New Player. Upgrading amp help!!
I have been playing bass for about 3 months now. Basically all I play is RUSH. I just love Geddy Lee and the band, best stuff to play in my opinion. Anyway, I am currently using an Ibanez B10 bass amp. Packs a nice punch to be honest, but I would like to upgrade in the next few weeks.
Any ideas as for what to get? Something still in the combo range if possible.. $100 would be my max to spend as I am still learning! I do frequent guitarcenters used section on their website and for the most part there's some nice used amps!
Any guidance would be greatly appreciated. I'm sure upgrading my amp would do me wonders as it would improve my sound, and just overall quality of how my bass sounds. By the way I am using a 20th anniversary upgraded Squier P bass with Ernie Ball reg. slinky strings!
You are definitely heading in the right direction with a used amp, but a few questions ive got.
Do you plan on playin' with a band at anytime in the future? Even if its many months down the road.
If so, are you going to be playin with a drummer or just a guitarist at this point?
Is bass something youre willing to invest some money into for a while?
I ask these because if you answered YES to any of them, i think you should save up for a little longer and get something that can provide you some serious tone at volumes capable of playing with a group.
Start by looking at used prices for combo amps from companies like Ashdown, Ampeg, MarkBass, SWR, Fender ETC. Play them at the guitar center and see what ones you like and then check the local ads for used ones.
Even check on the classifieds on this site, you might find some sweet gear as well. Dont discount pawn shops and local (small) music stores. There are plenty of people out there looking to turn their old amps into CASH for highly discounted prices from what they paid.
Be patient and the right amp will find you my friend!!! I dont think youll be happy with a $100 used amp, it probably wont be much better than the B10.
Definitely consider the questions above.
And, in general terms, "upgrading" with a $100 budget isn't necessarily going to take you very far. That said, I think an important question is why are you buying an amp now? Which goes to jbd5015's questions.
If it is simply to improve the way things sound as you continue to practice and learn at home, by yourself, you might consider continuing to use your Ibanez amp, but switching to headphones. That will sound much better than the speaker, both for your bass sound and the sound of the aux input (I assume you're playing along with that).
If you have an immediate want or need to be heard and hear yourself in a group, and you're set on putting $100 toward an amp, I'd recommend taking the search to Craigslist. I just looked at my local listings, and the first page had 3 potentially suitable Peavey (two 12" and a 15") combos for $100 and a Yorkville 15" combo for $75. With that, you have to balance is the risk of buying from a private seller (i.e., that you're able to fully check the amp out) against the increased value of finding a good amp at a good price. That same amp is likely to be more at GC, and at $100, you don't have very much room at all.
There's a '90s Peavey 12" combo that I've been using at rehearsals with one band for a few weeks now (I couldn't tell you the model). It belonged to the singer's son and had just been sitting around. A few weeks ago, I decided to go ahead and use it, instead of carrying my amp in from my car, and I was surprised to find that it got the job done just fine. It's a fairly controlled situation volume-wise, but it's drums and two guitars. I have to crank it a bit, but it doesn't fart out, so good enough is good enough.
This is an example of an amp that would probably sell for $100, and it would meet volume needs that the Ibanez would undoubtedly not be able to meet.
I definitely have the time and patience to save for something that would benefit me more. I am in the process of picking up a pair of headphones online. What kind should I get? I really only need them for practicing at night with when my parents are crashed out.
I do foresee myself playing in a band down the road once I get my chops up to par. I wouldn't mind waiting until Christmas and getting something really nice.. I always will look at used before buying something new due to my skill level at the moment.
Thank you all for your help.. I GREATLY appreciate it a lot..
any other questions please let me know and I will try to answer them for you!!
Off topic, but I'd add a goal over time to become good at setting up your bass. Not now, but down the road. It helps with technically involved material to find your own Goldilocks settings. Right now those things may not yet apply.
Get some plain-jane headphones; lower-end RadioShack, Sony, Sennheiser, etc.
My preference would be for ones that have large earcups (aka "full-size" or "around ear") for best isolation. Some cheaper ones that sit on your ears instead of over them can work fine too.
Sennheiser HD419's are $40
I have to agree with the general consensus, save some more money and get an amp/cab/combo that will actually be an upgrade from your ibanez combo now. Save like a madman if you can and by Christmas time you can probably afford a great cab and amp! Especially if you stick with the used market as suggested. Even some of the Ampeg combos out right now are really nice like the BA115's and so forth. Good luck and keep poundin those strings my fellow lowender :bassist:
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