednesday, June 20, 2012 - 4:09 pm:   Edit Post

I have been eyeing one of those Peavey IPR3000. Know what you mean about dragging the old Traynor out. Sold my YBA1, but miss it. I have a Marshall Super Lead when I want "that" sound. Looking for something lighter and with more oomph.
jimbobv
Member
Username: jimbobv

Post Number: 54
Registered: 4-2003
Posted on Thursday, July 19, 2012 - 7:50 pm:   Edit Post

I started out with the F1-X + Crest FA-901 (turn power amp all way up - 10) running in bridge mode, driving an SVT 810. Plenty of volume.
I added a Superfilter, and switched to the Crest CA-6 - again bridged-mode into an 810, turn the Crest all the way up. Oodles more volume. Other than the occasional blown fuse, no thermal issues were experienced. My EDEN WT-800 regularly ran into thermal shutdown so I off-loaded that.
Now I've completed my 'run-in' with a Mesa 400+, and will use the F1-X + Superfilter pre setup going into the tube power section of the 400+. I'll give it the workout on the 810, then try it out on bag-end 1-15's - 2 or 4 of those.
I've not been afforded the opportunity yet to try the MacIntosh.
jazzyvee
Senior Member
Username: jazzyvee

Post Number: 3041
Registered: 6-2002
Posted on Friday, July 20, 2012 - 12:20 am:   Edit Post

Thats interesting Jimbobv, turning the power amp all the way up. Is that the best way to run a power amp to get the best sound?
I tend to have my about a third of the way open.

I'd be concerned about tearing the speakers into oblivion.
But I will try that and gently play to hear what the difference is.


Jazzyvee
jimbobv
Member
Username: jimbobv

Post Number: 55
Registered: 4-2003
Posted on Friday, July 20, 2012 - 8:14 pm:   Edit Post

Try with caution - square waves kill!

- my understanding is the FA- and CA- Crests run extremely clean with little distortion driving a 2 ohm load, plus I understand that you get the added headroom by running them full on - so as they say turn them up to 11. I tried it and liked it, cool factor aside. I drove the A***g 810 like that for about 2 years on 100+ gigs, replacing 2 of the 8 speakers in that time - one was coil damage, the other the magnet structure actually de-bonded from the frame. The Crests would rarely clip per the LED's on the front. Main bass is a Modulus TBX with Alembic pups with a touch of overdrive and a touch of compression.

I'm not sure about driving the all-tube boogie that way but will give it a shot. If the power amp is not relatively clean, i.e. more distorted, it will clip, resulting in square waves which will shred your speakers.

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