Amps for EUBs?

Discussion in 'Electric Upright Basses (EUB's) [DB]' started by Josh Curry, Mar 23, 2005.

  1. Josh Curry

    Josh Curry

    May 29, 2003
    Frisco, TX
    For those solid body EUB players out there (NS Design especially), what amp do you use? I read a post in an article about certain amps not being good because of the tone coloration due to the fact that they are usually designed for electric bass.

    Does anyone use a non-bass amp? Like, say, a keyboard amp? Most can handle the range, and probably offer a flatter tone response than a bass amp. I have a few amps that I'm going to try once I get mine, I have an SWR Workings Man's 15, and a Roland KC 550. Both are really good amps.

    I'm also hoping that someone out there has used the Phil Jones Bass briefcase amp and can offer some advice on using one of those with an EUB, especially on battery power.
  2. lionel


    Sep 3, 2003
    Guadeloupe - FWI
    I use a swr workingman 12 with my ns cr5m and it sounds nice...
  3. mchildree

    mchildree Supporting Member

    Sep 4, 2000
    I used my Azola Bug II with a Phil Jones Briefcase on a gig last Saturday night. It sounded pretty good, but the Briefcase lacked the extra low-end punch I get from my AI Contra. Oddly enough, with URB, this extra low end isn't as desirable because you get it from the acoustics of the bass. The EUB needs it, however. You can get about an hour on battery power with no difference in tone, to my ears. Nice little unit if you don't need lots of volume.
  4. mje


    Aug 1, 2002
    Southeast Michigan
    I bought a friend's Clarus/ Euphonic Audio CXL-110 rig after hearing it with his Eminence and my Azola. Very Hi-Fi. I also have an ancient, beat-up G&K 200MB which is pretty good, given what I paid for it, although it's nowhere as HiFi as the oither rig.
  5. allthumbs


    Dec 30, 2004
    South Devon, UK
    I use a GKMB150-E with my NS upright and it sounds great. I have the GK extension cab as well, but I only use it occasionally for louder gigs which need a bit more grunt.

    I have used a Roland keyboard amp before, but it wasn't entirely successful. To my ears it had a very flat and "toppy" sound, but that maybe just because I had insufficient time to set it up properly.

    The whole "tonal colo(u)ration" thing is more a concern for players amplifying a URB and wanting to get the sound as close as possible to what you hear when the instrument is used entirely acoustically - which is a tall order anyway, and next to impossible if the amp is adding unwanted tones you can't dial out. It's not such an issue with the EUB, especially solid bodied models like the NS, as relatively little sound is produced by the body of the bass (in fact none at all in the case of the NS).

    I'd have thought an SWR Workingmans would sound fine - for authentic bottom end, I'd make my priority ditching the NS strings and subsituting some authentic DB strings instead. :)
  6. SteveC


    Nov 12, 2004
    North Dakota
    They don't make them any more, but the SWR Baby Blue - the old 2X8, not the new 1X10 - was great with my Azola.
  7. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member

    I think the cab is more important than the amp - so I use my Eden WT300 amp with an EA VL208 and it sounds great, very Hi Fi ! :)

    But if I use it with a Hartke 1 X 15 cab I have, it sounds nothing like as good! :meh:
  8. Passinwind

    Passinwind I Know Nothing Supporting Member

    I've tried quite a few amps and cabs with my solid BSX, and the iAmp 800 into a CxL-112 works the best for me, out of what I've tried. I liked the CxL-112 better than the VL-208, but I only tried the 208 briefly, and not with EUB. I liked the Fender Acoustasonic 30 and the SWR Strawberry Blonde acoustic guitar amps a lot as well. Some keyboard amps are pretty similar to those, IME. I agree with Bruce, the cab is the most critical link.

    Sometimes I want the EUB to sound electric though, for instance for hip-hop. The Mesa Walkabout Scout is great for that, IMO. I don't own one, so I use a big scary rack rig for that function.
  9. =^..^=


    Jan 25, 2001
    Stuck on a rock !
    I've used my NS with an Ashdown ABM 500 4*10, a MAG 250 with a single 15" (my regular pit amp) and with a bi-amped Ashdown RPM1 with 4*8 and 1*15.

