1. Please take 30 seconds to register your free account to remove most ads, post topics, make friends, earn reward points at our store, and more!  
    TalkBass.com has been uniting the low end since 1998.  Join us! :)

dumb question of tube amps

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by KataPolt, Apr 18, 2005.

  1. KataPolt


    Aug 4, 2004
    Good morning talkbass and friends,

    This is a dumb question, so feel free to please educate me :)

    How important is overdrive for the people who choose to play with all tube bass amps? Do many bassists who play all tube amps play them to a high amount for its ability for tube overdrive?

    I enjoy tube amplifier tone, however, I would not overdrive very much.

    (thought inside my head: I wonder if a lot of what is 'tube' about a tube amp would be wasted on someone like me :oops: I go after a very warm, round and slightly punchy tone, and I wonder if considering that I do not use overdrive, if it should be really worth it for me to get a heavy tube amp, but rather, go for a ss or ss/tube hybrid...)
  2. MrBonex


    Jan 2, 2004
    New Hampshire
    I (personally) think tube amps sound best at low to medium volumes and no overdrive.
  3. What I like about tube amps is the sensitivity to playing dynamics- to me it's like you can dial in more or less 'drive' w/how hard you dig in. I tend to lean more towards clean, too, but even clean, tubes sound different. Go try one- the more you know(from your own experience), the better-equipped you are to make these decisions.
  4. protoz


    Nov 30, 2000
    Being a new tube owner myself I am finding out how much I need to change my style to get a good sound out of it. It is very transparent but if I crank it I am getting some funky noises so I might need to take it in and get looked at...

    But before I do I need to test it on my other cab to see if I have some blown speakers or not

    So far I am liking the low volume tone but you get more tone when it's cranked, just before you get distortion so you just have to play around with it.
  5. BurningSkies

    BurningSkies CRAZY BALDHEAD

    Feb 20, 2005
    Seweracuse, NY
    I use an all tube head (400+)...and try to get the cleanest tone possible. I like it for the tube tone and color, not for the OD/distortion. Like the above posts, I like the ability to control playing dynamics with my fingers!
  6. KataPolt


    Aug 4, 2004
    Very interesting, thank you!

    One of my problem is that it is difficult for me to trust my experience in a shop to translate to how it will be for me in a practice or performance with a full band. :meh: I have played amps in a shop that people say are AMAZING amps, and I thought it sounded very bad, and vice-versa - have played amps that people do not like very much and really liked. I think it is very difficult for me to truly experience an amp in a shop. Also, I am very shy in music shops and I never feel comfortable to do everything that is proper to do a full try attempt (sorry for my English).

    What to do!? :help: :p
  7. Plain Old Me

    Plain Old Me

    Dec 14, 2004
    I see using tube overdrive as a tool. In some songs, there are parts where overdrive just fits better. However, getting the transition right live requires a pedal to control the settings.