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Advice on multi-purpose combo amp

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Anonymous
September 5, 2004 4:25:32 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.tech (More info?)

Looking to buy a single amplifier to handle rehearsal & home recording
for multiple instruments (guitar, bass and keyboards mainly).

This is a big ask I know, but I don't have the funds to purchase
standalones for all instruments at the moment, and I'm not deluded
into thinking I'll get pro-quality sound with such a combo amp.

There seems to be some market for "busker" combos, or similar amps
that can give a clean sound suitable for different instruments, but
can anyone actually recommend one of these amps, or am I better just
going for something like a keyboard amp? Ashton (Australian company,
ashtonmusic.com.au) have a product that has dedicated inputs for mic,
guitar/bass, and keyboards, with seperate levels, but I haven't found
one available to test. Do I have any other options? Obviously putting
keyboard through a guitar amp isn't going to get me anything good is
it?

Watt-wise 100-150w should be ok (definitely no less), and I need to
keep it cheap (not too far over US$500 if possible).
Anonymous
September 5, 2004 11:16:52 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.tech (More info?)

soundwave6@hotmail.com (Ben Leane) wrote in message news:<3b8ecb85.0409042325.7700ed4@posting.google.com>...
> Looking to buy a single amplifier to handle rehearsal & home recording
> for multiple instruments (guitar, bass and keyboards mainly).
>
> This is a big ask I know, but I don't have the funds to purchase
> standalones for all instruments at the moment, and I'm not deluded
> into thinking I'll get pro-quality sound with such a combo amp.
>
> There seems to be some market for "busker" combos, or similar amps
> that can give a clean sound suitable for different instruments, but
> can anyone actually recommend one of these amps, or am I better just
> going for something like a keyboard amp? Ashton (Australian company,
> ashtonmusic.com.au) have a product that has dedicated inputs for mic,
> guitar/bass, and keyboards, with seperate levels, but I haven't found
> one available to test. Do I have any other options? Obviously putting
> keyboard through a guitar amp isn't going to get me anything good is
> it?
>
> Watt-wise 100-150w should be ok (definitely no less), and I need to
> keep it cheap (not too far over US$500 if possible).

A so-called "keyboard amp" is exactly what you need. I have shared the
stage with both the Roland and Peavey keyboard amps -- slight
preference for Peavey, perhaps because I have had good luck with their
equipment in the past.

Putting a keyboard through a guitar amp is a bad idea. Guitar amps are
quite specialized, with speakers that are not designed for bass
response -- for instance, many have open-back cabinets. These will
suffer from excursion limited distortion at the lower frequencies.

Playing bass through a keyboard amp may require a bit of EQ to make it
sound OK. Ironically, speakers used with bass guitar tend to have a
fair amount of low end rolloff, which contributes to the classic sound
that we have all come to expect from bass. A full range speaker might
sound a bit too "boomy" for your tastes, but to be honest, you could
get the rolloff you need with a simple RC filter if nothing else
works.

Also worth considering, some combo bass amps have a tweeter, and might
have enough of a full range sound to be useable with keyboard and
other instruments. For multiple channels, spend an extra US $100 and
get a little Behringer mixer. A single channel amp and little mixer
might actually be less expensive and more readily available than a
multi-channel amp.
Anonymous
September 5, 2004 4:04:08 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.tech (More info?)

Ben Leane wrote:

> Looking to buy a single amplifier to handle rehearsal & home recording
> for multiple instruments (guitar, bass and keyboards mainly).
>
> This is a big ask I know, but I don't have the funds to purchase
> standalones for all instruments at the moment, and I'm not deluded
> into thinking I'll get pro-quality sound with such a combo amp.
>
> There seems to be some market for "busker" combos, or similar amps
> that can give a clean sound suitable for different instruments, but
> can anyone actually recommend one of these amps, or am I better just
> going for something like a keyboard amp? Ashton (Australian company,
> ashtonmusic.com.au) have a product that has dedicated inputs for mic,
> guitar/bass, and keyboards, with seperate levels, but I haven't found
> one available to test. Do I have any other options? Obviously putting
> keyboard through a guitar amp isn't going to get me anything good is
> it?
>
> Watt-wise 100-150w should be ok (definitely no less), and I need to
> keep it cheap (not too far over US$500 if possible).

There are various 'powered mixers' available on the market. Need separate
speakers ( not a bad thing really ) but will offer far better results than
the choices you've suggested so far.


Graham
Anonymous
September 5, 2004 4:34:53 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.tech (More info?)

Pooh Bear <rabbitsfriendsandrelations@hotmail.com> wrote in message news:<413AF2A8.6F1A7394@hotmail.com>...

> There are various 'powered mixers' available on the market. Need separate
> speakers ( not a bad thing really ) but will offer far better results than
> the choices you've suggested so far.

Nice point, and it's worth noting that many of the less expensive
powered mixers are monaural anyway, so you could get by with a single
speaker. OTOH a stereo rig gives you some future options such as using
one channel for mains and the other channel for monitors.

The advantage of PA gear is that it seems to be less expensive,
perhaps because the market is less specialized and hence more
competitive. People don't expect PA systems to have unique sonic
features that they are willing to pay extra money for.

With a less powerful amplifier, it is helpful (to me, it is crucial)
to have a built-in compressor limiter designed to avoid power amp
clipping. This is like having "effective headroom" so you can get away
with much less amp power. It used to be the case that this was a
trademark feature of all Peavey amps, but it has become more
widespread since their patent expired.
!