Open mic size amp?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by jeff schmidt, Oct 20, 2005.

  1. jeff schmidt

    jeff schmidt no longer red carded, but my butt is still sore.

    Aug 27, 2004
    Novato, CA
    I'll be hitting some open mics with a solo bass routine and need a SMALL - lightweight amp that still sounds great. Any thoughts?

    What do you think about a small 150W portable PA like Fender and JBL makes?

  2. Plain Old Me

    Plain Old Me

    Dec 14, 2004
    Whatcha play? What is your sound? How small? Whats the $ range? A PA would be fine if you like the sound- I know I don't...
  3. jeff schmidt

    jeff schmidt no longer red carded, but my butt is still sore.

    Aug 27, 2004
    Novato, CA
    I play mostly upper register, light touch jazzy vibe - lottsa chords and harmonics. Fretted and fretless.

    That's why I'm thinking "not so much" on a small practice "bass" amp.
  4. seanm

    seanm I'd kill for a Nobel Peace Prize! Supporting Member

    Feb 19, 2004
    Ottawa, Canada
    Don't open mics usually provide the amp?

    A Focus and a Raezor's Edge cab would work well for a small or possibly medium room depeneding on volume. Something like 30 pounds.

    I played with a lead guitar who put the focus in a bag over one shoulder, guitar in gig bag over the other and carried the speaker. One trip! I'm not sure that Raezor's Edge are back in business yet though.

    An iAMP 500C comes in at 44 pounds and is very loud but is larger.

    Both are very clean setups.

    Edit: Oops, missed your reply. Both these setups are pricey.
  5. Eric Moesle

    Eric Moesle Supporting Member

    Sep 21, 2001
    Columbus OH
    Around my neck of the woods, they usually do . . . BUT I wouldn't want to do a solo bass thing high register through a 20 year old Peavey combo that's been mistreated for years.

    I have an SWR Baby Blue II combo with two 8's and a 5" tweet that's to me sounds perfect for what you've described, light, small, and can be had used for around $500, if that's your budget. Low B's at volume make it cranky, though . . .
  6. keyboardguy

    keyboardguy Supporting Member

    May 11, 2005
  7. TaySte_2000


    Jun 23, 2001
    Manchester, UK
    Endorsing Artist: Mojohand, Subdecay, Overwater, Matamp
    What about the Phil Jones Briefcase, or the Acoustic Image combo amps can't think of the name but both are small and lightweight and about that power spec.
  8. chaosMK


    May 26, 2005
    Albuquerque, NM
    Hi-fi into an old tube amp
    Ive seen a lot of players use SWR 2x10's for those types of gigs, sounded great.
  9. Nedmundo

    Nedmundo Supporting Member

    Jan 7, 2005
    The Carvin is good for its price, and I really like the tone. The output isn't bad considering it pushes only 100 watts into a ten -- but there's only so much you can do with that. It might work for solo outings, so if price is paramount it might be worth a shot. (I wrote one of the H-C reviews, BTW.)

    But I recently bought a Roland Cube 100, and it makes the Carvin seem like a toy. It sounds simply huge for its small size and power rating, and provides enormous tonal flexibilty. Since you do chordal upper register work, its coaxial tweeter and superior clarity will be major assets. Unless you want to spend for a boutique small combo (Eden's CX110 and G-K's MB150 come to mind), I think the Roland is a good bet. In fact, I've played the G-K, and I think the Roland compares favorably.
  10. iriegnome

    iriegnome Bassstar style Supporting Member

    Nov 23, 2001
    Kenosha, WI 53140
    A Mackie Powered 15" works great. I use one for our Acoustic Gigs. There are a bunch of options in the Molded 12" or 15" cabinet with a mic preamp built in. Great sound, light and not that expensive.
  11. thejohnkim


    Sep 30, 2003
    I'd highly recommend a SWR Workingman's 12 combo. They're a portable size, will be loud enough for you, and sound nice. Used they're a solid value. I used a 15 for a while, and used a 12 on many occasions.

    I've had good experiences with the mid-sized Roland combo amps, and their small Cube's get good reviews, so they're worth a look-at as well.

    Oh yeah, the Electric Blue Ashdown 10" combo's are great also. Used one of those for a bit and they sound nice. They shold be pretty affordable also. That would be my pick if the SWR 12" was too big.
  12. cheezewiz


    Mar 27, 2002
    I think the Eden Nemises with the two 8s would be perfect for what you describe. They aren't too pricey, they sound really good, and have a lot of upper end detail for the type of music you're playing. They are also really small and light.
  13. Folmeister

    Folmeister Knowledge is Good - Emile Faber Supporting Member

    May 7, 2003
    Tomball, Texas
    Try a JBL EON G2 15. You could even run your vocal through it at the same time.
  14. bucephylus

    bucephylus Supporting Member Commercial User

    Aug 18, 2002
    General Manager TecPadz LLC
    I keep looking for that perfect combo for just this kind of thing - simple, light, good sound.

    IME the 2x10 combos are articulate, but don't move much air around. I don't know if that would satisfy a solo bass situation or not.

    The combo I'm currently curious about is the newer Nemesis 15 with the horn; I think it clocks in around 46 lbs. Anyone have experience with those?
  15. FireBug


    Sep 18, 2005
    One of the combo manufacturers I have found to be underrated is Ibanez. I played an SW65 at HH Music yesterday and it sounded very well balanced. Nice punch, decent warmness, slightly mid cut, articulate upper register. Unlike most of the cheap combos I've played this one had a very nice overall sound and I was surprised at how good the horn sounded. It's 65 watts into a 12" speaker with a horn. If you feel like checking them out make sure not to look at the coaxial kind. They are no where near as good. I should also tell you that the SW65 handled a low B very well.

    or here for the price:

    You'll notice that on the Ibanez page it says it weighs 44 lbs. and on the musiciansfriend page it says 55. I am going to have to go with the Ibanez page because I've picked it up and it's not a back breaker at all.
  16. tonedeaf

    tonedeaf Supporting Member

    I've used an SWR Workingman's 10 in an open mic setting. It works great, but might not be well suited for a large room. Sounds great, IMO.
  17. iriegnome

    iriegnome Bassstar style Supporting Member

    Nov 23, 2001
    Kenosha, WI 53140
    Same style thing as the Mackie. Peavey makes on, too. This is an all in one unit that will work with vocals, bass, and guitar, even all at the same time. There are a couple of options like power ratings you can choose from.