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#1
I need a recommendation for good bass amp for my son for Christmas. He has been playing upright for about 4 years and electric for about a year. His teacher says he is very very good. I bought him a decent Washburn bass a year ago, but his amp if crap.

His teacher told me to get an Ampeg or SWR amp, but I am looking for advice. I would rather buy him a very good amp now, and a better bass guitar next year.

Budget is $500-1000.

Thanks in advance.
1999 Gibson LP R9
2006 Tele John Cruz Masterbuilt
2007 MIA Strat Sunburst
2008 PRS SC-J Thinline Black Cherry/Bigsby (for sale)
2009 Zerberus Hydra II
2009 Custom Red Strat

Traynor YCV-50 Blue
#2
three questions first
can it be used or must be new?
what genres does he play?
will this be used for gigging?
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#3
Quote by alternitivebass
three questions first
can it be used or must be new?
what genres does he play?
will this be used for gigging?


Sorry should have been clearer:

1. Used is fine (i can buy on eBay) but prefer new or newer

2. He plays both oldies and new stuff like any 12 year old

3. No not yet--too young. But I expect him to play in a band in 1-2 years with a couple of his friends. (In fact, he is playing his first mini concert with his teacher next month with his band.)
1999 Gibson LP R9
2006 Tele John Cruz Masterbuilt
2007 MIA Strat Sunburst
2008 PRS SC-J Thinline Black Cherry/Bigsby (for sale)
2009 Zerberus Hydra II
2009 Custom Red Strat

Traynor YCV-50 Blue
#4
Gallien-Krueger half stack would be nice. Look at the Goldline cabs and the new Goldline head. Sure, he doesn't need the power yet, but he won't have to upgrade when he does. The Goldline 500 head and the Goldline 410 Cab would make a great, punchy sounding pair. http://www.guitarcenter.com/Gallien-Krueger-Goldline-500-Bass-Head-and-4x10-Bass-Cabinet-Package-483504-i1425640.gc
Schecter Stiletto Studio 5
Ibanez SRX2EX1
Gallien Krueger 1001rbii
Gallien Krueger Neo 410
Last edited by Cody_Grey102 at Nov 19, 2008,
#5
What about his recommendations (Ampeg or SWR)?

(Thanks, I will look into G-K)
1999 Gibson LP R9
2006 Tele John Cruz Masterbuilt
2007 MIA Strat Sunburst
2008 PRS SC-J Thinline Black Cherry/Bigsby (for sale)
2009 Zerberus Hydra II
2009 Custom Red Strat

Traynor YCV-50 Blue
#7
Quote by jazz_rock_feel
Are you looking for amplification for an upright and an electric, or just the electric?


Just his upright.
1999 Gibson LP R9
2006 Tele John Cruz Masterbuilt
2007 MIA Strat Sunburst
2008 PRS SC-J Thinline Black Cherry/Bigsby (for sale)
2009 Zerberus Hydra II
2009 Custom Red Strat

Traynor YCV-50 Blue
#8
I am convinced that the best amplification of an upright is a microphone to the PA. But other than that, a good pickup into an Acoustic Image amplifier. The sound is like goo, it's amazing. If you can find an Acoustic Image amp, I would buy it. They're built specifically to reproduce the natural, woody sound of acoustic instruments. They might be a little over budget, but DEFINITELY worth it. Another option is the GK MB series, which is reported to be a good upright amplifier. AI first as far as I'm concerned though.
#9
Quote by jcoley2
Just his upright.


What a dope I am . . .i was talking to my wife and meant to type electric.

So to repeat, it is for his electric, not Upright.
1999 Gibson LP R9
2006 Tele John Cruz Masterbuilt
2007 MIA Strat Sunburst
2008 PRS SC-J Thinline Black Cherry/Bigsby (for sale)
2009 Zerberus Hydra II
2009 Custom Red Strat

Traynor YCV-50 Blue
#10
Quote by Cody_Grey102
Gallien-Krueger half stack would be nice. Look at the Goldline cabs and the new Goldline head. Sure, he doesn't need the power yet, but he won't have to upgrade when he does. The Goldline 500 head and the Goldline 410 Cab would make a great, punchy sounding pair. http://www.guitarcenter.com/Gallien-Krueger-Goldline-500-Bass-Head-and-4x10-Bass-Cabinet-Package-483504-i1425640.gc


this is a nice amp, i would have him go to a guitar center or something, and try stuff out in his price range and get the 1 that he likes
What doesn't kill us, only makes us stronger

