Our Ampeg BA-210 Review
Ampeg rolled out their BA Series Bass Combo Amps back in 2014 with the sole purpose of delivering that amazing Ampeg tone that the company is known for. The company released its re-envisioned BA Series Bass Combo Amp with five models – the BA-108, BA-110, BA-112, BA-115, and the BA-210, with a brand-new overdrive circuit to lend to a tube-like grind to the amps.
Ampeg has always been known for delivering big sound, and this amp certainly doesn’t disappoint. Here, we are going to review the BA-210 which was designed for some serious gigging. The BA-210 amp is player-friendly, offering plenty of power and tonal variety. The amp’s amazing sound output and ability to take pedals well makes it a great choice for the beginner bassist.
When it comes to durability, the Ampeg BA-210 has been built to last with a premium quality 15mm poplar ply construction that means it can take a few hits. It’s heavy but durable, cab means that it will go the distance when it comes to throwing out amazing sounds for a long period of time. This is probably the best practice amp available in the market today. However, we’ll let you be the judge.
Who Is This Bass Amp For?
The BA-210 comes to you from the brand that designed the world’s first bass amps – Ampeg, so it’s safe to say that you are going to get unbeatable sound quality for its price point. Ampeg’s BA-210 Bass Combo boasts of a 450W RMS power with its reasonably sized dual 10” speakers.
If you play bass and need a practice amp, the Ampeg BA-210 amp should be your first choice. Not only is it a combo, it’s also compact and features a bass scrambler and a tilt feature which will keep you from breaking your neck while playing. The slanted bottom of the rig means that it can be used as a stand-alone app or as a powered monitor.
The many features that the Ampeg BA-210 offers make it a great practice amp while also being able to punch out small to medium gigs. What’s great about this particular amp is that not only is it clean-sounding and smooth, it rocks a nice design and is easy to move around even after weighing about 50lbs. For those who play in small gigs, this amp beats lugging a full-stack around wherever you go.
Furthermore, the BA-210 also works great with a keyboard and all drum machines, but you wouldn’t want to crank it to 10 in a small room unless you want to rattle the HVAC in the basement. All in all, the 450 watts RMS Power of the 10” speakers throw out just enough sound to make you feel the E throbbing in your soul.
The following is a breakdown of the features:
- 450 watts RMS Power
- 2×10 inches Ampeg Custom speakers complemented by a 1-inch HF tweeter
- Bass Scrambler overdrive
- Ampeg Ultra Hi/Lo tone shaping and Preamp with 3-band EQ
- Dedicated XLR balanced line out with true 60° sound
- Aux input for playing along with smartphone
- Headphone output
Overview of the Features Of The BA-210
When it comes to the features department, the Ampeg BA-210 has a lot going for it. The Bass Scrambler overdrive provides that classic tube-like grind. The BA-210 boasts of a true 60-degree monitoring angle with front-facing controls for greater accessibility. You also get aux inputs and a wide headphone jack for when you don’t want to wake the neighbors. One point to make here is that the inclusion of the 1/8 inch headphone jack is a very useful feature.
It’s clear to see that the Ampeg BA-210 has been designed to take the most advantage of the 2 x 10” combo. This results in the bass sounding absolutely fantastic. The BA-210 also gets full marks when it comes to the form factor and tone. It sounds perfect while on its own and even better when fired up together with the 15” extension cabinet. The amp is great at producing a wide range of tones, especially when paired with other active electronics.
Those who are particularly biased towards smallish amps, such as the BA-210, might have a few gripes. For instance, the BA-210 is a bit noisy due to its fan and white noise. But, to be fair, most amps this size and up have fans, and they all make a noise.
The scrambler overdrive might come across as a bit gimmicky, considering it doesn’t have much subtlety, but it will give you that tube-like growl that bass players love. The good news is that most bass players have enough petals to compensate for the slight rattle and hum that the rig produces.
There’s also no mute button, so it can get loud when trying various instrument cable combinations. While the Ampeg BA-210 is a powerful amp, the woofer does tend to bottom out once the volume knob is turned to the extreme.
Also, while playing through the aux input, the music tends to sound a bit tinny, which could have been deliberately done to make your music stand out while on stage. Another issue with some of these rigs is that the amp spits out a lot of static sounds, which only increases as the volume is turned up louder. But the backline technician in me thinks the best way to reduce that is by turning on the -15db to mute high frequencies.
While these are certainly some gripes that are good to be aware of, they are by no means deal breakers, especially when considering the approachable price point of the Ampeg BA-210 amp. If you’re a professional, then these minor hiccups could be a deal breaker, in which case, you could go with a Fender or a Gallien-Krueger.
Conclusion – Is The Ampeg BA-210 Right For You?
Some might think that this particular amp is not kind at all to the lower B string on a 5 string bass, but when used right, it can easily embellish the sound of the bass at a small venue. Overall, the sound is on point and the tone shaping capabilities of the BA-210 seem to be endless.
While there are a lot of amps out there, but when comparing them pound for pound and watt for watt, the Ampeg BA-210 amp gives you the support as a practice amp while having the nuts to perform well at larger gigs. When it comes to overall quality, Ampeg’s got the best beat. So, if you’re looking for a sweet-sounding box that’s nice for the money, then the Ampeg BA-210 amp is going to be the right choice for you.
We hope our Ampeg BA-210 review has been helpful. You might want to check out our list of the best bass amps.