Why do newer bass amps weight less in most cases?
Here’s an article or two also to chew on:
I’m not an really an expert on anything… but I know a little bit about just about everything… certainly enough to be dangerous. lol
My guess would be new amps are weighing less because Class D amplifier ICs are now cheap and readily available. They’re super efficient, requiring smaller power supplies and heatsinks than previous generations of amp ICs to get the same wattage. I learned about amp ICs when I helped do some research for MGB Guitar Parts when they were working on a prototype for there own line of CBG amplifiers… which unfortunately haven’t been put into production yet… but that’s not my fault… I promise!
Also neodymium magnets are used in some bass speakers and like the Class D ICs, they pack a bigger punch in a smaller package. Out of curiosity I looked up weights for 15" Celestion bass speakers. Ferrite magnet speaker: 10.6lbs. Neodymium magnet speaker: 5.1lbs.
Yes the science and along comes the price increase. Too. No next gen for me this time. Thanks for info.
Actually the new class D amps tend to be cheaper too, which is nice. You can get a new 500 watt TC Electronic amp for $200, and the 250 is even cheaper. That’s just astoundingly cheap in comparison to the previous generation of amps.
All the major makers make similar amps now. The Gallien-Krueger ones look especially good to me.
Yeah, there’s some excellent examples of super lightweight combos out there. I am seriously considering the Japan domestic version of this:
It’s a nice little 1x10 cab with a P300H bolted on the back. The nice thing about the Japanese version here is that the thing is held on with these little finger through-bolts and easily comes off, giving you a standalone head and a 1x10:
No idea why that’s only on the domestic version, the US version is different.
I played with one in the store. It’s tiny and weighs about 23 pounds total - about the same as my Rumble 25. Tone was great, really liked it. And it’s relatively inexpensive.
Class D amps efficiency is not far from 100% because the transistors work in switching operation, so there’s almost no energy loss. Because of that, there is almost no need for cooling, and the transformer can be reduced to a minimal size, which means it’s light and cost less. It also means it’s pretty easy and cheap to make high power amps.
The principle of Class D exists since the 50’s, but those amps work well only if the switching frequency is very high. These high frequencies have been available recently, that’s why we are seing big changes in bass amplification these last years. The cost per watt on a typical current Class D amp is mind blowing.
I like this thing, it’s so cute !