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30 Hz and 15 kHz To cut or not to cut?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Argento1980, Nov 8, 2013.

  1. Argento1980


    Oct 5, 2012
    There isn't much energy in a bass guitar at this low and high frequency and some engineers simply apply high and low pass filtering.
    I have these two frequencies on my Trace Elliot AH-1200 amp and have tried taking them out completely.
    I think the 30 Hz rumble taken out sounds cleaner and less boomy but I'm not 100% sure whether to remove the 15 KHz frequency 'cause it takes away some of the brightness, albeit hardly noticeable especially when compared to other treble frequencies such as the 5 KHz.

    So, I was curious as to what other bassists do with these frequencies, if at all they have them on their amps because these are quite extreme frequencies!

    One last thing about the 15 kHz. One could argue that by taking it out, since it's practically beyond the range of a bass guitar and more belonging to things like cymbals, that by taking it out, one is making space for cymbals in the mix.
    Conversely, low frequencies are usually filtered out on cymbals, so even though one may lose a bit of 'shine' on the bass by taking the 15 kHz frequency out, it helps to separate the different instruments in the mix to make each one present and clear instead of the mix sounding muddy.

    I think that's all for now. Looking forward to your opinions! :hyper:
  2. AdamR


    Sep 24, 2007
    Bethel CT
    Endorsing Artist: VF Cables, Dirtbag Clothing
    I cut below 100HZ (leave it for the kick) and leave the highest range flat.
  3. Jim Carr

    Jim Carr Dr. Jim Gold Supporting Member

    Jan 21, 2006
    Denton, TX or Kailua, HI
    fEARful Kool-Aid dispensing liberal academic card-carrying union member Musicians Local 72-147
    Few adult musicians can hear anything above 14khz. Really.
  4. FretNoMore

    FretNoMore * Cooking with GAS *

    Jan 25, 2002
    The frozen north
    I use an Sfx sound micro Thumpinator to cut rumble below 30 Hz but leave the rest flat. When using an overdrive pedal I may use an EQ on the pedalboard to tame the high end a bit though, to get rid of some of the fizz the drive pedal adds.
  5. Mr. Foxen

    Mr. Foxen Commercial User

    Jul 24, 2009
    Bristol, UK
    Amp tinkerer at Ampstack
    Depends on your cab, can cut the lows higher if you cab doesn't do them. ditto with highs, but might find your ear is the limiting feature there, a poll of musicians hearing range tests would be interesting.
  6. CL400Peavey

    CL400Peavey Supporting Member

    Nov 7, 2011
    Grand Rapids Michigan

    The vast majority of cabs dont product those frequencies anyways.
  7. FretNoMore

    FretNoMore * Cooking with GAS *

    Jan 25, 2002
    The frozen north
    The PA may though, so it's interesting in terms of what gets sent to your DI.
  8. I don't believe in graphic EQ's on bass amps. One thing people fail to realize is those frequencies are the "center" frequency with the frequencies above and below the center still affected depending on how sharp the slope is. In the "old days" it was a necessary evil for high power PA systems that required extreme care in usage. JIMO they are a toy on an instrument amp best left on cheap stereo gear to "look pro". YMMV :)

    The complete opposite of the people looking for flat response I guess, accepting hidden peaks and valleys in between those "center" frequencies? To each their own. :)
  9. I use the 80Hz roll off on the input of my preamp. REALLY cleans up the bottom.
  10. FretNoMore

    FretNoMore * Cooking with GAS *

    Jan 25, 2002
    The frozen north
    I would say it's as interesting, if not more so, what the audience can hear.
    Maybe their hearing is not as damaged as the musicians'. ;)

    I have had the distinct non-pleasure to hear what aome sound guys think is good sound. I do suspect they have blasted their own ears to kingdom come, and thus dial in a sound that they may think is OK but hurts everyone else's ears.
  11. will33


    May 22, 2006
    Pretty much my entire bass tone is contained 50-5000hz, and that's being generous. The 50 is fairly reduced, that's for the bass drum. Full spl probably more like 80-4000 with some bumps and dips along the way.
  12. lexington125


