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VBA stands for Valve Bass Amplifier and who better to make a bass amp powered by valve technology than Marshall Amplification? Over 36 years of designing and manufacturing world-renowned high quality valve amps has given produced priceless knowledge, experience and insight in the world of valve tone.
The VBA400 gives you 400 Watts of Marshall valve power courtesy of 12 valves! A staggering 8x6550 power valves, 3xECC83 classic Marshall pre-amp valves and 1xECC82 valve. Marshall didn't want to dilute any of this natural valve tone quality by incorporating unnecessary features and controls, so only the essential front panel controls have been included. That said, the VBA400's 3-band EQ network for Bass, Middle and Treble has been designed so that it offers you all the tonal adjustment you'll need. Plus, this tone network can be totally changed by means of the 3-position Contour switch.
Contour position 1 drops the low mids and creates a rounder, fuller fat bottom end. Contour position 2 boosts the mid range, giving your sound greater edge and aggression. Contour position 3 moves the mid range higher than you'd normally expect on a bass amp, adding aggressive twang while leaving the essential body of your tone intact, making it ideal for percussive styles such as slap bass.
Further tone control is provided by Deep and Bright switches. Engaging the Deep switch increases low-end thud without losing definition while the Bright option adds extra high-end brilliance and bite.
Other essential features include Active and Passive inputs, and XLR DI Output, complete with switches for ground lift and pre/post EQ selection, a Series FX Loop and a High/Low Fan Speed to ensure the valves are kept at a safe operating temperature.
In addition to great tone, the VBA400 combines a number of other exciting and useful features. Situated on the rear panel of the amp is a Tuner Output which allows you to keep a tuner in line at all times (the bass is still plugged into the input on the front panel). Should you want to tune up during a live situation in silence, simply press the Tuner Mute facility button and both the sound to your speakers and to the DI will be cut off.
All valve amps need to be connected to a speaker before use and failure to do so will result in serious damage to the amp. To ensure that you do not damage your VBA400 by inadvertently forgetting to plug your amp into a speaker, Marshall has designed the unit so power cannot be applied internally unless it is connected to a speaker. The VBA400 also features an instant overall tonal re-shaper in the form of a Contour control that has three pre-sets to allow you to dial in three different characters in an instant.