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$500 amp recommendations for upright bass

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by nomaj, Oct 4, 2013.

  1. nomaj


    Apr 2, 2012
    I have a friend who recently bought an Ampeg BA115 to use with with his double bass. He has mentioned to me that he isn't completely happy with the overall tone, saying that the BA 115 has more than sufficient low presence, but that he can't get the string snap and vibration sound to his liking.

    If he decides to return it, what approx. $500 or less amp would you recommend? Acoustic tone is more important than volume.
  2. The old GK MB150 combo is nice.
  3. Jeff Elkins

    Jeff Elkins Supporting Member


    The GK MicroBass combos were the only thing recommended to me for mine 4 years ago. Still have it, still going strong. Research the different models, but I've seen them on Craigslist for under $500.

    What pickup is he using? Does he have a pre? There may be a cheaper solution...
  4. Bert Slide

    Bert Slide

    May 16, 2012
    Louisville KY
    Preamp would help. I use a GK 400rbIII and an old Eden David 210 it sounds pretty good even without a preamp. 15's can often sound too boomy so most people prefer 10's or 12's.
  5. nukes_da_bass

    nukes_da_bass Banned

    Feb 19, 2006
    west suburban boston
    Theres a Clarus here in the classifieds for about that price, engineered for DB. Go with purpose built so you can avoid the need for an outboard buffer preamp!
  6. You may find it useful to check out the Double Bass side of things here, where there is a Forum titled, appropriately, "Amps, Mics, and Pickups."
  7. thejumpcat

    thejumpcat thejumpcat

    Sep 30, 2007
    SWR Baby Blue 2x8.
  8. MyMusic


    Jun 1, 2010
    Dover, De
    I've seen a couple of bassists using Genz Benz 3.0 and 6.0 and they sounded great.
  9. jeff7bass


    Apr 9, 2009
  10. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    I've played through a BA115 using an upright. I thought it sounded good for the money. However, I'll say that the weak link of it is the tweeter. Par for the course in inexpensive amps, though. Me, I would just unplug the tweet if I had one but you can replace them with better ones for not too much money.
  11. Linnin

    Linnin SUSPENDED

    Jul 19, 2012
    Linningrad, Earth
    At one time SWR made a 112 combo specifically for bass violin that was without equal for the task. If you can find one, great. While this may sound crazy to many, do yourself a BIG favor and plug into a Fender Rumble 75. Keep an open mind, and I'll bet you will be amazed at the wonderful open airy presence of the hi-mids & low-highs. Nice solid bottom end and plenty of punch in the low-mids too. I love mine.
  12. Jim Carr

    Jim Carr Dr. Jim Gold Supporting Member

    Jan 21, 2006
    Denton, TX or Kailua, HI
    fEARful Kool-Aid dispensing liberal academic card-carrying union member Musicians Local 72-147

    However, do you have any idea what kind of pickup your friend uses? Preamp?
  13. nomaj


    Apr 2, 2012

    I believe he has a Realist transducer. He doesn't have a preamp.
  14. dukeorock

    dukeorock Owner BNA Audio Supporting Member Commercial User

    Mar 8, 2011
    Nashville, TN
    Authorized greenboy designs builder/Owner of BNA Audio
    I have heard DB players use that combo, and cannot confirm that at all...did NOT sound anywhere near great.

    The Genz Focus combos sound pretty good...the lower priced GK stuff sounds pretty good.

    For all I know, there's a good DB sound at that price point, but I haven't heard it yet :meh:

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