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TC Electronic BH250 Bass Head

11 December 2012 | 2:40 pm | Scott Cherry

It takes no time at all to dial in a great full tone. The input gain accommodated the output of both active or passive basses quite well.

In the right corner, weighing in at just 2kg, is the Swiss Army Knife of the amp world, the TC Electronic BH250 bass head. As far as modern bass amps go, the BH250 is simple and intuitive to use. The front panel has from left to right a single input, an active/passive gain control switch, three-band Tone Contour, the TonePrint control (more on that later), a built-in tuner and mute switch, and the master volume; no room to spare and more features than it seems. The rear panel sports the power switch, mains in, foot switch, USB connection, speaker out, aux in, headphone out and balanced XLR out. So plug in and select the appropriate input gain setting (active or passive)

The EQ section, or 'Tone Contouring', Bass, Middle and Treble controls, are not your standard bass amp EQ. Normal tone controls usually boost or cut the same frequency. The BH250 controls multiple frequencies for cut and boost. TC Electronic TonePrint allows you to load signature bass effects into your amp in seconds: Chorus, Flanger, Vibrato, Octaver, Compression or Bass Drive.

You can also choose and load from an impressive list of signature Artist TonePrints, created by bass masters like Nathan East, Charles Cave, Michael Shuman, Gail Ann Dorsey, Mark King and Roscoe Beck.

So how can these signature bass effects actually be loaded? There are two ways. First… Beaming! Anyone who owns an iOS or Android device can simply download the free TonePrint App and place the speaker of the device over the magnetic pickup of their bass. Now TonePrint/s of your choice can be beamed through the pickups and cable directly into BH250, which will adapt to become whatever the TonePrint you selected. Alternatively, the amp can be hooked up to a PC or Mac for loading the TonePrints via USB. Once you've uploaded your TonePrint you can dial in the required amount.

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BH250 can be hooked up to any cabinet, or combination of cabinets (minimum 4 ohm load). The BH250 can also be run as a Direct Input, so if you need to or just want to travel light you can rock up to a gig with your bass and amp in your gig bag. 

So how does it sound?

It takes no time at all to dial in a great full tone. The input gain accommodated the output of both active or passive basses quite well. For a small amp it kicks out an impressive amount of volume, easily enough for most gigs. And if the venue calls for more, 'd-i' it. 

I loved that I could pack up after rehearsals, put the BH250 in the front pocket of my Mono gig bag, sling it over my shoulder, grab the speaker cab and head to the car. And at $499, it's more than just a back-up; it's easily a #1 rig.