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#11
Quote by tbirds1013
this is a nice amp, i would have him go to a guitar center or something, and try stuff out in his price range and get the 1 that he likes


I know that makes the most sense, but if I did that, it would not be a surprise, would it!
1999 Gibson LP R9
2006 Tele John Cruz Masterbuilt
2007 MIA Strat Sunburst
2008 PRS SC-J Thinline Black Cherry/Bigsby (for sale)
2009 Zerberus Hydra II
2009 Custom Red Strat

Traynor YCV-50 Blue
#12
SWR makes some pretty solid gear.

I would honestly stay away from Ampeg, as much as I love them, if your not going to shell out some serious dough I don't think its worth it.

I like the Fender Bassman 250/210 combo, sounds very nice. I'm hoping to pick one up in the near future.

You should also check out Carvin. The make some top-notch stuff, and probably the most bang for your buck. The only sell factory direct though, which keeps the prices down, but also does give you a chance to try them out.
#13
SWR Blonde combo, though out of your price range is supposed to be a REALLY good upright amp. Markbass also has some combos. But those will be closer to the $1000 than $500.

And about Ampeg, they are quality amps, but I dunno if they'll be good for upright. And if you are going Ampeg I would advise to get an American one, used off of Ebay.
#14
I'm an SWR man and swear by their gear, and they have a lot of great stuff aimed for the acoustic player. For example, the aforementioned Blonde combo so probably the best piece out there, and has microphone inputs as well as pickup inputs. It'll last him for the rest of his life. Might be pricey, though. Derived from the SWR Baby Blue.

There's also the newer, smaller, Spellbinder Blue combo which is just as good, just smaller, and probably more appropriate at this stage. However, if you spring for the Blonde, you'll probably never, ever need an amplifier for his upright forever.

Ampeg I wouldn't recommend for acoustic amplification (and rarely would for electric...). Upright bass is a difficult instrument to amplify, and unless special care is taken to figure that out, the amplifier is not worth getting. In this case, Ampeg is exactly that.

I believe Carvin makes a few acoustic amplifiers for a great price, but I don't know how bass-centric they are.
Quote by Cody_Grey102
I was looking at a used Warwick Vampyre LTD 5'er for about $200. I went home to grab my wallet and came back and some jerk with an epic beard got it already..
#15
Quote by jcoley2
I know that makes the most sense, but if I did that, it would not be a surprise, would it!


It's a great gift and the surprise makes it feel better...but.. I'd still let your kid try things out. I remember the old days when my mum would say "Oh I got your bass strings today", and she'd come home with normal guitar strings. I would just cringe and think "I should have done this myself....".

The intentions are great, but it will save you money in the long run. Your son probably has an idea of the sound he wants (Or will do when he tries out the different amps in the shop).

This would be like buying my mother her favourite books. I know she likes books, I know what genre, but i'd still end up getting something she'd return within a week.
#16
Quote by jcoley2
What a dope I am . . .i was talking to my wife and meant to type electric.

So to repeat, it is for his electric, not Upright.


I think a lot of the latter posts accidentally skipped over this comment: I agree with the earlier comments about ampeg. Ampeg can be very nice, but their low end combos are not nice at all, and their solid state heads lack the uumph of their tube ones. This pretty much raises any new ampeg that is worth a toot considerably above your budget. With 500-1k, just steer clear of ampeg.

GK is something to look at, but the goldline that was recommended has a kind of idiosyncratic sound with its aluminum speaker cones. You're probably better off getting a combo/cab with paper cones just because this is the more traditional and widely usable type of speaker. Avoid low end GK (notably the backline series) like the plague--but you can get into decent GK territory toward the top of your budget.

