The Fender Rumble 100 Bass Amp
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  • Being a bass player is not a convenient lifestyle
  • I believe a higher-powered Rumble will work nicely in that setting, but at the cost of portability

    • by Matt Berg

      If there was ever a half-man, half-donkey, then that abomination should be a bass player. He could use the man half to learn to play the music, and the donkey half to lug all the bass equipment from home to rehearsal to show to back home again. Bass equipment is heavy duty; it takes a lot of power to supply the low frequencies when playing live music. That’s why bass players are usually big, burly men who wrestle bears in the Yukon. Being a bass player is not a convenient lifestyle. If a bass player needs to take his equipment all over the place, he needs something easy to transport without sacrificing tone and power.

      The Fender Rumble 100 fits that bill. It has a single 4-ohm 15” speaker, but despite that, at 60 lbs, it seems

      more lightweight than most 15” speaker cabinets. The Rumble’s size is just right to slide in and out of the trunks of most cars. It also has casters, which means moving it over smooth, even surfaces is as easy as rolling it. The Rumble 100 even has an a switch for a red light that will glow from beneath it, which doesn’t add to ease-of-use or tone, but is just sort of cool.

      That’s all well and good that the Fender Rumble 100 is easy to carry and travels simply from the basement to the garage to the party and wherever else one might take a bass amp… but how does it sound, and is it’s performance up to the live music standard?

      The sound of the Rumble 100, without any effects, and the EQ flat (knobs at 12 o’clock), for lack of a better term, is “rumbly.” The EQ knobs are very responsive; adjusting each of the Rumble’s four equalizer knobs between 10 and 2 o’clock is all it takes to clean up the tone of my Jazz Bass. The amp’s volume knob seems to get most of its loudness around 12 o’clock, and then it’s not really that noticeable after that. Using my Tech 21 SansAmp Bass Driver with this amp makes it really easy to get the tone I’m after, and my Aguilar TLC compressor also helps me dial in the dynamics, and keep everything tight and even. The Rumble 100 makes me really happy at home with a bass driver and a compressor on it. I also like that it has an effects loop, adding versatility to how I set ...

      • The Fender Rumble 100 Bass Amp
      it up and dial in its sound.

      At rehearsal, it works under most conditions, and can be heard clearly along with guitars, vocals and drums. It keeps up nicely with one guitarist’s 60-watt Fender tube amp; However, I need more firepower when another guitarist cranks his 100-watt Marshall or Mesa amp through two 4×12 cabinets. I believe a higher-powered Rumble will work nicely in that setting, but at the cost of portability.

      The Rumble 100 is a great recording amp. It has a line out, and can feed directly in a board. It also sounds nice on recordings when I have my tone dialed in, and I put a large-diaphragm mic on it, just off center of the 15” speaker.

      Live, the Fender Rumble 100 is good in small venues, like my neighborhood Irish bar, or anywhere I

      can go direct into the soundboard. By itself, the Rumble 100 isn’t powerful enough for a big stage. I bring the big rig anytime I have a stage people can lean on and set their drinks, but if I’m ground level, and there are people sitting in tables six feet from me, the Rumble 100 is fine there.

      I am really happy with this amp. It’s not a dream rig, but like how you should never meet your heroes, a dream rig will never get loud enough anywhere I can take it to sound good. My SansAmp with my Rumble 100 and Jazz Bass is easy to set to my liking. The Fender Rumble 100 is a great utility amp that is lightweight, loud, and capable of sounding very nice while supplying bass in most live music settings.

Matt replies :

A higher-powered Rumble combo would indeed be heavier. A higher-powered Rumble amp would be pretty easy to carry around… but the resultant cab would mean extra trips back and forth, and as any bass player knows, bass cabs are sort of heavy.
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The review was published as it's written by reviewer in October, 2013. The reviewer certified that no compensation was received from the reviewed item producer, trademark owner or any other institution, related with the item reviewed. The site is not responsible for the mistakes made. 1624101620210931/k2311a1024/10.24.13
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