Indie builders...who wants to build the world's greatest bass cab sim?

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by JimmyM, Dec 29, 2013.


  1. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

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    I have very specific wants for a bass cab simulator, but unfortunately, nothing on the market currently is hitting my buttons, and I'll tell you why...

    I only want the sim to go through the DI line, not my amp line. Every time I have a cab sim through my amp, the sound in my amp darkens up. And the currently available cab sims are either unsuited for bass, or they don't have flat response, or they're attached to pedals that do other things that I don't want.

    I use a REDDI, and it's very important to me that its magic sound isn't touched in any way, shape or form, except of course a high end rolloff similar to an 810e. The Palmer PDI09 was almost acceptable, but looking at freq charts posted here, it's got a hump centered at about 250 hz. Might be small potatoes in the grand scheme of things, but I don't want it.

    I know I can't be the only one who wants this, so I'm posting it here for commentary. So here's what I want out of a cab sim, and if any indie builders are interested in making this for me, please contact me either in this thread or a PM. And if it can't be done, please let me know where I'm going wrong. But I'll be happy to pay reasonable money to get this thing built, and I believe you'll sell it to way more than just me. Here are the requirements:

    ---Must have balanced XLR ins and outs. Combo jacks are OK, as are additional jacks, but I really only want this in my DI line and I'd rather not have to pay for additional ins and outs that I won't use.

    ---A simulation of the 5k rolloff you get with a Heritage 810e or a flatback SVT 810 with CTS alnicos. Close approximations are good enough, but I don't want a brick wall LPF that hits 5k and stops. Optionally, it can have a low end rolloff similar to the 810e, but if it does, I'd like them able to be switched on and off independently, as I find the highs are always more troublesome than the lows. Soundmen will almost always grab the troublesome lows but are sometimes hesitant to grab the highs, even when I tell them I don't want them.

    ---Other than the aforementioned rolloffs, it must not interfere with the DI in any other way. No compression, no EQ curves that the builder might like, etc. All I want is my REDDI with the highs rolled off similar to a Heritage 810e or flatback (optionally the lows too) but otherwise flat response.

    ---Passive or active is fine, but if it can be done passive, that would be better for me since I'd rather not mess with a power supply.

    ---On-off switches might be desirable, but doesn't have to be footswitchable since it'll sit on my amp. A footswitch is OK, however, for me, the smaller, the better.

    Thanks for reading!
  2. bongomania

    bongomania Gold Supporting Member

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    Have you asked Max at [sfx]? He'd be my first call for this sort of thing.
  3. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

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    Thought of sfx but he's in England, isn't he?
  4. father of fires

    father of fires Supporting Member

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    Jimmy...you may remember I was doing a project like this some time ago. I'll post some info later when I get home.
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  6. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

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    Please do! I vaguely remember it but that was a while ago.
  7. FretNoMore

    FretNoMore * Cooking with GAS * Supporting Member

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    Make it with the toggles recessed or on the jacks' sides, so it's a flat pack, and I'm interested.
  8. MAMMOTHvolume

    MAMMOTHvolume

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    the palmer in the bright mode kinda looks like the 810 response. What issue are you having with the sound out front?
  9. father of fires

    father of fires Supporting Member

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    Ok here is some information on a project I started a while back. The idea was for an all passive bass DI that had an 8x10 cab sim in it. like a JDI or Palmer made for bass. It could be run either from the amp out, the line out, DI out, or from the pedal board (after a decent buffer).

    I had a buddy who worked for a big fancy speaker company who offered to run tests on amps to get some frequency responses but I didn't have access to an ideal SVT rig.

    I did find this website:

    http://www.hexeguitar.com/diy-cabsims_e

    That had a link to this 8x10 frequency response:

    http://www.hexeguitar.com/graph/PX4D_CLS8x10_Bass.gif

    I used this as my model and came up with this circuit as a passive cab sim:

    [​IMG]

    I had the idea to make the LPF, HPF, and Mid Cut switchable. Here is the response at different setting:

    HPF Off:

    [​IMG]

    Mid Cut Off:

    [​IMG]

    LPF Off:

    [​IMG]

    All filters off (Less than 3dB dip at 3kHz and 20kHz):

    [​IMG]

    Since each switch was independent you could combine the filters in any way you wanted.

    I also looked at switchable caps and such for altering the response to different types of cabs.

    I was really excited about this design. I found a supplier for the inductors (not easy) and then I started prototyping.

    Sadly, after a lot of planning I found the sound was too dark for my taste. The midcut and lpf made little difference if on or not. The HPF did tighten the lowend up nicely and I have continued working with that part of the circuit. Either my design was way off or just applying the 8x10 frequency response to my signal wasn't the whole picture.

    I stopped working on the project about the time I sold my tube amp. I started using a BDDI again and after many years of designing and building circuits. I have a much greater appreciation for that little box.

    I never completed the final prototype because I could never settle on reasonably priced transformers. I also had concerns about wattage ratings which is a little over my head.

    The final nail in the coffin was the fact that I realized that my bass tone is more than just the clean signal into a cabinet. Amps themselves add so much needed character to the bass signal. I looked at adding bass and treble controls but that moved it towards being an active devise where the trouble of using passive high order filters becomes harder to justify.

