Bass loud onstage, weak offstage even with Schroeder...

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Scotius2001, Nov 20, 2005.

  1. Did a gig last night with my new Schroeder 1212, epi T210 on top driven by a PLX 3402 all on an elevated stage in a small sports bar with about 20 patrons. Started up our set and during the first tune, my bass player buddy in the crowd who was working our PA and getting vocals balanced motioned to me to turn up (this happened a couple of times). After a couple of adjustments, I was PUMPIN on stage, almost too much. I was thinking, this must sound awesome out in the room but after the show, my friend said I was barely audible out where he was maybe 20-30 feet away. Curious if others have experienced this especially with the Schroeders which I had thought had a strong throw. Was the stage possibly eating up the lows? Would a gramma help? Is there just no hope for bass in some rooms?
  2. Eric Moesle

    Eric Moesle

    Sep 21, 2001
    Columbus OH
    If there was a guy working the PA, why did he ask you to turn up instead of turning you up in the PA . . . that's part of what they're for. If you aren't running bass through the PA, then there lies your solution . . .
  3. Again, small sports bar. PA consisted of 2 flown 12"-2 ways. Bass in the PA wouldn't really have helped and for the room size, shouldn't have been necessary. With how loud and powerful I was on stage, I can't believe it was weak 20 feet away. Just wondering what kind of acoustic affect could cause this to happen...
  4. chaosMK


    May 26, 2005
    Albuquerque, NM
    Too much hip thrust
    High ceiling, or super long room?
  5. msquared


    Sep 19, 2004
    Kansas City
    Turn the "enhance" all the way off.

  6. Mcrelly


    Jun 16, 2003
    Minnesota, USA
    almost embarrassed to say, but I've only really played two rooms with more than the band listening. as far as I understand the problem could be a number of different things. I played one in a tall room (2 stories, old church w/balcony "u" shaped) My sound was thin out where the sound desk was, but I was also NOT NEAR A CORNER OR BACK WALL (my theory). in my other situation I'm in the middle of a long wall, bass sounds great on stage or in corners, but near the middle of the room, THIN.

    Finding nice mids that reveal your notes is part of the solution. I run 212's 1200w into 4 and I've given up trying to fill the 60ftx30ft room, the PA system has 215's, 118 and 208 on each side and that seems to be enough.

    In your situation you might really need 412 or 810, or 215's to do that room justice.

    my 212's trail off after about 10ft, at least the low bass does. if I can get the mids kinda round in tone then the thinner bass sounds o.k. at 10+ft.
  7. winston

    winston Supporting Member

    May 2, 2000
    East Bay, CA
    Are you sure the Epi and Schroeder are in phase with each other?
  8. cheezewiz

    cheezewiz Supporting Member

    Mar 27, 2002
    You didn't mention how you had your EQ set. If you had the classic "smiley face" running, that was your problem. Boost some mids. That's where your cut comes from. Back of the lows, which take all your power, and just translate to mud live.
  9. billfitzmaurice

    billfitzmaurice Commercial User

    Sep 15, 2004
    New Hampshire
    Owner, Bill Fitzmaurice Loudspeaker Design
    What happened was purely room derived, and quite rare, it's usually the other way around, with the bass too soft on stage, too loud out front.
    Yes, especially small rooms.
  10. One possibility: If your cab was sitting on a hollow stage you may have been hearing all of that boom and thinking it was making it out front. But all of that energy that your cab puts into the stage is energy that isn't making it out front. I use an Auralex gramma and it solved almost all of these problems. I play on some really boomy stages and this thing made a huge difference.

    Also, translating stage mix to the FOH sound requires some cooperation between the band and either a soundguy, or at least someone you have planted in the crowd to tell you how the balance is. I try to make a point of taking a quick breath after the first or second tune and asking how the mix is.
  11. tallboybass

    tallboybass Supporting Member

    Feb 25, 2003
    Tulsa, Oklahoma
    I had this happen too many times...that's why I sold my 1210.
  12. Thanks for all the input guys. I have a Gramma on the way and I'm going to see how that might help in situations like this. I WAS happy with my sound on stage so that was a factor here. I wasn't inclined to make any changes because it sounded so good to my ears. Not doing all that many gigs like the one in question so hopefully it won't be an issue much. If it ever is, I'll have to experiment with EQ compromises (never thought about the enhance control adjustment. Duh!)
  13. Petebass


    Dec 22, 2002
    QLD Australia
    As someone who has several very different bass rigs, I can assure you there are some rooms where every single one of them sounds like garbage.
  14. Folmeister

    Folmeister Knowledge is Good - Emile Faber Supporting Member

    May 7, 2003
    Tomball, Texas

    Some rooms just don't cooperate despite how much you invest in gear. Some rooms make you feel like a star. I played a small gig on Thursday with my DB750 and my Acme B2 and I was making the whole room throb (in a really good way). It is a great opportunity to rethink your stage sound, though. Work with the sound engineer to create a better house sound, and always ask to get put through the FOH. Let the guitars fight the room.
  15. I've seen that sometimes, especially with a raised stage. Seems like you lose that bass advantage to being on the floor, the bottom drops off when you get off the stage and the speaker is suddenly in the air.

