Bass guitars have their own special needs, due to the frequency they produce. In turn, you can't plug an electric bass into just any guitar amplifier. While the setup will work for the time being, the vibrations will eventually damage the guitar amp.
Whether you're getting started and require a practice amp, or you perform regularly and bring along something sized for the venue, Alamo Music Center has your low-frequency needs covered.
Types of Bass Guitar Amplifiers
Bass amplifiers emerged around the same time the electric bass did. In the 1950s, when Fender introduced its Precision Bass, or P-Bass, it launched an amplifier to handle its range and tones. The Fender Bassman was a 50W tube-based amplifier featuring a single 15-inch speaker in its cabinet. Eventually, Fender evolved the arrangement to include four 10-inch speakers instead.
The vacuum-tube based amplifier - or simply a "tube amp" - dominated until the 1970s, when solid-state models gained a greater share of the market. A smaller size, lower weight and correspondingly inexpensive cost made them a quick competitor. Plus, the higher wattage handled the louder-volume playing needed to perform rock music.
As such, players even today debate the classic and warm quality of tube versus solid-state bass amplifiers.
In between these two, hybrid bass amplifiers give players the best of both worlds, combining a tube-based preamp with a solid-state power stage. The result offers a greater degree of warmth and distortion while handling the louder volume live players need.
Aside from this option, bass amp stacks match heads and speaker cabinets for their sound and performance, while combo amplifiers house the amp and speakers into a single, more portable cabinet.
Features of a Bass Amplifier
The most significant feature differentiating bass amps from their guitar counterparts is the speaker. Typically, bass amplifiers have a 15-inch speaker designed to handle the instrument's lower frequency and the power needed to create a sound. A guitar amplifier, by contrast, uses an eight- to 12-inch speaker. Visually, a bass amp features fewer controls than a typical guitar option.
On a general level, your bass amplifier will include tone controls for the bass, mid-range, and treble frequencies, with equalizers added to more advanced models. Bass amplifiers also offer clean and overdrive channels at a minimum, with some models adding a third channel. Each channel will include its own controls.
Browse Bass Amplifiers at Alamo Music Center
Thinking about purchasing your first bass guitar from Alamo Music Center? Be sure to pair it with a bass amplifier to fully hear your sound. Browse practice amplifiers to options for live performances, and take advantage of multiple financing and layaway options, including 12- to 48-month no-interest options at times.