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Practice Amp/Speaker Combo For Bass
MUFF WIGGLER Forum Index -> Guitars, Basses, Amps & FX  
Author Practice Amp/Speaker Combo For Bass
Reality Checkpoint
I have just picked up a P Bass as for years I have wanted to learn to play the bass.

Has anyone got recommendations for good basic setup amp/speaker combo? It does not have to be powerful or loud.
I would look for a used combo on craigslist. Or New probably a Fender Rumble
tony d
I started playing Bass about 2 years ago, the gear lust side of me really wanted to buy a nice setup because i appreciate quality in sound but the logical side of me decided on the Fender Rumble because it was cheap and i didn't really want to regret putting a bunch of money into something i honestly didn't know if i would stick with. Well here we are 2 years later and i still use this amp, mostly i use the headphone output on it so i don't drive my family nuts. It is totally sufficient for me, but i don't play with bands still or play out at all so for me it is fine. Honestly it's not a nice or good sounding amp but it does the job for practicing.
I guess the important take away for me is i am still very much learning how to play this instrument and so the focus isn't really on the sound quality of the gear like it is with my synths,monitors,outboard,processors etc. but just learning how to play, becoming comfortable with the instrument and learning how to get the tone i desire through technique.
Just some thoughts that may help you decide on what kind of money you want to invest right off the bat, but to answer your question directly i would second the Fender Rumble suggestion.
What about for recording? In an apartment? Maybe with a headphone out? This would be a strictly studio amp. The Rumble was something I was looking at but it doesn't sound so hot. Any suggestions?
The one Fender Rumble amp I've heard was less than impressive. Avoid, in my opinion.

Gallien Krueger make some useful little combos.

Markbass stuff seems to be popular with a certain segment of the bass community.
Reality Checkpoint
Many thanks for your input.

Has anyone tried the Roland micro cubes?
At home, if you already have a monitoring setup, you could just use that. Get a passive DI, hook that into your mixer and play over the monitors or headphones. This will also lead to your technique becoming very clean, as the monitors are much more sensitive than a small combo.

For playing with others, maybe something like the Phil Jones Briefcases is sufficient.
I have been using a Line 6 LD150 with foot controller.

Nice little combo amp. Has enough output for intimate jam sessions without taking up space.

These days I just DI into my desk
Reality Checkpoint wrote:
Many thanks for your input.

Has anyone tried the Roland micro cubes?

Micro cubes are fine but nothing particularly special. Not a fan of their amp modelling and built in FX in general.. Boss Katana range are getting raves from the guitar guys but as yet no bass version.

The point made above about just using a DI and studio monitors is a fair one. I do find that sometimes it's useful to have your bass coming from a separate point source when you're trying to play along with a backing of some kind. Sometimes helps me with timing, anyway.

If you're really trying to go budget I've often found the Harley Benton branded stuff from Thomann to be surprising good and fairly reliable! HB gear has a lot of fans online.

I've been wondering recently what it'd be like to play through an amp-in-a-pedal DI unit (Palmer/Sansamp/Ampeg etc) into an Avantone active Mixcube. Fast, sensitive transients but not much low end. Could be decent. Then you also get an auratone type speaker box that can help with mono mixing duties as a bonus.
If you'd just like something small and reliable, I'd maybe think about a Peavey. Usually pretty readily available used/cheap.
I like my Vox Pathfinder 10 Bass.

All the Euro Bass patches I put through it sound great hihi
Extremely satisfied with my Phil Jones BG-100 'Bass Cub' , but probably a BG-75 'Double Four' would work just as well given your requirements.
Very small footprint. Decent output, but not amazingly loud. Pricewise... not the very cheapest though

Really wasn't happy with the Roland Micro Bass Cube RX I owned before that. Constantly farting out even at low practice volume levels. The basic sound was just ... meh - sounded artificial.
I've been touring, recording and practicing with a Markbass Mini CMD 121P. It's light, loud and has great tone. Stock, it pushes 300w out of a single 12" speaker, but you can get an additional 12" to run the rig at 4ohms, bringing the wattage to 500. I have an Epifani 4x10 cab, as well, but living and gigging in a city means (for me at least) giving up large gear in favor of ease, weight and the longevity of my hand/wrists/tendons/ligaments.

Markbass also makes a variety of other, smaller combos and I highly suggest checking them out.
new Femder Rumble Studio 40 is eek!
The first thing i’d Do in your situation is to check local guitar shops and see what’s out there used.

Other than that, any Fender or Ampeg small bass amp would do the job — but I’d stay away from anything tiny with an 8” speaker, since that probably won’t sound much like a bass. 10, 12, or 15” speakers are all fine.

Orange makes a 1x12 50 watt combo that might be fun, not too expensive, though ther are probably cheaper options.

Bass amps matter less than guitar amps. It’s more about the instrument and the player, so in my book anything available used and cheap might just do the job.

But stay away from the really tiny ones with 20 watts and an 8” speaker, those would probably not be satisfying to play.
Ampeg's little combos are quite nice
I picked up a GK with the 10” cone. Fckin awesome. It has a DI out, headphone amp, its just around 20lbs, narrow enough to tuck it away when not using it......class D amplification; lightweight, powerful & clean at high levels, but new its $399.
Starting out I had a Peavey Basic 40, you can pick them up used for c.$150.00, there's one on Reverb now. It's ok to start out on, I'd also seriously recommend picking up up a Sansamp pedal, that will allow you to DI with decent tone, and also to shape up the tone into the amp.

Another (more expensive) option may be something like the Trace Ellliot Elf and a 1x15 cab. I'd scour Reverb to get a feel for prices.
Delta T
Also check out Hartke Kickback amps. SWR has a small Workingmans series and Eden has(d) a Nemesis series that was pretty decent. Just stay with a 10" or larger speaker.
Politely disagree on the 10" speaker thing. For home/bedroom volume an 8" is fine, and can usually be had dirt cheap.
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