Buy a bass amp or go from a direct box to a JBL Eon 15 G2?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by phoenix, May 22, 2003.

  1. phoenix


    May 22, 2003
    Hi, this is my first post here. I'm primarily a guitarist but I've got some gigs lined up where I'll be playing bass as well as acoustic and electric guitar. I have a Fender American Deluxe Jazz Bass, but I don't have a bass amp at the moment. It would lighten my load considerably if I could run both my bass and my acoustic guitar through a JBL 15" G2 cabinet instead of buying a real bass amp. What if I used an ART Tube MP as a direct box and went straight to the JBL? (I have an Aphex parametric EQ and could do some sound shaping with that for the bass too, if needed.) Or would it sound a lot better if I got a real bass amp? If so, what amp would you recommend? I'm playing mostly classic rock and blues. Thanks a lot!
  2. I'm sure the JBL would sound OK for bass and acoustic guitar. Given your gig, it would probably make for a good solution. Could something else sound better for bass. Sure a good bass amp is going to sound better than the EON with a pre-amp. However a real bass amp may not work as well for your acoustic. Go into a music store, hook up a bass pre-amp of sorts to a EON and try it out. As for a bass pre-amp, I'd just get a SansAmp Bass Driver DI to run into the EON. jmho
  3. jokerjkny


    Jan 19, 2002
    NY / NJ / PA
    I'm guessing that the JBL self powered, so you'll need a powerful enough preamp that can drive enough signal to the power amp section of the speaker.

    IMHO, i dunno if the ART Tube MP will put out enough headroom to make you happy. IMHO, the Tube MP is more for line boosting and matching.

    but, any good rackmount vocal mic pre should do the trick. a great one is Raven Labs Universal preamp. two rack, with more than enough features. very clear sounding, and great for all instruments. Raven Labs is the same company that acoustic fingerstyle great, Lawrence Juber, endorses.

    an even better idea for you electric guitar and bass, would a Sansamp PSA-1. has presets for both electric gutiar and electric bass! runs on midi, so you've got a plethora of tones at your fingertips.

    BUT, if you're speaker is not self-powered with its own internal power amp, you'll need to buy both a pre and power amp.

    a great idea to tackle this would be to get an Acoustic Image Clarus. its less than 6 measily lbs., yet slams 350 watts @ 2 ohms!!

    its pretty much a mini PA box that's mainly used for bass. its got a great frequency range, so upright bassists love how it captures all the acoustical nuances, much like an acoustic guitar amp.

    you can even get Acoustic Image's more versatile, Clarus 2R, which has two channels, one with an XLR for mic level, and another channel for 1/4" line level, AND has reverb to boot!

    both include parallel effects loops, and did i mention they're about the size of a good book & a little less than 6 lbs! ;)
  4. phoenix


    May 22, 2003
    Thanks a lot, Greybeard and joker. Greybeard, I've been checking into that Sansamp Bass DI after reading your post - I'm impressed by the reviews I've read. Do you think that the Sansamp sounds better than the other bass amp simulators out there (like Digitech)? I'm really picky about sound, but I can't see lugging three different amps to this bar gig. I might end up doing that anyway. I guess there's something about a real bass cabinet that can't be imitated by a digital box....

    Joker - thanks for the tip about the Art Tube MP. Yeah, the JBL Eon G2 is self-powered. I didn't realize that the Tube MP might not be powerful enough for the Eon.

    Would appreciate any other thoughts anyone might have about the DI/JBL setup v. a real bass amp.
  5. jokerjkny


    Jan 19, 2002
    NY / NJ / PA
    np, phoenix,

    but thing is, can the sansamp really drive a power amp?? it says it can on the website, but i'm still a little apprehensive, if it sounds good at all. after all, its a little battery powered box trying to push an acceptable tone thru a PA rig.

    also, i doubt the Sansamp Bass DI would sound all that nice for your acoustic, if at all.

    what you need is a nice two channel rackmountable mic preamp. any will do. Joemeek, Avalon, ART's larger stereo mic pre's, etc...

    or you can just get this:


    but it just hit me!

    for a really versatile rig, just get a nice mackie 1202VLZ mixer. add this to your powered speakers, and VOILA, your own personal full frequency PA, perfect for both your bass and acoustic!

    you can plug right into the Mackie, where your bass will sound fine, but it'd prolly sound better with a Sansamp plugged in between your bass and mixer to give it a more aggressive, amp'ed "ampeg" like sound. and your acoustic will sound even nicer, since its being amplified in full frequency glory!

    but the cheapest route (and lightest carrying one), would be to just leave the powered JBL home, and DI yourself straight into the house's PA.

    take both your acoustic and bass, direct with an "all-encompassing" direct box supplied by the venue, or buy one for yourself like a nice Countryman DI or better yet a tube based DI like Demeter's VTDB-2B or Aguilar's DB900.

