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Thread: Favorite Acoustic Amps?

  1. #26
    Registered User Billy Packard's Avatar
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    Default Re: Favorite Acoustic Amps?

    I just spotted this thread and thought I'd chime in.
    I have had a Acoustic Image Chorus 2 for nearly 10 years and it is an absolute joy for small jobs and especially (these days) rehearsing with my partner who is playing a Steinway grand.
    It wasn't cheap but it is sure good.

    http://mobi.acousticimg.com/index.php

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  3. #27
    Mandolin Botherer Shelagh Moore's Avatar
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    Default Re: Favorite Acoustic Amps?

    I use a ZT Amplification Acoustic Lunchbox for smaller jobs and a Bose L1 Compact for slighter larger gigs. I’ve been extremely happy with both. Where I have to go into a house PA I use my Radial Tonebone Preamp to make sure levels match and that I have some personal control.

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  5. #28
    Registered User Pick&Grin's Avatar
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    Default Re: Favorite Acoustic Amps?

    Can't thank you all enough for your advice and suggestions. With my budget where it is, for now, I went ahead and got the Fishman Mini Loudbox. If need be, I figure I'll eventually sell it and work up the chain, as I've done with my mandos. For right now, it sounds great! Can tell right out of the box that it's a quality product. For an amp newbie like me, I also appreciated the suggested settings for different volumes.

    I'm going to keep checking back here as a reference as I look for different amps for different situations. Been suffering with MAS. Is AAS a thing? (just realized those initials are better spelt than said! )
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  7. #29
    Registered User saintjohnbarleycorn's Avatar
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    Default Re: Favorite Acoustic Amps?

    I just went up to the performer fishman, I glad I did, I also use a pitch shifter which really shows up with the bass speaker the artist didn't have.
    "I'm still not dead" j barleycorn

  8. #30
    Registered User Papalobo's Avatar
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    Default Re: Favorite Acoustic Amps?

    I'm using a Mesa Rosette and am very pleased with the accuracy , it's also very portable.

  9. #31
    Registered User Papalobo's Avatar
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    Default Re: Favorite Acoustic Amps?

    I ran a Marshall ASD 100 for a few years and loved it, I sold it to my Music teacher who is a professional violist. Very good sound, and loads of usable effects on board, and reliable.

  10. #32

    Default Re: Favorite Acoustic Amps?

    Quote Originally Posted by Patrick Sylvest View Post
    This is what I use for small gigs. I've utilized it with a mixer and two condenser mic's to power a full bluegrass band for an outdoor gig.
    Another Roland AC 60 fan and I bought a used one about ten years ago that is still going strong either as a stand-alone unit for instruments (fiddle and mandolin through a Dean Markley DI Plus) and vocals, or a very effective stage monitor within a larger system. Highly recommended and would buy another one if it ever bites the dust.

  11. #33
    Registered User almeriastrings's Avatar
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    Default Re: Favorite Acoustic Amps?

    Just as a footnote for anyone considering acoustic amplifiers, as noted above, you might find it worth looking seriously at a good quality powered PA speaker(8-10" is usually best) plus a good acoustic preamp unit. This will give you pretty much identical (or even superior) results with a lot more flexibility and coverage, as you can get that speaker well up off the ground on a stand. You also have an easy route to expansion (just add a second matching speaker) and mixer as required. The only downside is a few more interconnects and a little less 'compactness'. If you use a really top class speaker (such as the QSC's) to my ear these sound as good as any acoustic amp I have yet heard. You also have the option to use different 'front ends' (e.g. different preamps) as necessary or to taste. Just something to think about.
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  12. #34

    Default Re: Favorite Acoustic Amps?

    Quote Originally Posted by almeriastrings View Post
    Just as a footnote for anyone considering acoustic amplifiers, as noted above, you might find it worth looking seriously at a good quality powered PA speaker(8-10" is usually best) plus a good acoustic preamp unit. This will give you pretty much identical (or even superior) results with a lot more flexibility and coverage, as you can get that speaker well up off the ground on a stand. You also have an easy route to expansion (just add a second matching speaker) and mixer as required. The only downside is a few more interconnects and a little less 'compactness'. If you use a really top class speaker (such as the QSC's) to my ear these sound as good as any acoustic amp I have yet heard. You also have the option to use different 'front ends' (e.g. different preamps) as necessary or to taste. Just something to think about.
    This is good advise. QSC at the top of the food chain, but we've been using little 8" Behringer powered speakers as monitors and at less than $200, they are a great value. Powered speakers can grow with your needs, like the above advise add another and a mixer and you have a small PA. Add two more and you've got monitors and can service a combo.

    My Carvin AG 300 can handle bass. Add two powered speakers and a small mixer and you can support a couple mics plus the other instruments in a three or four piece. Mix and match as needed.

    When looking at mixers, figure out what you need and add four to six more channels.
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  13. #35
    Americana in France? Daniel Nestlerode's Avatar
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    Default Re: Favorite Acoustic Amps?

