New Player Needing Some Help
I have recently moved into playing the bass, and I must say, I love it. I'm an old guitar player, but my last few guitars were acoustic. I picked up an Ibanez SR300 and a Fender Rumble (15W) amp to use for practice.
Yesterday I was in a local music store and grabbed one of their Ibbys off the rack and went to the amp room. I plugged it in to a couple of amps with 15" speakers, and I thought I was playing a different instrument. Although the Rumble works fine for practice, it occurred to me that I will never know what my bass can really sound like until I upgrade the amp.
The two amps I tried out were both in the $250 -$300 range. As I scan the web, I see that that kind of price range can get me many models, both new and used. I finally decided that I really need to take MY bass with me to try out any potential new amp I might buy. Using the above price range, are there some suggestions that anyone would give me on what I should be looking at?
Personally, I’d be tempted to go used before buying new. And yes, you should definitely bring your own bass to eliminate unknown variables. Some stuff you might want to think about:
· If you like Fender, consider upgrading within the Rumble series in terms of wattage and speaker size.
· Look at some of the older Fender Bassman combos. I’ve got a Bassman 150 that I like a lot for practice and smaller gigs.
· Peavey combos offer a lot of bang for the buck. The older Basic and TNT amps are plentiful on the used market.
I'm a big fan of the GK MB210 combo. As it sits, its 350 watts through 2 10" speakers. If you add an 8 ohm extension cab, it puts out a full 500 watts. GK offers quite a few amps in their MB combo line, but the 210 is the only one that accepts an unpowered extension cab. Also, don't let the 10" speakers fool you. They get a lot of love around TB for their clarity and tight punch.
Overall this amp has proven itself to be a reliable, great sounding amp. I've gigged mine hundreds of times in my classic hard rock bands with and without an extension cab without a single failure.
They can be found used for around $350 or new for around $600 with the right coupons/negotiations.
Oh yeah. It only weighs 33lbs!!!
Here's a GC link: http://www.guitarcenter.com/Gallien-...13-i1869758.gc
I am looking at the GK MB115, the Peavey Max 115 and the Ibanez SW 80. I can get a used GK MB115 II for just about the new price of the other two amps. The GK MB115 is a 200W amp, the Peavey is a 300W, and the Ibanez is an 80W. I have played on the Peavey and the Ibanez, but I have not played on the GK yet. Am I on the right track? Would the used GK be preferable over the Peavey and the Ibanez? By the way, thanks for the help!
I'd advise buying used - more bang for the buck, and amps don't generally have hidden flaws that you wouldn't notice from playing through it for five minutes. One I might add to your list to look for is the Ampeg BA115 (100 watts, 1x15) or, better, the BA115HP (220 watts, 1x15). The HP, at least, will be all you need for most band settings. It is heavy, though. What I use for a practice/band rehearsal/small gig combo these days is the Carvin MB210 (200 watts, 2x10) which has great power and sound and is lightweight to boot. It's a little pricier than your range (about $400) and not as common to find used, though.
A lot depends on how much power and volume you need. For a new 1x15 or a 1x12 I'd look at the tc electronic BG250s. You'd be in a $300-$350 price range and into a very nice amp with great features and power to spare for home play and plenty to gig with. GK and Ampeg also have some vary nice bass combos but tend to be a bit more money for what you get.
It sounds like the bottom line is to play my bass through many amps that are within my budget and get the one that that matches my sound pallet the best. After browsing through this forum, it is clear that there are several good brands I can go with. Thanks for the help!
I ended up getting a used GK MD115 II Ultralight. Out the door for <$285. I have to wait a few days for it to get to me (it's coming from Ft. Worth to Austin). I had a chance to play on the GK, the TC Elect. BG250, and the Peavey Max 115, and liked the sound that came out of the GK, playing my bass, the best.
That was quick! Congrats Reddog01.
Pics (when available) or it never happened!
Sounds like we may be adding a new GK fan club member to the roster....
I picked it up yesterday. It is in pristine shape, and it sounds great. I'm very pleased!
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