The other amps I looked at were...
Fender Rumble 100, SWR LA15, Peavey TNT115, Behringer Ultrabass BX1200, Ampeg BA115.
The determining factors were.
#2. Ease of use.
#3. Price (can't buy it if I can't afford it).
#4. Output options. This thing can output to a mixer through XLR giving me good options for future growth.
It seems to me that some folks don't like Crate Bass amps for one reason or another. I would suggest you try them out. I happen to be very happy with Crate. Do what I did, go to the store and try out everything they have in stock that is within your price range. If you judge it by its sound, usability, and loudness, then you will likely chose the Crate.
Model Year: 2003
Price: $299.99 (new)
Where Obtained: Guitar Center
Starting from left to right on controls we have...
Input Pad (-15db), input gain, Shape active pushbutton and knob, 7 band slider graphic EQ, volume control and a power switch.
This amp features an effects loop which is very nice for hooking up a distortion pedal to (no built in effects).
The 100 watts is more than enough for small to medium gigs like parties and 200 or so person churches. Bigger venues need a bigger amp.
The BX100 is a fully solid state piece of equipment.
I use this amp with an Ibanez SR480 4 string active bass, and an Ibanez SR305DX 5 string.
This amp is a good fit for all sorts of metal, punk, rock, etc...
I checked out a large number of 100 or so watt combos before buying and found I got the tone I wanted and the volume I wanted quickly and easily. Far more than I could say for the Fender Rumble 100, SWR LA15, Peavey TNT115, or even the revered Ampeg BA115.
This amp has no facilities for programming.
A few fiddles with knobs and sliders and you should get just the sound you are looking for.
It simply works.
This amp gets dragged from my living room to my truck to practice jams and small gigs and then back again on a regular basis, and is holding up just fine.
I haven't had to have it repaired yet. ****UPDATE**** I have had this amp for about a year now, with lots of bumping in and out of my truck, overdriving the input pad, and generally using the snot out of this thing. It is still holding up perfectly!
The construction brings new definition to Heavy Duty. This is a heavy beast of a combo amp. I am about ready to purchase a hand truck to move it with. I think it is around 70lbs. (After I wrote the original review, I went and purchased a hand truck, makes moving this thing a breeze, buy one!)
I was on the verge of getting a Behringer BX120 (12" 120 watt amp), but when guitar center didnt have 'em, the guy gave me a discount on this baby and I took it grand spankin' new out of the box and haven't looked back. If it was lost or stolen I would definetly buy this amp again (unless for some reason I had more money to go up a class). If I could change one thing about this amp i would put those embedded handles on the side; the handle on top is useless. My favorite aspect is the tone versitility. The 8 band eq and shape havent failed me yet.
Model Year: 2003
Price: $450.00 (new)
Where Obtained: Guitar Center
Gain (w/ a +10dB switch for passive basses), Shape (w/ on/off switch), 8 band eq, Master level, balanced Line out w/ level and pre/post eq switch, effects loop (handy even without effects because you can plug in a tuner for easy, quick tuning), headphone and speaker jack. This amp has'nt failed me yet. That 100 watt 15" speaker gets heard over the drummer while keeping its tone.
I use my stock Ibanez SR300DX with no effects (though I would like an envelope filter). I have used this amp with slap, tap, fingers and picks and as I've said it hasn't failed me (a tweeter would be nice for the tapping, but since I suck at it anyway so it doesnt bother me). As a predominently finger style player, the 8 band eq and shape get me what ever tone I want. I've never heard it distort, but I also havent ever cranked it full blast. I'm sure the he auto-limiter has somthing to do with it too. I dont like distortion so its good for me, no complaints.
Everything on it is self explanitory. Even the shape knob has the eq curve it provides along the dial. I have been able to reproduce every tone that I have attemted with a bit fiddling. I like to leave it in a realativly neutral tone, and adust the rest with the eq in my bass, so its very easy for me. The 8 band eq makes it very versitile. A bit bulky, that handle on top is worthless, but I have this nifty little dolly I stole from my bro's baritone case so that was solved.
Only had it for 6 monthes and no real problems. The speaker cover (I have no idea at the moment what the real term is) is loose, though, and cosmeticlythe vynle cover has gotten damaged, along with the strip under the nobs that names their functions. Besides cosmetics it is perfect (that previusly mentioned cover doesnt rattle or anything, maybe its sposed to be like that...?). Its only con is that it might look a bit rough in a year or so.
I shopped eBay for quite a while until I got this one. The seller tried to
walk the deal but decided against it when faced negative feedback issue.
This was a low-ball buy from a relatively new seller. These amps trade in
the $220-$170 range so at $80 it was a bargain. I liked the price but
would have been happier with an SWR or Peavey; as a practice amp for 2
hours a day over the past 90 days it's worked fine. When I'm ready to
move on, it will probably get donated to one of the kids in our Church
who wants to bump up his volume a bit as his band "equalizes until the
amps bleed and/or the cops show up" (some thing haven't changed).
