Critique my purchase

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by P220ST, Sep 18, 2006.

  1. P220ST


    Sep 18, 2006
    Portland, OR
    I'm beyond new. After a decade of contemplation and 3-4 months of serious thought, research and talking to anyone (strangers, mostly)with a four-srtinged instrument slung over their shoulder, I stepped off the cliff. After 20 years of violin (ancient memory), but having never played bass in my life, I finally did what I've always wanted. Here's the bill:

    Total: 756.53​

    The math's off due to some bargaining on my part (my only strength at this level of expertise).

    I bold-printed the amp for a reason. Regarding the amplifier, how did I do? I mean, I know I got a good deal. I'm just not positive I got a good amp. I promised the powers that be (my wife) that I'd keep it under $800. Rule #1: never mess with my wife.

    From all the investigation I've done, for me to take a step up in quality regarding the amplification would require the investment of another $200 or so. What I want is a practice amp to learn on but not be excluded from playing with others due to inadequate volume. Also, I have enough experience with music and strings that bad tone drives me to tears. Being a beginner, I want equipment that complements one another, that I can grow into (not feel the need to move up in four months), and simply sounds OK whether I'm strumming open strings or Les Claypool stops by for a cup of coffee. This distills down to three question:

    1. Is the above accurate, that is am I asking the right questions?
    2. Should I make any changes, especially with the amp?
    3. If so, what brand and model should I explore?

    Thanks for reading my first post!

  2. JanusZarate

    JanusZarate Low End Avenger

    Feb 21, 2006
    Boise, ID, USA
    To comment on your bass selection... excellent taste! I have the exact same Schecter model, but in a lefty. It's my main bass!

    As for the amp... can't help you too much there. I don't use Eden/Nemesis gear, and I haven't had the opportunity to give them a try yet. For practice though, a 1x10 is all you'd need. I'd venture to guess that it won't be enough for a live or band practice setting, however. Don't worry too much about your amp yet, though - don't invest in a big rig unless you really need it!

    Consider this your opportunity to explore the sound of Eden. As you get better, I'd start looking into other brands and higher-end Eden amps/cabinets to see what you like!

    The cable you bought is good, but I think Monster cables are overpriced. Still, it works great, so your only loss is in the fact that there are some cheaper (but equally good) cables on the market. No real loss here, otherwise.

    String-wise, it depends on your style. You mentioned Les Claypool; are you looking into slap bass or funk? Or are you more of a rock guy? Or maybe jazz?

    Elixir Nanowebs are nice strings, and have a warm tone to them. I prefer bright tone, however, so I switched off the Elixir Nanowebs on my bass for DR Lo-Riders. Personal preference, that's all. You'll find that it'll be a while before you find the perfect strings for you, and perhaps you've already got them!

    The gig bag is fine. Unless you plan on taking the bass out of the house a lot, you won't need much more. However, if you do, consider a hard case - pricier (around $100 average new cost), but better protection!

    The tuner is fine as well. Again, it depends on your usage of it. In my case, I have a Planet Waves chromatic tuner pedal because when one plays a heavier style (like rock) or intends to gig eventually, re-tuning and muting are more necessary. Again, it's not essential however - it just depends on what you play, and how! Most people can get by with just a small tuner like yours, and tune before and after a gig without worry. For practice, you wouldn't need anything fancy - as long as it works, it's good enough!

    I hope all of this info helps you out. Take a look at my profile if you'd like to see what I'm using or have used in the past.
  3. wolfs


    Jan 18, 2006
    Will you be using the amp just for practice and stuff? I mean, one 10" speaker combo isn't ever going to get loud... I would think, if you're concerned about saving the most amount of money, to just buy a cheaper combo... like a used Peavey or Crate or older Roland, something like that. When you get down the line and you want to play with other people, then you can think about a setup that'll help you be heard among other musicians. But at this point you shouldn't need anything more than a cheap 10" or 12" speaker combo.
  4. RWP


    Jul 1, 2006
    Welcome to talk bass! IMHO you did well on the selections you made. Bet the first thing you'll upgrade is that amp however. :) It will be interesting to know how much help your violin back ground will be. I picked a violin once and cold not make it make a single note that wasn't a squeek. :eyebrow: Good luck with your new toys!
  5. dangnewt

    dangnewt Veteran Dispenser

    Jun 6, 2003
    MetroWest Boston
    Maybe keep the Nemesis as a practice amp. It will handle smaller jam sessions, but will likely not cut through in a band setting with a loud drummer and loud guitars.

    When you start playing in a band, even if it just in your basement or garage, you could get an additional louder rig. That is, more or less, the pattern I followed.

