High Gain Bass Amps?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by zhollywood, Oct 1, 2012.

  1. Hey guys so I've been looking around and can't find any direct answers to this. I'm looking for a high gain bass amp that does not need a dirt pedal in front of it.
    For example: When playing guitar, if I want a nice clean rounded sound (which I find most bass amps are TO AN EXTENT) I plug into a Fender amp. If I want something to thrash with I plug into a Mesa Dual Rectifier.

    What are the Mesa Dual Rectifiers of the bass amp world?!?

    I have a Mesa M6 Carbine and find it to be a little tubey and can get some grit from it. I want gain not grit.
    Any ideas? I've tried Orange amps and find that those get closer to my goal but there is nothing that is close to being what I am looking for.

  2. BbbyBld


    Oct 13, 2005
    Meridian, MS
    Try the Peavey VB-3 overdrive channel.
  3. brotherbassj


    Sep 20, 2008
    Jim Dunlop USA, King Kong Cases, Golden Eagle Energy Drink
    Try a Mesa Big Block 750 and use the distortion gain channel
  4. wcriley


    Apr 5, 2010
    Western PA
    My bass rig takes the voltage from my pickups (1 volt or less) and increases it around 50volts. That's a LOT of gain.

    To get more gain would probably require a multi-kilowatt PA power amp and a seperate preamp.

  5. Primakurtz

    Primakurtz Registered Nihilist Supporting Member

    Nov 23, 2011
    Denver, Colorado
    Bingo - this is the one.
  6. JGR

    JGR The "G" is for Gustav Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jun 29, 2006
    President, CEO, CFO, CIO, Chief Engineer, Technician, Janitor - Reiner Amplification
    Tech 21 RPM has a good amount of gain; GK2001RB has an overdrive channel that is high gain.
  7. Mesa D180 is pretty gainy. The Mesa Bass 400 and 400+ can get kind of gainy. But it doesn't get very distorted unless you are really punishing it.

    I wish there was a nice all tube head with simple channel switching like most guitar heads have had for decades.
  8. the Arsonaut

    the Arsonaut

    Aug 27, 2012
    The fender bassman pro 300 (sunn 300t) is pretty decent with the gritty grainy sound...I've flipped through a few different 12ax7s in positions 1, 2...forget what's in there now(either a nos rca or mullard)...though stock was not bad, either...
  9. The Peavey Classic 400 has a great distortion channel. All tube. 400 watts. 100 pounds.
  10. StrangerDanger

    StrangerDanger Neo Maxie Zoom Dweebie Supporting Member

    Jan 3, 2010
    North DFW, TX
    If I understand you then youre looking for a saturated sound, yes?

    Try the Genz Benz Streamliner or Aguilar Tone Hammer 500. They can both get pretty saturated.
  11. CL400Peavey

    CL400Peavey Supporting Member

    Nov 7, 2011
    Grand Rapids Michigan
    It's pretty good Yup! Good luck finding one though.
  12. Sartori

    Sartori Supporting Member

    Mesa D-180, Ampeg SVT-2pro, just off the top of my head.
  13. you had me until 100lbs.
  14. Also there are various old Acoustic brand amps that had some pretty wicked distortion on board. Sunn as well had the beta bass.
  15. CL400Peavey

    CL400Peavey Supporting Member

    Nov 7, 2011
    Grand Rapids Michigan
    How many true 400 watt all tube amps are out there though?
  16. jasonbraatz


    Oct 18, 2000
    Oakland, CA
    You should send me one of these so I can do a nice review of it - I have no idea why this thing isn't the belle of TalkBass by now.

    edit: And on topic, the Aguilar AG500 has a versatile, wicked distortion section.
  17. CL400Peavey

    CL400Peavey Supporting Member

    Nov 7, 2011
    Grand Rapids Michigan
    I think cost and distribution both play into this. Not widely available, and the price keeps a lot of people from ordering site unseen. Cost stays high because they are not everywhere and being purchased by the masses.
  18. nitromullet


    Mar 29, 2012
    Seattle, WA
    Fender Super Bassman and Bassman 100T. These could be what the OP is looking for also.

  19. CL400Peavey

    CL400Peavey Supporting Member

    Nov 7, 2011
    Grand Rapids Michigan
    The Classic 400 does this as well.
  20. jasonbraatz


    Oct 18, 2000
    Oakland, CA
    Plenty of guys on TB buy expensive stuff based on specs and features, though, and a 30ish pound tube head with all the bells and whistles for what an SVT-CL costs seems like something that more than one or two people would have dug on. Is it just the cheezy lights?

    Maybe I'll just have to take one for the team.