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12Apr/110

Orange Terror Bass Head & Cabinet | Bass Head and Combo Review

Orange Amplifiers Terror Bass 500 Series BT500H 500W Bass Amp Head

Martin does a very completely first look of the Orange Terror 500W Bass Combo.
Here's the video transcript for future references:

Welcome back to another episode of Loudest reviews. I'm happy to say that we have Orange. Orange is a very interesting company.
They were founded by Cliff Cooper in 1968 in London England. I played my first Orange bass amplifier, actually a guitar amplifier
and an Orange guitar cabinet I think it might being a 2 12. In a gig in 1977 in a bar, and I remember walking with my Fender Jazz Bass.
The guy said, don't bring your amp, we have a bass amp. So I walk in and I see this Orange, the strangest looking thing I have ever seen.
1950s style knobs and graphics, really big, this kind of orangy picture frame around a white face...
I said: Did that came out of a science lab ? what the heck is that ? So he said, No, no... Just trust me, try it.
I said, well that's a very strange bass amp... Well it's really a guitar amp. You must be kidding, I'm not going to play through a guitar amp!
Kind of a big show for us.
No, you just got to try it. So I plugged in, I was completely hooked. The first part of this combo is the Terror Bass Head. This a lunch box style head, which means it weight only 10/11 pounds, with a lunch box handle and a lunch box kind of case. So it's very easy to bring around. They created the first lunch box bass head. Lunch box style head have been around for guitars for a little while,
but no one has made them for bass player until orange did, and what I mean for Lunch box I mean as a metal handle with a metal box and it's size as a metal pale.
The Terror head comes in two formats 500W and 1000W. This is the 500W, It's a tube pre-amp and a solid state power amp.
The Power amp is digital, which enables Orange to make it so small and light. The first thing that it's remarkable about the 500W head
is the fact that it's incredibly loud. I don't know if all the power is stoked into the beginnings part of the switches, I think that's probably some of it, but it's unbelievable powerful.
It's one of the most powerful bass amps I've ever played through. Tremendous low-end, tremendous head-room. Now, with the tube pre-amp if you start to drive it harder you hit the notes with great attack, It's tube so it would brake in a nice way. But it's tremendously powerful. The tone controls act passively. So I tend to use the middle range higher than the middle, I roll of the bass frequently, and I leave the treble some where straight up, but I have to say, It does behave passive tone controls so you would have to play more than you would with a typical amplifier. Also in Orange, one of their main distinct feature is that everything is reverse.
The input is on the right side if you face it, power switch is on the left side, the pre-amp control right near the input on the right side,
and the master output is on left side.
you can buy the head separately of course, and It's a wonderful amplifier for someone who likes a more traditional warmer sound
but it's definitely for someone who wants more vintage kind of sound.
I play in a lot of classic rock bands, play a lot of traditional rock and roll music so a vintage sounding amp is very good for me or a vintage bass with kind of a flat amplifier. I surely don't mind a vintage amp around. This is an isobaric speaker cabinet. Isobaric means constant pressure, so the idea is that the better. Engineers argue this point, say it's very inefficient, that it's not very good for producing a lot of bass, but to say that the lind DMS in its day was one of the best speakers you could buy and it had a faboulous low end very accurate sound.
This is the Isobaric SP212. It's the size of a single 12" speaker cabinet but there's two woofers. There's a front woofer, and a woofer in sliding enclosure behind it. The Cabinet is vented in the bottom, but the isobaric concept still applies. Two 12" drivers, one is the one you hear, the other one is creating the isobaric loading of the first driver.
Very interesting design, I wouldn't say that it goes as louds as a typical 2 12 but It's a very powerful small format speaker cabinet.
Still weights only around 40 pounds very small easy to bring around, so I think it's a very successful usage of this isobaric concept. I'm really happy Orange decided to use it, they make a 10 a 12 and a 4 10, which is a 2 10 and then an isobaric behind them. The Head is design in England and produced in China, the cabinet is design in England and made in England. Most people thinks is a 1 twelve, no it's a 2 12, but just in a much smaller cabinet. I took it on a live gig, and as I expected I barely was turning up the volume,
had all the power and low end I needed a really rich warm vintage sound.
Knowing more about it, I'd have probably adjusted the mid range more to match the bass I was using and match the room and maybe roll out the bass I was using to match the room and maybe roll out the bass a little more. I just started with all the control set to flat.
I really like the Orange stuff.
They really went into territory that no other's done before. Made a lunch box style bass head. I think it's really cool. The stuff looks great, and they did an Isobaric speaker cabinet. Considering Orange tends to be a traditional, people think about them as a traditional tube kind of amplifier company, the fact that they did something so unique is very impressive to me. You can get the Orange products in Orange covering and now they make some in white too, but frankly I like the orange color. This is Martin from Loudestreviews, if you have any recommendations for a product you would like us to review please contact us,
Thanks again for tunning in.

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