What is the Bass equivalent to the famous Dumble amp?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Spectre Gunner, Jan 31, 2023.

  1. Spectre Gunner

    Spectre Gunner Supporting Member

    Jun 8, 2016
    Tampa, Florida
    Apparently, the Dumble amps are the Holy Grail in the guitar world. Dumble amps are rare, very expensive, highly coveted and used by some top artist like John Mayer, Eric Clapton as well as a few wealthy rock-star wanna be's. Is there an amp or combo with a Dumble like mystic the bass guitar world? Does anything come close?
  2. elgecko


    Apr 30, 2007
    Anasleim, CA
    Walter Woods amps never got as crazy expensive as Dumbles but share a similar mystique. The amps were built solely by Walter, were never really advertised yet highly sought after, were played by some big name players, and had component values/markings obscured or erased by Walter to keep them "secret". Technology has caught up to them but they were revolutionary when they first came out as one of the first, if not the first, microamp.
  3. I don't know that we have one.
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  4. rmayer

    rmayer Supporting Member

    Sep 17, 2008
    Boynton Beach, FL
    For me, this one comes closest. Sadowsky SA200. 200 tube watts of pure bliss and the matching 410 cab ( built by Jim Bergantino) is the perfect mate. Shoulda, woulda, coulda bought one back then. C78475BC-3197-4E0B-BA24-CAED67E14ED6.jpeg
  5. Mighty Thumb

    Mighty Thumb Supporting Member

    Was just going to post the SA200.
  6. brianrost

    brianrost Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 26, 2000
    Boston, Taxachusetts
    I agree with elgecko about Walter Woods, legendary and mysterious to most non-jazz players, but they have never been as unobtainable as Dumbles.

    As far as the SA200, not many were made but it's not like I hear people talking about them as often as I hear guitarists talk about Dumbles. In fact I never hear anyone talking about them :roflmao:

    I don't hear people talk about this amp either, but I played a gig with one and it is the best tube amp I have ever experienced.

  7. Jeff Scott

    Jeff Scott Rickenbacker guru..........

    Apr 11, 2006
    Out there!
    I would agree with this assessment. I have owned three WW amps over the decades but I could never afford a Dumble, even if I wanted one, which I don't. For me, I would look to Ken Fischer's Trainwreck amps if I wanted a coveted guitar amp.
  8. chris_b


    Jun 2, 2007
    Most of the top players I see on tour are using SVT's or the occasional Aguila DB750/1. Do bass players get hung up like guitarists over their sound?
  9. squarepeg


    Dec 21, 2010
    Who needs a Dumble when you've got tort and flats?
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  10. brianrost

    brianrost Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 26, 2000
    Boston, Taxachusetts
    Here's the real answer to the question: Dumble Winterland bass amp, 300 watts, all tube


    Here's a link to a Japanese page showing Winterland with serial number 0003.

    EDIT: got the wattage wrong, sorry...
    Last edited: Jan 31, 2023
  11. Spectre Gunner

    Spectre Gunner Supporting Member

    Jun 8, 2016
    Tampa, Florida
    That's cool. I'm a fan of NYC Sadowskys but I didn't Roger ever made an amp. I was also wondering if Dumble ever made a bass amp but apparently so. Of course, there are going to be even fewer Bass Dumbles than Guitar Dumbles.
    Last edited: Jan 31, 2023
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  12. Spectre Gunner

    Spectre Gunner Supporting Member

    Jun 8, 2016
    Tampa, Florida
    Apparently, this is one of two. I wonder where the other one is?

    Here's the Japanese article translated to English:

    "Since Alexander (Howard) Dumble himself makes one-offs only for players he respects, each Dumble amp is said to have a different look, including Stevie Ray Vaughan, Larry Carlton, and Robben Ford. Since then, it has been loved by many famous guitarists, and due to its rarity, it is known as the most expensive boutique amp currently traded.

    Built around 1968 for bassist Michael Husser, this amp is said to have been made by Jack Cassady at a Jefferson Airplane concert in San Francisco's Winterland a little earlier. I was impressed by the sound of the Sunn 200S that I was using and the power of the amp, which could not be buried even in a large concert hall. Therefore, it is said that the name of "Winterland" was attached.

    Since 1967, when the music festival culture has blossomed since Monterey at the same time as the flower movement, monster amps such as Marshall Major, Ampeg SVT, Sunn 2000S, etc. have enabled high output equivalent to 200W to 300W with all tubes. It was also around this time that . It is a specification.

    As for the sound, it has a wide range that can be reproduced without difficulty even with low B strings, and the speed of sound is as expected. It works especially well with low-gain single coils, and there's no better luxury than playing rock from the 60's and 70's.

    Also worthy of special mention is the amazing headroom and linear volume curve of its power section. As far as the operation range of the is allowed, it seems that the volume will increase while remaining clear.

    It is no exaggeration to say that this machine #0003 is the only one of the two Dumble bass amplifiers that are currently in circulation, and is the rarest in terms of rarity. It can be said that it is one of the models. As we celebrate our 10th anniversary, we would like to thank you for the opportunity to introduce you to this one-of-a-kind masterpiece."
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  13. IngloriousOz

    IngloriousOz Supporting Member

    Jun 1, 2006
    SLC, Utah
    Two come to mind...

    Matamp OR200


    Hiwatt DR405

  14. arbiterusa


    Sep 24, 2015
    Dumble is an absolute triumph of marketing over reality. I've heard several in person. They're good sounding amps. Nothing I would mortgage the house for.
  15. rmars


    Jan 2, 2004
    Bettendorf, Ia
    Well supposedly the Dumble Steel String Singer uses essentially a SVT power section. I believe there is a story of Tommy Shannon using one of Stevie's Dumble's on bass but I'm foggy on where I got that info.
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  16. TomB

    TomB Supporting Member

    Aug 24, 2007
    WhenI last saw Hot Tuna, this was Jack’s amp combo.
  17. mmbongo

    mmbongo I have too many basses. Supporting Member

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  18. mmon77

    mmon77 Supporting Member

    Jul 9, 2008
    Southern MN
    I don't know that bassists are as bewitched by tube amp lore as guitarists are. As someone who plays both, it seems much more prevalent on the guitar side of things.

    Amps like Dumble, Trainwreck etc. and their makers are considered legendary and almost magical. Yet, if you actually listen to some of what their makers said, you have to wonder if they really believe it, or are just blowing smoke. For example, Ken Fischer was quoted as saying that a piece of wire has a natural polarity, and when you learn that and assemble an amp with the wire connected in the proper polarity, it sounds better.

    Thankfully, there doesn't seem to be the same fanaticism on the bass side of things, at least not with tube amps. Maybe with tort though.
  19. ZachM


    Nov 19, 2010
    Nashville, TN
    I don’t believe a bass parallel to the Dumble amps really exists because I can’t think of anything with the right combination of intentionally manufactured exclusivity, secrecy, and snake oil! I’ve no doubt they’re great amps, but there’s simply no way they’re worth the price of a house.

    In terms of scarcity and the general opinion of those who’ve played them, several of the amps mentioned already certainly would qualify; If I had to pick one amp to finish out my days with a Hiwatt DR405 would be pretty much the grail for me.
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  20. Jeff Scott

    Jeff Scott Rickenbacker guru..........

    Apr 11, 2006
    Out there!
    The only time I heard a Dumble was at a Robben Ford show I went to at a tiny club in the late '90s. The Dumble sounded just like one would expect a guitar amp to sound like. :D

    He must have been related to Noel Lee. ;)
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