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Bass Guitar amp suggestions

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by swimnerd13, Apr 23, 2006.

  1. swimnerd13


    Apr 23, 2006
    Hi guys! I'm kinda' new to the world of guitars, all I own is an acoustic guitar. So that I can play in a band, I want to learn bass guitar (I can already play Cello, so the difference isn't too much). I found a great deal on a Fender Bass, and could also get some stuff reduced price (like a 10' cable, gig bag, and stand. If I go ahead and buy, I'd get those). Anyway, the amp at reduced price is only 15 Watts!!!!!!!!!!!!! I havebeen told to play in a band I should look to about 150-200 Watts. After noticing how amazingly expensive those are, I looked to eBay, and as usual, it never failed me. :hyper: But then I had a thought, and here's my question:

    Do I need to buy a Fender amp for a Fender bass, or can I get any manufacturers amp?


    Swimnerd 13
  2. IvanMike

    IvanMike Player Characters fear me... Supporting Member

    Nov 10, 2002
    Middletown CT, USA
    the brand of amp doesnt matter. what does matter is how well the amp will provide enough volume for your application and somewhat secondary, what sort of tone the amp will provide at said volume.

    The faq sticky at the top of amps has quite a few linked threads that go into various aspects of this topic, opinions differ to a degree, so it's worth taking all of them with a grain of salt - even mine. :p

    One opinion of mine that i do not recant; a bass amplifier that allows you to be loud enough to play with any band is going to be expensive. Sorry, but it's a sad fact. I don't mean to say that you have to purchase a boutique amplifier that will set you back thousands of dollars, but, an amplifier that will "cut it" in a band situation is going to be more expensive than a bass guitar suited for a beginner. That's one of the reasons that it's easy to get work as a bass player. Sure, there are a lot of guitar players who are competent bass players, and maybe they even own a bass, but a bass amplifier suitable for gigging is a hefty investment. Sad fact of life. :meh:
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    :scowl: :scowl: :scowl: :scowl: :scowl: :scowl: :scowl: :scowl: :scowl: :scowl: :scowl: :scowl: :scowl: :scowl: :scowl: :scowl: :scowl: :scowl: :scowl: :scowl: :scowl: :scowl: :scowl: :scowl: :scowl: :scowl: :scowl:
  4. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Total Hyper-Elite Member Gold Supporting Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
    If your band is going to play out, I used to say 300 watts minimum. Now I say 600 minimum, with a good 410 cabinet to go with it.

    Fender is making some pretty decent amps these days, but I'd stick with their Bassman line. They make a Bassman 400 Pro 210 combo that, while only 400 watts, may suit your needs for quite a while.

    As IvanMike said, you don't need to play the same brand of bass as your amplification. Otherwise, folks like SWR, Ampeg, Crate, Eden, Aguilar, Gallien Krueger, Walter Woods, Alessandro, Mesa, Behringer (forgive me), Bergantino, Thunderfunk, Glockenklang, Acoustic Image, Euphonic Audio, and others wouldn't be selling any amps at all.
  5. vyse933


    Mar 31, 2006
    Grand Haven, MI

    with the ibanez 35 watt amp, i would tilt it back, turn everything up to ten, turn my tone control all the way up, press the +10 dcb. button, and play with a pic. i had no trouble being heard with a drummer and guitar. now the sound, haha, it wasn't quality, but it worked.
  6. Thank you for that post. :rollno:

    and just so no one has to reply...

    ...thank you KeithBMI for your post, also a waste. :D
  7. swimnerd13


    Apr 23, 2006
    OK, so I can have a different brand. That definitely helps. Another idea I recently came to was that my dad plays acoustic guitar (actually quite well) and is considering buying an electric guitar. He said he'd pay for 60% the cost of an amp on the condition that he can use it for gigs when he wants to. This sure is a great deal for me. Anyway, I was wondering if an electric guitar and a bass guitar can use the same amps? :bassist: :bassist:

    Thanks for the help guys!
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  9. IvanMike

    IvanMike Player Characters fear me... Supporting Member

    Nov 10, 2002
    Middletown CT, USA
    Can the same amp be used for electric guitar and bass? Yes and No. The guitar requires mouch less wattage to end up being the saem percieved volume as a bass. An amplifier designed for the electric guitar is generally not suitable for bass not so much for the tonal difference, but by virtue of the fact that speakers optimized for electric guitar are easily blown by the bass guitar's lower frequency range and much more powerful transients. Conversley, a bass guitar amplifier and bass speakers will not be damaged by a guitar, but the guitar player is likley to find the sound of the amplifier "sterile" and "lifeless". It might be worth your while for the both of you to go down to the store together and try out guitars and basses through amplifiers to see what i mean. (PS, dont play the bass thru a store's guitar amp - you may end up having to buy it). ;)
  10. swimnerd13


    Apr 23, 2006
    So what you're basically saying is that we couldn't get a guitar amp because the bass would just blow it away, but we could get a bass amp, however my dad might find it a little boring? If that's the case, is there a particular line of amp you might reccomend?
  11. Jack


    Sep 6, 2003
    Newcastle, UK
    By all means try everything, but Id say some general rules would be to find a tube amp (expensive, but a good choice for bass and damn near essential for guitar) and smaller speakers, say maybe 10" or 12".

    Good hunting,
  12. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Total Hyper-Elite Member Gold Supporting Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
    I agree about getting the bass amp and not the guitar amp if you're both going to use it. The bass amp is going to amplify what it gets from a guitar pretty cleanly. It may sound "sterile," but that can be remedied by putting a nice tube effect in front of it like, say, a Radial ToneBone Classic, or any of a thousand others to warm up the sound. It can sound very good.

    For example, I have an SWR Workingman's 12 (100 watts) that I use as a practice amp, as it doesn't have enough power to gig. On the other hand, I can stick a Boss Blues Driver pedal in front of it or in the effects loop, and it creates fabulous electric guitar sounds. A hundred watts is a ton of power for a guitar (but not for bass). Any of a number of multi-effects would work bitchen, as well, such as a Boss GT-6 or GT-8, or some kind of Line 6 Pod.

    As for tube amps, for your application I'd say forget it. Get something you can use for bass for a long time (which usually means solid state power amps), and let your dad get a tube amp when the time comes.

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