Fender Bassman 10
The local music shop has quite a few, but I haven't had the time to try one out. Research hasn't produced a lot of good sound clips, or advice on these amps (probably because I should've done this first). My question is if anyone has any kind of experience with these. Anything beyond what I've read on the internet would be awesome.
Are the strings paired or is it a wide fingerboard 10?
There's been several different ones over the years, what are You referring to?
I have a beat up, converted to a 212 silverface from the late 70's, a cute little amp.
Even though it's no "real" bassman, it's still far better as guitar amp than it is as a bass amp.
I'm in a process of building yet another combo around it, hopefully in the near future ;).
The old Bassman combo with the 4 10s and the open back cab was great in its day, but I doubt it could stand up to today's SPL. The '70s-era Studio Bass combo has 4 10s in a sealed cabinet and sounds very good, especially for recording, but I doubt even that would have the headroom and SPL to work today, unless you have a very soft band. The Fender tone stack has a lot to do with the sound of these tube amps.
First, you might want to ask the moderators to move this from "Basses" to "Amps", it'll get you better responses.
Second search the Amps forum for "Bassman 10" because there've been quite a few threads over the years about these.
The "Bassman 10" is a dual 6L6 amp combo amp Fender made from about 1972 until the mid '80s. It started rated at 50 WRMS and was eventually advertized at 70 WRMS. Four ten inch speakers in a sealed cabinet with ports in the baffle. It had a pretty clean pre-amp so they weren't easy to distort and generally don't sound in any way like the early tweed covered Bassman combos with the open backs from the '50s that guitar players and harp players love.
I was a Fender dealer from '76 through '88 and my experience with these amps is that they either sounded awesome or horrid. Never played one that wasn't from either extreme. We even had two with sequential serial numbers in the store at one time, and one was great while the other was dull and lifeless. We swapped chassis so we could hear both amps' guts through the same speakers. We swapped tubes between amps, we put new tubes in the crappy sounding one. No change.
I thought at the time it was kind of a poor choice for most gigging bassists because it really didn't have enough power to play well, and the cabinet may have been a bit too small. Add in that they're top-heavy so if you have them on the casters they could rather easily fall over, that they were a tube amp with the attendant maintenance and weight factors, and they were kind of expensive for a 50 watt amp and they weren't real popular. We sold a lot of Yamaha and Peavey combos with the Bassman 10 sitting next to them.
But a good sounding one at low volumes was a great warm sounding tube amp for "traditional" bass playing- not for slap/pop or big volumes. I had one for a few years around ten years ago that was my practice rig in the basement. Sounded good for bass and was OK for guitar practice. Sold it mainly because post-divorce I needed cash and to thin the herd moving to a 2-bedroom second floor apartment...
My advice is to play YOUR bass through some and see if you like the sound. Start with the tone controls set at 2 for the bass and treble, and 10 for the mids. The tone controls on the tone stack interact so if you're used to more modern EQ it might take some time to find the cool sounds. But try a few and see if they sound good to you. Well-made amps, and if the caps and tubes are in good shape it should last you a long time.
Mine was a 60 watt that I would kill to have back for recording
Just wasn't loud enough for live gigs
I assume you're talking about the silverface models with 410's? They are sealed back, but the baffle has a few small holes drilled in it as sort of makeshift ports. You'll see that if you pull the grillcloth off.
I had one of those for a ahort time. Nice low volume tone for bass but couldn't cut it volume-wise for a gig even with a blues trio. I assume due to the speakers or goofy cabinet they were in. I sometimes wish I would've kept it for guitar, but not all that much.
I think those amps were a beefed up version of a bassman50 and used an ultra-linear output transformer and were rated for 70watts. Something similair to how they turned the bassman100 into the 135.
The amp stays clean almost as loud as it goes, then the overdrive is something not all that pleasant to my ear. I like how my 135 sounds clean, but not overdriven.
Well, I am glad somebody realized I posted this in the wrong place. I'll try not to do this again. And yes, it is the silverface 410.
JTE, I appreciate the info and the solid advice. As a Fender dealer, or any other dealer for that matter, were there any amps that particularly impressed you? More of a curiosity question than a sales advice question.
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