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Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
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on March 10, 2012
WARNING! There has been an important change in the specs!

The newer GK MB200s no longer have 1/4" speaker outs.
There is an addendum included with the manual that states that the amp speaker out now only allows the use of Speakon connectors.

Be careful when ordering one to get the proper cable or adapter for your cab.

I wish I had known that when ordering mine, so I would have ordered a speakon cable or a speakon to 1/4" female adapter along.

One star off for the inconvenience and for no longer having the Speakon - 1/4" speaker out combo.

Besides that issue, I am very pleased with the extremely light weight and appearance of the amp and am eager to be able to play it.
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on June 15, 2011
I've been an electric and upright bass player for over 15 years, and have been gigging regularly for the past 10 or so.
I hate hauling heavy gear.
I absolutely hate it. I build my own cabinets so I can shave pounds off of my load-in. I run with the smallest possible rig that I can get away with for any given show.
Because of that I've been watching the ultra-light part of the amp market for quite awhile now, waiting for good Class-D amps to make their way into the live audio segment at reasonable prices.

My last lightweight amp was a Crate Powerblock, 150w @4ohms and at least 4 times the weight of this one. Only problem with it is that it's a guitar amp, so it goes into overdrive when you turn the gain up past about 12 o'clock. It served my needs for gigs where I had a good PA and just needed my amp for on-stage monitoring, but I still had to haul a big (50lb) old school 350w head for most gigs without a PA.

I tried a Bose Packlite A1 power amp, but it didn't have the oomph despite allegedly being rated at 250w.
I call BS on those specs, the Crate was louder at it's 150w.

This MB200 though is freaking awesome.
Designed for bass, 200W of CLEAN power in a tiny package, and it doesn't cost a fortune like the EA mini or micro series, Walter Woods stuff, or Genz Benz shuttles. I generally run it off my Fishman platinum pre-amp just so I have tonal control easily at hand, but I'm starting to consider leaving that at home as well. The EQ on the MB200 is very solid, it's got an XLR output with switchable pre/post output, and Speakon or quarter inch power outputs.

It fits in the pouch of my upright bass bag and can serve as my primary amp for any gig I play that doesn't have PA support, and doesn't break the bank at just over a buck a watt.

What's not to love?
Get one now.
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on January 17, 2013
I've always owned two bass heads so I'd have a backup.

Recently, I acquired a somewhat capable combo, so felt it was time to ditch the spare head.

This plan was a dumb idea, since hauling around a large combo with my rig, was not practical. I needed something small; like a doughnut spare tire that most cars have. It didn't have to be as capable as my main bass head, but had to be just enough to get me through any gig.

Enter the GK MB200

PROS:
-This amp is tiny, light, and will fit into the pocket of most gig bags.

-The tone is what floored me. It has an aggressive, punchy, tight sound that makes my main head seem ho hum.

-I'm in a KISS tribute band. This little amp got me easily through a gig when my main amp started having issues. It had plenty of juice, nicely powered one of my cabs, and I occasionally use it at rehearsals now.

-The EQ is simple, and easy to dial in on the fly.

-The price is right for a quality piece of gear.

-The fan is quiet.

CONS:
-Speakon is the only speaker output on this amp. My main amp has banana jack and ¼".

-My main amp has an efx loop that I use with my rack tuner for muted tuning. This amp just has line out and a return, but the return is 1/8" jack.

-The power cord that it came with didn't securely seat into the amp's electrical socket. I swapped out the cord, and no further issues.

-If you're one of those who likes parametric EQ's, this amp may be too simple for your taste.

-It can really only power one of my 410 cabs. My main amp can power both.

-The biggest advantage and disadvantage this amp has is its size. While small, light, and easy to transport, it can also be easily stolen at a gig. However, if rack ears are purchased, it can be racked. A nice idea, but placing this amp in a bulky rack defeats the purpose of owning a micro head.

I'm happy with my new spare amp. It gives me exactly what I need, and it is way more powerful than I anticipated. I am so impressed that I plan swapping out my main amp with the MB200's 800 watt big brother.
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on July 17, 2011
I have both the MB200 and the MB500 Fusion amps. I bought the MB200 as a backup for the MB500. (I NEVER go to a gig without a backup amp). Strangely, I use the MB200 more than the MB500. I use it with two 2 x 10 cabs (thus 4 ohm) and it has more than enough power to compete with my large 6 piece band. Simple tone controls , just a tweak of low bass and you have the perfect sound. (BTW, I also prefer it over my previous main Markbass F1 and LMII heads). If you like the GK sound, you'll love this little amp.
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on November 9, 2013
Since I play 150+ gigs a year, weight and portability have always been major factors in determining what stage gear I purchase. I play multiple instruments, but as a bassist, I've been using Walter Woods amps over the years. I happened to stumble upon this bass amp, and was intrigued by the specs. I was worried that using Walter Woods over the years may have spoiled me and that nothing smaller and lighter could compare, but decided to give the MB200 a try.

