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Bass rig setup for a new metal player...

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by GhostSong, Mar 29, 2015.

  1. GhostSong


    Mar 29, 2015
    I am new here, just been googling "METAL BASS RIG" setups and i see you guys give excellent advice and seem to love helping people out, so i figured i'd sign up and before i make any serious purchases i get some good advice from you guys =)


    Right now I come from an electronica background as a Guitar player. I'm recently invited into a metal band as a bass player however I'm looking at completely starting from scratch and starting a new rig. Eyes Set To Kill is my favorite band and I respect Anissa as a bass player...with that said i've done some research over the past few weeks and also played a few different amps...


    I play a few, but I'm gonna be playing metal as a jazz bass player...most likely will add some passive EMG's to my guitar soon. I also have a Hoppus bass and an old 80's P-bass...still feel the jazz is most comfortable, and i like having good tone in the mids...will rely on EQ for my low ends.

    AMPS/Rig setup:

    Never really had a rig as a bassist so this is where I'll need your help. I think I want to go the preamp/power amp route, and I absolutely LOVE the Peavey Tour-700 that i played. I want this to be a part of the rig and build from there.

    No idea what cab(s) to get and no idea what to use as a pre-amp (assuming the tour 700 will be my power). Haven't seen anyone comment on using an SVT 3 Pro / Peavey 700 combination as pre/power but can you guys suggest anything to complete my rig?

    I'm fairly open minded and will consider almost anything. Just need to decide on what Pre amps and what cabs will be able to handle the rigs you guys recommend. Thank you guys :)

    A friend of mine who tours in a Rise band told me a sonic maximizer will be a waste of money...comments/concerns about that as well plz :) I'd like a simple but effective setup...as I've noticed that some of the best metal bass players have rather simple rigs, and not nearly as expensive as the setups guitar players build (which i found to be pretty shocking honestly...)
  2. You didn't state what guitar amps you will be up against or how loud you expect to be playing so your questions are a bit hard to answer so I will try to cover both ends of the spectrum here.
    Both the tour 700 and the SVT Pro 3 have their own pre amps built in. Running the two together is unnecessary. Either one by itself will be more than adequate. You can vary the tone in either one by tweeking the master and volume controls. If you want clean sound , crank the masters and adjust the volume for your needs. If you want some dirt , crank the volume and adjust the master for that. Over and above that , one pedal for some added dirt should be all you really need.
    As to your cab needs , you are probably going to need a fairly loud cab. If you want really low and a bit boomy , the Ampeg 4 10 hlf vented cab will do the job. If you want low and boomy and really loud , get two of them. If you want a tighter sound , The ampeg 4 10 he is the way to go. If you need really loud in that configuration go with an 8 10.
    There are dozens of other cabs that will work with this combination but since I don't have personal experience with other stuff , I won't try to comment on them. Hopefully there will be plenty of other people chime in on this with other options. I am aware of other lighter options but they tend to get a bit pricey and again , I don't have personal experience with them either.
    As to the sonic maximizer , I agree with your guitar player. Unnecessary. Good luck.
    Oh and one more thing. This thread should probably have gone in the amps rather than set up columns. Be prepared for one of the moderators to move it there.
  3. cfsporn


    Aug 20, 2011
    New York City
    What is your budget and what kind of tone are you looking for? How many guitarists are in your band? What tuning do you play in? How loud do you all get?

    Sorry to ask so many questions, but they are important.
  4. Jim Carr

    Jim Carr Dr. Jim Gold Supporting Member

    Jan 21, 2006
    Denton, TX or Kailua, HI
    fEARful Kool-Aid dispensing liberal academic card-carrying union member Musicians Local 72-147
    You don't need a pre-amp with the Peavey Tour-700. Nice amp. Read the manual.


