10 Best Bass Amps in 2021
You can find today's article a good read before you splash out on a new practice amplifier online, we have flung together a comparative analysis of some of the best-sellers to find a front-runner for the best title of the bass amp.
To show you what they are made of and decide their worth, we have put them through their paces and played side by side with them.
In general, we want a large speaker to handle the low-frequency noises, but it is always to have a smaller, more compact knock-about for bedroom use. Bass amps often need a smaller consideration, particularly for practice purposes.
View The Best Bass Amp Below
1. Fender Rumble 25 v3 Bass Combo Amplifier
First of all, we look at the lower end of the Fender rumble line, having previously looked at the 15 model that we are stepping up to the 25.
Now, while we would never recommend anything to do with below a 75/100, this is a decent simple beginner practice amp suitable for bedroom use.
It's a bit of a step down from the rumble 40 because it doesn't deliver too many on-board controls, there's no advantage, and as compared to the 4, you're restricted to your usual 3-band EQ.
That said, it gives quite a great sound and provides both an overdrive and a contour filter. The overdrive is a Delta-Comp non-adjustable limiter that holds pretty well and keeps the volume low enough to not feed subtly.
If you want the benefit of sculpting it, then the price increase for the Rumble 40 model that gives you drive and level dials, as well as a vibrant and antique switch in addition to the contour, may be worth it.
It is fitted with a rigid paper cone with a high-quality 8-inch speaker that does not dampen, which is what gives this amp its name-sake rumbling nature. The rigidity of the outline also gives it a nice attack, perfect for slapping.
For a lightweight substitute, + Good lows.
+ 3-band EQ, overdrive and outline.
Why We Liked It -
It is remarkable that it copes with a sixth string reproducing a low B for a smaller low-watt option, although the harmonics are primarily above rather than below what should be expected.
2. SUNYIN Bass Guitar Amplifier
A few eyebrows might be raised by this second range, but it was included as a flexible travel amp that can be easily lugged around.
Now when it comes to battery mini-amps, let's be honest with most of them sucking and you won't find many that will do your bass any favors in all honesty, but being able to have a jam on an outing is as enticing to us bassists as it is to a guitarist.
Nobody really wants to spend a lot on something so impractical, which is why we chose SUNYIN for this cheap little amplifier.
For a 10-watt speaker, it has a pretty good sound and they make a specifically bass-oriented model that has some low curve response to replicate the signal's lower harmonics. As far as the volume levels are concerned, it has a very low cut-off for the break up.
There is an overdrive switch with a volume knob as well as tone and gain, but to be frank, with the break-up the gain works anyway at a low-level overdrive at full volume.
It has an auxiliary in and out, so that without spending a whole lot, you can use this a portable silent practice amp to jam tracks and practice playing technique.
+ Sufficient mini amp operated by battery.
+ Modulation of tones.
Why We Liked It -
With a reasonable amount of tone-play, it is a fun choice, a little mediocre, but very compact, and fit for use, it certainly gets the job done.
3. Hartke HD15 Bass Combo Amplifier
To keep our comparisons equal, we are once again sticking with the low-wattage, the Hartke HD15 combo amp is another great practice choice for bare-bones, let's study.
The HD15 is the entry-level maiden model for businesses, offering onboard bass, mid, and treble controls in an uncluttered layout with hardy dials. You've got your volume change alongside the 3-band EQ.
Despite its back to simple choices, it serves up a decent selection of tones, this is primarily attributable to the consistency of the proprietary speaker designs of the companies.
The HD15 model has a smaller dimension (6.5 inches) than its higher-output models, but the composition of the cone makes it a thin, dynamic beauty.
The HyDrive speaker cones are made with a blend of paper pulp and aluminum that gives it rigidity and flexibility for a flexible range of tones from smooth and warm to the bright-end, peaky attacks that are punchier.
This makes it an effective practice amp for a variety of genres to be played and a number of techniques mastered. It has auxiliaries in and out to play from your computers and listen to your headphones again.
+ Typical EQ for 3-band.
+ Magnificent speaker.
+ Punchy and wet.
Why We Liked It -
If you are looking to kick it up a notch, it is an amazing low-watt choice, we suggest you take a nose at the 100 or 150 The Hartke range has some great features the higher you fork-out.
4. Ampeg BA108V2 20-Watt 8" Bass Combo Amplifier
Next up is an Ampeg option with a hard-working 8-inch speaker that does a fantastic job, running at 20 watts.
With a great enclosure design, it is a tougher choice that is perfect for carrying the brunt if you have to take it to a different practice spot. It is designed with a 60-degree angle, which means that you can make it stand or place it in a position in the manner of a monitor, in which case it directs the audio up to you.
For a 20-watt option that competes in terms of volume and punch with some 30/40 watt versions, it is impressively powerful.
It features the standard triple-band equalization and has an additional auxiliary input volume dial as well as an output volume control. For quiet practice, it has a headphone jack too.
