Psst... Ready to join TalkBass and start posting, make new friends, sell your gear, and more?  Register your free account in 30 seconds.

Eden or Demeter or Alembic

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by BigBohn, Jan 4, 2002.


  1. BigBohn

    BigBohn

    Sep 29, 2001
    WPB, Florida
    I have a few days left to make a decision on an Eden Navigator I bought from a store to demo. Now I had an SWR IOD on order, but since it wouldn't be in for another few weeks, I decided on the Navigator. I like it alot for its versatility and sound quality, but its seems to be alittle too confusing for me. Something that I want is very little EQing for a sound that works. I just want a preamp that suitable for live rock use.

    Do you think a Demeter pre (I forget what model names, the VBP or something), an Alembic F-1X or F2B, the SWR IOD, or maybe just stick with the Navigator and learn how to use it?

    Please help a fellow TBer out. I'm in desperate need of advice at this issue. Thanks for all your help and time, guys.

    BTW, the cab is an Eden 410XLT
     
  2. Turock

    Turock Supporting Member

    Apr 30, 2000
    Melnibone
    If you want simple controls and a great sound, check out the Demeter. Best sound that I have ever had.
     
  3. Bohn, you got da GAS bad...

    :D

    I own the Alembic F-1X and can tell you what it will and will not do.

    It's built on the Fender Showman circuit which is a passive tone stack, meaning it will do Cut only... no Boost. The closest it gets to flat is 0-10-0 on the B/M/T knobs. This is full Cut on the Bass/Treble and wide open (no cut) for the Mids. The F-1X has buckets of bottom and top. It goes from fairly straight line flat to a steep V-shape Smiley Face type EQ.

    See these links:

    F-1X 0-10-0 Maximum Cut

    F-1X 10-10-10 No Cut

    My particular speakers are already designed for flat response across the spectrum, so I need external EQ to boost my mids above Flat. YMMV. Speakers that fall off in the lows, such as your D-410XLT (-6dB at 31 Hz) will find the extra bottom beneficial. I find the extra bottom a pain in the ass because I run subwoofers.

    At last nights' gig, I used my recently acquired Rane RA27 analyzer with its mic in the audience position to EQ my rig. The RA27 pumps pink noise into the Effects Return of the F-1X and into the amplification chain. The sliders on my Rane GE30 1/3 octave EQ correspond to each of the LEDs on the analyzer. Adjust each until all LEDS are in the green, and the rig reponse is flat. It was a wild and VERY unusual pattern in the sliders that gave flat response at the audience position. This procedure adjusted for the drivers, amp, preamp, crossover, cabinet position on stage, and the acoustics of the venue.

    Pink noise really pisses off the bar owner because it sounds like a jet engine roar.

    The F-1X tone is indeed thick, clean and buttery but there is no grind and no drive control. I ran the RB5 in P-Bass mode last night, neck-only and series humbucking mode. RB5 tone and volume both dimed. The strings are GHS Progressive solid nickel alloy taperwounds. Low B thunders and was very open and clearly articulated like piano strings. No mid-bass boom or mud, and the highs were glassy clear. Another test of the fidelity would be running a portable CD player into the rig, but I didn't have access to one last night.

    The XLR connector is on the front panel... easy access for a sound man, but a pain if you use it to drive the preamp signal chain like I do. I built an unbalanced to XLR cable to experiment with using the 1/4" unbalanced Line Out jack on the rear of the F-1X instead of the XLR I normally use. There is a bit more hum because the entire system is now unbalanced, but the Line Out appears to be louder than XLR Out. I don't have measurements yet, but found the F-1X volume control set at 3~4 instead of 7+. The extra hum is an acceptable tradeoff, as I am able to make the F-1X fart badly by turning the preamp up past 7. Dunno if this is a bug in the new Groove Tube 12AX7 or what, but farting sux.

    The F-1X has a built in 12dB slope variable crossover for bi-amping. I use a Rane MX22 instead, because I prefer a 24dB slope and the active filtering in the Rane. There is also a full Effects Send and Effects Return loop, but I only use it for the pink noise input from the analyzer.

    In summary, the F-1X is perfect for Set It And Leave It Alone operation. For me this means 0-10-0 and EQ'd for the room and my drivers. The F-1X offers both the Bright and Deep switches that significantly change the tone. I'm not a knob twiddler, so all my tone changes are done by my RB5 using the numerous pickup switch combinations and the tone control at either 0 or 10. Mid-Boost and Grind are what is missing. I have a BOSS ODB-3 pedal but have yet to use it at a gig.
     
  4. blamkin

    blamkin

    Nov 28, 2001
    Broomfield, Co
    I hate to make this worse, but if you really want plug-and-play great tone, you really should look at the Aguilar db 659. I have its big brother, the DB680, and never fiddle with anything -- it just makes tone all day long.
     
  5. BigBohn

    BigBohn

    Sep 29, 2001
    WPB, Florida
    Holy boboli!!! Mr. Gavin, I did not know you were in college, but thank you for that thesis on the Alembic! :D You certainly know your stuff, sir, and I would never doubt that. Damn, may I ask if you invented the bass? :D :p

    Arggg...now I'm at stepping stone #1, where I was. I can't keep going thru the run around. I think I must work with what is available to me instead of searching long and hard for these components that are not readily available for me. The Eden is a fine preamp with lots of versatility that can only be tapped by working with the EQ. Guys, I'm starting to drift back towards my Eden, and I think I like it...:)
     
  6. captainpabst

    captainpabst

    Mar 18, 2001
    Tennessee
    well, what else is readily available to you?

    for simple operation and great tone i second the demeter recommendation.

    if you end up keeping the eden, it's not like you'd be making a mistake. and if you decide to sell it down the road and get something else, it'll probably still be worth a decent chunk of change.
     