    OR, you could also get the stomp boxed sized, Sansamp Bass DI, and use that to take your bass straight into the house PA board. and you could get a similarly small box housed, Sansamp Acoustic DI, and take your acoustic straight into the house's board. either case, you just ask for your signal thru the monitors, and you should be golden!

    this way, you're only taking with you to the gigs, your guitar amp and merely packing two small stomp boxes for both your bass and acoustic needs.
  6. Are you going to be doing any singing? The more you talk about your needs the more I'm thinking some sort of mixer board may be the best way to go. A Mackie 1202 is tough to beat for a small mixer. Behringer makes several that are very in expensive that can do the job as well. If you need bass amp simulation then I'd still use the Sans Amp Bass DI. It has everything you really need in a bass pre-amp. I think I'd use the EON with the Sans Amp and a small mixer. That way you can easily switch from bass to acoustic or even vocal if need be. Also, I worked with a guy that had a zoom acoustic guitar pedal that was pretty neat. So here it would be. EON + small mixer + bass pedal + acoustic guitar pedal + whatever else you need. Good Luck....:bassist:
  7. phoenix


    May 22, 2003
    Great ideas, guys - very helpful - thanks a lot. Yes, I will be singing on this gig. And I didn't mention that I'm playing electric guitar too! Just the thought of lugging 3 big amps, lots of mics, etc., was giving me a freakin' hernia! I've actually got a Mackie 1202 VLZ that I was planning to use. I really like the idea of going direct to the PA with my acoustic and bass. That way, I just bring my Fender Vibrolux and a couple direct boxes (not to mention guitars and mics). I think this is going to work. I'm going to check out all the DI boxes you guys mentioned.
  8. Nick man

    Nick man

    Apr 7, 2002
    Tampa Bay
    My suggestion is to pick up a couple Sans amps.

    They have models for bass and guitar.

    I believe the PSA-1 is a popular guitar preamp they make. Use that with a Sans amp bass di and you are set!

  9. Jazz Ad

    Jazz Ad Mi la ré sol Gold Supporting Member Supporting Member

    SanSamp BassDriver + 2x Behringer B300.

    So yes, I think it works pretty well.
  10. Stinsok

    Stinsok Supporting Member

    Dec 16, 2002
    Central Alabama
    Would my ABG preamp require anything else to run a Behringer set up like that? I have a DI-what do you think?
  11. jokerjkny


    Jan 19, 2002
    NY / NJ / PA
    that setup prolly uses powered speakers. remember, besides a bass, you need a preamp, power amp, and speakers to make noise. ;)
  12. phoenix


    May 22, 2003
    Well, last night I bought the Sansamp stompbox DI and a Mackie powered 12" PA speaker (300 watts LF, 100 watts HF). I've been hearing that the Mackie is better than the Eon G2. Brought them home and tried them out. I think this rig will work. I like the Sansamp DI. It really adds presence and fatness to the sound. A certain amount of the natural character and detail of my Jazz Bass gets lost when I crank the knobs on the Sansamp too much (like "Reggae" settings), but I think there are times when that's what I'll want. I need to experiment with it a lot more.

    The Mackie speaker sounds great. I can crank the bass until my house seriously shakes, no problem. The low notes are huge. Haven't tried the Mackie with my Collings acoustic yet, but I expect it will sound great.

    JazzAd - Nice looking rig you have there. Great to see that you like that setup, as mine will be somewhat similar.

    Thor - that is a brilliant solution, and if I were really rational I'd probably do it. But I think I'm too hooked on my Fender Vibrolux's sound to leave it at home.

    Thanks again -- everyone -- you really helped me out.
  13. Jazz Ad

    Jazz Ad Mi la ré sol Gold Supporting Member Supporting Member

    Those are indeed powered speakers.
    Can't get out of the equation. :)
    The best part of such a rig is versatility.
    I have a PA, monitors, wedges, a combo and a full rig in a single setup.
  14. You can also use your sansamp bass di for the acoustic guitar. It works pretty well:bassist:
  15. jokerjkny


    Jan 19, 2002
    NY / NJ / PA
    kinda OT:

    but just today, after selling all my cabs and still waiting for my Epifani's to be done, i had to make due with a JBL Eon1500 speaker cab, and my Clarus 1 400A.

    but HOLY CRAP! what great tone!

    first time, i actually tried out my Clarus at a gig volume, and sheesh, the little bugger kicked butt with the PA 1x12 speaker. BIG tone, and punch to boot. made my Elrick sound kicker and gorgeously hifi. i literally heard things i never knew existed previously thru all my other gear. strange but very true.

    can only imagine what a Meyer 2x10 PA speaker cab would sound like. ;)
  16. IvanMike

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

    Nov 10, 2002
    Middletown CT, USA
    sorry for the subject change but.......
    joker, loved your reviews on the epi uls....
    what did you finally order?
    and btw...have you ever heard the aj version of the 212 and does it sound as good as a bergie 322?

    oh yeah the subject......
    as long as the speakers re good ilove going thru the pa as much as possible........playing thru the old bagend ta-12 pa speakers was pure joy