    Budget for speaker cabinet(s)? Probably a good idea to have at least a 215 rig with eminence 3015LF drivers. I'm thinking a fEARful 15/6/1 + 15sub or even a 1515/66.
  5. bolophonic


    Dec 10, 2009
    Durham, NC
    I found the Ampeg 4x10" to be more boomy than I liked, when I was in my last metal band. I switched to a Hartke 15" cab and really enjoyed the clarity. You will probably need to try out a few different cabs before you know which one is right for you, based on how many guitarists you have, what they play through, what the drummer is doing, etc.
  6. gpx1200


    Apr 24, 2013
    spencer mass
    for me the ideal full blast blow your face off metal rig would be GK rb2001 and 2x fearful 1212/6/1 cabs.
    but what I achuly use is a GK mb800 and 1x fearful 1212/6/1 witch can still blow your face off.
    for an off the shelf rig id go with GKmb800 or mb800 fusion if you like a tube preamp or rb700 or rb1001+ 1x gkneo 410+ 1x gk neo 212, although some will tell you if you mix drivers you will burn forever in a firey hell of phasing ishues I have not had problems after many years of mixing cabs.
    yes I love gk gear but I have tried the others as well for me in a metal mix the cutting punchy tone that gk provides is perfect.
  7. GhostSong


    Mar 29, 2015
    i have a decent budget but i don't want to overspend, because like i said, i know a few bands on the pro level that have bassists that are using rather affordable rigs.

    I'm looking for a really gritty metal tone is a good example (sorry if you're not a fan of the band but if you could give the bass a listen)

    I have a hartke cab (VX215) but not sure if that's the best cab to use...i have the money to upgrade to something better, but i'd like to keep the cab at a max of $1000 if possible.

    There is 2 guitarrists, one drummer me the only bass. not sure if they're adding a keyboardist or not.

    silly question about the youtube video i posted...she has a rig with quite a few electronics up there...i don't think she's using pre/power combo as i can clearly see the peavey 700 tour, but what else does she use to get that gritty tube sounding tone?

    And you're saying I don't need a pre amp with the peavey 700 tour right? what else can i add to the mix to get a versatile metal sound then? I do have a bass overdrive pedal (BOSS OVERDRIVE ODB-3 and BOSS Chromatic Tuner pedal)

    thanks for all the help so far guys. i can afford pre-power if i need it. i'm not 100% set on the peavey 700 tour, but like i said, estk uses it and that's kinda the direction i'd like to head in...
  8. Dave W

    Dave W

    Mar 1, 2007
    White Plains
    It's pretty hard to see in the video. At the top is definitely a power conditioner and the bottom is the Peavey, but other than that I can't tell. I'll guess that she's got a compressor and a wireless and something else.
    She's also got a few pedals on the ground. Looks like a Boss TU-2/3 and an OBD-3.
    She's playing EBMM basses which can be pretty nasty, and she's playing with a pick.

    Correct. It's a rack head, not just a power amp.

    Here's my advice (as somebody who has a TON of gear): Start off simple. Bass, head, cab. Go to a local store and try out as much gear as you can to get a feel for the different tones offered by different manufacturers. Whatever you buy, try it out for a while and see what you think is lacking and can be improved. You may find out the answer to that is nothing.
    I would not throw a ton of money into a ton of stuff only to find out that it's not what you want or that's it's too complicated or whatever...

    I'm a metal player. I play a J bass and Stingray into a tube head. That's my basic tone that I use 95% of the time.
  9. mpdd

    mpdd neoconceptualist

    Mar 24, 2010
    i think it comes down to this:
    if you want to be clear and loud get an svt or a higher wattage solid state/hybrid head
    if you want to be loud and really overdriven get a 200 watt tube head and crank it up
    as far as cabs go a 215 can be really loud, but an 810 can be insanely loud (this will be more determined by your situation)
  10. For a rig on the cheap look for a GK 400rb and a peavey 215D loaded with black widows.
    hsech and hintz like this.
  11. JellinWellen


    Oct 18, 2012
    +1 on the used 400rb. They go for dirt cheap and can be loud and dirty if you need it to, as far as cabs I'd look at used ampeg, peavey, GK, and Hartke.
  12. GhostSong


    Mar 29, 2015
    CustomBassRigsmall.png Photo by afraiddave | Photobucket

    what is that rig setup? can somenoe break it down? not that i want an ampeg svt -5
    will a 4x10 ashdown cab support what i'm going for or do i need something bigger? someone on facebook messaged me and told me to inquire about that idea i'm throwing around.

    by the end of the day i'd like to have a rig that i can seriously consider purchasing by the end of the week (obviously i'll want to go play some of the heads if you guys recommend stuff i haven't played/head before)

    anyone able to look at the youtube video i posted and help me break down how to get that sound?

