Fender Rumble 100 Bass Amplifier. Review

Amplifiers in general have come a long way in recent years thanks to advances in electronics and magnet technology. With this in mind, we reviewed Fenders revamped Rumble 100 bass amplifier.

The criteria for purchasing this amplifier was simple. We needed a great sounding reliable and lightweight amplifier for use in the studio, band practice and small venues. My teenage daughter who is playing bass now would also need to use it for practice / school events and exams.

The Rumble fitted our criteria perfectly. At 100 watts it was powerful enough for the practice room or small indoor venues and weighing in at under 10kg (22lbs) it would be easy to carry it around. Putting things into perspective my outgoing Ampeg BA112 (original model) rated at 50 watts weighed 17kg (39lbs).

The Rumble 100 sports the classic Fender look with the silver hatch grill, Fender script logo and black tolex covering. Controls are mounted top side and include a 4 EQ section. Three different voicings and an overdrive channel (foot switchable) allow tone shaping.

A useful DI out with ground lift is provided, allowing you to connect to a PA system or for recording purposes. For practice sessions a headphones socket is provided together with an auxiliary socket to allow you to connect your favourite media player. An effects loop is also provided.

The amplifier is well made and seems very solid, although when you lift it its lightweight 9.9 kilos (22lbs) becomes apparent and even confusing when relating the size and power of the unit.

First impressions are good, the unit operates quietly and has enough power for our criteria. The tone coming from the Eminence 12-inch speaker driver is clear and loud and there are no rattles within the cabinet.

Two minor issues however would be the lack of a kickback design which is always a bonus for monitoring and we would have liked to have a cover included with the unit (this is becoming difficult to find)

Aside from the minor lack of the two features mentioned this is a great bass amp which suits our needs very well. We have used it so far at several rehearsals, as a monitor for at recording sessions and my daughter also took her bass exams with it at her local music centre.

So far with have tried it with a Classic 50s P Bass with Seymour Duncan Basslines, A Squier Jaguar Bass (Active), a Marcus Miller Jazz Bass and a Roscoe Beck V (5 String). In each case we had great results with each instrument even the low B on the Roscoe Beck coming through cleanly.

If you are looking for a powerful, portable bass amp for small venues this is it.

For those of you looking for more power for larger venues or perhaps need to keep up with a loud drummer I would recommend looking at the 200 or 400 watt models as well.

By E.H.Slade