Ampeg Series Comparison – Bassamp v Classic v Heritage Series


 

Photo of Ampeg Valves Glowing compare Ampeg Bassamp v Classic v Heritage Series SVT vs Portaflex

Bassamp Series vs Classic Series vs Heritage  Series

Bassamp Series

Photo Ampeg Bassamp Series BA-112Offers the player five combo (amplifier and speaker in one unit) options, all of which have an effective use at an effective price-point with varying levels of tone-shaping options and connections for the player's benefit. The BA-210 and BA-115 are the two options that stand out as offering 'gigging potential' based on their architecture and speaker options. The BA-210 offers a transient rich 450 watts and coupled with the tweeter provides plenty of clarity coupled with a smooth response courtesy of the 2x10-inch speaker arrangement, which will no doubt appeal to those using percussive bass techniques. The addition of the Bass Scrambler overdrive gives the player the option to dial in some of the famed Ampeg grit and distortion. The BA-115 is similarly specced although the 15-inch speaker offers a rounder, 'fatter' response compared to the 210 model and rated at 150 watts, has less power on tap. The BA-108/110/112 models are effective for home practice and performance with acoustic instruments but may struggle to keep up with an electric band or a live drum kit. However, as a home practice solution, all five options are certainly worth considering.


Classic Series

Photo Ampeg Classic Series bass ampComprises two Micro stacks, three amplifiers and eight enclosure options so there is much to consider when looking for which components will best deliver the sounds and tones the player requires. All of the enclosures offer a different tonal response based on their configuration, layout and dimensions so if you require the sonic spread of an 8x10-inch cabinet but don't have the transportation for such a unit, two 4x10-inch cabinets may be a better option. Likewise, if the player likes the clarity of 10-inch speakers matched with the roundness of a single 15-inch speaker, a two-speaker configuration is viable. Sound, power and overall tone have to be considered alongside, portability and storage from the player's perspective. The amplifiers are significantly different from each other to offer the player options based on what they require. The V-4B offers a rock-solid 100 watts in a simple, but effective, control layout and weighing in at 41 pounds is a lighter alternative to the CL and VR amplifiers if valve tone is your goal but you don't need a full 300-watts or the weight that goes with it. The SVT-VR is billed as 'the original rock 'n' roll workhorse' and this vintage reissue captures the vibe of the original exactly. For those players who need an 'in your face' rock tone, this is the real deal with a knockout punch. With all the heft and power of an early 70s 'Blue-Line' Ampeg, matched with articulate clarity and presence, this is the amp of legends! The SVT-CL sports a slightly less busy front-end compared to the VR but its tone is no less impressive for it. This amp has provided the goods for every musical genre and style and continues to do so, hence why it remains 'ever-popular'. Rock, pop, soul, funk, blues, jazz, country – it serves them all!


Heritage Series

Photo of Ampeg Heritage series bass ampConsolidates the very best vintage features with modern improvements and represents the premium range incorporating the best materials and components and assembled in the USA to exact standards. Through rigorous testing and re-testing, every component is checked to ensure that every product is perfect when it leaves the factory. The cabinets are built using 15mm poplar ply, finished in soft Tolex and use black sparkle grille cloth. Fitted with Eminence drivers and tweeters, these cabinets offer detail and power handling capabilities to handle anything the player wishes to throw at them. The amplifiers are equally well laid out, incorporating matched tube sets and finished in matching cloth, Tolex and trim alongside period-correct detailing. The Heritage range is aimed at the player searching for uncompromising tonal delivery, detail and ultimate performance. Sourced and matched 6550 valves are used in each amplifier, undergoing a thorough test and burn-in procedure before being unleashed on the world. Representing the best Ampeg has to offer, this range offers no compromises.


Summary

All three ranges are impressive in what they aim to deliver. The Bassamp range of combos serve the home player/small-gig player with versatile, easily transportable units. Your tonal preference will no doubt dictate which speaker configuration serves your requirements best but all five combos offer significant possibilities. The Classic Series is impressive based on its history alone. The fact that it continues to perform impressively on stages around the world is testament to the build quality and high standards set by the company over many years. Whether you play for enjoyment or it's your profession, the Classic range of equipment can fulfil your musical requirements. But if only the best will do and compromising is not in your nature, the Heritage Series will bring your bass-sound dreams to life through combining the best of modern technology with the traditional warmth of valves. Valves have always been at the heart of the Ampeg tone and with the Heritage Series, this continues to be the case. Listen and be impressed!