Better to look stupid on the internet than in real life right? I bet you've heard this story 1,000 times before. I was a solid state player with all hartke gear... well... up until last week. For years... 6 years at this point... i only learned enough about rigs and such to make essentially amplified noise. However, last week my amp finally won the war with my cab and started eating myspeakers. This was an omen. This also pushed me through my denial stage. My tone is awful and i cannot figure out the constant clipping problem. (besides it being inaudible... or off... when it didn't clip.. ) So i decided I'm going to stop lollipoppin' around and take a loan out to finance some gear. Amazingly, gear was the easy part. I've decided on the fender bassman 300, all tube and such with a ampeg 4x10 cab. BUT, here's my sucka n00b questions: active vs. passive inputs? under what circumstances do you use each one? Active input for active pickups i guess? (I play a stingray MM with 9V onboard power, and a vintage epiphone without) AND Effects loops? (pre amp send and effects returns?) Not even sure how they work. I only use a digitech multi-effect, (it has one voice on it that i need for one song, otherwise it's bypassed) boss-bass (ODB-3) overdrive, and the boss limiter/enhancer, (which i might get rid of with this new amp) that i have intercepting a direct signal from bass to amp. (which could have been my clipping problem before) I'd appreciate some input so after 6 years of playing, i can shed my novice status.