    keep in mind my budget will max out at $1200 per piece but like i mentioned above i don't want to max out or spend $$ on unnecessary equipment. i'm not playing ampitheatres
  13. AciDBatH666


    Feb 13, 2008
    Lafayette, LA
    Metal? I'll give you my cliff notes.
    1) Get as many watts as you can afford. Aim for 3X the watts your guitarists are pushing. If they're playing 100 watt half stacks, aim for 300+.
    2) Whatever cab you get, do not get it in a 4ohm version (unless it's an 810, 610 or something else that wouldn't normally be paired with another cab). You'll quickly regret this when you find out that you need to push more air to compete with 2 metal guitarists.

    If I was looking to go the cheap route, I'd grab a Gallien Krueger 1001RBii. There's a 1001 and a 700 version. The 1001 is 700 watts and the 700 is 480 watts. The 1001/700 are pretty much a great go-to head for any metal setting. I ran one for a good while and still keep it as my backup. 700 watts is plenty to keep up with 2 high gain guitarists.
    I now play a GK MB800 Fusion. It's 800 watts, and a 1/4 of the weight of the 1001. I used to have a 6U rack with the 1001 and a bunch of other stuff, and dragging an 80 pound rack in and out of your car every practice gets old. The MB series are VERY light (5 pounds at the heaviest), and they push out a TON of volume.
    Playing bass and playing metal, you may run across an instance where you need more volume. You're better off with more than you need so you'll never have to worry about it down the road.

    Getting a grit/dirt tone is going to be a rabbit trail for you. We all go through it. Some of us have been doing it for years. For me, it started with adding a Sansamp Bass DI to my chain and it instantly made my tone what I wanted. Then I added other things and ultimately ended up with a Darkglass B7K providing most of my tone. You are correct about the BBE Sonic Maximizer. It's hit or miss. Some people swear by it, some people hate it. It's all subjective. I've got it, but ultimately my band plays so loud that things like the BBE didn't even matter once we were at live volumes. I mainly just crank my mids on my Darkglass pedals to push through the mix.
  14. davegt666


    Jun 30, 2010
    San Jose, CA
    My rig in my sig gets the job done on the cheap in my metal band with two guitarists, tube amps, half stacks, and a hard hitting drummer.

    GK 400RB+Carvin BRX 4.10

    Used this is a $400-$500 rig. I never have had to go passed 1/2 way on my master volume.
  15. JSpradBass


    Mar 3, 2013
    Columbus, OH
  16. buldog5151bass

    buldog5151bass Kibble, milkbones, and P Basses. And redheads.

    Oct 22, 2003
    GK or Carvin BX-500 head.

    GK 2x12 cab. If you need a second cab, get a match.
  17. I dig the Hartke Hydrive cabs. Very nasty. You could pair a 4x10 and a 15 with the LH1000 and get an overdrive pedal like the Aguilar Agro and have a gnarly tone.
  18. anavar


    Oct 10, 2013
    my bass tone can beat up your dad's bass tone.
    metal bassist checking in. Buy all this gear second hand and for as cheap as you can get it.

    Hartke — HA3500
    Hartke — 410XL

    Hartke gear is cheap, loud, sounds killer and you can generally find it for cheap second hand. You may want to get a Sansamp/big muff/darkglass/bassbone incase you want some extra distortion. but otherwise, a good hartke setup, with a decent bass and some DR high beams and you're ready to play some metal.
    Vince Klortho likes this.
  19. The Regulator

    The Regulator

    Aug 10, 2005
    The bass rig in the video is a Peavey tour series head going to an Ampeg SVT 810E. There's other stuff in the rack but I can't tell what it is.
  20. hintz


    Jun 5, 2014
    wahiawa, HI(Oahu)
    Keep in mind that the GK 400/800RB's can get real dirty on their own in a real pleasing way if you set the "boost" high and use the 1st volume as your level...

    I also recently found the 400(about 200 watts IIRC) was more then enough to keep up with 2 guitars and a hard hitting drummer;)

    plus the GK 400/800's can be had for real cheap, I just got an 800 from the classifieds for $400 shipped... Check out guitar center used, music go round and the classifieds here before eBay though(they go for much higher there)

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