    DERECOLA Supporting Member

    Aug 21, 2006
    congrats. on the purchase,welcome to the world of the bass guitar.
  7. P220ST


    Sep 18, 2006
    Portland, OR
    Thanks to everyone who took the time to respond. Again, my biggest concern is, for my elementary needs at this embryonic stage of my musical development, should I be looking at another amp? Given that I'll be practicing and likely solo for at least the short term, should I rest comfortably with what I've selected?

    Again, thanks for the input.
  8. dangnewt

    dangnewt Veteran Dispenser

    Jun 6, 2003
    MetroWest Boston
    You can absolutely stay with what you have for now. You could even play in coffee-house settings with that amp with a guitarist playing at reasonable volume.

    It is a few steps above the normal entry-level practice amp.

    You could go for a cheaper first amp, but since you got such a great deal, you would save maybe $100-150 but will suffer on the tone. You would then have a headstart on getting the bigger amp; but if you never play with a drummer, you may never get that bigger amp and in the meantime you would have suffered with a cheap 100-150 practice amp.

    I'd keep the Nenemsis, you really don't want to haul around anything much heavier just to jam with buddies.
  9. P220ST


    Sep 18, 2006
    Portland, OR
    Thanks again, people. If you could look up above at my initial posting, is there anything I forgot that would be helpful for a beginning bassist to have lying around? My first lesson is coming up in a week or so and my instructor will surely have his own ideas, but I really want to hear your collective thoughts as well. Little stuff, big stuff, pencils, erasers, life-sized cutout of Primus, staff paper, cleaning/protective stuff, chamois. How do you folks deep your necks clean and smooth? Whenever I get into something, I absolutely love to collect the various sundry paraphernalia. I'm a music store shopkeeper's dream.

    Thinking outside of the box is acceptable and encouraged!

    Take Care,
  10. SnoMan

    SnoMan Words Words Words

    Jan 27, 2001
    Charleston, WV
    For your purpose, I feel you've done very well.

    My question is this: what direction are you moving in as a bassist?

    Thus far, you've mentioned having experience in music, twenty years. You haven't alluded to what level your experience is, but I would assume you have a strong grasp of music theory and concepts. With that in mind, I believe your first goal will be physically adapting to the bass. I don't believe this should prove too great a burden. You sound very enthusiastic and I imagine that will lead you to being able to play comfortably soon, especially with an instructor who will keep you away from developing bad habits.

    Are you looking to be a soloist or work in a band? or both?

    If your choice is either of the latter, then it's time to start thinking groove. I could go on about that, but I'll save it for later or others.

    In any case, I'd recommend adapting violin solos that you're familiar with for use on bass.

    I'll leave it at that for now.

    Good luck, and welcome to TB
  11. dangnewt

    dangnewt Veteran Dispenser

    Jun 6, 2003
    MetroWest Boston
    Metronome. My teacher was big on the metronome and the importance of playing in time.
    I bought one of the little Seiko ones - they are under $30 so you'll still be within that $800 budget.
  12. dmas81

    dmas81 Supporting Member

    Sep 17, 2006
    Indianapolis, Indiana
    If your instructor doesn't already provide it, buy a scale hand book. Theyre great for keeping in your gig bag and you can always pull it out 15 min before bed and practice your finger movements. The best tip I can give you from this point is your bass is like someone you know, If you don't spend every day w/ it you won't know it very well.
  13. Fuzzbass

    Fuzzbass P5 with overdrive Gold Supporting Member

    Welcome, fellow low-life (grin).

    Great selection of gear for <$800. The only quibble I have was noted by MysticBoo: I believe Monster cables are overpriced... you could've gotten a longer cable for cheaper. On that note, you'll likely find that 12 feet is too short a leash regardless of brand. But that's a very minor quibble. Aside from that, I'm a huge fan of Elixir Nanoweb strings, and an inexpensive Korg tuner has served me well for years.

    Once you start gigging you'll want to start thinking about backups and spares (strings, cables, even bass) but you've got some nice basics for home rehearsal. Best of luck!
  14. toad


    Jun 26, 2002
    Congrats on your purchase! Looks like you'll be fine for now. I suspect it might take awhile for your tastes in tone to really develop and then it'll probably change also. So, no need to rush into a bigger rig.

    One thing you might add is a nice wide strap. I personally find the Italia 4" leather straps comfortable and reasonably priced. I like Levy's also.
  15. Dan Knowlton

    Dan Knowlton Sometimes you're the dog, sometimes the tree Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 3, 2000
    Palm Coast, FL
    I don't think you paid enough! You got a pretty good price. I think that the amp is going to work for you for a while and if/when you start gigging you can step up pretty easily.

    Welcome to bass playing!

    Dan K.
    Recovering Drummer!

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