Playing Electric Guitar With Bass Amp

Bass amps and speaker cabs are specifically designed to reproduce lower frequencies, so their vibrational patterns vary from those seen when playing an electric guitar with an amp designed for this purpose. As such, when used to accompany electric guitar playing they often produce sound that lacks clarity or is muffled altogether.

However, it is possible to use a bass amp with an electric guitar; adjustments may be necessary to achieve desired results.


An effective bass amp can produce clear sound that’s pleasing for electric guitar players, as well as features to enhance tone like an equalization system and feedback loop that allow you to craft music uniquely your own. Plus, bass amplifiers are more durable than guitar amps making them suitable for use on the road!

Some bass amplifiers are specifically tailored to work with bass guitars, while many electric guitar amps can accommodate them too. This is due to their larger speakers producing low frequencies more clearly while guitar amps often amplified higher frequencies which could potentially overpower smaller speakers leading to distortion and noise issues.

To avoid this issue, it is advisable to avoid using overdrive or distortion pedals with your bass amp. These pedals may help enhance the sound of your bass guitar but they could potentially raise volume to levels which could damage the amplifier. Also avoid playing it through tube amps since these types aren’t designed for handling low frequencies.

Finding an appealing sound while playing electric guitar through a bass amp requires using pedals and its tone controls in combination, creating a distinctive tone to suit both your personal style and genre.

Some bassists opt for hybrid amps, which combine a tube preamp with solid-state power amp. This allows them to access more natural sounding grit than they’d find from pure tube amps, providing them with greater versatility depending on the environment or gig they’re performing in. In addition, hybrids save money when repairs or replacement parts need replacing – especially with older amps nearing their end of life where replacement tubes or components may quickly add up and save you money in repair costs compared with an expensive new amp purchase – making hybrid amps ideal choices for bass players struggling financially who wish they had more options at their disposal when upgrading an expensive new amp purchase option is necessary.


Equalization (EQ) is one of the key elements to consider when setting up a bass amp. Some bass amplifiers may feature only one knob to cut or boost frequencies while others feature several separate zones with separate settings that should be addressed to get maximum benefit from your amp and ensure you don’t overdo any settings.

Basic bass amp EQ settings should center around the lower frequency spectrum, typically 40Hz, 100Hz and 400Hz. By increasing these frequencies you can add depth and weight to your sound.

When it comes to EQing your bass amp, another crucial frequency range to focus on is the midrange. This is where most of your bass’s snarl and punch come from, and to increase this you can either increase low-mid or high-mid settings accordingly.

As part of your EQ settings, treble should also be carefully considered. By increasing this setting, you can add brightness to your bass’s tone – ideal when playing faster tempos or when the guitar needs to stand out in a mixed soundscape.

Add too much gain, and your amp will quickly become uncontrollable due to excessive distortion, with buzzy, harsh tone becoming apparent and rendering control difficult.

Experimenting with your EQ settings until you find one that sounds and feels natural is of vital importance, while keeping an eye on your signal chain (the whole chain between bass and amplifier that determines tone).

Example: Using an overdrive pedal when connecting to an amplifier should help determine how much gain you desire on your sound.

One common error made by bass players is overdoing the EQ on their amp. It can be easy to forget that overdrive serves as more than simply power amp – cranking the gain knob too often will leave your bass sounding dull and lifeless, not to mention competing for space with kick drums in mixes, leading to inarticulate low ends and an unpleasant bottom end sound.


Electric guitar players frequently rely on pedals to shape their sound before it reaches their amplifier, while bassists may use pedals to enhance their tone when performing live. A preamp pedal, for instance, can help alter the overall tone and dynamics of bass guitar before going through mixer and PA system; this allows bass players to tame high frequencies and reduce muddiness more effectively. These pedals may be placed either after an amp’s input jack or in its effects loop before power tubes.

Many guitar pedals can be used with bass amps, while certain pedals have been tailored specifically to bass guitar use. These may include modified versions of existing pedals (such as EHX Bass Big Muff or Ibanez TS9B Bass Tube Screamer), or custom designed pieces aimed at providing specific bass-oriented features.

Some of the most sought-after pedals for bass include overdrive, distortion and fuzz pedals. Overdrive pedals give your bass an upbeat tone by increasing sustain notes; distortion pedals add gritty distortion by decreasing signal amplitude whereas fuzz offers unique tones by changing frequencies of notes in real time.

Pitch-shift and octave pedals are also frequently utilized by bass players. Octave pedals in particular are useful, as they allow bass players to shift the pitch of their original input without altering its fundamental frequency, creating crystal clear harmonies or subtle upper-octave shimmer effects.

Some pedals from Darkglass Electronics such as the EQ-7 offer both compression and octave-shift effects in one. This enables you to control both levels of overdrive and amount of octave-shift in your bass’s tone with just one pedal – perfect for easy use while providing impressive features for guitar sound! Short patch cables designed specifically to connect effects pedals together will prevent cables from getting tangled while onstage, saving time while keeping cables tidy!


A bass amp is a type of guitar amplifier specifically designed to produce clear, crisp sound that cuts through any mix. Most bass amps contain high-quality speakers capable of handling the lower frequencies found on bass guitars and include an EQ section with different knobs for adjusting tone of your instrument. They may also offer additional features like built-in chorus or delay effects in order to help achieve your ideal bass tone.

A tube bass amp employs glass vacuum tubes to amplify sound. Considered classics by many bass guitarists, these amps offer an extensive variety of tonal possibilities and tonal variations. However, tube systems make bass amps much heavier than their guitar counterparts which may pose problems for certain players; additionally, their distortion may not suit some styles of music as much and was frequently replaced with solid-state amps in the 1960s and 1970s.

Solid-state bass amps use transistors to amp up their sound, making them lighter, cheaper, and more durable than tube counterparts. Furthermore, solid-state amps don’t produce as much heat when playing loud music in smaller spaces than tube-based amps do. Bassists tend to favor solid-state amps because of their clear sound that cuts through mixes without producing as many high frequency spikes that tube amps do.

Can an electric guitar be played through a bass amp? Absolutely, although the tone will depend on your preferences and genre of music. For example, metal guitarists might find their bass amp too trebly; however if your tastes lie more with jazz, blues, or pop then its clean sound might just be what’s required!

To check whether or not your guitar will work with a bass amp, connect it and stand close while strumming a chord. Adjust gain until feedback can be heard, and volume until feedback becomes constant without building or shrieking. Keep in mind that bass amplifiers should only ever be used with bass guitars; otherwise it could damage its speaker.