Model Year: 2001
Where Obtained: eBay
Equalizer, effects loop input and output, mono solid state amp.
No programming. Only one input, so adding Garageband input from my
Apple laptop for practice is a hassel. Working on getting speed and
improving tone with scale practice so ease of use isn't an issue yet. My
last amp was 35+ years ago (Bassman 100 with 2x12 cabinet -- v. good!)
driven by a Tiesco "instrument" (horrid, the worst) so I don't have much of
a "bass-line" for comparison (Ugh. Sorry.) Set up without effects box in a
single amp-head/speaker cabinet is a non-issue except for weight.
Too early to tell. It's heavy but so are some of the K-mart specials.
I looked at wm15, bassman 100, and ampeg115, This one sounded as good as those and costs a heck of a lot less.
As much as I like it I would buy something else more powerful if something happened to this one. 100 watts is fine if your playing by yourself but with a crazy drummer and a tone deft guitar player I need more headroom.
My favorite aspect of this amp is the bang for the bucks. My least favorite is the handle on top
This is a good product for small gigs. I really like it and the 5 year warranty also. It would be better if it had more power, say about at least 200 watts.
Model Year: 2001
Price: $327.00 (new)
Where Obtained: ALLEN'S MUSIC STORE
8 band graphic eq,contour shape,pad,effects loop, xlr output,1/4 cab output, headphones,gain
I play gospel,blues,jazz,with a little rock(very little). I use no effects just straight axe and amp. It is noisy when you cut it up to around 7 and then it distorts quite a bit. At five or lower it has a nice clean sound. In large rooms it just doesn't sound that great. Mainly because you have to boost the volume to be heard. I think it compares good with wm15,bassman 100 though.
Not programable. Easy to use though just plug and play.
Does not take long to get the sound you want. Easier than wm15
It is tough. Have dropped it several times and it's playing without any problems. Have left it in a freezeing cold van for a couple of days and still no problem. Construction is tough. Although the tolex is tearing on the bottom from being dragged through snow I guess. It is hard to carry though. Has only the 1 handle on top and weighs a ton.
Where Obtained: Jordan Walsh- good friend but he lies too much
Many knobs, no effects, well rounded
The best tone for the price-- a great buy for any bassist playing smaller gigs! Outstanding tone! Low end kills!!!
Amps can be programmed? What are patches? No fiddiling! Compared to my old johnson 10 watter, its a liiitttle better...
Im using it to hold up my bed right now so it seems to be durable.
It hink this is a great amp, if you have enough to afford it. IF this amp was lost or stolen i'd think about buying a new one or going w/another kind that i like alot. I think it could be better if it had a clean and a seperate distorted channel. Fav aspect is sound, lease fav aspect is weight (teh sucker is between 60 & 65 pounds!)
Where Obtained: Opus 1 Music, Evansville, IN
Solid State, 100 Watts, Graphic EQ, Effects Loop, no channel switching, Gain knob
I use a 5-string bass but any is good through it. I play in different styles. The amp does fit w/an ecclecti playing style. So far this is one of my fav amps to play through w/great sound and easy to use. If set to high via the Gain knob, the sound crackles
It is easy to use and easy to tune your sound.
This amp is durable, it was once sitting in a storage shed for a lil over 6 months (Including freezing cold) and so fatr I haven't noticed anything different then before.
Its agood buy, for a beguiners players
Model Year: 2001
Price: $430.00 (new)
Where Obtained: veercamp(mexico)
100w apm eq8band, gain, conture, efects loop, good to play in the garage
Its agood sound for the price, i think
Its good for every thing, its a very versatil amp, the construcction it very good, its strog
Like I said, for it last me this long is a definite blessing. I use this amp at the church I go to and it's held up pretty well there. The church has very traditional sounding music so I don't necasarily need that modern hi-fi bass sound...although I think a little more punch would be nice (which I may retire the Crate for something else in the future). The sound is not all that great and it's not very loud...but if you are wanting a cheap, resonable sounding, but yet durable amp to use for small gigs I definitely recommend it.
Where Obtained: local music store as a gift
Gain and Master controls, Contour Control, active/passive switch, 9 band graphic EQ, XLR direct out with pre/post switch, Ext. Speaker out, Effects loop. 100W Solid State. It's got a handle on top for carrying. It's kinda bulky and heavy...I slapped some casters on mine. But pretty much your average bass amp.
The sound is "ok" but could definitely be improved. To me the amp is not very bassy or punchy. Does not "throw" the sound out very well. And for 100W it's not very loud, but should work ok for small gigs.