Wow! What a great amp! I plugged my bass guitar into it to try it out, and the amp really boomed. It's very impressive for something that is literally the size and weight of a few sticks of butter. The tone controls sound great, and the knobs even have a pleasing, upscale feeling of resistance to them.

The contour switch does exactly what I hoped it would: it mellows out the "boxy" midrange and boosts the bass and treble, much like running everything through a smiley-faced graphic EQ. When you engage the contour switch, you can then continue to use the EQ controls for additional tonal adjustment.

An interesting thing to note is that the MB200 is not just limited to bass. I was recently hired to play keys on a gig, and the MB200 sounded crisp and clear. Out of curiosity, I contacted GK to ask them about the frequency response of the amp, and their answer was 20Hz-20kHz. Interesting! So I did a side-by-side comparison with a PA amplifier and found that if you leave the contour off and cut the bass and treble back, you get nice, flat, full-range amplification. Bass, keyboard, PA... the MB200 works great all around. I ended up buying four of these amps.

GK does not offer rack ears for this model, so I ended up making my own out of sheet metal. GK claims this amp is only intended to be carried around in gig bags, but I think they're selling their product short. An amp this good is worth rack ears, because one way or another, a lot of these amps are going to end up in musicians' racks for the sake of convenience. I'm certain of it.

Update - January 2016: None of my four MB200 amps has so much as hiccuped since I've owned them. They're all continuing to work flawlessly.
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on June 20, 2011
Playing through a 1x15 Altec-Lansing 421B mounted in a G-K Backline cab, the sound reproduction through this mighty midget is powerful, precise, and punchy. My flatwound P-bass, with the contour on, sounds like an old school juke box; fat, full, and in your face. My "boutique" 4 string active-passive sings with articulation and resonance, and the Schecter 5 string sounds growly and full. It handles the low B effortlessly, with no dips or peaks throughout the full range of notes. It's loud enough to use in small outdoor venues without having to go through the front system, and works well in dance club settings.

The only problem I had was keeping the amp from vibrating off the speaker cab, but this was solved by putting it on a small bath towel. It's not just an amp, it's an extension of my instrument, and responds to the most subtle nuances, yet pushes like a diesel when the music calls for power and drive. I like it!Gallien-Krueger MB200 - 200W Ultra Light Bass Amplifier
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on April 2, 2015
I run this through 2 - 400watt, GK MBE-II, 4X10 bottoms. I don't know if GK underrates the wattage, but this little power house is a real chest-punching "air mover". Simple, strait forward, very rich tone, and, impressive out-put.
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on April 20, 2015
The GK MB200 is a fantastic sounding bass head. Despite the small size and relatively low watts it puts out a lot of sound. I typically run mine with a single 8 ohm 1x15 cab but I've also ran it with (2) 1x15 cabs and it does great, doesn't even get warm to the touch. I've owned lots of other bass amps, including a handful of other micro heads, and the MB200 is the only one that I can't see ever getting rid of. I bought it as a backup/practice head but I have since sold my GK MB Fusion and now just use the MB200. I do wish the amp had a mute switch, two speaker outs, and an adjustable contour knob...but I guess that's why they make the MB500.

I can only see the MB200 not working for really large applications, but we typically have PA support for those types of gigs. I've even used the MB200 in a gig situation just as a preamp by not connecting to any cabs and going straight to the board.

If you like the classic GK sound (I do...this is my 7th GK amp) and don't need crazy amounts of power then I recommend this amp.
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on January 10, 2016
I'm a professional Bassist, and bought this amp after reading great reviews on www.talkbass.com forums.
I keep it with me in my case as a backup, in case of problems, and used it on many lower volume gigs with excellent results with GK & MarkBass cabs.
GK makes excellent amps, but there were reviews of some of these cutting out.
So far this amp has been great.
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on March 9, 2015
Light as air, heavy as you need! Although this may not have enough power for a big venue it is perfect for practice and your average club venue. It sounds great and although limited controls they are great. You can dial in your sound and be happy with out a huge amp! Now to find someone to carry the cabinet!
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