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When you need the most presence out of your rig, bass amp heads deliver full tones and big sounds without having to sacrifice tonal fidelity or volume.

Whether you're gunning for the classic warmth of a tube amplifier pumping 12AX7s and 6L6s or a modern solid-state model capable of producing beefy tone in a more durable build, bass heads lead the charge in your campaign for tone. The right unit is one of the key elements to achieving a signature tone like the percussive slap of Flea or the low, mean rumble of Rob Trujillo.

What Is a Bass Amp Head?

A bass amp head (often just called a bass head) is the part of a bass amplifier that amplifies the electrical signal of your bass signal. It contains the electrical components of the amplifier, including a preamp, power amplifier, and equalizer (bass and treble controls). Like combo amps, some bass amp heads are tube-driven, while others are solid state.

What Are the Pros and Cons of a Bass Amp Head vs. a Bass Combo Amp?

A bass combo amp has the convenience of being a single package—just one thing you have to lug around. You also don’t have to worry about the math of matching your bass head to a bass cab.

However, you’re going to get what you get with a combo. A bass head gives you the freedom to experiment with different speaker cabs to shape your tone exactly the way you want to. It also has the added benefit of being more grab-and-go—many venues have bass cabs in-house, so you’d just need to bring your bass head rather than your entire rig.

How Do I Match Bass Amp Heads to Bass Cabinets?

When matching a bass amp head to a bass cab, make sure that your cabinet can handle your bass head’s output. First, you want to make sure the impedance (ohms) and wattage matches. For example, if your bass head says 300 watts at 8 ohms, you need to find an 8 ohm bass cabinet that can handle at least 300 watts.

Learn more about bass cabinets and how to match them to bass heads here.

Popular Bass Head Brands on Reverb

Shopping by brand can be a great place to start if you're not sure which bass head is right for you. On Reverb, some of the most popular bass head brands include Ampeg, Mesa Boogie, Markbass, Fender, Peavy, and more.

Bass Heads Near Me

To exclusively browse bass heads near you, reference the list of top cities and countries available on Reverb to search within a desired location. You also can review shipping details within an item’s “Shop Policies” section.

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Your purchases also help protect forests, including trees traditionally used to make instruments.

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