Advantages/Disadvantages of Playing Guitar on a Bass Amp?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs' started by bahklava, Feb 15, 2012.

  1. bahklava

    bahklava Senior Member

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    Hi all!

    I'm toying with the idea of taking up bass again. I don't like to have a lot of superfluous gear around, though, and one thing I'm thinking of putting on the chopping block is my guitar amp (Line 6 Flextone II). I hear that you can plug a guitar into a bass amp (but not a bass into a guitar amp), so I figure if I can get a good bass amp, why not just have that take over all my amp functions?

    However, I'm wondering if there's something I need to know first. Are there any drawbacks to plugging a 6-string into a bass amp?
     
  2. SteveO

    SteveO Member

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    What kind of music do you play?
     
  3. Dave_C

    Dave_C Supporting Member

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    The Fender Bassman and all the early Marshall plexis were actually bass amp designs and are considered some of the most collectible amps of all time. Eric Clapton, Jimi Hendrix, Free and most of the 60s rock greats played them at one time or another. They are so good, in fact, that there are boutique amp builders who will reproduce them for you....like this one there...a Germino Monterey 100, which is a Marshall JTM 45/100 repro...the amp that Jimi played at Monterey, essentially a bass amp.

    [​IMG]
     
  4. SteveO

    SteveO Member

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    All very true, but most modern bass amps are cut from a VERY different cloth, and don't behave at all like the old ones. Most are solid state, relatively full in their frequency response, and tend to not distort in an aurally pleasing manner that lends itself well to rock and roll guitar tones. :)
     
  5. sharpshooter

    sharpshooter Member

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    Ampeg SVT, or a V4. Over at Talk Bass, V4s are highly regarded as bass amps, the only diff between a V4, and a V4B is the "B" has no reverb, and the value of a couple of resisters/caps are slightly diff.
     
  6. bahklava

    bahklava Senior Member

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    So basically, what I'm hearing is that if I can get an old-fashioned bass amp, go for it, but don't rely on a new-fangled solid state amp to replace my Flextone II. Is that right?
     
  7. RoadRunner

    RoadRunner Member

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    You can do anything you want :) There are no rules.

    As has been mentioned, some of the greatest guitar tone ever was processed thru "bass" amps, ie: the 4x10" Bassman and the subsequent Marshalls that copied that circuit.

    And yes, you can play bass thru a guitar amp too!:omg

    Remember... no rules... we're playin' music here, not doing rocket science.
     
  8. EZchair Picker

    EZchair Picker Member

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    Another option is using a modeler and powered PA speaker. I play guitar, bass and mandolin and use a digitech RP500 into a QSC K10. Depending on your group's volume and venue, the K10 may not be enough to carry the room by itself when playing bass. If that's the case, you can always try a K12 or adding a sub.
     
  9. rybass

    rybass Member

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    The old and old style bass amps won't have the bass response that modern amps will have if you ever plan to play bass through it as well.

    I played a dual bassman 50 set up for a couple years on bass. It was great for a vintage round bass sound and sounded great when I would run guitar through it every once in awhile but I switched to an Ampeg V4BH for more modern bass tones.

    I have ran a guitar through it on a number of occations. It's a cleaner sound and really roars but it depends heavily on the cab you use with it if running guitar through it. You'll want a more full range cab than a bass cab if you want highend. If you want the low and the thump with a little mud then a bass cab will work.
     

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