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Amp for a semi-poor high-school band student.

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by StoneTempleCore, Feb 15, 2014.

  1. Hello TB. I'm a high school student who has around $160 in his pocket (but can ask for more, and parents could help pay for the amp), and I'd like to upgrade from my Fender Rumble 15. It's a great amp, but I'm forming a band with a hard hitting drummer who knows his stuff. I'd figure that I'd ask you guys what's my best option, since many of you are experienced bassists who know much more than me (no sarcasm intended).

    I've taken a walk around the block once or twice just to narrow down what I like:
    - Ampeg, Fender, and Acoutic are my top three brands, but any reliable brand would do.
    - I prefer an emphasis on low-mids (defined, not muddy), and I also play a Jazz Bass with DiMarzio Ultra Jazzes, an SX 5 string, and DR/D'Addario strings (if that matters)
    - I play funk, rock, R&B, and a little bit of soul. I mainly play fingerstyle and slap often. Very rarely do I pick.
    - I don't mind if it's ceramic or neo, or any other magnet. I can also handle the weight (I have a somewhat stocky build.)
    - Preferably 100 watts or more, I may need it for jazz band in the upcoming months.
    - I don't mind new or used

    Along with that last note, I may have a chance to get a Ampeg Portaflex PF-210HE for $250. I won't be able to afford a head though. Could I just plug my Rumble 15 into the 210 for now?

    Hope this helps, thanks!
  2. mrb327


    Mar 6, 2013
    Nobody Knows
    Look into the 150 & 350 fenders, they are on close out and are discounted.

    Otherwise think used
  3. experimental bassist

    experimental bassist

    Mar 15, 2009
    Used Ampeg BA115 combos $150 or less all day long where I live.

    Also Peavey is sorta the "go to" brand for used budget rigs that can hang with a drummer.
  4. fjadams

    fjadams Supporting Member

    Jun 7, 2011
    Danbury, CT
    Might look at the GK combo amps. The used version I amps are floating around from all the upgrade to version II.
  5. cableguy


    Jun 4, 2009
    North Bend, WA

    Old Peaveys never die. They're just heavy as hell and people sell them as they get older because they want lighter gear. Some of the old TNT combos would work. For a little more I might look into an older Peavey 2x15 or 4x10. Those usually can be had for under two hundred. Then get the used head of your choice, old Peavey, Old GK 400RB or backline. Used is the key as long as it works well. Play before you buy if possible.:bassist:
  6. spaz21387


    Feb 25, 2008
    Portland oregon
    look at the carvin micro bass combos
  7. primusfan1989


    Jan 17, 2005
    new jersey
  8. klokker


    Jan 7, 2009
    Steele City, NE
    The used thing I can't comment on. New, check out a Peavey Max 115. 300 watts into 4 ohms. $300 and Peaveys are pretty bullet proof.

    The Ampeg BA115 isn't bad, but I think you'll get more volume and power out of the Peavey and it sounds like you'll need it. The BA115 wasn't enough for me. Again, not saying the BA115 is a bad amp.

    100 watts into a typical 115 will be enough, but barely. Get a little extra, I think you'll be glad you spent the money.

    Good luck.
  9. klokker


    Jan 7, 2009
    Steele City, NE
  10. Thanks everyone. It seems that Peavey is the way to go, and I don't blame you guys. We have a 4x10 Peavey with a Hartke 2500 head, and it's a beast. I'll try to search around the area to test the waters some more with amps (I live in Louisiana, and there's three Guitar Centers and a music store within a 100 mile radius).
  11. Keep an eye out for Fender BXR300C. Usually you can find them cheap and they hold up well in a loud band!

    I've used a BA115 and do not feel they have the power needed. Never liked them..
  12. I see a lot of suggestions for 115 combos, and I can't help but agree.
    My drummer hits hard. Hard enough that I wear hearing protection at rehearsal. I only have to turn up my Yorkville BM200 (the ones with the cool blue rat fur) to just under halfway to be heard and felt clearly, and I cut through the mix on top of that, but that's partially my bass' fault. The amp is essentially 150 watts into the built-in 15.
    Got it for a steal too, 150$ after selling the bass I got with it.
  13. Hanging with a hard hitting drummer needs a serious rig. You definitely need a used bargain. The TB collective can guide you on whatever you can find locally.

    You need to sell the little practice amp and get a little more budget from your parents.

    There isn't really a halfway house between practice amp and gigging amp that holds its own without PA support. The Rumble 350 can cover a small bar gig so long as you aren't stupid loud and would be fine for jazz. It is the closest to the mythical halfway, but do the job, that I have played.

    The closeout deals are probably done by now but a used one that hasn't been abused may be found. They are very prone to abuse, being marketed as real deal amps when gui****s have 2x12 cabs that easily bury them. 350w into 2x10 doesn't go too well when cranked.
  14. Most amps are pretty well maxed at halfway, it's sad but that's how amps sell instore. Johnny auditions the amp and can't bear to turn it past 11 o'clock before fearing he'll get chucked out of the store. At that point he's sold, but little does he know it won't get much louder at 12 and start flapping the speaker at 1.
  15. DukeLeJeune

    DukeLeJeune rational romantic mystic cynical idealist Supporting Member Commercial User

    Nov 24, 2008
    Princeton, Texas
    Owner & designer, AudioKinesis; Auth. mfg, Big E (Home Audio only)
    I don't know diddly about good used gear but I saw "SLHS" on your profile page.

    That wouldn't be South Lafourche High School by any chance, would it?
  16. christw

    christw Get low!

    May 11, 2008
    Dayton OH
    I want to be Tesla (tinkerer at Dayton Amp Co)
    My HS used an old Peavey TNT that rocked every band rehearsal and foot ball game for years.
  17. Kmonk


    Oct 18, 2012
    South Shore, Massachusetts
    Endorsing Artist: Fender, Spector, Ampeg, Curt Mangan Strings, Nordstrand Pickups, Korg Keyboards
    I have found Fender and Peavey to lack brightness and clarity. I would look for an Ampeg or GK combo.
  18. tubatodd

    tubatodd Supporting Member

    Oct 31, 2004
    Birmingham, AL
    In high school I went from a small practice amp to a Yorkville 100B amp. I bought it because I could afford it. It was a VERY disappointing purchase. I learned the hard way, GET A QUALITY AMP!

    That being said I think the best bang for your buck is likely getting a Fender Rumble 350 at the new discounted rate. It is twice your budget BUT it is a great bargain and plenty of headroom for your needs.