Micro Amps / Reliability. ELF, Gnome, Bam, +

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Mark Ambler, Jul 25, 2022.

  1. Mark Ambler

    Mark Ambler

    Nov 18, 2017
    London, UK.
    The TC Bam was a very popular microamp, but I'm guessing that recent quality control has been poor, and the amps are failing shortly after buying.
    The Elf is known to run hot, which is possibly it's way of dissipating heat, but I haven't read any reports of reliability issues.
    The Warwick Gnome also hasn't had any issues that I've heard of.
    There are less known microamps like the GR Bass Mini, and I'm sure a few others.

    If people would like to mention whether they've had any/no issues with their microamps, other than the BAM which is well documented already, it would be helpful. TIA.
     
  2. Christiaan

    Christiaan

    May 17, 2022
    GR Bass One350 here, essentially a Mini. Nice, decent amp. No problems experienced.
     
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  3. jvanoort

    jvanoort

    Nov 30, 2021
    the Netherlands
    Markbass Micromark 801 here with no problems whatsoever. Mind you, I only use it at home and run it at low volume.
     
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  4. Zbysek

    Zbysek

    Mar 23, 2017
    Czech Republic
    I have been using the Elf for several years without any issues…
     
  5. Matthias

    Matthias

    May 30, 2000
    Vienna, Austria
    I have been using the ELF for more than 2 years now, often at 'full blast' into a 4 Ohm cab without any issues whatsoever.

    The GK MB 200 seems to be quite popular too, and I can't recall any threads about reliability issues.
     
  6. msb

    msb

    Jul 3, 2002
    Halifax,N,S. Canada
    I lost the ICE module in my MB200 , but got it to an authorized tech . The fan was gunked up , probably why the chip failed . Cleaned out the fan , replaced the power module and works like a charm again . I love that little amp !
     
  7. ctmullins

    ctmullins Dominated Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 18, 2008
    MS Gulf Coast
    I'm highly opinionated and extremely self-assured
    It doesn’t surprise me at all that the BAM is failing on people. Anything built to that kind of price point is going to have some serious weaknesses.

    No issues with my Elf or my MB200 or my TC BH250. They are usually just used around the house though.
     
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  8. Passinwind

    Passinwind I know nothing. Commercial User

    Dec 3, 2003
    Columbia River Gorge, WA.
    Owner/Designer &Toaster Tech Passinwind Electronics
    Traynor SB-200H here, for a few months now. No problemo, no sir.
     
  9. squish

    squish Nothing TOO fancy Supporting Member

    Dec 6, 2005
    Atl
    Used a BH250 regularly at rehearsals without a glitch. Also pushed an ELF in the same way on a side project into an 8 ohm 15" cab with excellent results. Used both for two years. I trust both amps.
     
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  10. etoncrow

    etoncrow (aka Greg Harman, the Mad Hatter Gold Supporting Member

    I have two Euphonic-Audio Iamp micro's: 550 & 300. Had them both for close to 20 years and have never a problem with either.
     
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  11. Mark Ambler

    Mark Ambler

    Nov 18, 2017
    London, UK.
    Yes, An amp as cheap as the BAM does give cause to worry, which makes me wonder about the Warwick Gnome, but maybe it's sold as a loss leader? Haven't heard anything negative about them, yet.
     
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  12. BOOG

    BOOG

    Dec 13, 2016
    Cleveland, Ohio
    TE elf user here just about every week for the past 4(?) years. With a six piece and 1-2 vox loud band (4hr) rehearsal in large warehouse studio and a bar/restaurant gig, I have not had any issues.
    If I had to choose a different head for the purpose, GK MB200 would be a consideration, too.
     
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  13. road-cat1

    road-cat1 Supporting Member

    Mar 24, 2008
    Mesa, AZ
    Thomann has the TC Electronic BQ500 for $230.(USD) and I ordered that from them. I have not heard of any reliability issues with the BQ line of mini-amps. 2022-07-25 07_33_14-Window.jpg
     
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  14. Cave Puppy

    Cave Puppy "Humph Bo, he's wond!" - John Lennon

    Jan 13, 2015
    creamyj.bandcamp.com
    I had TWO Elfs a few years ago. They both had issues out of the box.
     
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  15. I bought a used SB200H about 8 years ago? Gigged with it frequently. Re-sold it on EBAY after most of the front panel markings had rubbed off approx 2 years ago & it went back in service to the next bassist. Well designed & well made !
     
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  16. Passinwind

    Passinwind I know nothing. Commercial User

    Dec 3, 2003
    Columbia River Gorge, WA.
    Owner/Designer &Toaster Tech Passinwind Electronics
    Yeah, I suspect they'd sell a lot more if they did a makeover on the cosmetics. I've been contemplating having a custom fascia plate made for mine, actually.
     
  17. The appearance was secondary to me. I went to using combos for my gigs. I would have been fine marking the knobs with a sharpie pen if I was still using it. Honestly I miss it somewhat!
     
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  18. Passinwind

    Passinwind I know nothing. Commercial User

    Dec 3, 2003
    Columbia River Gorge, WA.
    Owner/Designer &Toaster Tech Passinwind Electronics
    It's pretty easy to get faceplates fabricated for small money these days, so I think my Dymo label/sharpie days are behind me at this point! ;)
     
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  19. Mark Ambler

    Mark Ambler

    Nov 18, 2017
    London, UK.
    What Cabs do you use?
     
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  20. Mark Ambler

    Mark Ambler

    Nov 18, 2017
    London, UK.
    From what I've read, although it's advertised as a 500 watt amp, it is actually
    350 watts RMS @ 4 ohms and 175 watts RMS @ 8 ohms. Not a little misleading.
     
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