    Worked fine with each of them.
  10. Mojo-Man

    Mojo-Man Supporting Member

    Feb 11, 2003
    Try a Mesa Walkabout Scout.
    Small size, One 12" speaker. sounds great.
  11. Josh Curry

    Josh Curry

    May 29, 2003
    Frisco, TX
    Do you think the Briefcase is worth $600? As far as small combo's go it's pretty expensive. Especially considering it doesn't even come with the battery, that's extra. I wouldn't expect a 5" driver to have much low end anyway though. Do you guys know of any other battery powered portable amps?
  12. mchildree

    mchildree Supporting Member

    Sep 4, 2000
    You wouldn't think that the 5" drivers wouldn't have much low end, I know....but you'd be really surprised at how full the Briefcase sounds. Considering that my AI Contra would cost over $1K new, and the Briefcase really sounds more natural and is a smaller unit (and built like a tank), yeah I think $600 is a fair price. I just sold mine to another TB'er for a bit less than that because my Contra is my old tried-n-true, a bit worn, and would be tough to sell. The batteries they use cost $25 or less, so that's not such a big deal in the scheme of things.

    Really, the amount of needed volume would be the determing factor. If you need to be really loud, the Briefcase wouldn't be for you. If you just want to get the same volume a moderately amplified URB would get, you'd be fine.
  13. ikareru


    Jan 8, 2002
    Ferndale, MI
    I run my Zeta Uprite thru a Kern/QSC/Eden 410 Xlt rig. I get lots of compliments on my tone, and it's very close to the sound I'm after. I've also run a few times thru a Demeter/QSC/MusicMan rig, and it also sounded excellent. I run pretty bottom heavy, going for a Dub/hiphop sound as opposed to the traditional upright sound, so YMMV.
  14. Josh Curry

    Josh Curry

    May 29, 2003
    Frisco, TX
    I guess I should be more specific and say that I'm looking for a nice combo for my EUB. I've got the big rig taken care of. I have full SWR and Ampeg setups.
  15. abaguer


    Nov 27, 2001
    Milford, NJ
    I just did a society gig where space was a consideration so I brought the Eminence bass with an Acme B1 and the Focus1. Rig sounded terrific.

    A friend of mine who has the NS bass is partial to an Eden W400 head and 1 or two 1x10s. I think they're old Bag Ends that were made custom for him.
  16. My two custom made EUB's and my 65 year old Kay acoustic upright are all eqquipped with a Fishman Full Circle pickup and a K&K Sound Bass Max pickup (for redundancy) . I use one of three amplifier/speaker combos with ALL my basss with excellent results.

    1. An Acoustic Image Clarus 2R with either one or two Acoustic Image Contra EX Extension Speakers.

    2. A Stewart World 1.2 Power Amp with either a Fishman Pro Platinum Pro EQ preamp OR a D-Tar Solstice preamp.

    3. A GK 150 MBs III combo amp with or without a GK 112 MBX
    Extension Speaker (depending on the size of the venue.)

    Bob McHenry
  17. bassisten


    Sep 15, 2004
    Bergen, Norway

    I've just purchased a Walter Woods Ultra amp, before that I used my Demeter HBP-1 and QSC-Audio slave amp for my NS cr5-m. Cabs used are 2 x 2x10" w. tweeters from Eden Electronics.
    The sound was very hi-fi, too much for my taste...

    I'll receive my WW amp in a couple of weeks, I'll get back by then. :bassist:
  18. jjq


    Mar 25, 2005
    So far I've only tried the Aria SWB through my Torque acoustic instrument combo, in the channel designed for piezo pickups, and it works very well. It's a 100w solid state full-range combo with a sealed and ported 1x12 + hf horn enclosure.

    Sometime I'll try it through my usual bass stack, which consists of Ashdown 4x8 and 1x15 ABM Mini-cabs, driven by either an Ashdown EVO II 300w solid-state head or a THD Flexi all-valve head.

    I'd predict the best results being through the full-range combo though as the other setup is really intended for magnetic pickups.

  19. nysbob


    Sep 14, 2003
    Cincinnati OH
    I play a 5 string Clevinger with a mag pickup through an old SVT & two JBL 15"s. That low B is awesome.
  20. mikjans


    Dec 17, 2003
    Uppsala, Sweden
    I just tried an AI Contra (older model) with my EUB and it was one of the best sounding amps I´ve ever used in the context I play in (big band). However, I found it a bit disappointing when I plugged in a bass guitar, and since I double a lot (the BG gets strapped on for many of my vocal numbers) I think I´ll still stick to my old rig - an old GK MB-200 amp and a 1x15 JBL extension cabinet - for the added punch that the AI didn´t really deliver. If I played DB or EUB exclusively, I think I´d settle for an AI, though.