I don't actually have any useful suggestions. I'll beat thefitz to the punch since he didn't catch the electric bass part: Go check out www.carvin.com and look at thier bass gear. It's direct order so it's got a darn low price for the decent quality it offers. Their gear is also very "transparent" sounding, so you don't have to worry about buying an amp that shapes your son's sound in a way he doesn't like.

edit* damnit, he did mention Carvin already, even when not thinking about electric bass. I should have just assumed as soon as I saw your name on the post Fitz
#17
After a little research, I found this for you. Here's what I have to say about them.

http://guitars.musiciansfriend.com/product/SWR-California-Blonde-II-Acoustic-Instruments-Amp?sku=481996 This is the older Blonde combo, and is pretty nice and compact with some great features.

http://bass-guitars.musiciansfriend.com/product/SWR-Natural-Blonde-200-Watt-Acoustic-Bass-Combo?sku=481311 This is a refined, more powerful, and more modern version of the previous one. It may be a bit too complex at this stage of the game, but it's well worth the extra money and will likely never need replacing.

http://bass-guitars.musiciansfriend.com/product/SWR-Spellbinder-Blue-120V-1x10-In-Bass-Combo-Amplifier?sku=483506 This is also a great acoustic amp, but doubles as an electric amp better than the other ones. Probably the least value for your dollar, but with the most practical applications than the others. It's got the most pedigree, too.

EDIT: Awww crap... Still not gonna delete my post. Pretend it's for upright! And I will agree that Carvin is the best value for your dollar period. You can get a whole half-stack at that price.
Quote by Cody_Grey102
I was looking at a used Warwick Vampyre LTD 5'er for about $200. I went home to grab my wallet and came back and some jerk with an epic beard got it already..
#18
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#19
+1 on the Carvin, the BX series amps are pure awesomeness.

I have to ask, is this something that's going to be really good to practice on, or something that's supposed to be good for gigs as well? Is he going to be taking it to his lessons? We need to know just how portable this needs to be.

Assuming it needs a fair bit of versatility in the portability department, I'd go with This. A 600W 3/4 stack would be plenty for any situation, and if minimal space usage is needed he can simply take the head and the 210 and leave the 115 at home.
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#20
Not got much to add to the thread, but TS, you have some sweet guitars.

Gear:
Fender Standard Jazz Bass
Artec Matrix Pedal Tuner
BBE Optostomp
Boss GEB 7
EHX NYC Big Muff
Ashdown MAG C410T-300
Torque T100BX
GAS-ing for:
Boss SYB5
Behringer Intelligate IG9
#21
TheFitz,

Thanks. I am looking into.
1999 Gibson LP R9
2006 Tele John Cruz Masterbuilt
2007 MIA Strat Sunburst
2008 PRS SC-J Thinline Black Cherry/Bigsby (for sale)
2009 Zerberus Hydra II
2009 Custom Red Strat

Traynor YCV-50 Blue
#22
Quote by Mutant Corn
+1 on the Carvin, the BX series amps are pure awesomeness.

I have to ask, is this something that's going to be really good to practice on, or something that's supposed to be good for gigs as well? Is he going to be taking it to his lessons? We need to know just how portable this needs to be.


For now he will just practice on it but I expect him to play in a band in the next few years. He is a 7th grader so maybe 2 more years before high school years.
1999 Gibson LP R9
2006 Tele John Cruz Masterbuilt
2007 MIA Strat Sunburst
2008 PRS SC-J Thinline Black Cherry/Bigsby (for sale)
2009 Zerberus Hydra II
2009 Custom Red Strat

Traynor YCV-50 Blue
#23
If i was you, id get him an Ampeg SVT with an 8-10 cab... You'll be dad of the year no, dad of the century
'85 Fender Reissue '75 Jazz Bass ---> Ashdown MAG300h
Schecter C/SH-1 ---> Fender Hot Rod Deluxe
#24
Quote by Phishead42
If i was you, id get him an Ampeg SVT with an 8-10 cab... You'll be dad of the year no, dad of the century


That would set him back quite a bit more than $500~$1000!

I'd probably recommend Carvin, heard nothing but good things about them! As for the moment it'll be mostly for practice I'd recommend something with a 2x10 or a 1x15 cabinet as there fairly portable yet they work well! I would also recommend trying Ashdown, but the combos are pretty annoying in the fact the head is 300 watts at 4ohms and the cabinet 8ohm cabs so the best way to go with Ashdown is an Ashdown head and a 4ohm cabinet that's made by someone else (Peavey maybe?).

