Having an excellent bass amp is important when playing the bass guitar. It not only amplifies your voice but also aids in tonal shaping.
However, it can be challenging to find the best option from the market’s abundance of choices, particularly if you’re working within a limited spending limit.
So, I’ve created this list of bass amps you can buy for under $500.
What’s The Best Bass Amp Under 500?
Here are some of the best bass amps under 500 with great sound, and features, and they can be used for different purposes.
1. Ampeg Rocket Bass 112
Ampeg Rocket Bass 112 is a 1×12 combo amp that delivers a classic Ampeg tone in a compact package. This bass combo is great for many use cases such as recording, live performances, or rehearsals. The build quality is solid, the tone is great, and has some cool features.
This bass combo has a classic tone that is perfect for rock, blues, and funk music. The amp’s 3-band EQ allows you to shape your tone to your liking, and distortion adds beautiful saturation to your bass guitar tone.
2. Boss Katana Bass 110
Boss Katana Bass 110 is one of the best bass amps under 500 with awesome tone and features. It has a 60-watt power amp, a custom 10-inch speaker, and a 4-band EQ that allows more in-depth shaping of the tone. Like other Katana amps, this is an amazing modeling combo for anyone who is looking for quality and convenience.
With Katana Bass, you can use clean or distorted tones, choose from three different amp voicings such as vintage, modern, and flat and use built-in effects. It also has a power attenuator which allows using only 1 watt of power. And one of my favorite features of Katana Bass is the blend knob, which controls the dry signal blend.
3. Peavey Max 150
Another feature-rich bass combo under $500 is Peavey Max 150 with huge, 150 watts of power and a single 12″ amp speaker. This is a great bass amp to use on stage or record at home and it offers some of the coolest features I have seen in solid-state bass amps.
First of all, it has passive and active inputs, a built-in tuner, and an advanced 3-band EQ. In advance, I mean that each control has a switch for more tone shaping such as contour, mid-shift, and brightness. And it has an interesting switch called Kosmos-C which enhances harmonics and subharmonics for a fuller tone.
4. Fender Rumble 100
Fender Rumble 100 is one of the best bass amps under $500 you can get today. Great for any occasion and produces a powerful and punchy bass tone like a tube bass amp. Features a single 12″ speaker and produces classic Fender tone with 100 watts of power.
Control-wise it’s a simpler bass amp with 4-band EQ, master volume, and gain knobs. An interesting feature is a switch between different bass amp voicings – bright, contour, and vintage – which is great for diversity. Also, it offers line out, FX loop, headphone output, and more.
5. Blackstar Unity Bass 60
An amazing bass combo under $500 is Blackstar Unity Bass 60 which offers many great features and is a very versatile bass combo. It comes with a 10″ speaker and outputs 60 watts which is enough for home recording and can be used as a gigging bass amp.
You can use full or -10dB power which is ideal for home use, has a 3 amp voicing switch, and 3-band EQ with additional mid-frequency control. But my favorite feature of the Unity Bass combo is the built-in chorus and compression which is very handy in many situations.
6. Gallien-Krueger MB108
Gallien-Krueger MB108 is a 1×8 combo amp that is perfect for practicing and rehearsing with your band. It has 25 watts of power, a 3-band EQ, and only a gain knob. This is a very simple bass amp that costs less than $500 and can be a great gift for beginners.
Regarding features, it’s nothing special but the tone and overall sound are superb. Even though it’s a solid-state bass combo with 25 watts of power, the sound is huge and full. Also, it has I/O for AUX and headphones which allow practicing in silence.
So, if you’re looking for the best bass amps under $500, any of these amplifiers will do the trick. Whether you’re a beginner or a pro bass player, there’s an amp on this list that will meet your needs.