Quick Hit: Ashdown Tone Pocket Review

Paired with headphones and a bass, this little black box can create a freeing experience.

Recorded with Orange O Bass into Focusrite Scarlett 2i4 interface into GarageBand.
Clip 1: Bass at 1 o’clock, mids at 11 o’clock, highs at 1 o’clock.


Compact and light with nice-sounding preamp. Handy recording interface. Eight hours of playing time per charge.

Pricey if only using as a headphone amp.


Ashdown Tone Pocket


Ease of Use:



Headphone amps are nothing new, but they continue to get smaller and more feature rich. The svelte and stealthy Ashdown Tone Pocket is no exception. It’s about an inch tall with an approximately 4" x 4" footprint and weighs all of a half-pound, making it right at home in a guitar-case compartment, gig bag, or under your pillow.

The Tone Pocket’s command center is its 3-band EQ: bass, mid, and treble dials with +/- 15 dB on each band. A volume dial rounds out the control quartet. After the short time it took to put headphones on and plug in my bass, I was gifted with transparent and distortion-free tone with plenty of volume and headroom, and no worries about upsetting a family member or neighbor. A little bump on the bass and treble controls was all I needed to set and forget.

Around back there are 10V and 12V power-supply options, a balanced line out, and a USB port, which functions as a third power-supply option and a link to your DAW of choice. It was a breeze setting up the Tone Pocket as an interface for recording a couple sound clips. More importantly, I didn’t experience any latency issues to speak of. The Tone Pocket’s price tag isn’t exactly pocket change, but when inspiration strikes, you have quick and easy (and good) amplified sound at the ready.

Test gear: Fender Precision, Orange O Bass, Monster Inspiration headphones

Kick off the holiday season by shopping for the guitar player in your life at Guitar Center! Now through December 24th 2022, save on exclusive instruments, accessories, apparel, and more with hundreds of items at their lowest prices of the year.
We’ve compiled this year’s best deals in the 2022 Holiday Gift Guide presented by Guitar Center.

Read MoreShow less

This full-amp-stack-in-a-box pedal brings a new flavor to the Guitar Legend Tone Series of pedals, Missing Link Audio’s flagship product line.

Read MoreShow less

Sporting custom artwork etched onto the covers, the Railhammer Billy Corgan Z-One Humcutters are designed to offer a fat midrange and a smooth top end.

Read MoreShow less

Designed for utmost comfort and performance, the Vertigo Ultra Bass is Mono’s answer to those who seek the ultimate gigging experience.

Read MoreShow less