POLL: Help me choose my first amp

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Michal_Toth, Sep 16, 2018.

  1. Ampeg PF800

    19 vote(s)
  2. Markbass Little Mark III

    36 vote(s)
  3. Quilter BB800

    40 vote(s)
  4. GK MB500

    67 vote(s)
  5. Fender Rumble 500 Head

    37 vote(s)
  6. Aguilar TH350

    21 vote(s)
  7. TCE BH800

    6 vote(s)
  8. Ampeg PF50T

    12 vote(s)
Multiple votes are allowed.
  1. Michal_Toth


    Dec 12, 2016
    I'll be using this amp for my band, we play prog rock;

    I play with two guitarists and a drummer, who likes to go wild;

    I'll be using a 2x10 or a 1x15 cabinet with it;

    FYI my budget is ideally around 500, but 600 is the limit;

    I included all amps in this price range I was interested in and that were available in my region, but feel free to leave any additional suggestions;

    My expectations are - versatility for solos, melodies, but also sitting in the groove; reliability; mostly a clean tone.


    P. S.: Sharing your experience with any of these amps is very welcome
  2. Mushroo

    Mushroo Guest

    Apr 2, 2007
    I voted Quilter BB800 only because that's what I use personally. Lots of other good choices on your list, can't really go wrong. :)

    If I may add one more unsolicited word of advice: Make sure your 2x10 or 1x15 is 8 ohms, so that you can pair it with a second (preferably identical) cabinet when you start gigging. Choice of cabinet(s) is at least as important as choice of head.
    HolmeBass, PillO, basscapes and 4 others like this.
  3. Michal_Toth


    Dec 12, 2016
    Yes, I've read about that, thank you, will make sure to do that. Don't have a cab yet though, but I find that easier to decide than on amps. But who knows, maybe in a couple days you'll see me post a poll on cabs

    Thanks for the vote as well
  4. I’m going Markbass - the one you’ve listed is twice the rating of my Little Mark 250 so I’m sure you would have no lack of power.
  5. Michal_Toth


    Dec 12, 2016
    Thank you. I don't know, many people here say they're unreliable, so I'm kind of worried to go down that route. I love the looks though.
  6. pcake

    pcake Supporting Member

    Sep 20, 2011
    Los Angeleez
    i read your other thread. there's no way for your needs that anyone will hear your bass using a 50 watt amp.

    i voted for the GK MB500 because i really like it and it has a great tone IMO for prog and metal. and it's stupid light. i also voted for the rumble 500 - everyone seems to love it, and my experience has been very positive with fender products in every way. i like the way the rumbles i've tried sound.

    if you don't mind a heavier head, you might add the hartke LH500 to your list - i have one, and of the amps i've owned, it's the one that sounds best to me. it's also surprisingly versatile considering its very simple 3 knob layout. it's got a tube that maybe adds something to the tone.

    i would recommend an amp with some headroom. my friend chris blew his entire 300 watt bass rig trying to get over an aggressive guitar player with a 100 watt rig. i had to upgrade my rig to get over a loud band, and i was using a 600 watt head and an 18" cab. most people won't be playing that loud, but still, 50 watts would have been literally inaudible. i played 100% clean, btw. more gain would have helped, but it isn't my thing.
    shoot-r, AstroSonic, Crash 56 and 3 others like this.
  7. Michal_Toth


    Dec 12, 2016
    I don't like much gain either, so I might have the same problem as you. That's why I'm really eyeing the 800s.

    Of the amps and combos I've heard from Hartke, I liked none. Most were dead cheap, should probably factor that in as well.

    The PF50T I added just because I discussed it in the other thread, I pretty much gave up on that. Maybe one day...
    pcake likes this.
  8. BOOG


