Marshall MB15
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Marshall MB15

MB15, Bass Guitar Combo Amp from Marshall in the MB series.

Mythrandir1 04/04/2015

Marshall MB15 : Mythrandir1's user review

« Great value for a practice amp »
4

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Value For Money : Correct Audience: Beginners
Mainly being a guitarist, I decided two years ago to explore the Bass guitar and maybe even improve my guitar rhythm playing by doing so, therefore I got myself a bass guitar, did research for a bass amp for practicing in my apartment and I found this little guy.

The MB15 is a versatile solid state amp, well worth the money. When looking at this product, don't try to look at it by comparing it to tube amps, or larger solid state amps. This amp is made for practicing alone at home, without making the neighbors call the police.
If you want to practice with your band or be able to play at small gigs, the MB15 isn't powerful enough, the drums will drown your sound and you won't be able to make yourself heard. If band practice is what you are looking for, then maybe a slightly more powerful amp would suit you such as the MB30.

Features

The MB15 is a 15 Watt amp with a switch for two distinct styles Modern and Classic.
The modern channel has its own control knobs for volume and compression, giving you the ability to get a better low-end sound, while the classic channel has knobs to control gain and volume.
The bass is equipped with 3 band equalizer (bass, voice, treble) to further adjust your tone for every music style.
Personally I prefer the modern channel, you can get a better overall sound for every music style, I find the classic channel rather bad because the low end of sound is somewhat... lacking, or not pronounced enough. For this reason alone I gave it a 4 star rating.
A bonus with this amp is that it has an auxiliary jack so you can plug in a CD-player (do these still exist?) MP3 player or any laptop or PC so you can play along with your favorite songs.

Sound

You can shape the sound pretty well, I had no need to use any pedals, nor did I try to use any effect pedals with it. The settings it comes with, gives you the possibility to play bass for any kind of music style, anywhere from Jazz to Metal.
It is worth mentioning that the amp is terrible at close to maximum volume. The sound becomes heavily distorted, making the speaker rattle and create very unpleasant sounds. This didn't affect my rating however, because I used it at bellow medium volumes since I live in an apartment, so I had no use for max volume.

Overall Impression

The MB15 is a practice amp and nothing more. It offers you plenty of options for its price and its a great start when going on a venture to learn to play the bass.
The issues it has shouldn't affect you, unless you want to play at maximum volume, in which case the amp is pretty bad. At low volume it sounds clean with a highly customizable tone.

I recommend this amp ONLY for practicing alone. It is not enough for full band practice or gigs.