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

Fuzz and bass amps

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by CurbDawg, Mar 20, 2017 at 9:55 AM.

  1. Hello! New to Talkbass forum and am looking for some advice in the ways of Fuzz with my bass. I recently joined a band that will be playing some heavy tunes and so I picked up a woolly mammoth clone. I use a Markbass Little Mark iii head and Markbass 104H 4 x 10 cab but have not even tried the fuzz in it yet.

    The worry I have is that I was reading somewhere that clipping in the pre-amp or input stage of the amplifier can lead to broken tweeters. I have tested the fuzz in a tube guitar head that I have and its a big big sound with that, I'm just wondering what I should not do when using it with a bass rig. I use an active jazz bass so the input is pretty hot from the outset.
  2. morgan138


    Dec 10, 2007
    I would absolutely recommend turning your tweeter off to start with. In my experience, tweeters (and even some midrange drivers) can sound terrible with fuzz and distortion. And as you've said, there's also the risk of cooking them.
    Jared Lash, jumbodbassman and e-flat like this.
  3. So is that the dial on the side of the cab just turn it to - (whatever) DB ?

    Its not something ive ever used before i usually leave it set to 0DB
  4. rufus.K


    Oct 18, 2015
    If you're looking for fuzz, a blown tweeter may be just what you're looking for
  5. Indeed. Tweeter turned down or off, or just turn up the VLE a bit to tame it. At least the horn in your cab should sound better than the nasty piezo tweeter in the CMD121P I had!
  6. morgan138


    Dec 10, 2007
    Yeah, exactly. I'd suggest turning it to "-infinity" or whatever to start with. Maybe bring it up slowly if you think you need it.

    I think the problem isn't just that there's "too much treble" with the horn on, but that (some? all?) tweeters get scrambled up trying to reproduce distortion, and end up adding their own shrill, crackly, bad-sounding distortion on top of it. I've had kind of the same issue with 5" midrange drivers, except it was more of a hissy, paper-y rasp if that makes sense.

    I guess it is possible this isn't something the tweeters are adding, but they're just reproducing gross distortion that normally gets smoothed out by tweeter-less cabs. Either way, approach with caution!
  7. Sunset Shalom

    Sunset Shalom

    May 9, 2016
    My bass amp has a single tweater with a high frequency attenuator on the back. I usually just leave it set about halfway which is -6 db.

    Never had any issues when using fuzz, I also don't crank my pedals too much as they are crazy loud.
  8. Thanks for the kind responses I know im probably over-reacting I just don't want to inadvertently damage my rig

    Can i just clarify with you guys on the level control

    i usually have it set to 0db - is this regarded as being off or is infinity regarded as being off?
  9. morgan138


    Dec 10, 2007
    That control is a passive attenuator, so it can only decrease the tweeter's volume. At "zero" it's not decreasing at all. At "minus infinity" it's decreasing infinitely. So zero is full power, and -infinity is "off."

    The setting you normally use has the tweeter running at full volume.
  10. Sunset Shalom

    Sunset Shalom

    May 9, 2016
    Is there an off mode? 0 on my amp would be normal operation, then it has an off position and -3 - -24

    If it is -infinity then that is probably the off position, never seen that myself but it would make sense.
  11. Thanks lads!

    really appreciate it!

  12. Welcome @CurbDawg. Every combo of player bass effect amp speaker is different and every band mix is different you will have to work out what is the best fit. Start with treble turned down from your usual to take the hi range fizz that can kill a tweeter. Work your way up from there. What you are looking for is a grunt and grind to push the band without sizzle, leave the sizzle for the guitar and cymbals.
  13. Sartori

    Sartori Supporting Member

    If you're using fuzz, get a cab that doesn't have a tweeter. Or disconnect the one in the cab you have.
    rjovin likes this.