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Auralex Gramma + Amp Stand for an apartment?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by MicG, Mar 1, 2014.

  1. MicG

    MicG Supporting Member

    Jan 2, 2006
    Garden City, Michigan
    So I've got a Mesa Walkabout scout that I really don't want to get rid of. I'm getting ready to move soon. I've read about a lot of guys getting noise complaints in apartments with anything bigger than a Roland Microcube, so I know I've got to be really judicious about this.

    I was wondering if using one of those Auralex Gramma pads along with an amp stand and some volume control would keep me out of hot water? Overkill? Would just the Gramma pad work?

    I'll be picking up a headphone amp real soon but like I said, I'd like to be able to still use the Mesa once in a while.

    Id appreciate some input on this
  2. Baird6869

    Baird6869 RIP Gord Downey. A True Canadian Icon. Supporting Member

    The Gramma should help but low bass frequencies are hard to control in an apartment/condo. You will still have to keep the volume way down.
  3. Steve


    Aug 10, 2001
    I always thought it was more important that I not be "that neighbor" and just used headphones. Plus, with the right headphone, you can get louder than#$%^ if you want. If someone was on top of me, I wouldn't use an amp unless I knew they were gone. Probably not an option if you live in a big complex with people on all 6 sides of you.
  4. Ewo

    Ewo a/k/a Steve Cooper Supporting Member

    Apr 2, 2008
    Huntington WV
    I've had a Gramma for a couple years and it does seem to help reduce the cab's coupling with the floor. That's what it's designed to do. Won't keep sound waves from making it through walls, though.
  5. TomB

    TomB Supporting Member

    Aug 24, 2007
    ...headphones. Solves the whole problem and hones your studio chops as well.
  6. experimental bassist

    experimental bassist

    Mar 15, 2009
    Any bass amp is going to be too much for an apartment.

    A decent set of headphones is really the right answer.
  7. MicG

    MicG Supporting Member

    Jan 2, 2006
    Garden City, Michigan
    So it sounds to me like I may have no choice but to ditch the amp. I can't afford to have that much money tied up in such a nice amp that I can't use :(

    I've got a nice pair of Beyerdynamic DT770 Pro's that I've been using for silent practice at night.
  8. thefunkgorilla


    Mar 26, 2013
    I live in an apartment and have for two years with zero complaints. I live in a nice complex in a good section of Atlanta. I use a bass amp daily to practice and teach. I've been using my Mesa prodigy for 6 weeks, I've used a few different heads since I've live here, all with a 115 sealed Carvin MB ext cab.I do a few things:

    One- I place my practice amp three feet off the floor on a table with four spindle legs to reduce coupling with the floor and get it close to my head/ears. I think the sealed cab also helps to cut the very low boomy frequencies that tend to travel through walls the worst.

    Two - I roll the low end back and boost the low mids a little extra. The helps me to hear and reduces the boom through the walls.

    Three- I sit close to the amp, on a stool, and I keep the volume as low as I can to hear myself and still get the benefits of keeping my touch sharp on the amp.

    Four- Before 10 am and after 9 pm I use headphones.

    Five- All my neighbors that I am acquainted with always get a show flyer and are on my guest list at local shows.

    These options may be cheaper than buying an expensive pad and stand, especially if you can get a thrift store table and barstool for 5-10 bucks each. Most any amp should adapt(SVT on an 810 would be a stretch) as long as you roll off the lows, keep it close to your ears with low volume and practice at reasonable hours.

    Your results may vary widely. Peace.
  9. Dr McCoy

    Dr McCoy

    Jan 17, 2014
    Greensboro, NC
    When I lived in an apartment, I was on the bottom floor. During the day I could could play through my amp. The complex had a noise policy. No noise between 11pm-8am. However I could hear everything the neighbors above me did. I knew what time they got up and went to work. I knew what problems they had in the relationship. I knew what television programming they watched all before I met them. Once I met them I asked if they ever heard me play and they said only if they were outside on their porch.

    Long winded story just to say you might be okay on the bottom floor with reasonable volume control. On the top floor you may get complaints just for going to work. If the apartments have a noise policy such as the one I lived in did, not saying it's right you could play during those hours and not have to worry.

    I used an ampeg head with a 1x15 then.
  10. Ukiah Bass

    Ukiah Bass Supporting Member

    May 10, 2006
    Use a good pair of custom-molded IEMs. You will hear yourself as loud as you want. And you won't hear anything said or done by the neighbors.
  11. MicG

    MicG Supporting Member

    Jan 2, 2006
    Garden City, Michigan
    So it sounds like I need to consider the 3 leaf audio enabler or Cafe Walter for a decent headphone amp. While we're at it - does anyone have any recommendations or do they all basically do the job?
  12. svtb15

    svtb15 Commercial User

    Mar 22, 2004
    Austin,TX - McKinney,TX - NY,NY, - Nashville,TN
    I play it all. Whatever works for the gig
    Headphones is what you want if you are in an apartment.. ... even in my home i use IEMs by westone.. Just more consistent. And i dont annoy my family or dog.. .
  13. experimental bassist

    experimental bassist

    Mar 15, 2009
    Agreed, I practice in the basement of our house and I usually still use a simple but effective pair of AKG K44 headphones so I don't annoy everyone else. Bass can really carry, especially in the quiet evenings.

    OP I can't recommend a dedicated headphone amp myself, I just run them out of the headphone jack of one of my practice amps.
  14. I use my Auralex GRAMMA all the time! Especially on stage. Makes an astoundingly HUGE sonic difference. Want to tighten up your sound? Pile your cabs on your GRAMMA.
  15. PrietoBass

    PrietoBass How does he do that?

    Apr 16, 2009
    All is not lost. Depending on the apartment complex and lease, there are certain hours where you could turn up the volume some without being overbearing (let the "Golden Rule" guide you). Also, you may be able to rent a storage/enclosed-garage unit and play there?

    You may consider renting a house instead of an apartment; in this market depending on where you live it's possible to find homes for rent for less than $800/mo.

    I hope you find a solution that works for you.
  16. beans-on-toast

    beans-on-toast Supporting Member

    Aug 7, 2008
    Bass carries. These days some leases specify that sub woofers are verboten. If you can get the speaker cab close to ear level, you will be able to play at a much lower level.
  17. MicG

    MicG Supporting Member

    Jan 2, 2006
    Garden City, Michigan
    Thanks everybody, anyone else got ideas?
  18. Move somewhere else instead, rent a studio, quit playing?

    Seriously - using anything other than headphones/earbuds in apartments is begging for trouble.
  19. seamonkey


    Aug 6, 2004
    Get a small mixer with headphone jack. Take the line out of the walkabout into the mixer.
  20. MicG

    MicG Supporting Member

    Jan 2, 2006
    Garden City, Michigan
    I looked into doing that but had read somewhere else that the head still needs a speaker load to function; the DI out is only an option if the head is still plugged into the speaker.