New bassist looking for suggestions on amps/cabs/combos

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by ramrodTM, Feb 23, 2019.

  1. ramrodTM


    Feb 23, 2019
    Austin, Texas
    Hey all,

    After years of messing around in my bedroom on my old Squier J Bass, I've recently joined a band and want to start taking things seriously and upgrade all of my gear. I've been looking around for some solid amps/cabs/combos and was hoping to get y'alls feedback on a couple models I've been looking at!

    I'm looking for something that won't break the bank, can play small bars/gigs, and won't have to replace in the near future. What are y'alls opinions on:

    Hartke LH500 410 Combo
    Crate BT-350 w/ 4x10 Crate cabinet
    Fender Rumble v2 350 Combo
    Fender Rumble v3 200 Combo

    I've found each of these locally at solid prices but am having trouble pulling the trigger. Thanks for the help!
  2. jchrisk1


    Nov 15, 2009
    Northern MI
    Of those choices, I would pick the hartke, or the V3 fender. The crate wouldn't be a consideration at all.
    However, if you give us your location and budget, we may be able to help you better.
    ramrodTM likes this.
  3. PotsdamBass8

    PotsdamBass8 Supporting Member

    Jan 23, 2005
    Long Island, NY
    If you can give some idea of the type of music, how loud your drummer plays, what the guitarists are using, and if you would have any PA support or not at shows, that would help too. As a general rule, I like having flexibility. If I only need a small cab for practice, but I need a full 410 for shows, then I would find a way to have two smaller cabinets that I could combine for shows.
    ramrodTM likes this.
  4. nostatic

    nostatic Supporting Member

    Jun 18, 2004
    Lompoc, CA
    Endorsing Artist: FEA Labs
    Rumbles get a lot of love around here, but as above, it depends on your live situation. I'm usually not a fan of combos as modularity can be a good thing if you're playing in different bands and situations. But a combo that has enough power and enough speaker (the latter probably being more important) for rehearsal can often add another cab for louder gigs. If you can stretch to the Rumble 500 2-10, that should set you up for getting the 2-10 extension cab down the road if you need it, and should be plenty of juice.
    ramrodTM, Sav'nBass and Haroldo like this.
  5. ramrodTM


    Feb 23, 2019
    Austin, Texas
    Thanks for all of the replies! I am in the Austin area and looking for around ~$400-500 range. I would consider going up if I can get a great deal. I found the Hartke combo for $400 and the Rumble v3 200 I think I can snag for around $350. Definitely considering a Rumble v3 500 (played it at a music shop and thought it was great) but having trouble finding one on the cheaper end.

    We typically play new wave/ alt rock and our drummer doesn't play too loud. Lead guitarist is rockin a VOX AC30 212 combo and our rhythm guitarist is playing a Peavey tube combo but I can't recall the model no (probably a Classic 30 112 but not sure). Unfortunately, we haven't played too many gigs so I can't give much info on PA support or venue size. We're most likely not going to be playing beyond bars and tiny venues for awhile lol
  6. nostatic

    nostatic Supporting Member

    Jun 18, 2004
    Lompoc, CA
    Endorsing Artist: FEA Labs
    Two guitars can get loud - even if they are running 10 watt amps. If you're in it for the long haul, I think it is worth trying to go for the Rumble 500 as you might not have any FoH support at smaller bars/venues so your amp will have to carry the load. Always better to have a bit more power and not use it than the other way around. Plenty of people buy not enough amp, then. end up flipping to go bigger.
    ramrodTM, GuitarJay and Aqualung60 like this.
  7. PotsdamBass8

    PotsdamBass8 Supporting Member

    Jan 23, 2005
    Long Island, NY
    Yeah I would think the Rumble 500 is your best bet. It could be fine as is, or add an extension down the line. If necessary, have a discussion about moderate volumes with your guitarists because it will make you all sound better. But you might not need to have that discussion. I’ve played with lots of guitarists that are reasonable with their volumes. The band I’m in now, both have the ability to crank it up high but I’m able to get by with just a single 15 for practice.
    ramrodTM likes this.
  8. PotsdamBass8