    I also picked up an H&K Red Box which sounds pretty decent (with headphones at least) so I have no real desire to finish this project at this time.
  10. jimfist

    jimfist Supporting Member

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    following this thread...

    if you've followed some of my responses to other threads, you can tell that I'm an advocate for using impulse response technology as a remedy to the age-old problems that surround bassists who want a really good bass cabinet tone in live situations, taking advantage of the convenience of DI to FOH.

    IMHO there is a real opportunity for a product that effectively performs the task of cabinet emulations, and placed after the bass amps preamp (or similarly out of a bass head's direct line out), and without delving into taking the signal from a load box at the speaker output.

    With respect to Jimmy's OP, it seems to me that a 2 Notes Torpedo C.A.B. is close to what you are looking for. Perhaps the only thing missing in your specific case would be a custom IR, captured to suit your own specifications and taste in cabinet(s), mic (or multi mic) placement, and mic preamp (how about a vintage Neve?). You'd just need to find an engineer and a studio that has the software and knowledge that would allow you to get the impulse response .wav file, which then would be loaded into the 2 Notes device. With its software editor, you could then choose to further customize that IR with power amp modeling, or blend it with other stock cabinets found in the 2 Notes, if you so desire.

    Other gear like the AxefxII and Kemper Profiling Amp are more expensive and all-encompassing preamp that allow you to capture cabinet tone profiles along with built in amp modeling and effects. I've been using the Axefx for a while and have used it to replace my SVT CL tube head and effects stomps/rack devices. To use the KPA or Axefx for the sole duty of cabinet emulation would be an excellent albeit overkill solution to the task, but nonetheless a viable pro option.

    Thus, IMHO, if a $250-300 pedal/box version of the 2notes CAB existed, I'd already be on board. I suppose a used C.A.B. would work... I see a lot of products circling around this market, but nothing yet that hits the mark on all counts (function vs quality vs cost).
  11. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

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    More of an issue in my amp. When I use a highs cut going to the house, I sound fine, but in my amp it darkens the tone up more than I'd like. I've asked soundmen to cut highs in the house before, and some do and some don't.

    Father, what you had going on there looks very cool, even though it didn't work out for you! However, it does look like you might not have given yourself enough high cut. From the graph of the 810e you showed, it shuts everything past 10k completely down and yours will hit 20k, albeit at several db down. And yes, I do really dig the way Tech 21 does their cab sims, and if they made a pedal with only it on it and not the compression it adds, I'd be all over it. Thank you for sharing your work!

    jimfist, the CAB is expensive, yes, but I have no real prejudice against impulse modeling. Would really like to try it before shelling out, but that's probably not going to happen.
  12. jumblemind

    jumblemind I also answer to Bryan Supporting Member

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    Agree. I may be wrong, but I think the blend on the VT Bass DI is the answer to that, or at least the compromise. With the blend at noon, I don't find the compression to be an issue. The blend actually "fixes" a lot of the little things that nagged me about the VT Bass and Deluxe...neither of which I ever owned, just going on available clips and research.
  13. yaksonator

    yaksonator Supporting Member

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    Subbed... very intriguing!
  14. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

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    Oh yeah? Does the blend side still get the cab sim?
  15. jumblemind

    jumblemind I also answer to Bryan Supporting Member

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    As far as I can tell the cab sim is part of the "effect" of the pedal, so blend at noon would mean the sim is reduced to 50%. I'm assuming at that point the clean bass signal being dialed in is not getting the sim, then, but that's just going on what I hear (or you know, think I hear). One of the VT Bass DI threads would be a better place to ask that, as Tech 21 has been pretty active in those.
  16. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

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    Ah, that would make more sense for it not to be on the clean side. I wonder if it could be modded, though...

    I think I should contact Mike Putnam about this. He does great mods.
  17. aledeville

    aledeville

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    This thread somehow intrigues me to try my Palmer PDI-05 after my preamps DI. I never really came up with the idea to put a cabsim in the normal signal chain of the DI. Might do this in the next few days.

    I once looked at the response of the PDI-05, in the normal mode this is what I got.
    [​IMG]

    This is with the deep/mellow setting, but back then I somehow felt that it would take too much edge away. But I didn't test it after my preamp, just at home with some pedals.
    [​IMG]

    Then I remembered caeman's brickwall filter from sfx. If this is doable, other things might be too...

    I'd love to have a transparent non-sounding cabsim. One that optimises my signal for the PA and not an exact copy of a special cab with a strongly coloring sound.
  18. FretNoMore

    FretNoMore * Cooking with GAS * Supporting Member

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    I would think it would be a simple thing to replace the brickwall in the Screaminator with a less steep filter.
  19. MAMMOTHvolume

    MAMMOTHvolume

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    have you tried running two separate paths? running a cab sim into an amp wouldn't have desirable results
  20. bongomania

    bongomania Gold Supporting Member

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    That is exactly what he specified in the first post.
  21. johnbegone

    johnbegone Supporting Member

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    Same thing I thought, why not divide up your signal, A side goes straight to amp, B side goes straight to cab sim and off to the house. I thought of doing that when I was using the VT Deluxe's DI for my house sound, but it was also going to my amp, so I had to make some radical EQ moves on the amp to make my cab sound alright.

    EDIT: After thinking about it, I'm pretty sure this is what you want, too, you're just not happy with any of the cab sims available, right? If so, 10-4, got it, over and out.

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