An audio amplifier or AMP in the music world is an electronic amplifier that reproduces low-power electronic audio signals at a level that is strong enough for loudspeakers or headphones. Amos is found in many applications, from motorbikes, cars, trucks, home entertainment centers, as standalone speaker boxes and in office applications.
List of Top-Rated Bass amps under 300
There are a number of amp types, ranging from pre-amp to power amp. A bass amplifier or “bass amp” is made up of four individual electronic components, these include a preamplifier, tone controls, a power amplifier and one or more loudspeakers set in a cabinet.
The power that an amp system can produce depends on the audience the musician wants to reach, where a non-amplified signal will produce around a few hundred microwatts. An amp system can increase this power to tens or hundreds of watts for an individual bass amp set, or home stereo system, to several thousand watts for gig sound system or tens of thousands of watts for a large concert sound reinforcement system.
Now that you have a basic understanding of the Amplifier systems, just remember these key functions you need to see in your best bass amp unit:
- Watts: Amp watts must be equal or double to the speaker
- Headroom: must be wide enough to eliminate clipping.
- Ohms: Always calculate the exact impended of each individual speaker when connected in parallel to one amp.
Now let’s take a look at the best bass amps on the market today
The Best Bass amps under 300 Reviews
This is an original Fender, the Fender Rumble 25 v3 Bass Combo Amplifier
Fender is the original bass amp company that invented these devices back in the 1920’ and ’30s and have accumulated nearly a century of experience in producing perfect electronic components for musicians.
This is their Rumble Bass models that combines a 25-watt power system with an 8” speaker and comes with an overdrive circuit, mid-scoop contour switch and more. As a Fender, it delivers both a stylish looking professional finish together with classic deep rumbling Fender quality bass tones.
The stand out features is the top-mount control panel with ivory “soft touch radio” control knobs and a compact and lightweight ported enclosure with a removable grille that only weighs 21 lbs.
You also get a switchable overdrive circuit, a mid-scoop contour switch and 1/8” auxiliary input with a 1/4″ headphone output.
The overdrive switch delivers a gritty, aggressive, and incredibly rich satisfying overdriven tone.
- 25 watts
- 8” Fender Special Design speaker
- Top-mount control panel with ivory “soft touch radio” control knobs
- Compact and lightweight (21 pounds) ported enclosure with removable grille
- Switchable overdrive circuit
- Mid-scoop contour switch
- 1/8” auxiliary input, 1/4″ headphone output
This is an original Fender, it doesn’t get more bass-ic than this, and you get perfect deep seismic bass tones rippling from this bass amp speaker combo.
This is the Hartke HD25 Bass Combo
Hartke is another well-known name in the music industry, and this is their HD25 model that delivers 25watts of power out from 8” speakers. They combine their patented HyDrive speaker technology into a compact package that is perfect for small gigs and home use.
The HD25 uses a half paper, half aluminum cone bass speaker that combines the warmth and roundness of paper with the punch and attack of aluminum. This model comes with some exceptional features including volume, Bass, Mid and Treble control on its top-mounted amplifier pane, and a 1/8″ stereo Aux input with a 1⁄4″ headphone output.
This model comes with an integrated limiter that ensures constant amp operation at safe levels.
- 25 watts of output power
- 8″ HyDrive paper and aluminum cone driver
- Top-mounted amplifier with Volume, Bass, Mid and Treble controls
- 1⁄4″ input for active and passive bass guitars
- 1/8″ stereo Aux input for stereo line level devices 1⁄4″ headphone output
- Built-in limiter
- Perforated metal grille
- Molded strap carry handle
The Hartke is an all-round bass amp combo that delivers an interesting range of features and tones to perfectly support any electronic bass instrument and at an exceptional price.
This is the Ampeg BA108V2 20-Watt 8″ Bass Combo Amplifier
Ampeg is yet another leading brand name, well, all the leading brand names appear in my list. This is Ampeg’s BA-108 8″ Bass Combo that is designed to be perfect for small spaces and comes with a new 60-degree monitoring angle that is made to deliver unmatched clarity.
This model comes with front-facing controls and features that were designed and built for silent practice. When estimating value for money, this classic Ampeg model delivers high value for professional level performance.
What you get is a legacy Ampeg preamp with 3-band EQ and good modern flexibility. The true 60° sound reinforcement monitor angle provides great resonance, and you get a protective all-steel amp chassis with impact-resistant black metal corners for those outdoor gigs and venues. This model is lightweight, and portable weighing only 28.0 lbs / 12.7kg
- Classic Ampeg tone
- 20 watts RMS power
- 8″ Ampeg Custom8™ speaker
- Legacy Ampeg preamp with 3-band EQ
- Modern flexibility
- True 60° sound reinforcement monitor angle
- Aux input for playing along with smartphone or iPod
- Headphone output for silent solo practice
- -15dB input pad for active basses or additional level control
- Rugged portability
- Protective all-steel amp chassis
- Impact-resistant black metal corners
- Durable double-thick Ampeg Classic black Tolex
The Ampeg portable bass amp model is perfect for every occasion, from jamming at home, in the garage or in the subway.
