The 4 Best Cheap Bass Amps – Bass Guitar Amplifier Reviews 2016

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As we have noted several times on Song Simian, the market of budget-friendly instruments and gear has really flourished over the past decade, bringing us some very impressive products at amazingly low prices.

But the dangerous thing about buying cheap stuff is still the fact that you can stumble upon whole lot of junk out there, and need to have a keen eye for detecting the gems.

We decided to focus on the domain of bass amplifiers and sift the market in pursuit for the best cheap bass amp in the world. Our quest yielded four brave champions, all of which patiently await your consideration below (and we go into what you should look for in cheap bass amps after our reviews).

Fender Rumble 25

Kicking things off with a trusty Fender, we bring you the company’s renowned Rumble series and the 25 model. Present on the market for many years now, this series brings that classic Fender sound with a distinguishable punchy low end, a tad of gain and fuzz, and a healthy chunk of brightness to round things off.

What we like about this fella is that the basic sound is always very solid and that the sonic attack doesn’t tend to drop a whole lot at higher values, making it usable for smaller band practices as well (as long as the drummer isn’t bashing maniacally, that is).

The item packs a set of standard Bass, Middle, and Treble control knobs, along with an Overdrive switch to crank it up to 11, a headphones input, and an AUX in. Also included in the mix is the company’s 5-year transferrable warranty.

For the listed price, this is a great options for the fans of that classic bass sound that can work in just about any sonic realm from blues and jazz, through pop and country, all the way to rock and metal. If that’s how you like your sound, this is both one of the best cheap bass amps for beginners and for pros who want a rockin’ house amp.

Peavey Max 158

If you like to rock out with your giggle stick out, Peavey Max 158 is an excellent choice. This boy boasts 20 watts of power that are used very well, with a strong emphasis on the low end.

The unprocessed sound of the amp is very much bass-driven, while a string of built-in features allows you to take things to the next level. First of all, the Psycho-Acoustic boost that gives the already rich low end a kick in the butt and cranks things up to 11.

If you want to rock in style of Muse or similar distortion-heavy folks, we recommend turning on the Transtube distortion boost.

Apart from these neat tricks, the amplifier (see full specs) comes with standard Bass, Middle, and Treble control knobs, as well as an AUX in, a headphones jack, and even an on-board chromatic tuner. The goods are delivered through a single 8-inch speaker.

What stands out with this puppy is the reliability factor, and we can confidently say that this is the most durable and reliable item on the entire rundown. It boasts the iconic Peavey reliability and comes with a 5-year warranty. The weight is a bit heavier than the rest of the gang here, but seeing that durability is high above the rest as well, we say it’s worth it and is easily one of the best cheap bass guitar amps period.

Ampeg BA108v2

If you are after power, we bring you the strongest amp on the list – the mighty Ampeg and their BA108v2 model. Most players are a bit taken aback when they take this fella out for a spin and then find out it only has 25 watts of power. That would be one of the company’s staple mark, and we thoroughly love it.

In general, the sound is classic Ampeg, only in a smaller package. That means a strong sound driven by lower frequencies, with a prominent kick from the middles department.

The amplifier utilizes a set of two AUX inputs, along with a headphone input for silent practice. It comes with standard controls for Volume, Bass, Middle, Treble, and AUX Level. Also included in the mix is a -15 dB button for sonic alterations.

The design is rugged, yet lightweight. If you are planning to jam with other musicians, but want a cheap amp to cover your basic needs (band practice only, live shows out of the question), this fella just might be our No. 1 recommendation for the best cheap bass amp.

Hartke HD75

If you’re willing to invest just a tad more – or around $200 to be precise – we say go with the HD50 from Hartke. For a pretty low price, this thing is a bonafide gig amp and something you can use both for house practice and live shows. Despite carrying the highest price tag on the list, it also offers the best value for money from all the products here, by far.

The sound is strong, punchy, sturdy and versatile. With 75 watts of power delivered through a 12-inch hybrid cone driver with ceramic magnet and a 2-inch tweeter, the amp (see full specs) utilizes a 7-band EQ with switch, allowing far greater sonic control than any of the previous lads.

We’re not sure if the listed price exceeds the limit of what you consider cheap, but if that falls within the desired limitations, we say that HD75 deserves the crown here.

What We Looked for When Searching for Best Cheap Bass Amp?

As you might have noticed, we looked for an amp powerful enough to be used for band practices – at least, smaller ones. And with that in mind, we searched for amps that retain high sound quality even when cranked up to 11.

There’s quite a few amplifiers out there that work great on 20 percent power and then turn into complete bogus as soon as you cross 50 percent. These boys aren’t like that and will deliver the proper goods at all volumes.

Apart from that, we looked for the usual stuff – quality sound first and foremost, as well as sturdy build and high durability, and of course great value for money. Needless to say, we kept all the products cheap, as the title dictates.

With all that out of the way, feel free to look around some more and treat yourself with one of these bad boys as early as today. It’s all about practice and jamming, always remember that. Good luck!

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