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Aphex 204 and/or Avalon U5

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by Munjibunga, Jul 4, 2002.


  1. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Total Hyper-Elite Member Gold Supporting Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
    Anybody using either of these? I know they're different things, but I'm intrigued by their hype. How about some feedback?
     
  2. JAUQO III-X

    JAUQO III-X Banned

    Jan 4, 2002
    CHICAGO,IL.
    Endorsing artist:see profile.
    This is from a thread I responed to a little over a week ago called Aphex vs BBE

    I have been using The aphex for years and it is part of my live rig.it is one of the best low frequency enhancers around. primarly used in the studio as an aid to compression and vise versa,what it does for me is it takes a 10 inche speaker and adds enough assistance to the speaker response to enhance the bass almost like turning it into a 15 but it will peak to a point not to cause your speakers not to distort or bust It makes a Low F# sound so much clearer and thicker and I use it to get the same results with Low C#.
     
  3. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Total Hyper-Elite Member Gold Supporting Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
    Jauqo ~

    Thanks for the reply. Now that you mention it, I did read your other post, which was helpful.

    I ended up buying an Avalon U5 today at the GC blowout sale (it wasn't being blown out, but they gave me a good price in all the excitement). I ran it into the auxiliary input of my WT-300 to bypass the preamp, and checked the six preset tone shapes on my Jazz FMT and Lakland 55-94. I initially set the basses' EQ flat to listen to the tone of the U5 itself, then used very minor on-board EQ to juice things up a bit. It's a very smooth-sounding preamp with very usable tones. Setting #2 has a deep gash in the mids, giving a tone with plenty of bottom and some high detail. Settings #4 and #5 give more mid bite, with #5 having the bottom rolled off quite a bit below 100 hz. I didn't run my fretless through it yet, but I think #5 is going to give it some real bark. Settings #1 and #3 are pretty balance across the frequency range and should be helpful on fretted cutting through the mix. Setting #6 rolls of the bass and the top. Kinda blah for bass.

    Overall, it's going to be a very useful tool, especially on gigs where I don't use a stage amp.
     
  4. JAUQO III-X

    JAUQO III-X Banned

    Jan 4, 2002
    CHICAGO,IL.
    Endorsing artist:see profile.
    Kool! what the Avalon does is totally different from the Aphex 204.as I've used the Avalon on sessions.like I discribed from my own personal applications with the Aphex 204 it is perfect for low end enhancement.
     
  5. Fuzzbass

    Fuzzbass P5 with overdrive Supporting Member

    I bit the bullet and got an Aphex 204. What Jauqo said is right on the mark (I also refer you to the review in the recent BassPlayer magazine). I have now used it at home and on a gig, therefore I can post a preliminary review.

    The "effect" is subtle. Well, it can be tweaked it so that it is less subtle, but I agree that it sounds best when not overused. I don't really know how to describe the sound... there doesn't seem to be a change in tone; I just hit the button and my rig seems to have more "girth", more clarity.

    The suggested settings in the manual work beautifully. The only trick to operating the 204 is making sure it's set to the right level (-10dBV or +4dBu), and then tweaking the drive knob of the Big Bottom so that it has enough signal to work with.

    Sometimes a Neville Brothers live album is played on our system between sets. I always wondered how to get that huge bass tone. Well, the Aphex 204 got my MTD 535 to sound very close using practically no EQ. Here's the signal path I used last night: Bass --> TC Electronic 1140 Preamp/EQ (with EQ bypassed) --> Rane DC-24 Dynamic Controller --> Aphex 204 --> Stewart power amp --> pair of Goliath Jr. III speaker cabs. I ran a simple mono signal through one channel of the 204. Depending on the song I made very slight adjustments to the EQ on the 535, but usually ran completely flat.

    Two possible caveats:

    1) Yes, even my wenge-necked 535 has a dead spot: near the C on the D string. The Aphex did not smooth that out... in fact it seemed to make it more noticable. However I do need to experiment more with the 204 settings, especially the Big Bottom; I may find a way to avoid this.

    2) By the end of last night we wound up playing even louder than usual, and my tone got a little mushy. However this might have nothing to do with the 204, it might simply be that I was pushing my speakers too hard (my rig has to do all of the work; no assistance from FOH). I'll be playing outdoors tonight and will bring my Goliath Sr. 6x10... I would like to think I won't be pushing *that* cabinet too hard. :eek:

    Preliminary conclusion: I'm happy with the 204. I can't yet agree with the BP reviewer who implied that once you try it you might not be able to live without it... I was still getting good tone without it! However once I set up the device and push the Process button, my rig sounds even better, so as of right now it seems to be a keeper.
     
  6. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Total Hyper-Elite Member Gold Supporting Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
    The more I futz with the U5, the more I like it. I can take one of the six tone presets and, with very minor on-board bass tweaking, get some great sounds out of the thing. However, like you said, I can still get fabulous tone out of my rig by itself. I got the U5 to go direct into the PA without a stage rig. Today I'm going to run the U5 directly into my Mackie SR 1530's to see how it sounds. More on this later (henceforth, MOTL).
     
  7. JAUQO III-X

    JAUQO III-X Banned

    Jan 4, 2002
    CHICAGO,IL.
    Endorsing artist:see profile.
    The best way to use the 204 and get the most out of it is to use it very suttle.if you already use a sizable amount of bottom you will have to smooth it out first from the amp then the Bass then apply the desired amount of assistance from the 204,and TBers lets not forget that the Aural Exciter and the Avalon are to different tools.
     
  8. Fuzzbass

    Fuzzbass P5 with overdrive Supporting Member

    I'm looking forward to the MOTL. I like the idea of the Avalon very much: extremely well built device which provides a number of easily accessible tone curves without a ton of unnecessary bells and whistles.
     
  9. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Total Hyper-Elite Member Gold Supporting Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego