This is a transistor amplifier. It has your basic 1/4" input, as well as an effects loop send and return. It produces 140 watts, so its respectably loud for its size, which is 25"x17.5"x16". There is a 4 band EQ (low, mid low, mid high, and high) as well as an interesting contour effect. It has switchable compression as well.
I think that this amp is pretty easy to use, and beyond that, one can really shape a good sound out of it. The 4-band EQ does a great job of really perfecting the tone that you want, and the compression and contour effects really make for a solid combination. I don't use effects when I play bass very much, so I don't know exactly how well that works.
I was skeptical about this amp, as it's not a tube amp. I guess the things that hold true for me with guitar amps don't carry over to bass. This amp is pretty cool. It's got a lot of diversity, and it sounds good with a P-Bass, which is my go-to. I've heard about people having problems with hiss on this one. I haven't encountered that. I've managed to go from a really smooth clean, jazzy kind of tone (obviously later jazz that featured electric bass), to a nice solid R&B bass sound. Mostly, however, I go for the rock, and even sometimes add a little crunch with the compression and contour features. Not too much, though. Overall, this amp is diverse enough to satisfy anyone with an electric bass. I would also say, however, that it's hardly the best choice for anyone. If you aren't sure about what exactly you want, or you need one amp to create a variety of tones, then this is a really good choice.
I'd have to say I like some of the more fat, round tones that this amp has to offer. Mostly I think that the diversity is the best thing about it. I don't like the fact that it's not quite as punchy as I'd like it to be, and I do feel that I'll soon find a tube amp that will replace it for me. I think it's a pretty fairly priced amp. I'd say that if you're playing medium sized venues, don't get this, this is better for rehearsals and home recording. I would definitely recommend to people in those situations mostly.
As far as i can tell, this is a transistor amplifier. It's never taken long to start up like a tube amplifier would.
The Amp delivers 140 watts of power, and (before I moved out) has shaken the pictures on my parents' walls if it's loud enough and you play low enough.
There is an output and input for effects loops, and an input for the guitar cable and an output for a headphone jack, all of which are 1/4" jacks. There is also your standard power cable input in the back.
the setting controls aren't that sophisticated. From left to right, there is a contour button to give a bit of shape to your bass tone (or not, your choice), the volume, your low tone knob, mid low, mid high, and high tone knob, then you have your compression button.
I've found the settings to be excellent, and I am usually able to get the tone I want for any given moment.
The general setup of the amp is pretty straight forward. This is a "just plug it in and pound out some bass lines" amp. You don't need to work hard to hone in on a good sound. It's pretty easy to come by.
I never had a manual, though. I can't tell you if the user manual was clear or not.
This amp definitely suits my style of music for bass. I've never really needed a complex bass rig for the style I play with it.
I tend to just plug in my Japanese Ibanez Soundgear 5 String bass, and let her rip. I may hook up an old Digitech effects pedal to it now and again for some distortion or chorus effects, but I generally let the contour effect that's built in do most of the effects work. I've also hooked up my solid body acoustic to this for a cleaner sound to the acoustic pickup with no chance of dirtiness.
As I said, I usually use the contour setting with the compression on, with the highs up fairly high for accentuation, and the lows up just as much to even it out. The mid ranges tend to go wherever I feel is necessary for any given song.
There are few sounds I hate from this amp. I'd have to say the ugliest sound would be when I have the Digitech floor processor hooked up and you get the heavily distorted bass with feedback. That's not fun at all.
I've been using this amp since 2001, and I've been extremely happy with it.
The thing I like most about it is it can be as loud as it needs to be, and it's not a huge bass rig that i need to lug around and make multiple trips for. It's heavy enough as it is, which is the thing I don't like about it as much.
I didn't really try a whole lot of amps before deciding on this one. I felt it was a good buy, getting it used, and it had everything I wanted, so I didn't bother with much else.
If I had the opportunity to, I probably would buy this new. Yes. It's that good. And I'd do it even if the opportunity to buy it again came up, knowing what i know now, I'd most certainly get this amp.