Lightweight bass amp that can hang with a band...

Discussion in 'Bass Area; The Bottom Line' started by Guitarshreda, Dec 9, 2017.


  1. Guitarshreda

    Guitarshreda Member

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    So, I'm looking for a good lightweight combo bass amp that can hang with a band. I'm a guitarist so my bass amp knowledge isn't extensive. The lighter the better, and I know that'll be tricky with a combo but any suggestions would be greatly appreciated. Obviously as the title of the thread says, it needs to have the power to hang with a band.

    Thanks!
     
  2. walterw

    walterw Gold Supporting Member

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    what kind of band?

    my go-to recommendation is the new fender rumble 500 combo; it's a surprisingly light 2x10 box with the 500w rumble head mounted in it, plenty for moderate volume bands.

    for louder situations just get the matching 2x10 extension cab and you have a kick-butt bass stack.
     
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  3. Guitarshreda

    Guitarshreda Member

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    Basic rock and roll band, nothing crazy. Maybe "roots rock" is the best description.
     
  4. walterw

    walterw Gold Supporting Member

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    OK yeah, look hard at the rumble 500 combo.
     
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  5. Guitarshreda

    Guitarshreda Member

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    Just did. Looks perfect! Thanks man.
     
  6. walterw

    walterw Gold Supporting Member

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    the key detail i like about it is that it's scalable. will run an extension cab, at which point it becomes a real 500w "rock" rig suitable for louder gigs.

    to me bass combos that won't are just "practice amps" that get left behind when the drummer joins the band.
     
  7. Guitarshreda

    Guitarshreda Member

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    @walterw - what's your opinion on the 100 watter? Not enough for a band? It's going to be used in a situation where the FOH will take the line out...
     
  8. olejason

    olejason Member

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    100w is usually not enough if your drummer hits hard at all. It's nice to move a little air on stage for monitoring purposes.
     
  9. somedude

    somedude Member

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    Considering modern 500-800w mini-heads are 5-10 lbs, I'd consider a head and cab. It'll open up some options for you. If weight is an issue and money isn't, modern neo cabs lighten things up considerably.

    Can you guaranty you'll always be in that situation? Some clubs will have the bassist fill the room with his cab while using the DI to reinforce the sound. Takes stress off the house PA. In these situations I've been bumping up against my amp's limiter with 400w and prefer to use 800w.

    Beyond that, bass isn't like guitar... there's no real penalty for having too much power or speaker, however you can damage your gear by running it at it's limits.
     
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  10. walterw

    walterw Gold Supporting Member

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    IMO that's a practice amp; only 100w and it can't drive another cabinet.

    anything less than like 300w is really a questionable investment, as is anything that can't push external speakers. it'll be outgrown once the band gets its act together and now you have to buy a bass amp again.

    (and the bass amp always gets a line sent to FOH, that's automatic; i'm currently rocking a 900w power amp into two 15 cabs and it still gets sent to the PA. it's not about how loud it will get, it's about how good and deep and clean it sounds at the proper volume.)
     
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  11. Floyd Eye

    Floyd Eye Member

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    A mic is a line. :)



    The new Fender Rumbles are supposed to be pretty good. I played through one of the early models and I hated it thoroughly.

    Is bass going to be your main thing or is this just a side project or what? If you are just screwing around and will most likely be back to just playing guitar in the near future, buy something cheap that has decent resale value.
     
  12. germs

    germs Member

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    fender rumbles are better than they have any right to be, plus they fall into the "disposable" amp category - they don't really represent a significant investment so you won't be too heartbroken when they get a beer spilled on them or the tolex gets destroyed.

    personally i picked up a t.c. electronics rh450 and a 4x10 - done and done. plays all the stages.

    up to you thought. i like the idea of being able to drive a couple different cabs to suit the gig - the head forms the basis of my sound.
     
  13. walterw

    walterw Gold Supporting Member

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    right, i too think a head and cab is more of a "real" rig. the same head can run small cabs for quiet gigs and larger or multiple cabs for big gigs.

    the exact same setup as the rumble 500 combo can be had with a rumble 500 head and one of their 2x10 cabs; the combo just builds them together into one unit.
     
  14. bigtone23

    bigtone23 Member

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    With bass amps, you have to have more amp than you think you may need. These don't work as well and sound as good turned up as guitar amps do.
    In no order,
    Rumble 500, maybe 200.
    GK MB212 II or 210 II
    Markbass CMD121P, CMD151P or CMD102P.
     
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  15. electricity17

    electricity17 Member

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    I have a Genz Benz Shuttle 6.2 head that sounds good. Running it through a Rumble 2x10 cabinet, and thinking about getting a second one at some point.

    I would say anything below 500 watts is basically a practice amp. The Shuttle is listed as 500 watts, but right now I'm only getting 350 watts out of it because I'm using a single 8 ohm cab. I play with a moderately loud band, and the amp keeps up well but I don't have a lot of room to spare.

    If I was playing a louder rock band, I think I would need the second cabinet to get down to a 4 ohm load and therefore increase the output to 500 watts, plus the additional speakers.
     
  16. ksandvik

    ksandvik Member

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    I would not recommend a combo. Why? Because if something happens you are stuck with a broken unit. And big combos easily move around when transporting causing problems. If you purchase separate head and cab you more flexibility. Also, you could put any of the small 500W+ heads into a computer bag and carry in a nice sounding 1x12 or 2x10 or even 2x12 cab.

    Get a MarkBass/GK/Mesa (they have now small solid state heads)/TC/Genz Benz and a small lightweight 2x10 cab and you are set. If you need more stage volume, get a second cab.

    I like my GK MBFusion 500W and the 2x12 cab. That's my main bass rig nowadays.
     
  17. henryjurstin13

    henryjurstin13 Member

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    I absolutely love my Markbass rig... LMT800 & a pair of NY121 cabs. But just one cab can EASILY be loud enough for a rock band environment. The cmd121p is great & very light.

    Markbass isn’t cheap - but their gear has NEVER let me down at a gig or otherwise.
     
  18. Jeff Scott

    Jeff Scott Member

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    If you (OP) decide to go with a separate head and cabinet(s), look at the Aguilar line of amps (Tone Hammer 350 or 500, and AG700). Superb amps.
     
  19. Fishyfishfish

    Fishyfishfish Member

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  20. Daniel Piper

    Daniel Piper Member

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    The market is at a point now where EVERY brand has lightweight options.

    The real constraint is the budget.

    With no $$ constraints, but staying with recognised brands, I would look into the Mesa subway series or Genzler Magellan line. But the options at this price point are nearly endless.

    If $ are tight I would go for the fender rumble 500, the 210 extension cab- and enjoy the vintage flavoured bliss that rig provides.
     
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