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Best little practice amp.

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Kurt M., Sep 9, 2002.

  1. Kurt M.

    Kurt M.

    Dec 11, 2001
    Reading, PA

    I find myself rehearsing more and more at home. I leave my main rig at our practice place.

    I'm looking for a small, cheap practice amp.


    On the web www.lohmusic.com
  2. rllefebv


    Oct 17, 2000
    Newberg, Oregon
    Plenty of opinions on this out there... For my money, when messing about figuring out passages and the like, my Peavey Microbass sevres the purpose... 20 watts, 8" speaker...

  3. Kurt M.

    Kurt M.

    Dec 11, 2001
    Reading, PA
    I'm not shopping for tone at all. I have a big rig for that. I'm just looking to simply hear myself play.

  4. ebozzz

    ebozzz Supporting Member

    May 17, 2001
    About $130.00 for the Microbass brand new.
  5. embellisher

    embellisher Holy Ghost filled Bass Player Supporting Member

    The Microbass also turns up on Ebay from time to time, usually under $100 used.
  6. And we haven't even mentioned headphone amps yet. I have the Pocket Rockit for bass. Paid $40 new. Still want an actual amplifier? Hartke makes 'em nice & inexpensive. In fact, I was just at www.activebass.com and a flashing ad there asked $119 new for a 30w 10" unit.
    Of course, the more discriminating should go with the SWR Workingman's series. I love my WM10, which has 80w and all the connectivity of a rack preamp. I actually used it as a main once. With PA help, the audience didn't know the difference, but it did look a little weird opposite my guitarrist's Marshall 2x12 head&cab setup.
  7. 44me


    Jun 17, 2002
    Bedford, NH USA
    Kurt, Don’t fool yourself thinking that tone doesn’t mater for a practice amp. It's volume that doesn’t matter (actually, my wife would say that the lower the volume, the better the practice amp, but that’s another story). You should always strive to be musical when you practice, even if you are just running up and down scales, and that can be hard to do when you are playing through something that sounds like the PA at the train station.

    That said, I practice through a Danelectro Nifty Seventy. It’s small, light, cheap, and most importantly, it sounds pretty good.
  8. I've got two practice amps; a Peavey Microbass and a Fender BXR-25 (now called Frontman 25B).

    The Microbass is great for the money, it's very small and light, and has an OK sound, but don't push it. I keep it in my bedroom.

    The BXR-25 has a fabulous sound, a little more power, is a little bigger and heavier. I also use the BXR for band practices.

    If I had to dump one, the Microbass would go in a heartbeat. That little Fender has proven itself over the 3+ years that I've owned it. I don't think you can find a better sounding amp, especially for the money, weight, and size.

    But, that's simply my $.02.
  9. barroso


    Aug 16, 2000
  10. ldiezman


    Jul 11, 2001
    I always thought the Microbass sounded pretty decently.. I've also thought about getting a small practice amp... we shall see on that one though
  11. James Hart

    James Hart

    Feb 1, 2002
    Endorsing Artist: see profile
    I've got a microbass (new for $89 + tax last fall @ a moving sale).

    it has ok tone, and the volume is usable... but my passive barts with no preamp distort the thing anywhere above 3 (bass @ 9 - mid @ 6 - treble @ 6). I am heavy handed in my finger style... but the amp should have more. Most times I just plug into the line in of my computer (I've got nice Yamaha speakers hooked to it).

    I might be willing to let mine go cheap if you're interested
  12. Suburban


    Jan 15, 2001
    lower mid Sweden
    I run a TraceElliot Boxer 15, 15w and 8".
    It's definitely OK for at home practice, clear low B and all. It even works for small church setting, with grand piano, ac. guitar and 80 people singing. But that's the limit.
    If I needed a practice amp with "expanding possibilities" now, I'd look at the Boxer 30, Hartke Kickback or (here's a lot of "expanding"!) a GK.
  13. I've seen the Microbass mentioned a lot in these threads.

    However, my practice amp is an Ashdown Electric Blue 130. 130 watts through a single 15" speaker (although you can get a 12" and I think a 10"). Very loud, very small and it only weighs about 40lbs). I've seen them new on US websites for a little over $300.
  14. RobOtto


    Aug 15, 2002
    Denton, TX
    I use a fender Bassman 25 and it is excellent. Headphone, signal in/out, 2 inputs, excellent sound and enough thump to wake up your roommates should the need arise.

    A little pricey but you get what you pay for IMO.
  15. BlacksHole


    Mar 22, 2000
    Rockville, MD
    I've got a small older Fender, it may be the champ series. Brand new these sold for about $100. Has 1x8 and about 15 watts. Surprisingly good tone, but weak B string response.
  16. embellisher

    embellisher Holy Ghost filled Bass Player Supporting Member

    I second the Bassman 25 recommendation. I have one and play 5 and 6 string basses. It handles the low B better than any of the other small amps I have played, and is louder than some amps that claim to have 50 watts.

    I have used it as a small gig amp in a church that seats 200, accompanying a piano, organ, drums and guitar, and had no problems being heard.
  17. ebozzz

    ebozzz Supporting Member

    May 17, 2001
    I've got the Bassman 25 also. Like Rob and Jeff, I think that it's a great little amp. I just got the feeling that Kurt wasn't looking to spend much and wasn't concerned about tone from what he said.
  18. Chace90

    Chace90 Supporting Member

    Feb 1, 2002
    Denver, CO
    I just bought a GK backline 112. It has pretty good tone and can get pretty loud if I need it to. Works fine although it's probably a little bigger and heavier than all these other one's mentioned.
  19. Max

    Max Supporting Member

    Feb 14, 2000
    Bakersfield, CA
    Another Fender Bassman 25 vote here. Tiltbacks are so wonderful to practice with. Nice juicy tone, steel grill and surprisingly loud.
  20. I agree with Sammy. I have been using my BXR25 for three years. It not only produces excellent bedroom sound, but I also gig with it (restaurant gigs..drummerless). The Frontman 25B has the same specs, but I don't know if it has the same build quality.

    Unfortunately, we don't get bassman 25s here in Turkey.

    I also like the sound of the Marshall B30, which Barroso pictured above. But I find those Marshall amps have reliability problems.

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