It is a flexible low-watt alternative that has a minus 15-decibel switch to avoid destroying the amp for higher-output instrument sources.
+ Solid design.
+ Strong tonal selection.
+ Packs a kick.
Why We Liked It -
In a smaller venue, it has a serious kick and might also be a suitable backline. It is a strong light-weight, lug-around choice and serves up authentic vintage Ampeg sounds.
5. Orange Crush Bass 25W Bass Guitar Combo Amp
We are big fans of Orange and they are incredibly well-built and have notoriously good tube emulation, not just for their eye-catching retro good-looks. Amp for Practice.
It is ruggedly built and has a nice top-mounted panel with simple to navigate controls. At an affordable retail cost, it is competitively priced and brings some notable features to the table.
Importantly, it benefits from the parametric mid-frequency equalization of the firms, which enables consumers, in addition to your regular bass, mid, and treble power, to manipulate the curves to their choice.
Being able to soften or harden the peaks gives the 3 band EQ on board a much more detailed influence over the tones you can achieve.
Another comparison to its competition is that it is a convenient advantage for any musician equipped with a built-in chromatic tuner.
The speaker measures 8-inches and works well, all the signal paths of the circuitry are equivalent, allowing the headphone output to be authentically great cab simulated.
To lower the input power of the source, it has a minus 6 decibel switch.
+ 8-inch orator.
+ Analog routes of the signal.
+ The EQ parametric
+ Tuner built in.
Why We Liked It -
Despite being the smallest amp in the series, it serves up more options, benefits from a few extra conveniences, and delivers a warm signature sound.
6. Peavey Max 126 Bass Combo Amplifier
Next is a 10-watt choice from Peavey that rivals the 15's we have highlighted. It is constructed like a brick-house and offers one of the market's most robust options.
It is fitted with an industry-leading 6.5-inch regular speaker that holds its own and serves a rich selection of Peavey classic tones.
A sort of hybrid medium between the vintage analog and modern digital pathways profits from the TransTube technology of the business, which enables it to remain true to the classic vintage sounds associated with the Peavey line.
With Peaveys Psycho-acoustic low-end tech, signals are also processed which enhances the bass adding low-end. For such a tiny model that blows other 10 watt combos out of the water and is ideal for bedroom practice, it is especially impressive.
It has wide dials that provide your high and low e with a 2 band EQ forend, along with a Vintage gain dial that tweaks the sound by inserting dirt through the TransTube emulations.
+ Benefit from Antique.
+ Low-end psycho-acoustic improvement.
+ Technology TransTube.
Why We Liked It -
Despite its smaller speakers and consumption, it is an unbelievable low output amp that manages low-end reproduction.
7. Fat Boy FBGB15 15 Watt Bass Amp
Next, we have a low-cost approach that provides some decent value for money. It's a 15-watt model that is well-engineered and has decent low-end handling with a 6.5-inch speaker.
It has a sturdy design and is lightweight with a powerful carrying handle that makes it flexible for changing places of practice.
It features front-loaded dials that create wider spacing on the smaller side, so you won't knock on one while changing the other. They just have Treble and Bass adjustments, like the Peavey above, but you can zero in on a variety of sounds between the two.
A volume dial and an auxiliary input along with a headphone output are available.
+ High and low adaptation.
+ A cheap bass amplifier.
Why We Liked It -
It is a low-cost underdog amplifier that competes at the low-end with some of the leading brands.
8. Blackstar Bass Combo Amplifier
Over to Blackstar Fly3Bass for an extremely small battery-powered option that runs on just 3 watts.
In terms of sound, the miniature speaker won't work miracles for your bass, but it has decent bass handling and clarity, the clean is very impressive and the gain gives you a little drive when maxed without too much volume increase.
This is because it contains an ISS shaping compressor that can be used to monitor volume and allow fuzz to be added to the gain. It has compression and volume dials together with a tone depth control that enables you to concentrate the answer to find your sweet spot between the low, mid, or treble.
It has an aux-in and an emulated line-out and is suitable because of its battery operation for a quiet practice solution that takes up virtually no storage space and can be taken out and about.
+ A minuscule amp.
+ Powered Battery.
Why We Liked It -
This is a seriously small low-cost option to consider if you already have a gigging amp and only need to be able to plug and play to practice in your down-time.
9. New Donner 15W Bass Guitar Amplifier
This recently updated model from Donner that runs at 15 watts is another low-cost choice for bedroom practice.
It is equipped with a 6.5-inch 8 omega speaker that offers good reproduction at the low end. It is made with a paper/aluminum dual-layer cone that gives it a retro warmth.
It offers bass, middle, and treble controls as well as an input volume dial so that your desired tone can be adjusted easily.
With a carpeted exterior and metal corner caps, as well as rubber feet and the grille, it has a decent build quality that seems fairly robust for a budget bass amp.
It has two 3.5 mm connections for playing with computers and headphones, one in and one out.
+ Compact one.
+ Solid design.
+ Solution for low-cost.
Why We Liked It -
It is a decent bedroom amp for beginners that won't break the bank.