This is the orange, Orange Crush Bass 25W Bass Guitar Combo Amp
When it comes to classic and modern, Orange is the way to go. This is not just a color; it’s a way of sound. The Orange 25w bass amp with 8” speakers is their smallest and most compact model and delivers exceptional power and control.
This model combines an all-analog signal path, a ported cabinet for improved low-end response plus a highly responsive active EQ section. You also get a variable parametric mid band that is designed to deliver unlimited control over a broad range of frequencies apart from the bass and treble.
The Orange Crush 25 comes with an integrated tuner, an aux. input for backing tracks and a headphone output with their unique CabSim circuitry. The EQ circuitry uses a parametric mid band for the center and gives you more control over the sounds.
The mid band covers a wide range, starting from the fully counter-clockwise 300Hz to the fully clockwise 2.7kHz. This means you can tune to perform any musical style and it also provides you with up to 15dB of boost. You can also cut on the bass and middle frequencies, and go up to 20dB on the treble side.
The speakers are analog and are integrated with a ported cabinet. As such you get a reflex port for an improved low-end response. The CabSim circuitry delivers silent practice quality performance with headphone, and you can also channel the signal to a console for direct recording.
- Active 3 band EQ
- Parametric Mid control
- Chromatic Tuner
- CabSim loaded headphone output with Aux-in
- 25 watts
- 8” speakers
- Weight is only 8.3KG (18.26LB)
If it is tight and compact and orange, and you get rolling bass thunder, then it’s an Orange Crush 25, and you don’t get livelier than this. It’s a perfect portable bass amp for all occasions.
This is the super compact VOX PB10 Bass Combo Amplifier
When it comes to exceptional performance level tones, you want a small, compact and perfect home bass amp model. This is the VOX PB10 Bass Combo Amplifier which delivers 10 watts of power out of 5” speakers.
This classic VOX model comes with their signature basket-weave, leather-look, and distinctive diamond grille cloth. To top all of this off, they included their chicken head knobs. To make this perfect little bass amp combo stick out, even more, they added some white piping to recapture the legendary look of VOX.
This is a robust, rugged and compact VOX bass amp combo that delivers amazing power from such a small device. It comes with an input jack and a line/headphones output jack. The speaker size is the classic VOX bulldog 5” with 2 x 4ohm power.
- Pathfinder 10 Bass Specification
- 10 Watts RMS
- VOX Bulldog 5″ x 2 (4 ohms)
- Drive, Treble, Bass, Volume and Bright knobs.
- Weight is only 5.6kg / 12.32 lbs
For home gigs, small performances from the garage or in the Feld, or if you want to jam opposite a Starbucks, this is the bass amp combo you want.
How To Pick The Best Bass Amp?
Music and Science
Professional musicians are not just tune players and lyric singers; they are professionals that understand their instruments and understand the electronics that support most modern instruments. As such, when you start out a music career, or hobby, and intend to use electronic instruments, or even just use a speaker system, you must have a basic understanding of how these electronic systems operate.
Watts and Speakers
When investing in a bass amp for personal use, and limited to a $300 budget, you have to consider the components and conditions you want to work with. As such, you need to make sure you either buy a complete bass amp set or, if buying components individually, make sure they match. This means that the power you want the amp to produce must be equal to, or twice that of the speaker you intend to use. For instance, if you have an 8-ohm speaker, using 350 watts of power, you will want to pair it with a 700-watt amplifier.
Headroom is all about sound distortion. Headroom is the difference between the maximum level and the normal operating level that the amp can pass without distorting the sounds. Since musical instruments provide wide variations in dynamic range; without enough headroom, you get frequent distortion (clipping).
As such, when you have a limited budget or purchase legacy equipment that uses a lower power amp, take care that you have enough headroom or you will end up damaging your speakers from a low power result too.
Impedance and Ohms
Ohms are measures of resistance. Amps work with 4, 8 or 16 ohms of resistance. The best amp speaker configuration is when the loudspeaker’s power is exactly correct for the amplifier.
You can connect more than one loudspeaker to an amp, and there are two methods, these are dual and parallel.
The parallel is when you divide the impedance by the number of speakers connected, for instance, if you have four speakers that are rated at 16 ohms, you take 16/4 to get the overall rating of 4 ohms.
This is a list of standard parallel systems;
- Two 16-ohm speakers = 8 ohm
- Two 8-ohm speakers = 4 ohm
- Two 4-ohm speakers = 2 ohm
- Three 16-ohm speakers = 5.33 ohm
- Three 8-ohm speakers = 2.67 ohm
- Three 4-ohm speakers = 1.3 ohm
- Four 16-ohm speakers = 4 ohm
- Four 8-ohm speakers = 2 ohm
- Four 4-ohm speakers = 1 ohm
There are a number of amp classes on the market, and these include A, B, AB, etc…to D. The class D amp is the current live sound market model of choice. These are small, compact and powerful. Modern electronics is downsizing amps considerably.
As you can see, I don’t talk about deep tones, rumbling, throaty, mellow, and beefy and other colorful terms used by unprofessional sales sites. Amps are not just about the tones, they are about how to get the best performance out of your bass instrument, and the depth, mellowness, and power of the tones are set by the type of amp you buy and the instrument you choose to play. What you need to know before you go into tone specifics, is if the system will perform well or not. Once you have a good quality system, you can start to compare the output in terms of tone and depth.