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Little Amp Choice: Fender, SWR, Ampeg, Hartke?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by rickreyn, Nov 15, 2000.

  1. rickreyn


    Jun 16, 2000
    Lutz, Florida
    I need to get a small amp to play through for a more traditional music service at my church. This is necessitated by a need for me to move away from my main rig over to an acoustic piano. I've been given a budget of under $400 and I'm looking at an Ampeg B112, Fender Bassman 60, Hartke Kickback 10 and SWR Workingman 10. Which will do the best job for me. I will also take it home as a practice amp.
  2. Doug


    Apr 5, 2000
    Buffalo, N.Y.
    Personally, I would go with either the Ampeg B112 or SWR Workingman. However, I'd go with the Workingman 12 over the 10. I like the sound of both of these. It's a toss up between the two. Go with what ever your ears tell ya to go with.
  3. Deynn

    Deynn Moderator Emeritus

    Aug 9, 2000
    I'll put in a solid recommendation for the Ampeg B-112.
  4. Brad Johnson

    Brad Johnson

    Mar 8, 2000
    Gaithersburg, Md
    DR Strings
    Same here. The BA-112 or B50 or, for more $$$ (~$420) the BA-115 and B-100R. They just sound good;)
  5. FleaisGod

    FleaisGod Guest

    Jun 18, 2000
    Atlanta, GA
    I have an AMpeg ba-115, it's absolutely fantastic.
  6. 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
    SWR Workingman's 12.
  7. You just might be able to score a BA-115 for under 400.. try http://www.bassnw.com .. I got a new one for $330 from them, but it was a special offer.. I love it!
  8. Bernie


    Dec 12, 1999
    Ampeg BA-115!!!!Got mine for 350+tax.
  9. danhei


    Jan 21, 2000
    I would skip the workingman's 10. It's a nice sounding amp at lower volumes but it started to break up on the E string at moderate volumes when I tried it out. I don't think the amp would cut it with anything other than acoustic guitars.

    The ampeg ba 115 sounds really good (and lots of people have said so).

  10. Gus Autine

    Gus Autine

    Aug 25, 2000
    New York, NY
    I briefly owned a BA 112. I loved the sound(s) but found that it was not quite loud enough even for relatively small rooms with a guitar and woodwind player and no drums. (To be honest, I only used it out twice.) Because size and portability is an issue, I didn't step up to the BA 115. Instead I got a Workingman's 12. I love its sound, flexibility and features.
  11. VicDamone


    Jun 25, 2000
    There seems to be alot of Ampeg owners and thats great. I recently auditioned the very small Fender 25 at a noisy Guitar Center. Present were three other bassist all strangers to one another. Two very good slapers, hollow body picker, and myself finger style freetless. We were all suprised by the quality of tone from this little angled box. We compared it to the SWR 1-10 combo, Ampeg 1-12 combo. The Fender was a clear winner with all of us. The picker bought one at $225 to use as a portable practice amp. The lesson learned was there really wasn't much difference between 25w and 100w if you do everything else right.

    I honestly don't mean to put off all the Ampeg owners out there. And to be fair the Ampeg, which was quite abit larger, heavier and much more expensive, did have a little more bottom but that's all it had. The SWR seemed like it was simply filling the 1-10 combo product nich. Listen for yourself.

    Every piece of equipment out there is perfect for someone, its all about what you want.
  12. Bernie


    Dec 12, 1999
    Vic,which Fender 25 are you refering too.I think the BXR-25 is superb but was recently discontinued with the intro of the new Bassman 25.Nice,but a little gritty sounding for my tastes.Theres also the Frontman 25 but ive not tried one.
  13. Skip


    Mar 22, 2000
    Bronxville, NY

    I just played on a Fender Bassman 60, an Ampeg B50R and a B100R, and a SWR Workingman's 10 and Super Redhead Combo.

    The last is $1500 but the rest are in the $400 and lower range. I liked the Redhead the best by far (of course) but that was just to give me a bassline (no pun intended ;) ).

    I will probably get the larger Ampeg. The price difference between the B50R and the B100R is $50. The little SWR is the smallest and lightest and had a clean tone, but maybe the box is too small because it didn't jump out at me, but sounded choked or restrained. The Fender sounded a little washed out compared to the Ampeg. The Ampeg was not clean but the tone it had sounded "right" to me.

    The bigger Ampeg and the Fender were also fairly large, though the Ampeg has casters.

    Finally let me just say try everything out like I did, YMMV.
  14. There's a review in the "Gear" section of bassplayer.com called "Combo Amp Shootout", it's got a lot of good info. I have the Ampeg B-100R, and love the warm sound. You'd probably want something like that for a church setting i'm guessing. The Hartke's always sound too harsh for my taste. (Not that there's anything wrooong with that...)
  15. I'd say invest a little bit and get a SWR Workingman 12. If you do a little work and look for a good used combo, I'm sure you can get a really good deal. It's worth the time to look! My friend found a Workingman 12 for $250 that was only a few years old!

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