10. Ibanez Bass Combo Amplifier
For a look at their lowest watt starter choice, we are winding things down with a bass combo amp from Ibanez.
Again, if you want anything more than a compact practice amp, we recommend looking for their higher-end, but given that it is a 10-watt model, it does a pretty sweet job at low volumes.
It seems to have a break-up point, and you would want to keep it below the 6/7 mark as far as the volume is concerned, unless you want a lot of grit. Fortunately, for a rehearsal rig model, it is a total powerhouse and even the lowest volumes are reasonably loud.
With hardy corner shields, it has a great rugged build to keep it safe from knocks and bumps. The grille is of good quality and is very lightweight and compact.
For a variety of musical styles, the on-board controls give you bass, middle, and treble controls to tweak your equalization. Again, it offers an aid in and out to make it suitable for learning and performing new songs without upsetting anybody.
With + 10 watts.
+ Strong Amp Starter.
Why We Liked It -
It is a practical solution for rehearsal rigs that does not hog any room and is simple to transport around.
Bass Amp Buyers Guide
We looked at a range of combo amps for low-output practice and thus tailored our guide to the details of a smaller option.
What to Look For in a Bass Amp?
What to look for is truly dependent on how the amplifier is going to be used. Most of today's selections have been solid-state as the industry seems to be leaning towards digital amps in modern times, for good reason, not looking to settle the age-old tubed vs tubeless debate.
While analog tube amps have their place in live music, and indeed recordings with their inimitable vintage tones, for the majority of younger generation bassists, many modern amps come close enough.
In terms of their tone sculpting capacities, solid-state amps offer a great deal more than their antiquated equivalents, simply because the sound signals are processed digitally.
The onboard EQ is the big selling point in a combo amplifier, so you need to specify the set of functions you want to be able to change.
3-band EQ (bass, treble, and mid) is about as simple as it comes and will suffice for the budding bassist to provide most genres with a strong variety of tones. If you prefer heavier music, an overdrive button and a dial may be required.
Jazzier or precision bassists will focus a little more on their treble end as they prefer to play with a lot more of their neck than others, in which case it is good to have some additional sound characteristics such as contour control and brightness that will increase the harmonic focus to higher frequencies.
Unlike a conventional guitar amp speaker, to manage the low-frequency exposure and shift in a way that produces the air motion needed for low-end sound waves, a bass speaker requires a larger surface area and more rigidity.
As the speaker cone travels back and forth, they often usually need a greater space to do so, generating a backlash of reverse motion waves that need to be dealt with or muddying the intended signal sounds.
This is why bass cabs used to be much bigger back in the day, but over the years, enclosure designs have evolved and can be calibrated to help solve the problem.
By efficiently filtering the air out of the can through an opening and positioning the speaker as far forward as possible, the majority of smaller amps can do this.
You may want something larger with a higher performance for live use, but this could be less appropriate for practice at home as far as your neighbors and family are concerned.
We would suggest 10-15-inches and at least one or two for output to generalize on speaker measurements, but this is excessive again in a bedroom situation and a single 6-8-inch will do a very good job at the correct wattage.
Is a Low-Watt Amp any Good for Bass?
Although a solid-state bass combo below 75 to 100 watts will not be considered by the majority of us, the capabilities of smaller speakers, smaller cabs, and lower output amps are getting better by the decade.
You won't need too much in terms of consumption if you're just looking to improve your playing skills, especially if you're looking to hook up some headphones and play at any hour.
Technically speaking, the lower harmonics are lacking a smaller low-watt amp and not true to the accuracy of the signal, but our brains hear the pitch of the note filling in the harmonics as it goes, scientifically.
The sound would be missing in detail for a seasoned player with knowledge of much larger, high-output amps, but for a newbie, the bulk, to say the least, are very satisfying.
A smaller amp is always ignored by many, but if you just practice and play something over a 50-watt model for yourself, it's just overkill, but each one is its own.
We have looked at some practical low-watt options that make for decent practice amps and given that most now come with headphone outputs that allow you to play only for yourself, unless you practice as a party, you really don't need to overthink a practice amps spec.
In a band practice set up, we would suggest something more effective, but for the most part, those we have highlighted are models of sound bedrooms.
Our clear winner would be the Orange if we had to crown a single amp from our selections, not only because it provides the highest watts of the lot, but because it benefits from parametric EQ allowing more wiggle space to shape your sound, the cab emulation is great on the headphone out so you don't lose any sound quality and it has a tuner built-in.
It ticks all the boxes for us; we hope we have given you some food for thought and shown that for a savvy space-saving practice bass amp, you do not need to invest an arm and a leg.
If you are searching for something a little more strong and have a little more money to spare, we would suggest that you check for the higher ends of both of the series we have outlined here today, all of which make very respectable choices.
Did you Know
In combination with a very simple amplifier, a decent bass pedal will open up a wealth of more tone-shaping possibilities, so why not have a nose at our bass pedal articles?