Drummers and rear ported cabs

Discussion in 'Amps [BG]' started by bassjnky1, Feb 11, 2013.


  1. bassjnky1

    bassjnky1

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    I play with a drummer that has a difficult time hearing my bass unless he has a loud monitor or iem. My question is this: since the bass rig is generally next to him pointed forward (of course) and asuming that we are not set up with a monitor for him, will a rear ported speaker help him to hear the bass better?
    He happens to be a hard hitting and hard of hearing but very good drummer. I have considered a two channel bass rig just to be able to give him his own bass feed.

    All of my cabs happen to be front ported. Just wondering if rear ported cabs would help him hear the bass?
  2. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

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    Nope. Port location is 100% immaterial since the lows that come out of it are not directional. Monitors or IEM's are the way to go.
  3. CL400Peavey

    CL400Peavey Supporting Member

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    Part location doesn't matter at all. Turning the face of the cab toward him would let him hear the mids that give you presence in the mix.
  4. will33

    will33

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    Is your bass rig carrying the audience, meaning you are not in the PA?

    If so, placing it as far back as you can (beside or even slightly behind him) and angling it towards him slightly should let him catch enough of it's wide angle dispersion to hear you better without making mud out in the audience.


    If you are in the PA, try setting your rig up as a sidefill, pointing across the band for you all to hear. Let the PA carry the audience.
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  6. bassjnky1

    bassjnky1

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    Thanks guys...some stages are no problem and then there's the occasional minimal situation where space or the shape of the space is a challenge.
  7. MIMike

    MIMike

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    I played a rig a few years back with a Eden D410XLT stacked on top of a Eden D115T. I turned the 115 on the bottom 90 degrees directly at the drummer. The 410 faced out toward the crowd ( and me) and provided most of the stage volume. Since I ran direct from my GK1001RB to the PA, I didn't need a ton of volume. The drummer loved the setup, and everyone on stage (and in the crowd) could hear the bass just fine.
  8. AdamR

    AdamR Supporting Member

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    Do you guys have your own PA ? Why not send a line to the PA and give him his own floor wedge ?
  9. BogeyBass

    BogeyBass

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    Turn it up if he cant hear you?
  10. ddnidd1

    ddnidd1 Supporting Member

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    And say 'screw it' to the overall band mix?
  11. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

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    I guess if you want to be part of the problem and not the solution, that's a good answer ;) Not always that simple. If he has a good volume for the house and turns it up because the drummer complains he can't hear, then it's no longer a good volume for the house.
  12. bertbass666

    bertbass666

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    Bass might not be directional but when I used a couple of 4x10s with rear ports our drummer kept complaining that all he could hear was bass, in fact he said that that was all he could hear at times and that it wasn't musical in that it was just bass and no notes. The problem vanished when I used front ported or un-ported cabs. So rear ported cabs may well not be the way to go. Sounded alright to me though.
  13. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

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    I guess I could understand that if the drummer is positioned closely behind the rear ported cabs and is getting smacked in the face by the ports while you play very loud. But very few people are listening to your cabs from behind ;)
  14. bertbass666

    bertbass666

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    Actually, our drummer is always in line with or in front of the backline and never behind the amps. I never heard it so can't comment but he was adamant that all he could hear was bass and not even his own drums on occasions and before anyone says it, the bass wasn't too loud. It was definitely the rear ports. Maybe it was just the venues but no rear ports, no problem.
  15. ricguy

    ricguy

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    From my experience a drummer will hear you better with a rear ported cabinet.
    I was in a similar situation as yours - drummer plays loud and complains he can't hear the bass when I have my front ported cabinets (Eden D-210t) on the gig. I bring my rear ported cabinet (Eden D-115t), drummer is happy.
    You can check this out yourself - go to a music store with a rear and front ported cabinet in stock. Have someone play through each cabinet while you put your ear to the back of the cabinet. Hear any difference? Of course you do. Because sound comes out of a port regardless of whether it's in the front, the rear, on the side or the bottom.
  16. bertbass666

    bertbass666

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    I think you miss-understand me. Un-ported or front ported and the drummer hears the bass perfectly. Rear ported and the bass is overpowering in the drum kit area. Same volume and same venues. I'm not disagreeing with anyone that bass in not directional and the guitarist on the other side of the stage and me, notice no difference. The drummer being by definition not that musically bright, although being a mine of information when it comes to bell ringing, medeval church music, steam trains and buses just says I can't hear anything but bass. It is probably because bass is not directional that he was having the problem. I have a trebly sound so that was not the problem, I think that the low bass that the ports reinforce was what he was hearing. Bass but with no definition.
  17. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

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    As long as you got it fixed, it's all good, but what cabs were you using and what did you switch to?
  18. Downunderwonder

    Downunderwonder

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    Tell him not to hit the drums so hard. Hitting them really hard make these really loud noises that make it hard to hear the other instruments.:bag:

    You didn't say if this is PA supported bass or not. Follow will33's advice. Adding another bass monitor should only be considered on a big stage with a huge PA.
  19. 5 Wire

    5 Wire

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    Yep. You can hear you? The others can hear you?
    Sounds like the drummers problem.
  20. BogeyBass

    BogeyBass

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    No...but the foundation for any band is the drums and bass, and if the drummer cant hear you than most the others probably cant.

    depends on how many players/ vocals you have.

    if its a simple band with one guitar vocal then yah turn the heck up
    if vocals and others start to complain then yah duh turn down.

    drums are usually the only acoustic instument or the only one without pa or amplifier on stage so the whole dam mix is set so everything can be heard over the drums.

    so in this case if you have a really loud drummer then duh...yah turn up your bass.

    or if your using a tiny little cab, not a very aggressive player
    you need to place the cabinet closer or higher up so the drummer can hear you.

    and yes again if he cant hear you... turn up

    usually the only people who complain about to much bass is vocals...and if they don't complain then turn up so the drummer does not.
    or if your a cry baby and dont like loud drums, then find a new drummer. good drummers are hard to find sounds like this is a good one so make him happy. Some people just get scared or not use to loud bass because it starts to shake the room and blooms a bit.

    maybe he just needs to get use to playing bass and adjusting his playing style to louder levels.
  21. coyote1

    coyote1

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    Mar 23, 2012
    I do the same, but opposite: the bottom 4x10 is pointed out into the room, while the top 4x10 points toward the band. Makes it more audible onstage, which allows lower overall stage level.

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