Best cheap practice amp?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Whit Townsend, Sep 25, 2022.

  1. I want to pick up an inexpensive head or combo to leave at a buddies house for a bi monthly practice/jam. Needs to have enough vol for a small room, vocs thru PA, and an elec drum kit or congas. Needs to be louder than "bedroom" but not really all that loud. Been using an Orange Micro Terror 20w guitar head, which is adequate but it has developed noise issues to the point its unusable. Prob because its been yanked off the cab to the floor a few times. Plus its had other issue over its life like having to replace the crappy little external power supply. My experience with it makes me question the long term reliability of some of the tiny micro heads out there. They tend to run hot, can easily get yanked off the cab, and have those "questionable" external power supplies. Thinking I might be better off long term with a Rumble 40 for a little over $200.
    Ive looked used for a little combo Acoustic, Peavey, etc but nothing is available right now locally. Guess I'll just have to go to Guitar Center to pick something up this afternoon as I need it by tomorrow or else tote my big rig back and forth.
    I have a 1-12" cab I can leave, or could get by with a 8"-10" combo if it sounds decent. Budget $150-350 max.
    Genre is singer/songwriter, Jam Band.

    What say ye?
    Last edited: Sep 25, 2022
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  2. jallenbass

    jallenbass Commercial User

    May 17, 2005
    Bend, Oregon
    I thought the new Ampeg Rocket combo that I played through at a Guitar Center sounded quite good. It was the 1x12 which is over your budget but you might want to try the 1x10 which is within your budget.
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  3. InkCow


    Aug 9, 2022
    Chattanooga, TN
    If you’ve already got the 1x12, maybe just add a BAM200 (assuming you can find one by tomorrow) and Velcro?
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  4. 75Ric

    75Ric Supporting Member

    Feb 13, 2019
    I use the Rumble 40 occasionally in our rehearsal space. Two electric guitars and acoustic drums plus me on bass. It works fine. Plenty of volume and good tone.
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  5. scottfeldstein

    scottfeldstein Roots and fifths and a little extra.

    Jun 20, 2011
    San Marcos, California
    I have a Hartke KB12 "kickback" combo. It's easy to move and has that great kickback wedge monitor feature. Great for smaller spaces. And it is loud. Way louder than you'd think just by looking at it. It doesn't have a lot of features, but it's great for a quick in-and-out open mic or for small spaces. I have used it with my Zoom MS-60B where I dial in a compressor and a Sansamp and it sounds like the big rig.
    Last edited: Sep 25, 2022
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  6. I just bought a Rumble 40 and played a small room with acoustic guitar and percussion to 25 people and it sounded fine
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  7. Mighty Thumb

    Mighty Thumb Supporting Member

    I use an Orange Crush Bass 50 on an angled amp stand for my office jam rig. It’s loud enough for a small acoustic drum set, electric guitar, keys and vocals through a small PA. $299 free shipping on Reverb.
    Frankie Fender likes this.
  8. Stewie

    Stewie Supporting Member

    Jul 3, 2013
    Near Boston
    If you’re going to leave it somewhere, find a used Fender BXR300C combo. They are cheap as dirt because they are so stinking heavy, but sound as good as any amp you can buy. It’ll keep up even if your drummer is John Bonham. Offer $100 to 150. Thank me later.
  9. InkCow


    Aug 9, 2022
    Chattanooga, TN
    I have one and agree with all that, but definitely be sure that wherever you plan on leaving it is ok with something the size of a kegerator and weight of a safe to be left first because you don’t want to have to haul it back out.
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  10. Stewie

    Stewie Supporting Member

    Jul 3, 2013
    Near Boston
    Aw, come on. It only weighs about 100 pounds. If my wife still weighed that, I’d carry her anywhere
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  11. bordinco90

    bordinco90 Supporting Member

    Dec 7, 2011
    SW Louisiana
    I would say the Ampeg RB 110 or rumble 40
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  12. bigdaddybass12


    Feb 26, 2021
    GC had rumble 100 for $295. Check on that
    bordinco90 likes this.
  13. scottfeldstein

    scottfeldstein Roots and fifths and a little extra.

    Jun 20, 2011
    San Marcos, California
    I really want to believe that a 110 combo can do the job in a drums/guitar/vox type situation. I mean, I get that it won't be for all venues and all stages. But would it be good for any? Seems like having a 112 combo puts you over the finish line a lot more than a 110 would. Then again, I have never tried either of these.
  14. bordinco90

    bordinco90 Supporting Member

    Dec 7, 2011
    SW Louisiana
    Yeah you're right playing with drums might be an issue with the R40 or RB110. I have an RB112 and it can be heard at full band volume, but it's cranked up. At practice, it does just fine with our drummers electric drums.
    DJ Bebop likes this.
  15. Are Traynor amps available around were you live? I use an SB112 combo in the same type of situation you describe and I’m honestly thrilled. Light, portable… I use this in a drum/soft guitar/vocals context with the volume knob at around 9 o’clock… or a touch more.
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  16. scottfeldstein

    scottfeldstein Roots and fifths and a little extra.

    Jun 20, 2011
    San Marcos, California
    yeah that's what I'm talking about. A 112 combo puts it over the line, I think. Very much like my Hartke KB112
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  17. EatS1stBassist

    EatS1stBassist In Memoriam

    Apr 15, 2016
    So cal
    Hartke HD25 or HD50!
  18. Wfrance3

    Wfrance3 Supporting Member

    May 29, 2014
    Tulsa, OK
    Gently used Fender Rumble 40. Final Answer…
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  19. GWGuitar


    Jul 25, 2021
    I bought an Acoustic B25C. That thing has a good sound and I like the wedge shape. Enough punch for practice and it doesn't rattle all the other 15 guitars hanging on the wall.
  20. The Rumble 40 is good for percussion but might not keep up with a full kit, unless you can go into a PA
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