Peavey Max 126 Bass Amp with an Amazing Low-End Response Complete Review

#ModelRatingRMS Power HandlingWeightOur topCheck
1Peavey Max 126 10 Watts 12.4 pounds1

Peavey Max 126
Rating
RMS Power Handling 10 Watts
Weight 12.4 pounds
Our top1
Check


Do you know when Peavey was founded? Back in 1965, more than 5 decades ago, and has always been one of the key players in the industry.

This company is among the biggest manufacturers and most recognized suppliers of musical equipment and instruments. Currently, they are distributing their top-of-the-line guitars, amps, preamps, and everything else in between to 130 countries around the globe!

It doesn’t get better than that. Our focus today will be on Peavey Max 126, a highly affordable and capable bass combo amplifier. With the market being full of small and lightweight amps on a budget, the moguls have to always come up with new ideas to surprise the audience.

So, what is Max 126 all about? Does it have what it takes to impress the potential buyers, or maybe it’s just another average amplifier that can’t compete with the best of the best? The short answer – it’s quite an amazing little thing and will make your blood rush with those mighty tones. And while it is tiny and weighs only 12.4 pounds (5, 6 kilograms), it packs enough heat to be on par with the more expensive models. Peavey has always been a pioneer, introducing new, exciting technology and making it possible for small amps and preamps to sound like their bigger and heavier siblings. Let’s dig deeper and check out every single detail about this flexible gear.

The Controls And The Features

First of all, let me just say that for such a tiny amp, the low-end response is truly impressive. The 6.5-inch speaker is powered by 10 Watts but is still able to generate a lot of low-end response that you generally won’t find in this price range. Add Peavey’s trademark standards for reliability and durability, and you’ll get an all-around solid pick for the practicing musicians. The amp comes with an aux input for connecting an MP3 player and a headphone output for those late-night sessions. Even though this is a pretty standard set these days, 10 years ago, it was only available with the top-tier models that used to cost a fortune.

The fancy equalizer comes with two knobs – Treble and Bass (yes, in that order). And while we could use a Middle knob for even more control over the frequencies, Peavey Max 126 Bass Amp gives you a lot of sonic freedom with this section. The Gain knob in the far left corner allows the owners to balance between an overdriven and a clean tone. The Vintage knob, in turn, is for choosing between a vintage and a more contemporary drive. It sounds amazing, so, make sure to play around with it for a while to get a perfect tone. Different bass guitars sound different, of course, but with Peavey Max 126, even an average guitar will turn into a “low-end king” when you plug it in.

Taking The Amp For A Spin


The famous TransTube circuitry makes wonders happen, turning this otherwise ordinary amplifier into a beast capable of producing more than decent bass sounds. It’s no secret that it takes a lot of hard work to make those low frequencies strong and balanced on a low-budget rig. Well, Peavey found a way to do that! I was pretty skeptical about the low-end response of this little guy (take a look at the pictures online – it really is quite tiny), but as soon as I played my favorite walking bass with a solid drum track, I was instantly captivated by how accurate and musical the low end sounded.

Tip:For practicing in my home, I set the volume between 2 and 3. When I tried to jam with my friends (rockers), Peavey Max 126 got lost between the gated drums and the distortion-heavy guitar. But when we switched to something jazzy, my amp proved its worth. Important note: for live gigs, you still can’t rely on this amp, simply because it’s not powerful enough.

What Else Do You Need To Know About The Peavey Max 126 Bass Amplifier?


In modern-day rock genres, the bass guitar is slowly, but steadily obtaining a more “present” role and the engineers in the studios are trying to make it poke through the drums, the guitars, and the vocals. Usually, they achieve that with a fair share of distortion, and while this isn’t a studio-level amp, if you put your mind to it, you’ll be able to generate some believable sounds that will fit right in. For practicing in your bedroom, this is one of the best offers on the market.

Tip:For a price-tag of 80 dollars, Max 126 gives you enough controls and sound precision for enjoying your own music at home, and that’s a huge plus, especially for the beginners learning their way around bass.

Obviously, this amp can’t really compete with the high-end equipment that costs thousands of dollars, but hey, we’re talking about an affordable “box” here! Now, while most practice amps sound average at best, this beast has a rich, warm tone, mostly thanks to the TransTube technology I mentioned earlier. Even the experienced players will appreciate the tight low-end, not to mention the newbies that just want an amp to plug their guitar into. They say that a man’s first amplifier should be decent enough to inspire him, and that’s exactly the case with Max 126!

  • Amazing low bass for such a small lightweight amp
  • Selectable “Vintage” Gain control with patented TransTube circuitry

  • 6.5 inch speaker, 1/4″ Headphone jack, 1/4″ aux input.
  • Legendary Peavey reliability
Pros
Sound quality
Perfect for practice
Cons
Maybe: distorts even at low volume
Quality of materials

The Verdict For Max 126

Summing up, I want to say that you’ll hit the bull’s eye if you go with this amplifier. First of all, it is incredibly reliable, which makes it a workhorse (that’s a compliment, of course). Second, as already mentioned, you won’t find the same low bass response for 80 dollars anywhere else. The EQ, the input/output pair, and the 6.5-inch speaker all contribute to the amazing character of Max 126.

Tip:If you’re a plug-and-play kind of a person that’s in the market for a cheap and durable amp, you won’t go wrong with Peavey’s baby. This is a tiny piece of gear; yet, it lets you play big and achieve great results. You need to see it for what it is and never expect any “expensive” tones, though.

By the way, have you ever heard about the Peavey Max 126 Stage Pack? It includes the company’s own Milestone bass guitar, the amp that we’re reviewing today, a special gig bag, a fancy digital tuner, ear buds, an instrument cable, and even a DVD that will, supposedly, teach you how to play the bass guitar and how to work with the combo amplifier. That’s quite a collection, right? I’m not really sure that it’s a very clever investment, especially if you already have half of what that pack includes, but as a gift to a young bass player, it will be superb. I know I’d be extremely happy if someone presented it to me as a gift on my birthday!


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