    I've sometimes split my cabs up in that case, one on the floor in front of stage to act as FOH, and one cab on stage, tilted back to keep it pointing at my head. Works great with 2 identical cabs, but you'll have to decide which cab you want to listen to....

  16. While I've experienced that to some extent, I played a hole in the wall nowheresville bar a few weeks ago- that place just sucked up any kind of good tone. Cement floor, drywall walls, some paneling- dartboards... Drums sounded fine, guitars sounded fine, vocals sounded fine- it just ate up my bass.
  17. Larry Kaye

    Larry Kaye Retailer: Schroeder Cabinets

    Mar 23, 2000
    Cleveland, OH
    There are times when you think you're too "boomy" and you really aren't. My band was playing a couple of weeks ago in a room that was absolutely crappola +. boomy boomy boomy. So my usual first move is to cut the bottom end and turn up a little more. I run my mids only slightly cut so I brought them back to flat. Was also going through the PA. Now what happened was that I was hearing myself "better" (not in a good way however) and more from our PA than through my rig. I could barely hear myself onstage, Schroeder or not (1210 in this case). The two weeks before in good acoustic dampened room, this cabinet was ideal, but this one a couplea weeks ago was high ceiling, we were playing across a narrow oblong room, old banquet hall with rumble rumble rumble...sorry, I'm rumbling on here..

    The hint is to not turn down the lows. Our sound man has my tone adjusted to begin with allowing for a nice, balanced tone on stage, and that includes a flat low end, slightly cut mids, and boosted highs...With both my schroeder cabinets this is the "best" of both onstage and offstage sound But I learned you can't cut the lows and boost the volume. You need to boost the mids and boost your volume on stage so that you can hear yourself.

    As far as not going through the PA, which I haven't done until very recently, try as hard as you can to not cut the low end even if the room echoes and booms. Try boosting the low and mid mids and turn UP. not down. If you're not going through the PA, you have to adjust your volume and tone to the audience, and your bandmates (and you) will have to put up with whatever that takes. It might mean that you are overwhelmingly loud on stage. Tough gazadee's guys. If you want me to play quieter, then you have to. No one in the audience is complaining I'm too loud. My guitar player in one band I used to play with was bitchin' me out for being so loud he could hear himself (yeah, right!), So I asked three different musician friends, one a bass player whether I was too loud in the room or boomy. They said "absolutely not". I told the guitar player to either turn up more or turn himself up in the moniters....He was going through the PA and very rarely ever can hear himself because he's got a crapola stage amp. I don't...he better learn to spend or pay the consequences.

  18. I love it when everybody goes through the PA except the bass, and then they wonder why can't I turn down on stage to match their stage volume... Put me through the PA too, and I'll be happy to. :rollno: That's when the 2nd cab on the floor infront of the stage is good for a) simulating a little help from the PA, and b) makes a great stand for a stage monitor.

  19. Larry Kaye

    Larry Kaye Retailer: Schroeder Cabinets

    Mar 23, 2000
    Cleveland, OH
    If putting a cabinet or two out front, with/next to the PA is what will work, and you have a way of controlling the volumes of both the floor and stage cabinets separately, WHY NOT? It's definitely an outta the box, potential solution to the problem. Your soundman who represents everyone else in the band but the bassplayer :rollno: might not like it, but it's something he could get used to.

    There's a couple less obvious things to consider with this besides the more obvious extra investment and toll on your's or someone else's back. One...not only do you have to set the volumes different and you can't actually hear how loud you are from the speakers in front of you, you also may have to set the tone different. That means a separate set of tone controls are needed or if you have totally indepent channels on your preamp and can split the signal to two different power amps/or a stereo amp with enough power to do adequate damage,. again more money, shlepping, and hassle. will have to get a wireless if you don't have one now so that you can actually go out into the club both before and during the night to hear what you new concoction sounds like.

    I know you're not asking me, but personally if I had the money and the back to do exactly the above, I'd still much rather have total control over my sound whenever it's reasonable and practical to do so, from bringing my own small rig to musician's jam night, to playing the smallest to the largest club. The problem is that even with having a separate "bass PA" so to speak, you're not guaranteed in certain rooms that it's going to make you sound any better, clearer, punchier, or whatever it takes to get your sound across, just as there are no guarantees going or not going through the PA in these rooms is really gonna help. Also, the chances are, again, depending on the band's relationship with the sound people (your PA, you rent, you use a "real" professional sound company etc. etc.) you can expect some heavy resistance, probably the more professional they are.

    Ever look at the stage rig size of Victor Wooten, or Flea, or some of the top touring bassists? They got monster systems On STAGE, I guarantee you they have stage volume that will deafen even the least sensitive ears. AND they come through the PA.

    Why don't these guys put their own bass cabinets out front with the PA? Interesting concept huh?

  20. +1 DO NOT make rig decisions based on your experience in one room.