Can a Bassman (Blackface on) be made into a decent bass amp?

Discussion in 'Amps/Cabs Tech Corner: Amplifier, Cab & Speakers' started by efnikbug, Jul 4, 2010.

  1. J M Fahey

    J M Fahey Member

    May 22, 2009
    Why a Blackface?

    The Bassman 135 , which happens to be Silverface, is the best of the lot.

    Let Guitar players worry about Mojo, greasy distortion and such, Bass players need loud and punchy, at least as loud as they can.

    A Bassman 135 with 2 JBL140 for the deep rumble guy or JBL130 for the snappy punchy one are a force to be reckoned with even today.

    Of course, playing on the edge of crunch gives Bass natural compression and glorious growl, easy to hear even through a crummy TV or car radio speaker.

    Old 2x15" big fat cabinets are the way to go with these heads; modern 300/600W 4x10" in general are hard to drive unless you have a large amp (well above 200W, SS very acceptable.)

    I vividly bremember being crushed against my seat in an underground theatre by a Bassman 135 driving a large "fridge" loaded with 2 x EVM15 L .

    Glorious grungy and fat sound.

    And the guy was using a Precision with old style flatwound strings, go figure.
  2. Mike9

    Mike9 Supporting Member

    Sep 26, 2006
    Ghent, NY
    Great picture - I have a Bogen CHA33 too that I want to fix up.
  3. SeanF

    SeanF Member

    Mar 18, 2002
    Raleigh, NC
    yep, I've got one. they work great as a low/mid-power bass amp. nice guitar amp, too.
  4. DeaconBlues

    DeaconBlues Member

    May 2, 2007
    way down below the ocean...
    Back in the day I played bass through a Bassman Ten combo in a hard rock band stuck between two Marshall stacks. I kept up just fine.
    That same amp served me well as guitar amp. Just wasn't all that portable.
  5. drbob1

    drbob1 Silver Supporting Member

    Aug 9, 2004
    If you think about recorded bass sounds, anything up until the mid-70s was probably done on a Fender or an Ampeg B25, neither of which was crushingly loud. In the modern world, just mic the speaker and play whatever you want. If the guitar player can "make do" with a 15 or 30w guitar amp, you'd be fine with 50w. My son plays in a loudish punk band (Blue Matches, just played at the Blind Pig at SXSW-proud daddy moment) using a Crate Powerblock thru a 110 speaker cab with a Fane-played clean that's not pushing any more dB than a Bassman thru a JBL D130!
  6. swiveltung

    swiveltung Member

    Feb 5, 2011
    A Bassman 50 can sound great to a certain level with a good cab. Good grind.... esp with a Precision Bass!

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