So basically you want to have a look into:

Carvin
Ashdown
Fender (the Bassman series is pretty good, Rumble series much less so)


Damn! There's others but I can't think of them right now!
Gear:

Musicman SUB 5
Ibanez SRX305
Ibanez GSR200
Ashdown MAG300 C115
Ashdown MAG 210 cab

Soon a Fender Deluxe Jazz V & an LTD 206
#25
We went to GC today and they were pushing Mark Bass. Any thoughts/recommendations. We also talked to his teacher today--he is recommending SWR but I cannot remember the model.

Also, at his recital today some one had a Eden. Any thoughts about this manufacturer?
1999 Gibson LP R9
2006 Tele John Cruz Masterbuilt
2007 MIA Strat Sunburst
2008 PRS SC-J Thinline Black Cherry/Bigsby (for sale)
2009 Zerberus Hydra II
2009 Custom Red Strat

Traynor YCV-50 Blue
Last edited by jcoley2 at Dec 14, 2008,
#26
Eden makes GREAT gear, but with your budget it would be hard to get a full Eden rig. Markbass makes great stuff, especially if you're looking for something easily transportable. If you don't mind moving something more than 50 lbs, I would suggest a different brand (namely Carvin).
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#27
Mark Bass and SWR both make great equipment, and like most great equipment, it comes down to taste and preference when deciding. Considering his age, I would suggest a good combo amp that he could carry himself if/when he wanted to jam with friends. Something in the 300W range so he could be heard over a drumset.

I also echo the recommendation for a good bass in the $500-$1000 range. When he gets older and develops a more opinions and tastes based on what he likes to listen to and play (which will definitely change, or at least expand), get him the high end $2000-$3000 bass like you're prepared to for sweet 16 or something.

If he's not really hot for a specific high end bass right now, it seems a bit premature to get him a big ticket bass like a MM or Warwick when they have very distinct characteristics that you can't be sure he'll like in a few years when he really starts to come into his own.

Hope that helps a bit.
#28
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#29
There's absolutely no venue that the 200W acoustic would be enough for.

MarkBass is a great modern, forward thinking company, however they're big into small, light amplifiers and more money is spent on size and weight saving technology instead of tone. That is, I don't think they're a great deal for the power and price. However, they're still great pieces. I still stand by my statement that SWR is the best bass amp company, period.

Eden I'd rank at no. 2 and think they're the modern-day Ampeg, but in a good way. SWR's controls might scare some people off, but that's why I love them. Edens are similar, but half as complex, and the tone's just as great. Eden makes a very solid, round tone, whereas the SWR is known for clarity.
Quote by Cody_Grey102
I was looking at a used Warwick Vampyre LTD 5'er for about $200. I went home to grab my wallet and came back and some jerk with an epic beard got it already..
#30
Guys,
We are headed to Sam Ash tomorrow and I am going to have my son look at the SWRs. However, I jsut looked on their website and they only have two types of amp in my price range ($400-700 but no more than $1000):

Working Pro 12 1x12"
http://www.samash.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/product_WorkingPro%2012%201x12%20Bass%20Combo%20Amplifier_-1_10052_10002_-49960921_cmCategorySA182894

Working Pro 15 1x15"
http://www.samash.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/product_WorkingPro%2015%201x15%20Bass%20Combo%20Amplifier_-1_10052_10002_-49984845_cmCategorySA182894

Is that all there is from their brand in our price range from SWR or is that all they carry?

Some one recommended Eden and I saw one in our price range:

Eden 115SA 1x15"
http://www.samash.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/product_NC115SA%201x15%20Bass%20Combo%20Amplifier_-1_10052_10002_-49983392_cmCategorySA182894

No one mentioned Fender but curious about this one:

Rumble 100 2x10"
http://www.samash.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/product_Rumble%20100%202x10%20Bass%20Combo%20Amplifer_-1_10052_10002_-49966896_cmCategorySA182894

Thanks in advance.
1999 Gibson LP R9
2006 Tele John Cruz Masterbuilt
2007 MIA Strat Sunburst
2008 PRS SC-J Thinline Black Cherry/Bigsby (for sale)
2009 Zerberus Hydra II
2009 Custom Red Strat

Traynor YCV-50 Blue
#31
If your going fender get a abssman, it will do you better, Have you tried ashdown, There great. You should be able to get an abm second hand or new(im not sure of the price over the water). Out of the ones you listed there i would get the swr 1x15 combo. Has none mentioned acoustic i hear there good.
Yamaha TRB1006
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Hartke lh 500
Ev 606L
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#32
The Bassman 210 or 115 completely blows the Rumble out of the water, and it's an amp that you can actually and comfortably gig with. Fender owns SWR and since the aquisition their bass amps have really improved, and the Bassman is a definite result. It should be in that price range for sure, and once again, I wholeheartedly recommend it. I owned it before I went into stack territory.

