It’s said to take 10,000 hours to master an instrument but with our busy modern lives, that number can seem like an impossible task. Luckily, UK based amp gurus Blackstar have just released the amPlug2 FLY Bass, jam-packed with useful practice tools such as an Aux input, extended battery life and 6 tap-tempo adjustable rhythm loops. It’s now easier than ever to log some extra practice hours wherever and whenever you want. A simple interface, lightweight but solid construction and impressive tonal palette make using the ampPlug2 Fly easy and fun.
There are 3 bass channels included with the unit
- Classic – Valve-inspired tone with a mid-range growl
- Modern – Fat bottom-end with a mid-scoop and extended treble
- Overdrive – Smooth, natural overdrive with plenty of bite
Each setting is easily tailored to your desired tastes and I found myself being drawn to the Modern setting when using my active 5 string bass but favouring the Classic mode with my old P bass.
The 6 built-in rhythm loops actually sound pretty good for stock drum loops, especially considering the tiny form factor of this unit. You can choose from Rock, Funk, R&B, Hip Hop, Blues, Metronome and set the beat with a tap tempo control. I enjoyed cycling through the different grooves and jamming along one Sunday morning with headphones cranked and a hot coffee to fuel my playing. The amPlug handles the low B on a 5 string admirably even compared to some headphone amps that cost considerably more. The foldable input jack rotates 180 degrees to plug directly into all guitar body shapes, so whether you have front, side or recessed jack socket the amPlug should fit snugly. The auto power-off function is a welcome addition as it could be very easy to forget to power down the unit with only a small LED on the side to indicate active use. I would recommend using some quality studio headphones for maximum results with the amPLug as I found that it lacked a little juice when using regular earbud-style headphones. The Blackstar amPlug2 FLY Bass does many things very well at an attractive price point and super portable form factor. With high-quality audio processing and genuinely useful practice functions, this is one piece of gear you should definitely consider if you use headphones to practice regularly or just want to ability to jam any time of day or night without bothering those around you!
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