Ampeg Baby Bass: preamp, string height, help!!
I recently purchased an Ampeg Baby Bass. I am a doubler, and decided to get this particular EUB since I do play some salsa and jazz gigs that would sound great with this bass. BUT I need help.....
1. My string action is too high, is there a way to remedy this? Adjustable bridge recommendations?
2. What strings to use?
3. What preamp to use?
Thanks in advance!
There is a large thread for the baby bass in this section of the forum. If you have some free time, there is a lot of good info there. http://www.talkbass.com/forum/f101/b...athread-26190/
1. There is a bolt on the back of the body near the top. It is covered with a metal plug. Remove the plug and use an allen wrench to raise and lower the neck angle. No need to mess with the bridge.
2. Spirocore solo gauge are very popular for playing salsa and jazz. Just tune them to standard pitch.
3. I personally don't use a preamp. I just go direct to amp.
I would just add to make sure that you have the tone control turned all the way down or off; that's the sound of the Baby Bass in salsa.
Good luck with using it for jazz; it doesn't really work well for that in my experience. However, I have a Krivo magnetic pickup that makes the Baby Bass much more appropriate sounding in this context (nothing acoustic about that sound though).
I replaced the bridge on my original 60s Baby Bass with a maple bridge (I have kept the original aluminium bridge safe of course!) and have put a Shadow SH950 twin piezo pickup on. That way I have the option of the classic salsa sound from the diaphragm pickup or a jazzier sound from the piezo (in the latter case, you will need to cut the high mids and treble to take away the piezo nasal sound and string noise but it does work really well after careful EQ'ing and actually sounds quite like a real double bass amplified).
In terms of strings, I have put on Presto Nylon wound ultralight strings (the same product is sold in US under the name Eurosonic Ultralights) as these gut-alike strings make me feel closer to playing a double bass. They also sound great on the Baby Bass, with more warmth to my ears, and they are incredibly easy on the hands.
In terms of amp, I can plug straight into my MarkBass Mini CMD121P combo (which has plenty of EQ options). I have also just purchased the new Headway EDB2 preamp and it sounds excellent through that. I will be gigging this tomorrow night, using the Headway as a DI into the house PA with no amp (as I have to schlep the Baby Bass into central London via the London Underground; the gig is in Denmark Street, in the West End)
Thanks for all the help guys!! I adjusted the angle of the fingerboard, it is much more playable now, no need to replace the bridge just yet. I actually contacted Ray Ramirez as well as a few others in Cleveland to get advice. Definitely dig the tone knob down, sounds less clanky. It looks like I have D'Addario's on it right now, gonna try the Thomastik's once I get some bread, those strings ain't cheap!
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