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Solid State Combo Bass Amps

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Markbass CMD 121H 300/500W 1x12 Bass Combo Amp (MBC105016)
Markbass CMD 121H 300/500W 1x12 Bass Combo Amp
  • New: $949.99
  • Blemished: $883.49
  • Rating:
Vox Pathfinder 10W Bass Combo Amp (PB10)
Vox Pathfinder 10W Bass Combo Amp
  • New: $99.99
  • Blemished: $88.34
  • Rating:
Pignose Hog 30 Amp (7-300)
Pignose Hog 30 Amp
  • $197.95
  • Rating:
Ampeg BA115 Bass Combo (BA115)
Ampeg BA115 Bass Combo
  • $379.99
  • Rating:

One thing that any musician can appreciate is convenience and versatility. That's what you'll find in a solid-state combo bass amp. Packing all of the parts of a traditional amp stack into one simple box, these units make light work of big, bold sound. While the bigger classic stacks will always have their place, combo amps dominate in the low to medium-power segment and every bassist should own at least one.

What makes combo amps such important pieces of equipment, in a word, is portability. They're perfect for practice at home where you can turn them down to levels that won't disturb the neighbors, as well as a garage rehearsal for your band. Some of these combo amps can even be battery-powered, so you can take your bass out busking. They go basically anywhere and set up in an instant, usually with a handle to carry them or, for bigger combo amps, a set of casters to wheel them onstage.

Since they're so portable and so likely to be carried around a lot, solid-state technology is a natural fit for these combo amps. When compared to tubes, the solid-state platform is more resilient to the stresses of frequent handling—meaning that your amp will perform reliably even after long car trips and being carried in and out of countless venues. It also sounds great, putting an emphasis on technical accuracy and strong lows to make your bass line stand out. There are plenty of adjustments and effects built into these combo amps, so you can tweak the sound to just how you like it.

You've also got a number of different speaker configurations and power levels to choose from. Some are small and light practice models, while others are four-speaker performance combo amps with power ratings as high as 500W: beefy enough to rival full-size amp stacks, but in a much handier package. Speaker layouts for many of these amps are given in the form of "number times size," so if you see a unit labelled "1x15," you'll know it has a single 15" woofer, or "2x10," a pair of 10" each. Generally speaking, smaller speakers give a punchier sound while bigger ones are more deep and rumbly. A greater number of drivers will boost your power and volume.

Whatever you plan to use your combo amp for, from weekly gigs at the local watering hole to jamming at your lead guitarist's place, you've got plenty of models to choose from to get your preferred combination of size, power and effects features. With one of these solid-state bass amps at your feet, you'll be able to put out some surprisingly big tunes from a compact, portable sound system."