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Author Topic: Roland Cube-20XL Bass or Something Else?  (Read 3796 times)
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« on: March 30, 2015, 11:40:01 am »

Hi All,

I need to get a bass amp to keep at my place for quick impromptu jamming sessions with friends/family. I also occasionally play some minor basic bass myself when tracking compositions but currently have no amp so I normally DI it through my audio interface and send the signal through to my guitar amp which doesn't sound so great.

There's no drumming going on at my place (if there ever will be it will be an electronic kit since I would like to not be kicked out of a security complex), so the other "competing" (for volume) instruments that might be involved is:

  • A guitar Rig (Marshall JVM410H) - sensibly used
  • An Acoustic Guitar
  • A Keyboard
  • Drumming Loop (& sometimes other instruments) Backtrack through PA
  • Acoustic Violin (Probably the Loudest of everything - or at least most cutting)
  • Big ass grand piano

Sometimes only one/two of them, sometimes more.

Do you think the Roland Cube-20XL ( is a good idea for this? I am slightly concerned about volume since I've read somewhere people say the 20xl's volume is rather low but then I am not sure what they are trying to hear themselves over and how touched in the head their bandmates are. I like the features of it, it seems like a good choice to me.

  • Small enough to chuck in the car if ever need to take somewhere else.
  • Cheap enough for a guitarist to buy (read: a purchase for a non-primary instrument)
  • It has DI so if it is too soft here I can always put it through the PA with it's dual subwoofer insanity setup
  • It seems to have a massively flexible range of options as far as shaping tone is concerned

I will use this with a variety of different bass guitars (mostly a solidbody 5-string and a hollow-body 4 string violin bass).

I am not a bass player so can someone with a little more knowledge in this area perhaps make a suggestion or recommendation? Is there something else I should be look at rather instead or have I overlooked something here?

Greg Perkins
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« Reply #1 on: March 30, 2015, 12:06:21 pm »

I have a Laney RB2, which also has a DI for amp/recording.  It is 30 watt instead of 20, has a 10 inch driver compared to the 8" Roland and I got it cheaper from Paul Bothners.  I also listened to the two and it sounds better to me as well.  It is loud enough, believe me. The RB2 is only missing a reverb and effects section, which I didn't need anyway.  The rb2 cabinet also has two standing positions, one vertical the other laid back so the speaker face up towards you

Guitars:  Faith Venus FVHG, Tokai LC107, Fender Standard Stratocaster MIM '57/'62 pups, Yamaha APX-6, Fender CN 240 SCE, Ibanez LS300, Yamaha RGX-312, Cort Action Bass
AMPS:  Laney IRT Studio + 112 Cab, Roland Cube 30X, Roland AC33, Laney RB2, Carlsbro Marlin 6-250 III PA
Studio:  Focusritte Scarlett 18i6, Roland SC50, Yamaha HS50M, Reaper, Kawai Midi Keyboard. Proel DB2A DI
Effects: Digitech Vocalist Live 3, Boss DD3, GT-100, RC-300 BD2, Korg Pitchblack Tuner

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« Reply #2 on: March 31, 2015, 11:44:36 am »

It sounds like you already have a DI and some sort of PA support? Just run the DI straight into the Mixing Desk for now and give yourself a bit of bass through the monitors. The reason for me saying this is that sooner or later you might want to gig (this is not clear from your post) and then you will need something bigger. Rather save your money and buy something a bit more meatier in terms of wattage and speaker size. Second hand stuff rocks!! You can always turn down the volume on a bigger amp for practice purposes.

As for portability, there are tons of combo amps with some serious power that will fit into a car's boot. Some of them very expensive (Mesa, Markbass) and others not so expensive (Ashdown, Laney, Hartke)

Almost all of the people that I know that ever started out buying a practice bass amp eventually bought something bigger and then, sold the practice amp at a complete loss. (Myself included)

Just my R0.02  Smiley


Bass Guitars:
MIK Squier II P Bass
SX P Bass
Squier Vintage Modified Jazz

Amp:Ashdown MAG 300H

Cabs: Ashdown MAG 15 ( x2 )
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« Reply #3 on: March 31, 2015, 12:04:59 pm »

If you ever play anything below low E (drop tuning or a five string) check that the amp can handle it- a lot of smaller combos don't handle low notes very well.

But Sakkie is right, if you have a DI and a PA, that will go a long way for home practice. (modern) bass amps are closer to PA amps than guitar amps- they take the signal and largely make it louder, rather than adding colour and sustain like guitar amps do

Good dealings with matta, Keira witherkay, free2rhyme, Atilla Barath, Chocklit_Thunda
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