REVIEW: TC Electronic BG250 Bass Combo with TonePrint

PROS: Über light, great sound, smart phone app for new FX.

CONS: None.

PRICE: $399

TC Electronic has made a big splash with their TonePrint pedals, and now they’re bringing that sonic flexibility to a bass combo amp. 

First off, despite its imposing size, it tips the scale at a mere 35 lbs. The 15″ Neodymium magnet speaker is a major factor in its lack of weight. A 1″ tweeter complements the high frequencies nicely.  The controls are simple: Gain, a three-band EQ and tube drive control that brings in a distorted tone, calibrated for bass guitar, a TonePrint control (more on that later) and a master volume. There is a USB connection, 1/8” aux in, 1/8” headphone in, and a mute button. An XLR out finishes things off, and there’s also a switch to allow it to be PRE or POST EQ. The final touch is a built in tuner!

The TonePrint allows the player to download effects to the amp via the USB connection or the TonePrint smart phone app, which is a great feature. The fx themselves are great, and they’re optimized for bass.

Sound-wise, this amp really delivers, regardless of the bass you’re using. The EQ is flexible and plays nicely with active or passive pickups. The tube drive control really adds a pleasant color, as the overdrive never outshines the original bass tone; at lower settings it adds subtle warmth, increasing it really brings out a tight, aggressive overdrive that echoes the old tube-driven amps. Its 250 watts has plenty of volume to keep up with any situation. Players that want a classic rock amp without the maintenance of a tube amp will love this. Clarity isn’t an issue here either; it’s tight, punchy, and deep, all in the same breath. Slap and pop styles come through equally well, without muddiness.

For the price (around $400), the BG250 can’t be beat in the solid-state field. It’s affordable enough for the basement bassist, and professional enough to hold up on the road.

FEATURES

Type: Solid State

Number of Channels: 1

Power: 250 Watts @ 4 ohms

Speakers: 15″ TC Electronic Speaker, Piezo Tweeter

Effects: Yes

EQ: 3-band EQ

Height: 24.4″

Width: 18.2″

Depth: 15″

Weight: 34.8 lbs

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