Amp suggestions

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by keithconn, Dec 7, 2001.

  1. Alright - I need some advice ...

    I am new to playing the bass. I need some suggestions as to what would be a wise investment as far as amps/combos/cabs etc ...

    I can't spend THAT much money, but I would like something that I could eventually play with a band or something. Also something that I could practice with at home. I don't want to get something and in a year find that it is worthless. I am all for spending some money up front and getting something worth while.

    I have checked out the boards on ebay and see a lot of stuff. I also checked out some stuff here, and most of it is comparing one ??? to another ??? and I don't know what ??? is in the first place. So some simple advice would be welcome.

    Thanks in advance ...

  2. blamkin


    Nov 28, 2001
    Broomfield, Co
    Hey KeithConn, there's lots of good stuff out there -- give us a price range. :D
  3. Humm ... I don't really know. I guess thats part of my question - how much should I expect to spend.

    But I kinda see my self spending like $400 ... something used??

  4. rcrimm

    rcrimm Commercial User

    Jun 20, 2000
    Meridian, MS USA
    Customer Service, Peavey Electronics
    My suggestion:

    You won't really find a practical amp which is good for home practice, AND playing in a loud rock band (if that's what you want to do, you didn't say what music you like).
    Get yourself a nice medium power combo (50-150 watts), which will be good for home use, and jamming in the garage. You may need a bigger rig later when you are ready to play gigs, but you will still need something to practice with. A little combo will always be useful to you.

    Hope this helps.
  5. Basso Gruvitas

    Basso Gruvitas Supporting Member

    Jun 7, 2000
    Dallas/Ft. Worth TX
    It also helps to know what styles of music you play. If you're a more modern/fusion/jazz/Latin player, I would go for an SWR Workingman's 15

    If you're into vintage/alternative/new music, I would look at an Ampeg B100 (or something close to that). It's also a 15" combo, but it has more of that phat vintage sound to it.

    Carvin and Gallien Krueger also make 15" combos. Medium priced - medium quality.

    The big thing is to plug in and listen. It's great to be loud, but make sure it has the features you're going to need.
  6. Thanks everyone so far -

    I 'plan' on playing pop/rock stuff and eventually jazz(I hope). What do you think of these Crate Bx100's? I see them everywhere ... one for $200 on ebay?

    Thanks again -
  7. SRSiegel

    SRSiegel Guest

    Sep 17, 2001
    Ann Arbor, Michigan
    i would agree with roger.

    fender bassman-combos range from 25-400 watts, and can be found used within your price range (probably not the 400 watter though)

    ampeg-makes great 50 and 100 watt combos with a single 12 or 15 inch speaker. the sound suprisingly big and full for their diminuitive size and power ratings. you could get one new in your price range.

    peavey-makes all kinds of stuff. you could find a new or used one in your price range. they are usually quite loud, built like a tank. but because of this they are heavey. not fun to carry around.

    SWR workingmans series are wonderful too, might be a bit too expensive for you, but you could try to find one used.

    Carvin combos I have heard are decent, and a good deal given the power and the volume they have, but are not of the same overall quality as the previously mentioned brands. built well, loud, just not the best tone ive been told. you could get one new, with a warranty for 300 i think...

    personally I dont think you can go wrong with any of these brands. Check em all out, defenitly look for used gear at a local dealer. $400 will get a lot as far as a used medium sized combo goes (i got a peavey TKO-65 used for $150 once!)

    good hunting.
  8. ThunderStik

    ThunderStik Guest

    Jun 25, 2001
    Claremore OK.
    As a bass player you will learn that power is king. For playing gigs you need power for clean sound. I would suggest a minimum of 150 watts, there are many situations where you can easily get by with less but it sure is alot easier to turn down than to try turn up and fry a speaker or amp or both. If you want a combo get something with a 15" speaker (pending on what type of music you play) should do well anything less will die a slow painfull death. There are exceptions to every rule but these are general guidlines. Peavey makes some of the most durable stuff around actually they are built like russian tanks and last a long time but their sound has something left to be desired but thats just my opinion and their price is always right. Bang for the buck thay are a top contender. Carvin also makes good stuff IMO better sound than peavey pobably not as durable though and good prices also. Ampeg makes some nice combo's but they are more expensive. Just remember sound is very sujective and what I like you may hate and so on. Some may cry im crazy but I would go with at least 3-4 hundred watts and a 15 inch speaker and look for an amp that has jacks for an extension cabinet so if you need more you can add on another cab. Good luck
  9. rllefebv


    Oct 17, 2000
    Newberg, Oregon
    Here's a nice Ampeg from a fellow TB'er that should suit...

    100 watts, but they sound louder. Personally, I'm a fan of the 50 watter, but if I was in the market for an amp, I probably would jump at this... He's also got a V4-B for sale... nice head, but you'd need a cabinet to go with it.

    Good luck,
  10. HeavyDuty

    HeavyDuty Supporting Curmudgeon Staff Member Gold Supporting Member

    Jun 26, 2000
    Central Texas
    I think the route I took makes sense. ;)

    I found a used Gallien-Kruger 400RB head, which usually sell in the $200 range. These are very versatile and durable heads from the '80s and early '90s, from before the rash of QC problems G-K has had. Back in the day, almost every bar band around had one because of their light weight and small size. 125W into 8 ohms, and 200W into 4. If you're a slapper (bah), I don't think they have enough headroom, but they're fine for straight ahead rock and overkill for jazz. It would always be usable as a backup head later in life, too.

    I spent the majority of my budget on a first-class cab - a Bag End S15-D, which goes about $400 new. However, I'm an old fart that wanted that 15" sound. Most around here seem to prefer 10s. Used cabs are readily available in the $200 range - shop locally, since they're big enough to make shipping expensive.

    My .02 ...