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DI'ed vs MIC'ed

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by squire65, Oct 4, 2013.

  1. squire65


    Sep 22, 2013
    Lots of sound guys do prefer to pre-eq DI-ing bass ...but in doing so, only the clean sound of my bass will be heard by the audience (or just some effect the sound guy would use)...What if I would like audience to hear my stage sound (i mean the sound of cabinets, effetcs)? I guess he should mic the cab...but I've read many times on TB that this would get a worse result for the sound of PA...So?
  2. Hi.

    If You either trust the sound guy and he trusts you, or the sound guy is in the bands payroll and the aforementioned things are taken for garanted, mic it.
    Perfectly doable no matter how loud the stage sound is, but problems may arise if the bass is for some reason not as loud as the other noise sources in the mics vicinity.

    Otherwise DI is by far the easiest and best way to ensure there's at least some bass in the mix. Even if the amplifier craps out or some moron turns it off.

  3. The DI should be after all of the effects in the chain. And in all honesty, I don't thing the sound of the cab matters that much to an audience in a live setting, unless you're in a predominantly bass driven band like Primus. The subtleties of the bass get hidden in the mix. But if you still want to mic, and you are they one(s) paying the soundguy, he should listen.
  4. two fingers

    two fingers Opinionated blowhard. But not mad about it. Gold Supporting Member

    Feb 7, 2005
    Eastern NC USA
    Here's a tip. You need to cheat. Get a Countryman Type 85 (or something else that has speaker level DI) and run it at speaker level. What you do is run a speaker cable from your head into the DI. Then run another from the DI to your cab. Set the DI on top of your rig and tell the sound guy "I brought my own DI if that's OK." He will see your nice quality DI and not think anything of it. And the signal he gets will be the same thing that is sent to your cab.

    I do it with my vintage Ampeg V4 all the time. I have yet to have ONE sound guy say a word about it. Some guys on this forum (like every OTHER topic here) will get really negative and tell you it doesn't sound great. I will tell you this. I let another bassist sit in on my rig for a couple songs the other night, and it sounded AMAZING out front.

    By the way, I'm a sound guy myself too. So when I tell you how to trick a sound guy, I know what I'm talking about.

    Sure, he'll get your dirty signal through the PA. But by then he will have to work with it. Do sound check with something clean so his radar doesn't go off. Then, when you bring the dirt, he'll scramble for a sec and then make it work! By the time you get to a set break, he'll have it all figured out.

    It is ALWAYS easier to get forgiveness than permission.
  5. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    Word to that last sentence. Unfortunately, the speaker level DI really only works well with tube amps.

    I switched to a REDDI for a DI a year and a half ago, but before then, I mic'ed my cab. It sounded absolutely wonderful and never caused problems that weren't caused by soundman incompetence. Unfortunately, we have to use different soundmen all the time (not my call), and some of them were quite jerky about it, despite me bringing my own awesome cab mic and stand. So I got the very best DI that sounded like a tube amp being DI'd I could find.
  6. There are few more reviews coming in for the P2 this weekend on the "vintage amp mic or DI?" thread.

    The TB discoverer of the P2 recommends a backhanded lie to get the mic operational and apparently it is plain sailing after the shock wears off. Soundguy "here's your DI", BP "thanks" and plugs the DI lead straight into mic as soon as SG's back is turned, once he plays, SG says" ok".

    I bet he must have some winning smile. Probably helps to be on big stages with some distance between your rig and the drums etc.

    I wouldn't do that if you run a midscooped tone. Chances are a lot of "soundguys" will scoop you some more just out of habit.

    Bass players scooping themselves silly is a big reason even real soundmen like preEQ bass DI.

    How come a SS sourced speaker DI wouldn't be as representative as a Tube sourced Jimmy?
  7. Both. Always.
  8. Stick_Player

    Stick_Player Banned

    Nov 13, 2009
    Somewhere on the Alaska Panhandle (Juneau)
    Endorser: Plants vs. Zombies Pea Shooters
    DI for a live gig. Make it easy.

    Mic for recording - assuming that you have a room, amp, mic(s) and preamp better than a DI and amp sims.

    And, if you do have a "great amp", it's better to record DI, edit your performance and then reamp with your fabulous mics, pres and room.

  9. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    Because other than rare occasions, the power amp on a SS amp really doesn't add anything to the signal of the preamp.
  10. No reason not to use speaker DI on a SS amp then.

    It gets the pre speaker signal just the same, analogous in every way to being used on a tube amp.
  11. will33


    May 22, 2006

  12. xk49w


    Apr 13, 2008
    Agree - same in both cases. I'd consider one with a speaker simulation filter in it though.
  13. One more sleep and you'll be pulling the trigger on a P2 I bet.
  14. will33


    May 22, 2006
    I like you.;)
  15. will33


    May 22, 2006
  16. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    Except for the power amp going through the DI. But if someone wants to use it, fine by me.
  17. Speaker level DI, do that with the soundman's regular one and you'll be real sorry, lucky if you don't blow your amp along with the DI.
  18. will33


    May 22, 2006
    Well, they do have to be designed to work at speaker level, which the Countryman is (that and it's general quality is why it was an "industry standard" for a while), at least one model of Radial, and at least a couple others are.

    They used to be good for up to about 200 watts, but I think the newer ones are good for like 400. You'd have to be playing at least a 1200-1600 watt bass amp, and turning it up, to get 400 watts continuously. You'd have peaks that asked for giant power.....for a few thousandths of a second each....but you'd be hard-pressed to be using 400 watts continuously.
  19. will33


    May 22, 2006
    There are a few SS amps that could benefit from a speaker level DI, but they are few...

    Older Gallien-Kruegers, '70's Peaveys, Tubeworks amps from the '90's, '70's Acoustic amps.

    Those are some who's power sections, when "run to the rails" so to speak, put some flavor on the sound.

    Whether or not you find that sound pleasing is a whole 'nother deal, but those are some SS power sections that flavor the sound, rather than taking what comes in the front and spit it out the back just the same.
  20. I thought the point of speaker level Countryman was to wrestle some amp tone back from being bullied into taking the DI off your bass or effects. Same ends regardless of what amp.

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