Ampeg Portaflex 350

Discussion in 'Bass Guitar Discussion' started by House74, Oct 3, 2014.

  1. House74

    House74 Perfect Djentleman

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    So i'm thinking about getting a decent, yet inexpensive live bass rig, and these caught my eye, as I have played on ampeg equipment before (SVT Pro 3 +4x10 cab) and it sounds beast. Now I know this isn't an SVT, so since you guys are the bass gurus, can anyone lend some advice/share experience and review on the Portaflex series heads? I'm looking at the 350 specifically based solely on price at this point. Any input would be great, thanks dudes!:hbang:
     
  2. Fretless

    Fretless Knob Fiddler

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    I tried one out the other day, and I was sorely disappointed. It lacked all the feeling that ampegs have, and just sounded bleh.
     
  3. Sepultorture

    Sepultorture Murder Machine

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    you're better off going with a Gallien Krueger MB series amp if you're into the mini amps

    i own the MB800 ,obviously more wattage and higher price, but worth it, they have 500 and 200 watt versions aswell, sound amazing and def in keeping with the GK tone

    felt the same about the portaflex, was expecting SVT-ish tones, got woofy sounding shit instead
     
  4. Mwoit

    Mwoit SS.org Regular

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    I can't say I've tried one extensively but it was okay.

    I know that Evan Brewer from The Faceless used it at one point for his solo shows.

     
  5. ofu

    ofu SS.org Regular

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    Well, I'm not a guru, but for the last couple of years I've played on b5, svt-3 and svt-7 and I've also tried the portaflex 350, 500, svt classic and svt micro. Personally, the portaflex amps sounded worse than the micro and nowhere near any svt. They resemble in some way the ampeg tone, but if you look for that specific tone, svt micro does it better. The problem is - it's only 200 watts, it doesn't exactly pack the punch of the bigger svts. I've tried it in a shop, don't know if it can get loud enough for gigging with a loud band, but I've definitely heard louder amps, rated even at lower wattage.

    Have you considered buying used gear? Some old trace head for example. As far as I know they are dirty cheap in the US. Depending on the budget, maybe you can even find GK 700rb or ampeg b5 - all great amps for the money. Hope that helps.
     
  6. Murmel

    Murmel SS.org Regular

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    I've got a PF-500, I like it a lot. It doesn't sound like a tube driven Ampeg but it sounds better than a lot of solid states in its range. My only complaint is that the fan is noisy, which seems to be some sort of factory error.

    Get the 500 or 800 if you're going for it. Having the extra high and low boost makes a hell of difference when sculpting your tone. If you're after the true, classic Ampeg tone I would chase down something in the lines of an SVT, though.
     
  7. Grand Moff Tim

    Grand Moff Tim Some call me... Tim

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    How much wiggle room do you have in your budget? Another 350w micro head option to look into is the Aguilar Tone Hammer. I've got the 500w version and it sounds fantastic, and only weighs like 4 pounds.

    Aguilar Tone Hammer 350 - 350-Watt Super Light Head | Sweetwater.com

    I realize it's nearly twice the price of the Portaflex 350, but it still isn't a bank-breaker, and it will sound good.
     
  8. Sepultorture

    Sepultorture Murder Machine

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    effing awesome suggestion

    never even thought of aguilar, their stuff is spot on, can't always find it where i'm at but their amps and cabs are amazing sounding

    alex webster uses a tone hammer when writing stuff i believe
     
  9. House74

    House74 Perfect Djentleman

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    Thanks for all the suggestions and feedback guys! I guess to open it up a little more then, since it doesn't sound like the Portaflex isn't really a great option considering your feedback, Throw me out some other suggestions for that price range for maybe lets say 350-500W power. Price is kind of an issue because I will also have to pick up a cab as well so all in total if I can get said rig for around $700 that would be great. And yes I am considering used gear as well
     
  10. cGoEcYk

    cGoEcYk SS.org Regular

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    What kind of styles are you playing/planning on playing?

    For value right now some of favorite bass amps are the Genz Benz GBE series. Probably the greatest ratio of tone, quality, and angry power for the $. Sometimes there are ridiculous deals on GC Used.
     
  11. House74

    House74 Perfect Djentleman

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    I'm actually looking for versatility, I may use it for both After the burial type metal playing and Soft poppy punk stuff my singer writes. As far as tone goes, I tend to go more bass heavy with a touch of mids and not much high it that helps. Again, thank you to all for all the good info i'm scoping out some of the other options mentioned as well. Not to be greedy, but any good cheap cab suggestions, like in the 4x10 realm?
     
  12. House74

    House74 Perfect Djentleman

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    I found some Ampeg B2RE 450W heads at a decent price used, are those maybe a better choice for an inexpensive Ampeg with still decent sound? Looks like it has more EQ options too similar to the SVT
     
  13. Spinedriver

    Spinedriver SS.org Regular

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    Personally, I have a MarkBass LMII (it's since been updated to the LMIII) and when paired with a Tech 21 VT Bass pedal, it's an absolute beast. :metal:

    It has some serious low end and the VT pedal gives you the SVT style grit.
     
  14. hairychris

    hairychris Hairy Old Bloke

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    I use an older B2R. It sounds pretty good, the EQ is fairly powerful, and it really likes getting driven by a SansAmp (Bass Driver DI in my case). It generally takes pedals well. It's not the tightest of amps, mind, and could possibly do with more power IMO.

    You can probably do better.
     
  15. iron blast

    iron blast Northern Winds

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    The b2r is a solid Ampeg for the money I ran mine as a backup for my svt4 pro for years I had to sell it to afford fixing the Svt tho
     
  16. House74

    House74 Perfect Djentleman

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    Welp, I decided to pull the trigger on the B2RE 450w head. It was $219 USD including tax and shipping, which from all I could see from used and eBay, was a pretty solid deal. Worse comes to worse and it comes in and sounds like garbage i'm out $25 shipping no biggie. I will have the advantage of having the SVT 3 on hand and the same 4x10 cab (I think the Ampeg 410H) to run it through to get a pretty direct comparison between the two. I'll post up some pics/review once it comes in if you guys would like. Thanks to all you guys as well for your input and suggestions, very much appreciated! Now, lets move on to economical cab selections? :-D
     

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