    PotsdamBass8 Supporting Member

    Jan 23, 2005
    Long Island, NY
    I forgot to mention, call up the usual online stores and see what they can do. Sweetwater has free shipping and no sales tax, and they will usually give a discount. GC and musicians friend as well, but you may pay tax with them.
    ramrodTM and Starrchild like this.
  9. CallMeAl


    Dec 2, 2016
    Ithaca Ny
    Guitar center online used. They ship for cheap.
    ramrodTM likes this.
  10. Sav'nBass


    Jan 18, 2009
    Virginia Beach
    One thing I have learned about this gear thing is to think future. Get gear that can be built upon. The v 500 is the best bet in my opinion... out of what you listed and think of getting tge extension cab. Dont get a combo that you cant expand.
    Last edited: Feb 23, 2019
  11. Heyturnup


    Mar 28, 2016
    I don't care for combos so much, rather a component rig to mix and match as needed. Combos can be heavy, but that may be a good place to start out for you.
    ramrodTM likes this.
  12. caasi91


    Sep 18, 2009
    SF Bay Area
    Just a quick suggestion:

    Once you’ve made up your mind thru suggestions or the thousands of pages info here on TB check out the classifieds on here as well.

    Theres some very generous and amazing selections of gear available that IMO I’d rather buy/sell to fellow memebers
    ramrodTM likes this.
  13. tjh


    Mar 22, 2006
    ... sorta depends on just how loud you need, and how well you understand how to EQ for needed volume … remember, the pay is the same if you have a $200 amp, or a $1000 amp, at this point you are just getting into the game and not even sure what it is you are looking for/actually need … buy used, tread lightly .. ;)

    From the Austin area Craigslist:

    I had the chance to play one of these with a church worship group for a few weeks, was their house rig, I was very pleasantly surprised … had a nice balanced out too … just raise it off the ground a bit
    Yorkville Bassmaster xm200 1x15

    A little high on the price and a good thing it has casters, but could be solid ($100 less)…
    VINTAGE Peavey Mark III Bass Amp

    I am guessing this is the Hartke you are considering?
    Hartke LH500 Bass Amp

    Again, get it off the ground a little bit probably… borrow a milk crate ;)
    Gallien-Krueger 1x15 Bass Amp

    I would need to hear this, have never been a Trace guy, but asking price is right ..
    Bass Amp and Cabinet for sale

    I just looked at the first page … all Feb 2019 listings … enjoy the process, buy with your ears, not your eyes … and buy like you might want/need to replace it down the road a bit (once you learn what you want without asking), and like you worked hard for your $$ you are going to spend … ;)
    Last edited: Feb 23, 2019
    ramrodTM likes this.
  14. Pulverizor


    Jun 14, 2018
    New Zealand
    If you have PA support for every gig then you'll love the Rumble 200 combo for all sorts of rock.
    But you'll need at least a 4x10 without plugging into the PA.
    The Crate setup is probably bullet proof but will be very heavy! Is it on wheels?
    A Rumble 500 combo is the best choice though.
    ramrodTM likes this.
  15. TerenceE

    TerenceE Supporting Member

    Dec 6, 2015
    Look into a gk mb212ii
    ramrodTM likes this.
  16. fermata

    fermata Guest

    Nov 10, 2015
    Start with 200-300 watts into one 210 cab or a 115, then add a (matching) second cab if you need to. (You very well might not, based on the band and venues you describe.)
    ramrodTM likes this.
  17. bbh

    bbh Supporting Member

    Sep 27, 2011
  18. mcrawfordmusic


    Dec 11, 2010
    I’m sure it’s already been suggested about a million times, but my pick would be a Fender Rumble 500 combo.

    It’s light, loud and simple to use. Perfect for a gigging rig.
    ramrodTM likes this.
  19. flatrat


    Jul 8, 2017
    Rumble 500 v3. You should be able to find a used one in your price range.
    ramrodTM and 39-Bassist like this.
  20. The Rage

    The Rage

    Nov 12, 2013
    For me always great experiences with Hartke stuff, especially with aluminium cone cabs. No experience with their combo (not recent ones anyway)
    mikewalker and ramrodTM like this.