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  #1  
Old 08-03-2008, 01:09 PM
thewallylama thewallylama is offline
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Default Busking amp: Crate Taxi or Roland Cube Street?

I saw a guy busking with a Crate Taxi 15 last weekend and I thought I'd LOVE to get a battery powered amp for busking--one with a vocal and instrument channel. I thought the Taxi sounded good (he played nylon string, so that's what I heard, while I play steel string acoustic). Having looked around it seems to me the best candidates are the Crate or the Roland Cube Street (other than AER's battery amp, which is way, way over my budget--or Carvin's StageMate, which is bulkier than I want).

Any comments/experience based on comparing these two models? I have never seen or heard the Cube Street, but its design seems like it was designed for busking--nice controls and I could add a little reverb (I don't care about the amp modeling features). My concerns with this one is that it seems underpowered (5 watts total) and I wish it had a built in rechargeable battery (like the Crate Taxi) but I could just use rechargeable AA's I suppose. My concern with the Crate is that it doesn't have any reverb and has less to offer in the way of controls, but I kind of like its Zen simplicity.

I appreciate your comments!
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Old 08-03-2008, 02:58 PM
PaulData PaulData is offline
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The Crate Limo has reverb and more effects. It's heavy though...
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Old 08-03-2008, 03:05 PM
thewallylama thewallylama is offline
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Thanks, Paul. I have seen the Limo and it has great features but I agree it is heavy--more than I would want. I have an excellent (and heavy) acoustic amp (Genz-Benz--not battery powered) and I would like an alternative for busking that is lighter, smaller and battery powered.
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Old 08-03-2008, 04:37 PM
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Herb Hunter Herb Hunter is offline
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For busking, I'd consider this 100 watt, 4 channel, battery powered combo PA.

https://www.carvinguitars.com/produc...?product=S400D
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Old 08-03-2008, 04:42 PM
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BuleriaChk BuleriaChk is offline
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Check out the Vox DA5 or the DA10; if acoustic, replace the speakers with Jensen Mod 6-15's.

But also checkout the Roland Mobile Cube. It may be tiny, but it is pretty loud, and the speakers are FRFR (they don't color the sound like the other cube series, including the Street Cube and the stock Vox's...) And it makes a heckuva desktop computer speaker..... I think Roland REALLY got it right this time....

I was really disappointed in Crate and other Roland Cube products - they all seemed to really color the sound of my guitar (in a negative way).... But I have to admit that the form factor of the Cube Street is excellent, and it may be worthwhile to experiment with changing the speakers..... it is really too bad the sound and effects are so disappointing......

I always found the Crate amps (and most other low end amps) to be very harsh......

Last edited by BuleriaChk; 05-07-2012 at 11:17 AM.
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Old 08-04-2008, 02:18 PM
taropatch taropatch is offline
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I have a Crate Taxi 15. It is great for the price.

Kudos to Crate's customer service too. About 10 months after buying the TX15, I found that the unit would not power on, plugged in or on battery. After troubleshooting with customer support, they shipped me a new one. I shipped the defective unit back in the box that the replacement came in on them via UPS Ground. Customer service was responsive and helpful. The replacement unit is working great.
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Old 11-30-2012, 09:23 AM
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The Roland Mobile Cube AC is now shipping.
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Old 11-30-2012, 10:57 AM
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El Conquistador El Conquistador is offline
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I keep the Roland Street in my trunk in case I happen to need an amp (which actually does happen more often than one would think). Every time I use it I get people asking me where they can get one. It is extremely portable and I have never changed the batteries.


I have no experience with the Crate. I bought the Street Cube after seeing a buddy of mine use one and was very impressed.


Steve
P.S., it does have reverb as well as other effects I don't use
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Old 11-30-2012, 12:32 PM
krisls krisls is offline
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Bought a street cube a couple of years ago as a practice/ busking amp. Great little thing and louder than you might expect. Light, neat and tough. I use rechargeable AA's and they last quite a while. I looked at the Crate and it's bulkier and no reverb which I use very lightly on both vocal and guitar.

Around here the two most seen busking amps are the Vox and the Street. If you want a 'purer' acoustic sound, though the Street is pretty good, you could look at the AC33.

Kris
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Old 11-30-2012, 12:34 PM
jonfields45 jonfields45 is offline
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I've got a Roland KC-110 that combined with a Nady battery powered mixer and two low-high impedance adapters is a complete no AC sound system for my duo. Even handles bass guitar well. Easily provides conversation friendly acoustic music for a crowd of a 100 or so. Jon
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  #11  
Old 11-30-2012, 09:08 PM
Rudy4 Rudy4 is offline
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I have a Cube Street and like it a lot. It's plenty loud for small gig settings, sounds great because the effects are stereo, nice usable reverb on both the instrument and vocal channel, (it has a few other effects that I don't often use with the exception of a bit of chorus in the instrument channel), batteries last a long time between changes, built-in tuner is handy.

What's not to like? No phantom on the mic input, so you'll have to be satisfied with a dynamic or use a self-powered condenser. It's pricey for it's size, but you'll get a quality product that is well built and will last. If you sit in front of the amp it's difficult to see to adjust anything, if you're in back of the amp it's not as easy to hear what you just changed. I guess you can't have everything!

Bottom line, it's a good busking candidate and would serve well as a mini-PA for coffee shop gigs. I've also used it successfully as a personal monitor using the high impediance output from a direct box when playing through a larger stage PA system.
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  #12  
Old 12-01-2012, 07:36 AM
woodenstrings woodenstrings is offline
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Roland Cube Street is a great busking amp, much louder then you think it would be. Runs forever on AA batteries or AC adaptor.
Also have the AC33, it has a purer acoustic sound then the street, but the Cube Street is a great busker amp or mini PA and built like a tank.
You can also get a bag for it that has a shoulder strap and offers some dust and moisture protection when not using the amp.. makes it easy to lug around.
Don't think I'd ever part with mine...
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