I posted about my frustration with the volume level of the friedman ASM – 12 a few times. At this point I'm seriously considering the mission engineering Gemini 2, but I really want to hear users feedback regarding the volume level of the cabinet.
Some history of my experience with the Friedman ASM – 12. Overall I think the cabinet sounds really good, I also think the cabinet looks really great. I like the fact that you can use it in the wedge mode, as well as the traditional up right position.
The only structural issue I have with it, which is widely discussed, is the idiotic placement of the carrying handle. I honestly think Dave Friedman was smoking some insane pot the day he came up with that idea, it truly is idiotic on all levels.
My number one issue with the ASM – 12, is it's grossly under whelming volume level. I've actually gone through the process of contacting Dave Friedman, sending him multiple videos with my DB level meter, demonstrating the lower level output of the unit. At his request, I shiped the unit back to him, where he had it checked out, and he shipped it back to me basically implying to me there's nothing wrong with it. As there was Zero explanation, no I am sorry you're not happy with it, but it is what it is, no we checked it out, and it appears to be working properly, I got absolutely nothing. All I got was a box with the speaker cabinet in it delivered back to my house. I left multiple messages, all of which went and returned for over two weeks. Finally somebody who works for the distribution company told me, well of course it's working properly, why else would we have shipped it back to you? It was a really strange experience. I'll just leave that right where it is.
There is no way in the world you could play with just the ASM 12, with a live drummer. It's simply cannot produce enough volume to be able to even handle light practice. My badger 35, which is a 35 W amp head, completely drowns the ASM 12 out. My presonus scepter eight studio monitors, that are rated at 90 watts each, also will overpower the ASM 12. If I were comparing this to a typical tube amp, I would say the ASM 12 is the equivalent of a 20 Watts tube amp. The power amp inside the cabinet also easily clips, which completely makes it unable to run it at Max volume. Just in case you're curious, yes I did confirm all of the correct connections were made, verified cables, went through all the expected troubleshooting of all of that, actually had the exact same experience with both my Kemper as well as a fractal AX8.
So I get it, why am I spending so much time talking about the ASM 12, when my question is really about the mission engineering Gemini 2?
Well, I wanted to be able to give a clear example of my experience, as well as paint a picture of what I'm hoping to achieve. Considering I am happy with the sound of the ASM 12, I definitely don't want to go through the process of selling it, then end up buying the Gemini 2, then end up realizing I have the same problem.
So that being said, those of you who have experience with the Gemini 2, can you please elaborate on the volume of the cabinet compared to a traditional tube amp head. If you happen to have experience with the ASM12, and the Gemini 2, then please give me your opinions on both of those, from both a quality of sound perspective, as well as the volume perspective.
Obviously the Gemini 2 is compelling because it's a stereo cabinet, which hopefully, we'll get a good stereo image, and a solid stereo representation of the Kemper. Please, please, speak to that aspect of it as well.