Terror Bass 500 review by Orange

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  • Ease of Use: 9
  • Sound: 9
  • Reliability & Durability: 5
  • Overall Impression: 6
  • Reviewer's score: 7.3 Good
  • Users' score: 7 (1 vote)
Orange: Terror Bass 500

Purchased from: Local music shop

Ease of Use — 9
It's splendidly simple to use and is perfect for any playing style. I cannot fault it. When changing sounds, I don't need to get the 600 page book of "Advanced tones in bass guitar - Volume VI" out or anything, I just give it a loose idea of what I want and the internal workings of the amp translate it to a sound, which is ALWAYS right. The manual is simple, but then again, this is a simple amp. Nothing is overcomplicated here for the sake of trying to show off, it's pure and simple sound as its most fundamental level. Unpack, plug in, play, unplug, pack. With regards to ease of use, what more could you want?

Sound — 9
This line of amps was launched in direct response to the Tiny Terror range for the electric guitar, and while it looks almost the same on the outside, it's an entire different beast inside. I have never in my entire life been blown away by the sound of an amp before, but this did it. The sound is like a ninja body builder walking on a tightrope - absolutely HUGE, but also perfectly poised and ready to spring. Since posting my previous review, I now play on an Overwater bass (seriously, check them out!) as well as a modified Fender Jazz and my now bashed up Ibanez ATK300, and through this amp, they all sound fantastic. The simple looking EQ is actually very well designed and allows me to quickly alter sounds (much quicker than on my previous Marshall) and I've yet to be left yearning or finding myself having to compromise on tone because I can't find it through this amp and my Boss GEB-7 EQ pedal. I mainly plug this amp into an OBC410 cabinet, but I'm happy enough that if I can't get my cab to a gig, this amp will be versatile enough to still give me the sounds I want. I like that it doesn't muck about with FX loops or built in compressors. It takes sound back to it's roots.

Reliability & Durability — 5
Personally, I find that this amp doesn't feel like it has the same chunky build as other orange amps. It weighs only 5kg, and even though the bag that comes with it serves as good protection, I just don't feel I have the same confidence in it as my guitar weilding bandmates, one of which uses Orange and the other using Marshall. I know it will last and be able to take a battering, because Orange isn't known for flimsy products, but I always find myself cradling it instead of throwing it in the back of the van like everyone else. I have to confess, when I swapped to this amp I also made myself a custom wooden box to mount the head from my Marshall MB4210 in, which sits in the back of the van. I haven't used it to date, but I feel so much more comfortable knowing I do have a spare.

If someone posts a video of them dropping their Terror off a building and it still working, I'll change this review and give it better marks, but until then, it has to be low.

Overall Impression — 6
I've had this amp about a year now, having swapped from the Marshall MB4210 (of which I wrote a glowing review for). I don't know whether I've got a lot more cynical since growing older, but I just don't feel this amp does it for me. Don't get me wrong, it is an absolutely FANTASTIC amp, it's perfectly diverse and the sound is full of presence, and other bassists who show up with their Behringers and such are always asking to borrow it. For me however, I liken it to being in a relationship with the perfect partner - they make you dinner every night and like everything you do and support you in everything, but sometimes you WANT a disagreement. I just want this amp once in a while to just splurge out a horrible sound or for me to be struggling with it on stage. No matter how I play, or what instrument and effect is plugged into it, the sound is simply amazing. That just is uneasy for me.

1 comment sorted by best / new / date

    I dropped my Terror the other week at a gig, the corner had punched a hole straight through the zipper of the supplied case and I feared the worst. Much to my relief, there was absolutely no damage to the head and it still works perfectly. Not sure if I got lucky, but I think the flimsy looks may be deceiving!