    Quote Originally Posted by almeriastrings View Post
    Just as a footnote for anyone considering acoustic amplifiers, as noted above, you might find it worth looking seriously at a good quality powered PA speaker(8-10" is usually best) plus a good acoustic preamp unit. This will give you pretty much identical (or even superior) results with a lot more flexibility and coverage, as you can get that speaker well up off the ground on a stand. You also have an easy route to expansion (just add a second matching speaker) and mixer as required. The only downside is a few more interconnects and a little less 'compactness'. If you use a really top class speaker (such as the QSC's) to my ear these sound as good as any acoustic amp I have yet heard. You also have the option to use different 'front ends' (e.g. different preamps) as necessary or to taste. Just something to think about.
    I concur. The best sound I've ever gotten for an acoustic amplified instrument was through a Bose tower thingie. (Terribly technical word that, but I cannot remember the model name or number.)

    I recently did a solo gig with a borrowed Bose unit and a 4 channel mixer. (1 vocal, 1 mandolin, 1 octave mandolin, and 1 uku-dola) The set up took an extra hour of my time. But the sound was absolutely worth ever second.

    Daniel

  14. #36
    Quietly Making Noise Dave Greenspoon's Avatar
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    Default Re: Favorite Acoustic Amps?

    Quote Originally Posted by Daniel Nestlerode View Post
    ...1 vocal, 1 mandolin, 1 octave mandolin, and 1 uku-dola) The set up took an extra hour of my time. But the sound was absolutely worth ever second.

    Daniel
    It was worth it just to post that you used a ukudola...
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    Amps: Fishman Loudbox 100; Laney Cub 10 & Cab, Peavey Studio Pro

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  16. #37
    Registered User Papalobo's Avatar
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    Default Re: Favorite Acoustic Amps?

    The Marshall acoustic amps are wonderful , both the 50 and 100 ( I had the 100 and miss it)

  17. #38
    Americana in France? Daniel Nestlerode's Avatar
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    Default Re: Favorite Acoustic Amps?

    Quote Originally Posted by Dave Greenspoon View Post
    It was worth it just to post that you used a ukudola...


    It's a concert size ukulele tuned CGDA. Lovely sound. Much softer than a steel string archtop instrument.

    Daniel

  18. #39
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    Default Re: Favorite Acoustic Amps?

    I play in a bluesband including a drummer and bass player so need a bit of volume, even when the rhythm guys try to keep the volume down.
    When we play half-acoustic gigs I use a Fishman Performer and always connect that from the XLR out to the PA. That way I can keep the volume on the Fishman at a moderate level - much better for the sound, I totally agree with Tomando. Also I'm usually close to my amp as we mostly play in pubs and keeping the volume down is one way of avoiding feedback.
    I also use a EWS Subtle Volume Control, which sits next to my chair so that I can adapt my volume. A very useful toy!
    The EQ settings on the Fishman are a kind of compromise as I switch from guitar to resonator and mandolin. Resetting the settings every time I change is just not possible.
    When we play electric gigs I it's a different story. My amp is then a Fender Blues de Luxe. For the acoustic songs I use a Fishman Pro EQ preamp. From the preamp I run an XLR to the PA. The preamp is close to me, so I can change settings and volume.
    Hope this helps!

    Michael

  19. #40
    Registered User Murphy Slaw's Avatar
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    Default Re: Favorite Acoustic Amps?

    Those little Bose S1 Pro's are getting a lot of attention lately.
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  20. #41
    Quietly Making Noise Dave Greenspoon's Avatar
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    Default Re: Favorite Acoustic Amps?

    Daniel Nestlerode would any concert size would work? What strings are you using? Is that a reentrant uke voicing or just a straight chromatic? Thanks!
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    Amps: Fishman Loudbox 100; Laney Cub 10 & Cab, Peavey Studio Pro

  21. #42
    Americana in France? Daniel Nestlerode's Avatar
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    Default Re: Favorite Acoustic Amps?

    Quote Originally Posted by Dave Greenspoon View Post
    Daniel Nestlerode would any concert size would work? What strings are you using? Is that a reentrant uke voicing or just a straight chromatic? Thanks!
    Hi Dave,
    There's a thread here somewhere about converting concert ukes to CGDA. But I'm using a set of 31U "concert fifths" Aquilas. It took a while for the uke to settle to the different tension, but it did and it sounds great.

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  23. #43
    Registered User Mando Mort's Avatar
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    Default Re: Favorite Acoustic Amps?

    I have been happy using my Fender Acoustasonic, Jr. for mando, guitar and vocals. Can play an instrument through one channel with vocal mic working in the other, like a small p.a.
    "All of us contain Music & Truth, but most of us can't get it out." - Mark Twain

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  24. #44

    Default Re: Favorite Acoustic Amps?

    I have both a Loudbox Mini and Loudbox Performer. The performer is larger and heavier, but in exchange, it has a handy 3rd channel, phantom power, more effects, ability to take either individual or combined signals to a PA board, and combined low/high impedance inputs that make it much more flexible than the Mini. The Performer can be found at discounted prices around $600.

