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Bass through a guitar amp

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by whatever4, Mar 6, 2014.

  1. whatever4


    Dec 12, 2012
    I live in an apartment, and my downstairs neighbor complained about me practicing. I told told him it wasn't loud, but he said the bass travels through the floor.

    Okay, I don't want to drive the neighbor crazy, so I bought some headphones. But I hate practicing with headphones. They don't sound that great; they make my ears sweaty; and I feel like I'm going to get lynched by the cord or pull over my amp if I move too much.

    So, I thought, I need a bass amp that I can play at really low volume with minimal bass. Someone had a 35watt Gorrilla tube cruncher amp for $15 on Craigslist. It's not a bass amp, but I bought it because I'm playing treble at low volumes, and I'm only out $15 if I trash it. So far it seems to work perfectly for my situation.

    Does anyone else play bass through a guitar amp?
  2. I have but at very low volumes so as to not ruin the amp. It's a tiny Epiphone and probably comparable to what you're using.

    By bass amp stays at my buddy's house where we have band practice.
  3. spaz21387


    Feb 25, 2008
    Portland oregon
    Id replace the speaker in it to handle bass better. bass through a guitar speaker will shred that speaker even at low volumes.
  4. Fair Warning

    Fair Warning Deliverin' the Goods! Supporting Member

    Coffee Shop Amp.....$15 everywhere
  5. experimental bassist

    experimental bassist

    Mar 15, 2009
    Playing bass through a guitar amp at low volumes is perfectly fine.

    Playing bass in an apartment will never be fine.

    Invest in a better set of headphones and everyone will be happy. :)
  6. A Sansamp or other source of compression and EQ can help a lot when playing quietly through a guitar amp. But really, a nice, I mean NICE set of headphones is hard to beat. The cord is longer, they have better ventilation, they sound MUCH better, and even though not noise cancelling, my Sony cans work great on airplanes, defeating a significant portion of noise and letting me sleep, or listen to my music at less than ear-splitting volumes like I had to with ear buds.
  7. klokker


    Jan 7, 2009
    Steele City, NE
    I practice all the time through a 10 watt Squire guitar amp with a 5 or 6 inch speaker. It's a bit tinny but who cares? I only use my good stuff for gigs pretty much. Plus it goes away easily if I don't want an amp laying around.
  8. Alexander

    Alexander Supporting Member

    Aug 13, 2001
    Seattle, WA
    I live in a town home and my neighbor seems to play (poorly) his piano at all times, day or night. Drives me nuts. Today, My Fender Super Bassman just arrived and I've been playing it through a 412 cab. Perfect apartment rig, if you ask me!

    (Psst... Hey buddy, if you're going to start a volume war, don't do it with a bass player...)
  9. suzukiagogo


    Mar 4, 2014
    spot on. I live in an apartment as well and used to live on the second floor. I could not play without pissing off my neighbor down stairs, so i played when he was not home.
    as soon as the chance arose though, i moved to a ground level apartment and have not had a complaint since.
    headphones are your best bet, or a very small amp keeping your low end levels down as to not get too thundery.
  10. RoadRanger

    RoadRanger Supporting Member

    Feb 18, 2004
    NE CT
    I have a vintage 300w amp in my LR (and my nearest neighbor is 200 feet away) but rarely use it. I mostly use my Koss KTXPRO1 with my Tascam BT-1 :
    Open back and on-ear so they don't make you feel "shut in" or have sweaty ears - and you can hear what's going on around you, they don't block ambient noise at all :bassist: .
    Best $13 I ever spent on gear :D .
  11. dwjazz54


    Jan 21, 2003
    Jersey City, NJ
    I've been known to plug into my BL's Mesa Boogie 50 watt 1x12 tube amp if I'm over at his place and we're just playing in his kitchen (he's in an apartment, so gotta keep the volume down). But at VERY low volumes, it actually sounds really nice!
  12. funkingroovin

    funkingroovin Conquering A-D-D,and all the other notes as well!

    Apr 19, 2009
    A friend and fellow bassist was recently given an old 15 watt Peavey guitar practice combo with a torn speaker..he threw in an old bass speaker and it gets a lot of after-party use. It actually sounds really good at low(apartment tolerable)volumes,and does the job keeping up with two acoustic sixers,but starts getting crappy quick when pushed..
  13. MVE


    Aug 8, 2010
    Have you tried elevating your bass amp a bit?
    It might help if you could get it up off the floor.
  14. bherman

    bherman Supporting Member

    Apr 30, 2009
    Grand Junction, CO

    this for sure! Even sitting it on a plastic egg crate will help decouple it from the floor
  15. Boom762

    Boom762 I AM the one who Booms! Supporting Member

    Oct 19, 2013
    Lubbock, TX
    I do. I had a Fender Rumble 350 head and played into a Crate 2x15 but I rolled my truck down a hill in Texas and the head did not survive. I now use a Crate GX-65 guitar amp plugged into my crate 2x15. It has degraded slightly over the years but its still good tone and super loud. The guitar amp is 8 ohms and the cabinet is 4ohms.

    I first used this combo in Austin at a sound lab and even though the rooms were insulated, if I turned the master volume passed 2 it was heard and felt throughout the place. Loudest mix and match I've ever used.

    My advice for playing quietly is to turn the bass all the way down, play acoustically, or get some wireless headphones. If hey aren't wireless but I swear by my Skull candy ear-buds. It separates the instruments in the music well. Ill listen to a band like Cannibal Corpse and you can hear the bass every note of the way and it never guts collected into the guitar sound with those things. I would at least look into getting some good skull candy and an extension plug/converter so you can plug into the rig from a distance.
  16. :D LIve in a condo. The six year old next door is often pounding around the house, and the noise travels. So does my bass when I practice next to his bedroom... ;)