    Dec 13, 2016
    Cleveland, Ohio
    From your list I voted GK MB500
    My choice though, Ashdown RM 500 EVO for your price point bought new. It’s sturdy, reliable, sounds great with a whole lot of versatility in sound and built in compression, overdrive, sub octave, eq override and “smiley eq”. I have a few amp/cab combos but at your price point this head with a 210, 212 or 115 can take you pretty far and provide some real usable sound for just about any situation barring stadiums or large outdoor gigs.
    Yes, you can get something used but I shy away from that business as, too many people like to tinker with gear guts and too many people like to abuse gear prior to sale. Warranty benefits can be worth more than the $100 you save in the used market. However, I have bought used and been lucky. Just something to think about if you are considering going that route.
    Have fun searching and enjoy the journey. I can’t wait to hear what you decide to get.
    Michal_Toth likes this.
  9. mikewalker

    mikewalker Supporting Member

    Jul 30, 2017
    Canada, Eh!
    These are worth a look: TX600
  10. mmbongo

    mmbongo I have too many basses. Supporting Member

    From that list, Quilter.
    Michal_Toth likes this.
  11. Jim Carr

    Jim Carr Dr. Jim

    Jan 21, 2006
    Denton, TX or Kailua, HI
    fEARful Kool-Aid dispensing liberal academic card-carrying union member Musicians Local 72-147
    Any head delivering at least 500 watts into a 4 ohm load is a good place to start, but 800 is better. At that point, you need to really focus on speaker cabinets that can deliver clean volume. I suggest two 115 cabs or two 210s. A 212 might cut it if is a good one, like wise for two 112s.
    Last edited: Sep 17, 2018
    eriky4003, Al Kraft and Michal_Toth like this.
  12. DanAdams

    DanAdams Supporting Member

    Nov 3, 2013
    First Amp! I thought there was a long standing tradition in which
    every player must rock a Peavey TNT 1-15 combo for no less then 1 year tnt.jpg
  13. You could get a used Mesa D-800 in that price range, but from the list I voted for the GK MB500. I like my MB200 quite a bit and was planning on upgrading to the GK MB800. Then a great deal on the Mesa D-800+ changed all that :)
    ELG60 and Michal_Toth like this.
  14. jhm2112


    Apr 27, 2013
    Los Angeles
    I’m pretty sure that’s what I had in high school. 2 guitar players in the band with 100 watt half stacks. I was completely inaudible.
    Michal_Toth likes this.
  15. pcake

    pcake Supporting Member

    Sep 20, 2011
    Los Angeleez
    i never liked hartke amps much till this one. and the price was nice, but mostly it sounds good.
    Michal_Toth likes this.
  16. matante


    Nov 3, 2003
    As rule of thumb you should spend a lot more on your cab(s) than on your amp. Also you're better off with a used amp and new cabs. First figure out which cabs you want to use, are able and willing to transport, and what you can afford. The amp is really far less important.
    HolmeBass, Bahjark, BOOG and 4 others like this.
  17. catcauphonic

    catcauphonic High Freak of the Low Frequencies Supporting Member

    Mar 30, 2012
    Seattle WA
    I'm gonna toss out another line that will give you plenty of juice, that's not om your list...

    Those older Genz Benz hybrid heads come in 600-900w, and are well in your budget. Specifically the Shuttle 6.2 (on up), or the Streamliner 600-900. I see them both pop up here regularly, if you can afford to be a little patient. Many of those sellers recently upgraded to the latest & greatest, or will be typing a few years later that they wish they never sold them :smug:.)

    Shuttle = 1 tube in the pre, under #4
    S-Liner = 3 tube pre, about #8

    Qlanq and Zbysek like this.
  18. Michal_Toth


    Dec 12, 2016
    I'm really leaning for the GK MB500 because through thomann it comes with a foot switch for the boost thing. This is a big deal for me, since we play a lot of songs where the volume shifts a lot and right now I'm either too loud in the verses/intros/the slower quieter parts in general but heard in the choruses, or heard perfectly in the slower parts but lost completely in choruses. This thing I believe could solve that.

    But I liked what you had to say in the other thread, I'll look into the Ashdown.

    Don't worry, I'll post here and in the other thread, after I've bought something. Could take a while though, since I don't really need it ASAP.
    BOOG likes this.
  19. Stumbo

    Stumbo Guest

    Feb 11, 2008
    You'd be better off with less watts and more speakers, like a 6x10. Gotto move more air to make more noise.
    500 watts into 1x15 won't do it for you.
  20. Michal_Toth


    Dec 12, 2016
    I live in Slovakia, I'm not even that familiar with this brand, since no shop here has them. Nor in Slovakia, nor the widely known Thomann. Very informative though, will check it out on other websites, but I'm all for effectivity and practicality, which ordering from UK or wherever else doesn't deliver.
    Zbysek likes this.