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  26. #45
    its a very very long song Jim's Avatar
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    Default Re: Favorite Acoustic Amps?

    Kustom PA50 with a Behringer ADI21 is great sounding on it's own , has a hole to mount on a stand and an output for a subwoofer should you need one.

  27. #46
    Registered User John Flynn's Avatar
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    Default Re: Favorite Acoustic Amps?

    I have a Loudbox Mini and really like it, but it didn't have enough power. I was all set to upgrade to an Artist, but I found a Loudbox 100 on Craigslist that was like new. They don't make the 100 anymore, but if you can find one, they were really a great design. I played in a group with a guitarist who used an Artist and I like the 100 better. If I need even more volume, I use them both and slave the Mini to the 100.

    The thing I don't like about both Loudboxes is the disappointing lack of headroom. With my Rigel un-preamped piezo running into the #1 input, I can only get the volume up to about 40% with good clean tone. Higher and the tone falls apart to the point that the EQ can't save it.

  28. #47
    rock in rôle mandopixie's Avatar
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    Thumbs up Re: Favorite Acoustic Amps?

    +1 for the Loudbox Artist Almost got the Mini, but was persuaded to spring for the 120W Artist. I't still small enough to be portable. The Performer (180W) is larger to the point of cumbersome, if you are lugging your own gear, that is.

  29. #48
    Registered User Andrew Faltesek's Avatar
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    Default Re: Favorite Acoustic Amps?

    Another vote for the Fishman Loudbox Performer. Sweet sound and control; 180W 3-way speakers plus tweeter control, phantom power, aux input etc; flexi 2-channel with all these features plus best feedback control I've ever known.

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  31. #49

    Default Re: Favorite Acoustic Amps?

    Quote Originally Posted by Billy Packard View Post
    I just spotted this thread and thought I'd chime in.
    I have had a Acoustic Image Chorus 2 for nearly 10 years and it is an absolute joy for small jobs and especially (these days) rehearsing with my partner who is playing a Steinway grand.
    It wasn't cheap but it is sure good.

    http://mobi.acousticimg.com/index.php

    Billy
    I've used my Acoustic Image amp for approximately 300 gigs. They make a great US made product; they also have the best warranty in the business- they cover their amps for whomever is holding it - new buyer or someone who bought it secondhand- for life. Try finding that anywhere else. Rick (the owner) is also a great gigging musician who understands. If you have a problem on a weekend gig, call him on Monday, ship it out, and he usually will get the repaired unit back to you in time for Friday night's gig. In a disposable import centered cheap price is more important than everything world, that type of service is priceless and almost unheard of. That also helps explain why there is a thriving secondhand market for reasonable prices.

    You may want to consider a separate head and cabinet system or a convertable setup; they are a lot more versatile and much easier to transport. I use my AI head sometimes with an AI cabinet that it slides into, but more often I'll mix and match different combinations of speaker cabinet(s) to meet the needs of different venues. When needed I can use it with other backline cabs that are at the gig. Most of the new class D heads pack a huge punch in a tiny package. My Acoustic Image Focus is 1000 watts (!!!) down to 2 ohms but is so small fits in my (empty) mandolin case or a small gigbag....
    Last edited by grandcanyonminstrel; Sep-16-2018 at 11:42pm.

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  33. #50
    Registered User Mark Seale's Avatar
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    Default Re: Favorite Acoustic Amps?

    Quote Originally Posted by grandcanyonminstrel View Post
    I've used my Acoustic Image amp for approximately 300 gigs. They make a great US made product; they also have the best warranty in the business- they cover their amps for whomever is holding it - new buyer or someone who bought it secondhand- for life. Try finding that anywhere else. Rick (the owner) is also a great gigging musician who understands. If you have a problem on a weekend gig, call him on Monday, ship it out, and he usually will get the repaired unit back to you in time for Friday night's gig. In a disposable import centered cheap price is more important than everything world, that type of service is priceless and almost unheard of. That also helps explain why there is a thriving secondhand market for reasonable prices.

    You may want to consider a separate head and cabinet system or a convertable setup; they are a lot more versatile and much easier to transport. I use my AI head sometimes with an AI cabinet that it slides into, but more often I'll mix and match different combinations of speaker cabinet(s) to meet the needs of different venues. When needed I can use it with other backline cabs that are at the gig. Most of the new class D heads pack a huge punch in a tiny package. My Acoustic Image Focus is 1000 watts (!!!) down to 2 ohms but is so small fits in my (empty) mandolin case or a small gigbag....
    Totally agree with everything said above. I've been gigging with an AI Corus for 8 years, I have no idea how many gigs and/or rehearsals. Solid as a rock and the only issue I had were the rubber feet coming off, which Rick sent me replacements free of charge. I do want to use some other speaker boxes, but haven't really needed to enough to jump into that blackhole.

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