The SWR 15 is also a similarly-appointed amp probably made in the same plant which is also a good choice. Try the Bassman with the SWR and see which he likes better. The 12 isn't big enough, speaker wise.

The Eden is another great choice but it'll sound very different than the SWR/Fender setup. Also, since it's Eden, it'll probably be more expensive than it's Nemesis counterpart, which will have much more power at a cheaper price.

All that said, I think at 250W you're straddling the line between gig usable and gig unusable. I think 250W is the minimum comfortable power to gig. I've gigged with 200W and I couldn't hear myself well. I used that exact Fender Rumble 100 and could not hear myself AT ALL.
Quote by Cody_Grey102
I was looking at a used Warwick Vampyre LTD 5'er for about $200. I went home to grab my wallet and came back and some jerk with an epic beard got it already..
#33
As we speak i think ive got a buyer for my rumble. YEAAAAAAAAAAAAa
Yamaha TRB1006
Fender MIA jazz bass
Hora Hybrid double bass
Hartke lh 500
Ev 606L
Epiphone les paul
#34
Quote by thefitz
There's absolutely no venue that the 200W acoustic would be enough for.

gotta disagree, most venues I've played, my AB50 managed to reach audibility with some overdrive/fuzz (I borrow usually) and a very liberal approach to high mids.
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Warwick Fortress>>Acoustic AB50

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#35
Yeah, well, I'm talking about finding a tone you want and being able to hear it when standing in front of a mic stand on stage. I don't compromise my tone for the sake of 'audibility', and I don't think anyone should have to.
Quote by Cody_Grey102
I was looking at a used Warwick Vampyre LTD 5'er for about $200. I went home to grab my wallet and came back and some jerk with an epic beard got it already..
#36
Quote by thefitz
Yeah, well, I'm talking about finding a tone you want and being able to hear it when standing in front of a mic stand on stage. I don't compromise my tone for the sake of 'audibility', and I don't think anyone should have to.

hmm.

well I'd probably do that anyway.

though for many types of jazz and country, due to the softer nature of the music, you can get a lot of versatility with even 150 watts.
Quote by FatalGear41
I wouldn't call what we have here on the Bass Forum a mentality. It's more like the sharing part of an AA meeting.

Quote by Jason Jillard
HUMANITY WHATS WRONG WITH YOU.


Warwick Fortress>>Acoustic AB50

http://www.myspace.com/rustingbloom
#37
Meh once i sell my rumble im going 500watts+ just so i can do what the fitz said.
Yamaha TRB1006
Fender MIA jazz bass
Hora Hybrid double bass
Hartke lh 500
Ev 606L
Epiphone les paul
#38
I agree with the bassman recomendations, i have the 250 watt 210 version and it is awesome
BASS GEAR:
Fender Bassman 250 2x10
Squier MB-5
Tanglewood Premier TW155 acoustic bass

GUITAR GEAR:
Ibanez ART300
Fender GDC-200SCE
Peavey studio chorus 70

PEDALS:
Ibanez SM-7
Ibanez PH-7
DOD Bass Chorus
#39
Quote by TANKER69
I agree with the bassman recomendations, i have the 250 watt 210 version and it is awesome


Ok, I see two Fender Bassman amps in similar price ranges:

250/115 (obviously a 1x15")
250/210 (2x10")

Some one else recommended not going below a 15" speaker in this thread. Yet the 250/210 is slightly more expensive. What am I missing? Any thoughts between these two models?
1999 Gibson LP R9
2006 Tele John Cruz Masterbuilt
2007 MIA Strat Sunburst
2008 PRS SC-J Thinline Black Cherry/Bigsby (for sale)
2009 Zerberus Hydra II
2009 Custom Red Strat

Traynor YCV-50 Blue
#40
I would get the 1x15, it'll push more and have more punch. 2x10's on there own are always lacking.
Yamaha TRB1006
Fender MIA jazz bass
Hora Hybrid double bass
Hartke lh 500
Ev 606L
Epiphone les paul
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