  7. BigBohn

    BigBohn

    Sep 29, 2001
    WPB, Florida
    Cool, captain. Thanks for boosting my morale about my Eden. :D
     
  8. College has been so long ago, I can hardly remember it. They say if you claim to actually remember the 60's you weren't really there...

    :D

    There are a number of nice choices presented here... The DB680 is the primo solution, but at a primo cost. They go for over a grand on eBay, used.

    If you can out to listen to any of these, you should do so. I just put up Warwick5S files and posted a link in another thread. He took the time to make several demos of the IOD in various configurations. You can get there from my signature. Look for Jason Braatz in the Bassists section of my site.
     
  9. BigBohn

    BigBohn

    Sep 29, 2001
    WPB, Florida
    Cool, I will check out those clips, just for old times sake. I'm startin' to like my Navi more and more everytime I play it. I don't think I will change. Maybe eventually a SansAmp or something will be added. Cool. Thanks for all your help, Bruce, you rule! :D
     
  10. Jerry J

    Jerry J Supporting Member

    Mar 27, 2000
    P-town, OR
    BigBohn, I pat you on the back for perservering with the Nav. I LOVE mine. I pretty much have mine set flat all the way across. And no magic knob!

    The trick with the Eden's to set them flat and make very small steps on the EQ. A little goes a long ways. Hang in there and it will become a very close friend to you.

    BUT, just to throw a wrench in the works, I just bought a Demeter VTBP 201S. I should have that by next week. I'm going to do some serious A/B-ing between the two pre's. It should be fun.;)
     
  11. Jerry J,

    Would you mind cutting a few MP3 of the Eden and the Demeter?

    Run their Line Out into the Line In on your computer sound card. If you would take the time to make them, give me a full description of everything used and I will hang them on my site for the community benefit.

    You can reach me at: doc@compudox.com
     
  12. Jerry J

    Jerry J Supporting Member

    Mar 27, 2000
    P-town, OR
    I think that I should be able do. That will be fun.:)
     
  13. BigBohn

    BigBohn

    Sep 29, 2001
    WPB, Florida
    ***LATE BREAKING NEWS***

    Today, I made the decision to cancel
    the order of the SWR IOD. Yea!!! :D



    EDEN RULES!!!:D :D :D
     
  14. Mario Lewis

    Mario Lewis

    Jul 6, 2001
    Clinton, MD
    but have any of you tried the Avalon U5? IT has two knobs. One for Gain (volume) and one for selection of six preset tone curves. Curve #2 is the one meant for bass guitar according to the manual and my ears. There is no twiddling. No knobs to adjust, it's just set it and forget it. 30 dB of gain from the other knob. You'll need an XLR jack to get the signal from it, but it is simply set it and forget it. EQ Curve #2 can be viewed in the .pdf manual that you can down load. IT's big borhter the VT737sp is touted as the be all end all of integrated preamps, but the U5 is VERY affordable at $539 NEW and it WILL NOT DISAPPOINT! IT will take a paradigm shift to not have a bass knob and a treble knob to tweak, but the EQ curve is already set. I tried one with a Crest Power Amp, and Epifani 210 and my bass was a Warwick Thumb Bolt On 6. FAT- NASTY - TOUGH - LOUD Crystal Clear.....

    Try it, you like it. (Hey Mikey.........)
     
  15. BigBohn

    BigBohn

    Sep 29, 2001
    WPB, Florida
    Those are some cool looking amps, those Avalons. I'm sure they're nice and all, but I think I'm fixated on my Eden. I love it more and more everyday.:D
     
  16. The U5 is more of a direct box, but there's no real reason why you couldn't use it as a preamp, I guess :D. I'd never thought of that before. Neat idea, Mario. Avalon stuff is high end recording equipment and isn't bass specific, but it is amazing sounding.
     
  17. Mario Lewis

    Mario Lewis

    Jul 6, 2001
    Clinton, MD
    You're right Spacegoat, it is a DI, but take the signal off the 600 ohm conection via an XLR cable and route that to a Power amp and you've got a preamp that is quite the B String's Pajama's. Like I said, it will take som getting used to, the only tone controls you'll have are the on'son the bass, but it doesn't get any more natural and "true reproduction" like than the Avalon.

    An Avalon 737sp and a Aguilar Tube Power Amp with a Epifani 212!!!! NIRVANA!
     
  18. That would sound awful.....:D Just kidding. That would make a pretty amazing rig. I've used the 737 for recording and it is pristine, a very very nice piece of equipment indeed.
     
  19. Mario Lewis

    Mario Lewis

    Jul 6, 2001
    Clinton, MD
    So do you think the 737 would work well in a live rig? I was just day dreaming when I typed that. But the U5 DEFINITLEY works in a live rig. The guys at the L.A. Bass Exchange say that the 737 is the be all end all. If the U5 is as good as I know it is from experience, the 737 must be a monster? Just too many freakin' knobs to tweak. What with the compressor, and the shelving EQ, just give it to me straight and plaing & simple. Ya know.....
     
  20. VicDamone

    VicDamone

    Jun 25, 2000
    I'm hopeing someone will share thier experience with der Glockenklang Art preamp which, like the Avalon stuff, is a class A design for bass.