    Sep 11, 2013
    hollywood, baby......
    someday I will find 4 or 5 other guys who want to play the blues the way it was played before it became all about guitar heroics
    Agree completely. The graphic was the only feature of my old Mesa Bass 400 that I did not like. For many years I carried a D180 as a backup and I always wished my 400 had the D180 front end.
  13. chaosMK


    May 26, 2005
    Albuquerque, NM
    Hi-fi into an old tube amp
    I always cut my lows and the highest highs using the GEQ on my 400/D180. Not too worried about 30Hz! Not too worried about much below 100Hz but I wouldnt cut that out completely, just keep it restrained and let the Master vol kind of fill in. My PH cabs are boomy on the low lows.

    You mean the Channel 1/guitar channel with that filter?

    400 and a D180... I like your thinking. I like the tone of the D180 slightly better but I use my 400 primarily since it's 6550 loaded. May one day fullfil my dream of a monster rig with both, slaving the 400. I need a gig that loud and maybe an 8x10 for the 400 to drive so I put a giant rack case with the two heads on top of my 4x10.
  14. cut
  15. Sid Fang

    Sid Fang Reformed Fusion Player Supporting Member

    Jun 12, 2008
    It's not only that the subsonic component isn't musically useful. It also sucks disproportionate power from your amp. The real question is whether that "30Hz" band is actually so wide as to attenuate frequencies up around 80-100Hz, where the real work starts being done.
  16. which is why I question the practicality of a "hi fi" bass cabinet, and cabs that can go down to 30hz. For sure, it is an improvement to have 80 to 6K as flat as possible, but above and beneath that is lost in live situations.
  17. Jim Carr

    Jim Carr Dr. Jim Gold Supporting Member

    Jan 21, 2006
    Denton, TX or Kailua, HI
    fEARful Kool-Aid dispensing liberal academic card-carrying union member Musicians Local 72-147
    I used to feel this way, and have lots of practical experience and a pretty good understanding of analog and digital filters.

    You're right that the cheap GEQ filters found on many pre-amps/pedals have bands that widen and overlap at higher or lower amplitudes than desirable, leaving peaks and valleys. Plus in terms of noise, they are not of studio or lab quality.

    However, I find the GEQ on my Mesa M9 to be very very useful, especially with a fEARful 15/6/1. It is the main feature, besides its tons of clean power, that I love about the amp. My evaluation of the equalizer is based on studio and live use. Bottom line is that it sounds good. I can get the tones I need with diverse instruments, and increase the flexibility of each instrument's tonal pallet. :D

    My ears tell me that it works. :cool: For cutting at 30hz, we have the fdeck ver. 3.
  18. As I said YMMV :cool:. Even Mesa gives this warning in the manual of the M9: "However, the Equalizer is a capable of producing extreme amounts of cut
    and boost and therefore makes it a dangerous tool in the wrong hands. It is
    easy to abuse the shaping power and create sounds that are unbalanced
    and have “big holes” in the response. The Graphic is best applied with taste
    and care to “fill in” or add spice to an already balanced sound and you will
    find it a great resource when used in this manner."

    The fdeck is an excellent idea as it is a HPF not a bandpass. :)
  19. Fuzzbass

    Fuzzbass P5 with overdrive Supporting Member

    I play BEADG five string, and detune it a half-step in the band I gig with most... they play a lot of modern rock that goes below low E. Even so, I use sealed cabs that begin rolling off above 40Hz.

    Low B fundamental on the five string is 30Hz, but the 2nd harmonic is 60Hz and additional harmonics go up from there. So, those lowest notes sound great even when the fundamental is weak or missing.

    To sum up, I agree with you. The low frequencies can [DEL]sound[/DEL] feel good, but can be messy, especially onstage. Soundmen tend not to like them because they interfere with the lows coming from the PA. Finally, those low lows eat a lot of amp headroom, so trimming them can be a very good idea.
  20. AdamR


    Sep 24, 2007
    Bethel CT
    Endorsing Artist: VF Cables, Dirtbag Clothing
    The 80HZ roll off is why I love my 800RB. With the seal 810 its even better, Nice and clear.