Many bands and recording professionals know the importance of the bass sound. A roaring bass sound usually glues everything together and can fill the gap between the rhythm section and the entire band. This is the reason why your choice of bass is crucial, and the amp you opt for can significantly affect the quality of your tone. Therefore, it’s important then that you carefully figure out what is the right bass for you. This article discusses the different types of bass amps you need to know.
Understanding a bass amplifier
A bass amplifier is simply an electronic device designed to make the bass sound or even other low-pitched sounds audible to the audience. Remember that many bass amplifiers are designed for electric basses.
They have bass strings that generate audio vibrations that are changed to an electrical signal by the pickups of the bass. Then, the amplifier processes these signals and sends them back to the audience as audio from the speaker of the amp.
Some of the bass amplifiers you can find on the market include the following:
A solid-state bass amplifier
Before you learn about a solid-state bass amplifier, you should note that there is another type of bass amplifier called a tube bass amp. Guitarists like tubes as it helps them soften the piercing high frequencies. However, bassists don’t want tube-based distortion, so they prefer solid-state amplifiers.
A solid-state amplifier utilizes transistors to amplify sound. The good thing about transistors is that they are less expensive, lighter, easier to maintain, and less fragile than glass vacuum tubes. But some guitarists usually avoid transistor-based amplifiers because they can produce a piercing high tone without mellow distortions that tubes give.
On the other hand, bassists don’t need to worry about these piercing high tones and they usually don’t look out for distortion. Hence, they didn’t seek out the benefits that come with tube amplification. This encouraged most bassists to switch to solid-state amps.
Hybrid bass amplifiers
A hybrid bass amplifier is another good option for bassists. These amplifiers usually feature solid-state power amps and tube preamps that are lighter than power tubes and need less maintenance. For some bass players with a natural grit in their tones, a hybrid bass amplifier is an ideal solution.
Buying a bass amp
You should remember that a Fender bass amp is a significant investment. Therefore, you need to buy a bass amp that meets your style of playing. Ideally, before you decide to purchase a bass amp, you need to figure out where you intend to play.
If you want to be a regular bassist, then you may be taking with you an amp a lot. Most places tend to have their bass amps, though there is no guarantee that you will like what the place offers. Therefore, if you take your playing equipment, it can be a good idea to have a bass combo amp. This amp combines the speaker and actual amplifier in a single package. But if you are usually in a studio, then a heavier tube amp can be a better option.