Pretty easy to use, nothing here that's too complicated or anything. Just take a little bit of time to fiddle with the graphic EQ and that's it.
Hey, this thing has lasted me about 8 years without hardly any trouble so that's why it's giving it 5 stars. I had a problem one time where the input was not making good contact and would cut out on me but I'm pretty sure that was my fault (trust me, it's been one abused amp).
I shopped around and was considering several amps in the up to $500 range:
Ampeg B-115 $430
Crate BFX-100 $420
Crate BX-100 $350 to $370
Crate BX-160 $460
Fender Bassman 60 $370 to $380
Fender Bassman 100 $490 to $500
(blem at one dealer for $399
Hartke Kickback 12 $460
The prices above represent the best prices I could find on these amps shopping on the Internet.
Ultimately, I visited the local Mars store and they quoted me $329 on the BX-100 and I made a quick decision.
I'm a happy customer.
Model Year: 2000
Price: $329.00 (new)
Where Obtained: Mars Music
It's a 100 w amp, so it won't cut it for a major gig, but it produces plenty of quality sound for my regular gig in my church band. We have about 400 people attending services, and it is more than enough for that size and type of audience. It might be suitable for a small club, but as clubs are noisy, you may want more power.
This amp is an economical solution to having an amp that can play most everything, but not cost too much. For just a little more than the cost of a 25 watt Fender, or less than the 60w model, you can have a 100w amp that can shake your whole house. I was borrowing a Fender Bassman 25 and was not impressed with the bottom end at all. I like to play along with my stereo, and could not hear what I was playing with the stereo at a "normal" listening level. Also, I think this made me play more aggressively, trying to hear myself play by actually playing harder. I've read that you should play lightly and let them amp do the work. This amp allows me to do that.
This has much more features than I need for my style of play. I just want clear representation of what I play and this thing delivers. It has an EQ which I leave flat for now, limit indicators etc.
Like I said....for the price this is a great amp and comlaints are few. I highly recommend this amp for beginners or as a good practice amp. Give it a try and you wont regret it.
Model Year: 1999
Price: $375.00 (new)
Where Obtained: Musician's Friend
This is the first amp I ever owned and I loved just about everything about it. The Crate BX-100 comes equipped with Gain, Shape, and volume controls along with an 8-band EQ. It also has an effects loop, which I haven't tried yet. It is a really good practice amp, but I don't think it has quite enough power for larger gigs. However it would slam at smaller gigs. It runs one channel at 4 ohm stereo from a 100 watt solid state amp.
I use my Ibanez GSR200 with this amp, but I don't currently have any effects for it. I play just about every music style except country or opera. This amp is a well rounded amp for just about all styles, however it is a little weak for metal and punk jams. It sounds pretty good comopared to other amps, but you know you get what you pay for these days and for the price, this amp sounds great! Noise?? Yeah! Whenever I hit the E string my garage rattles apart! The speaker is pretty nice, but I definately recommend an upgrade. It gets a little muddy on the down lows.
Very easy to use because it is a very simple amp. There are no programming features, which is kind of a bummer, but hey "for the price" Good sound is easily obtained through the 8-band EQ/Gain/volume controls.
Very durable amp. It weighs about 69 lbs. and is made of 3/4 inch plywood. One thing that sucks is that it is equipped with only one top strap which makes carrying this monster a real challenge. Another downfall is the small diameter wire leads from the amp to the sub which can cause a loss in sound quality. Overall...This amp will stand up to about anything except a far drop (duh)
This amp is good considering what price I paid for it. It is excellent if you are jamming with your friends or playing a very small venue. I've used it at our local arena and when micd it sounds pretty good. This amp would be better if it had more power and didn't distort so easily. It also needs a bit more punch or tightness. I like the amp because of its portability. On one hand it is very heavy and hurts my back but it sits great in the passenger seat of my oldsmobile cutlass and once you plug it in, you are ready to play. The heaviness can be resolved with a caster board.
Where Obtained: Local Guitar Shop
9-band equalizer is nice. Has gain and volume and shape. No channel switching or effects loop. The amp is only loud enough for small rooms and very small gigs. When its cranked, it doesn't sound good. Solid State electronics
I use a japanese p-bass and standard j-bass with a dod bass overdrive and dod zoom 506 multi effects. I play funk, ska, and rock. It fits well for ska and rock but not tight enough for funk. Sound is ok, but it is not loud enough except for use as a band practice amp. It is very noisy when it is cranked. It distorts very badly.
Not programmable. It takes a little bit of fiddling to get a good sound. It is pretty easy to use though.
I bought it used and it is very durable. I drag it all over about 2-3 times a week, in my car and it gets banged into things but it still looks good. The only downfall is the mesh covering instead of hard plastic. I've never had to have it repaired and I've had it for more than 2 years.