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Could reverb help my sound?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by groov'ster, Jun 7, 2005.

  1. I'm the bassist for my church where the congregation seats about 1200 people. My rig is this: Cirrus 6string > Peavey Pro500 head > Peavey 410tvx. I send my signal out to the main board via the DI from the amp head with it being EQ'd. I use my rig mainly as my monitor, but it can still be heard aloud in the congregation.
    My problem is this. This weekend we had a special practice whereby another bassist came in to learn some music. He played on my rig using my bass and while it sounded great within several feet of the rig, I moved off of the platform out into the seating area. IT SUCKED! The sound was completely muddy with almost no clarity. I was blown away. I tried playing with the EQ a little but to no avail. My music minister agreed that up close it sounds awesome but away from the platform IT SUCKS! Another problem is that I am the only bassist and this other bassist coming along was for a day only so I did not get to work with the problem.
    Although the rig is mainly for a monitor it can still be heard during services. Mind you there was no one in the seating area the church was empty other than us on the platform. The mains were NOT on, it was simply the sound of my rig about 150 feet away.
    I know that there are many variables to this problem and it is hard for a simple answer, but is there one? I thought maybe a good reverb might help, Am I wrong?
  2. alexclaber

    alexclaber Commercial User

    Jun 19, 2001
    Brighton, UK
    Director - Barefaced Ltd
    I'd have thought that excessive room reverb is your problem, allied to maybe having too much bottom in your sound. I doubt adding more reverb will help, but cutting some lows and adding some mids might.

  3. PhilMan99


    Jul 18, 2003
    US, Maryland
    I doubt reverb would help. At our church, the frequency-response of the PA is the problem - it is intended primarily for voice.

    If that's not the problem, maybe compression would help (if you're getting distortion on the loud notes).
  4. BruceWane


    Oct 31, 2002
    Houston, TX
    I doubt that adding reverb would help; it'd probably hurt. Think about it. When you were playing in the empty church, you had lots of natural reverb. Once those seats are filled, there will be a whole lot less; humans make pretty good sound dampening material.

    You really can't get an accurate idea of what you sound like in a full house unless you're playing in a full house, so don't get too anxious about it. I'm guessing that it might be kinda inappropriate to go roaming about the church with a wireless during services, though, so you will either have to get another player to sit in on your rig or you're going to have to trust someone else's ears.
  5. +1 your problem is probably too much room boom, which the reverb would make worse. Also, remember that the room sound will change a lot when the place is filled.

    I agree with the previous comment... usually a 'bad sound' results from too much low end. That big low end sounds great 'nearfield', but rarely transmits to the audience.

    This is another example of 'less bass response' actually many times results in more apparant bass, punch, clarity and 'usable bottom' out in the audience.

    I was at one time totally in love with a cab (it was one of the original EAVL210's). It had so much big bottom and warmth, I thought I was in heaven. Until.... I heard it out front a few times with other players sitting in. All that beautiful low, low bottom disappeared about 30 feet from the stage to the back of the room.... the poor little cab, even though it was tuned very low, just wasn't able to push enough air. When I switched back to a cab without those very wide specs, things got better (although I still miss those big, fat near field lows sometime!).

    Listening to your rig out front can be a very, very surprising experience.

    Ps I'm not slamming the EA stuff... it can sound amazing in the right situation... :p
  6. billfitzmaurice

    billfitzmaurice Commercial User

    Sep 15, 2004
    New Hampshire
    Owner, Bill Fitzmaurice Loudspeaker Design
    A 4x10 is not going to cover 1200 seats; that's the job of the PA. Without the PA being on and the pews full of human acoustic damping there's no way to know how it sounds under actual operating conditions.
  7. i think the wireless is a great idea.... maybe some headbanging too. ;)
  8. Thanks for all the fast replies. I'll try to give a little more information based on your responses.

    I do use a light compression almost all the time, nothing too strong though. IMHO it's just enough to cover all styles.
    The Pro500 has a para-met eq.
    lows are set flat-narrow-40hz; mids are set -5-narrow-500hz; highs are set +5-wide/narrow-1.5Khz. The pregain at 5, postgain at 5, and master volume at 3. As you can see the lows are not set to "boomy". On the rear panel I have the DI volume set to 5.
    I like the sound I have at the rig but I worry about changing the eq to much because the sound I hear is what I want sent to the mains and thats what I want everyone to hear.

    Our soundmen, not one but many, have their own individual tastes and well.....thats a whole other rant. I dont know if I truly trust their ears. Theres only one of them who shares my passion for "quality of sound, not quantity of sound". I will try to get him to help me make changes.

    I have thought about the wireless idea and roaming. It probably wouldn't go over to well, even on what we laugh and call a roll cage night.

    I am the only bassist at this point and no one else plays for me to be able to move and "hear" the sound.
    The only reason I mentioned reverb, I have never used it by the way, was I thought maybe some type of "large hall" effect might clear up the sound. BUt like I said I have never used it before, just an un-educated guess.

    Thanks again for the replies.

    Oh by the way, GETLOW...it's a Pentecostal church, theres some headbanging going on. LOL! :cool:

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