Boutique prices for stage monitors?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by GeorgiaHonk, Jul 12, 2004.

  1. I'm suddenly having difficulty putting together the requisite cash for my new rig. I've got a 450-watt Peavey head waiting to be matched with the cabinet of my choice. Until now, I've been leaning towards an Eden 215xl. But getting the cash is not the hangup any more, its my desire to pay for a glorified stage monitor that I'm having trouble reconciling. To wit:

    My band played our first gig Saturday (well, at least it was the first gig with the current membership lineup), and I was stuck using my underpowered Peavey TNT combo. Not surprisingly, the combo was far too underpowered for the gig. Of course, rather than listen to my suggestion that the other two guitarists should turn down, they surprisingly suggested that I go direct into the PA for support. I never dreamed the rest of the guys in the band would agree to having my bass in the monitors, but there you go.

    In a nutshell, it worked great. The little combo, placed directly behind me, functioned fine as a stage monitor and never approached being pushed into clipping. Meanwhile my sound through the mains was authoritative and present without being bothersome through the monitors.

    Suddenly, the idea of me shelling out over $600 for a speaker cab doesn't seem like such a great idea anymore. I may go with an efficient 12" cab, or maybe an Avatar 2X12, just to provide my stage volume. If the rest of the band doesn't complain, I'll stay with PA support at every gig.

    What say the great and powerful TB masses?
  2. Fuzzbass

    Fuzzbass P5 with overdrive Supporting Member

    I would MUCH rather bring a small rig and go through the PA, but unfortunately my rig has to provide bass for the entire room. So I'm lugging 5 or 6 10" speakers to every gig.

    I know some bassists who only need a SansAmp BassDriver DI, because the PA does all the work. I envy them!
  3. I've found that I play the way I hear myself, meaning if my stage amp is solid and clear that's how I play.

    It all depends on your bandmates volume, the PA support and your playing style. I bring my whole rig for bad PA situations and keep the 1X15 at home if the PA can handle the bottom, but it's great to have a clear solid sound from the 2X10 cab on stage.

    Hope that helps
  4. If you were happy with the sound through the monitors then that's' great. Who wants to lug around equipment that they don't need?

    I would recommend that you get whatever you can for cabs whether you need them now or not. Things change and you will inevitably wish you had more speakers at some point.

    I wouldn't consider it a waste of money at all. Get the cabs so you are prepared for anything.
  5. ESP Eden

    ESP Eden

    Feb 9, 2004
    washington mo
    You should definately look into cabs that you can use without PA support, you won't always have it to help you out. I think that the avatar 212 would be a good idea. And then you could also get an avatar campact 112 ( if you want to spend the money ) that you could bring to gigs that you know you won't need much stage volume, and you could run direct into the PA.
  6. xyllion

    xyllion Commercial User

    Jan 14, 2003
    San Jose, CA, USA
    Owner, Looperlative Audio Products
    I haven't seen Rush on their current tour, but on their last tour Geddy had washing machines behind him. He was going direct and listening to himself in the monitors. Of course, he was playing at large arenas where the PA carries everything and the stage rig never contributes to the audience.

    As for me, I'd love to go through the PA, but then neither band that I'm in has a PA that would really carry the bass well. So, you do what you have to do. I keep a rig loud enough to do the job.
  7. BassDemon


    May 18, 2004
    If only the places I played at had a decent PA........

    At the moment I take a 2400w power amp and three speakers cabs to every gig.

    Bloody Guitar players with full stacks.......
  8. If you can be guaranteed of having the PA wherever you play, buying a huge rig is a waste of money, I'd buy another bass (thats my default mindset though).

    However the moment you find yourself without it you're stuffed. I'm one of the lucky sods that can walk in, plug in, tune up and I'm done; one of the benefits of playing at a church with most of its own gear. I have however had to play a few gigs without decent PA support, all times I've been lucky enough to be able to use the church's rig. This is not a good situation to be in.

    My next BIG purchase is a large rig. My next big purchase is going to be some new specs.

    Josh D
  9. jad


    Aug 29, 2002
    Pittsburgh, PA
    I'll suggest something that I've not seen suggested in TB ever before. Use your combo for circumstances when it delivers enough volume. Use your head into your combo's speaker for when you need extra volume. The amp part of your combo goes unused in this latter configuration. I've done this on several occasions quite successfully. Is it ideal? No. Is it your dream rig? No. Does it require spending $$$? No. Does it buy you time to make an educated decision on how to spend your cash? Yes! Just try not to blow your speaker. :bag:
  10. Hey, smaller is better as long as you can hear yourself and you like what you hear (good tone). Things do change, though.

    A year ago 90% of my gigs were through the pa and only required a small rig. These days I'm having to provide all the bass on more than half of my dates. For me, it's best to have a flexible, modular set up that I can use to get my sound at different volume levels.
  11. IvanMike

    IvanMike Player Characters fear me... Staff Member Supporting Member

    Nov 10, 2002
    Middletown CT, USA
    joe hit the nail on the head - modular is the way to go
    i've benifited from many situations where the PA wa good enough to be my main amplification and to me that is ALWAYS preferable (provided that the sound man is any good)
    as those who have read my posts before probably know, i'm always in favor of a head/cabinets approach because combos are too inflexible and are hard to upgrade later
    that said, you can never go wrong investing in quality cabinets - i currently use a preamp/hi power poweramp setup with multiple small cabinets - i bring as many cabinets to any given gig as i need and go direct to the pa whenever possible
  12. xyllion

    xyllion Commercial User

    Jan 14, 2003
    San Jose, CA, USA
    Owner, Looperlative Audio Products
    That is exactly the approach that I take. If you can keep your rig modular, then you are set for any situation. For practices and small gigs, I have my 2-space head and a GS112.
  13. I think modular is the way to go to.Last weekend we played a small bar and I thought my 210XLT would work perfect.I brought one of my Avatar 112s to use as a speaker stand to get the Eden up to near ear level.I plugged in,turned up and played a few lines to check volume and it wasn't near ballsy enough.I plugged in the 112 and it was just right,I was very glad I had the option of using the 112 with the 210,you just never know till you get to the gig.

    We've also played some large outdoor festivals this summer with concert type PAs and seperate stage mix.I thought I would need my whole rig but every time I stacked the whole thing(2-112s and the Eden 210) I ended up turning way down to fit in the mix.Also lifting those small cabinets 5' on to the back of those stages seemed a lot easier than the guys struggling with the 810s and 410s.I think at those shows I could have used my Eden alone.I'm just used to playing with an amp behind me after all these years and using it to project my sound and hear what I'm playing without depending on someone else to get my tone.
  14. superflybass

    superflybass Supporting Member

    Feb 16, 2004
    La Crosse WI
    I have done some gigs with just a DI box no bass amp and just my in ears I like it I just missed my paint legs shaking in the speaker wash I think I might start doing it more but my band also have a really nice PA System ..
  15. xyllion

    xyllion Commercial User

    Jan 14, 2003
    San Jose, CA, USA
    Owner, Looperlative Audio Products
    I used to be that way, but now I'm wireless. So, I'm not always standing right in front of my rig.