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Gear you wished worked out... (DB forum thread)

Discussion in 'Amps, Mics & Pickups [DB]' started by neddyrow, Oct 28, 2019.

  1. neddyrow

    neddyrow Captain of Team Orange Jacket Supporting Member

    Apr 21, 2011
    Cortland, NY
    i was thinking about how we talk a lot about gear and try to give advice. maybe we could start a thread about gear that DIDN'T work out the way you wanted to and what you ended up using instead.

    i'd also like to hear from people who are having success with said gear and how they may be using it differently to get better results.

    here are a few of mine that didn't work out and my guesses why:

    DPA 4099 - heard so many great reviews for this mic and went for it. could not get the tone i wanted and had lots of feedback issues. this was mostly due to the fact the venues i play are loud coffeshops and bars where bleed and feedback were horrible. outdoor gigs on bigger stages worked ok but never had the proper preamp and soundcheck time to dial it in. i used it on recording of an album and had decent success. ended up selling it and going back to my bassmax. expensive piece of gear to not use very often. i now have a great amp that gives me a tone i like and no feedback worries even now that i often play with a drummer and electric guitars.

    fishman full circle - same for the reviews here - all positive. i also saw lots of players i saw in shows mostly using the full circle. liked the idea of it being permanently installed. never could get a tone i liked - seemed too "thin" for my taste. i think i had less than stellar success was because the bass didn't have the greatest tone to begin with and my amplification wasn't as good. it died on that bass before i got to try it on another bass and again, went back to the bassmax.

    i have a few others but this is just to get the conversation going
  2. Dr. Love

    Dr. Love Supporting Member

    Nov 5, 2008
    Lubbock, TX
    Prodipe BL-21: Condenser mic with a low price and elegant mounting system. Absolutely terrible sound. It sounded like I was running through a fuzz pedal on anything below open D, but higher notes did not distort. Maybe the mic was defective, but it was so bad I didn't want to bother trying another. I stuck with my Rev Solo pickup.
    neddyrow likes this.
  3. dhergert

    dhergert Gold Supporting Member

    Jan 17, 2018
    Blue Zone, California
    I purchased a complete carbon fiber end pin kit, a nice one, that I want to put on my Alcoa. But the original wooden end pin plug, which is cracked and tired, is still working on my Alcoa, being the only original piece of wood on this bass...

    This original wooden end pin plug has unfortunately been glued in place using some pernicious green aircraft cement, so I'll have to ream it out before I can replace the end pin. As such, I wait patiently for the original end pin plug to finally fail, at which time I'll go to work.

    I carry the new carbon fiber end pin kit in the bass bag next to my bow case, anxiously waiting for that day...

    Other than that, I've been pretty lucky with everything I've purchased for the Alcoa.
    210superair and neddyrow like this.
  4. I wanted to start blending a mic with my Full Circle pickup and bought 1. a DPA 4099B 2. a Headway preamp 3. a QSC K10 powered PA speaker. I was rarely happy with the sound I was getting and had a couple gigs with feedback issues. I still have the DPA, but only use it for FOH applications now - works great. I still use the Headway preamp for at least 75% of my gigs. I sold the K10 - never liked the sound of it. I think it sounded pretty nice from about 30 feet away, but not up close. My takeaway was that a mic through an amp only sounds good at low volume and at low volume it's pretty easy to get a good sound with a pickup, so the mic's not necessary.

    Re the above comments about the Full Circle, I have a bass that had a FC installed 'threads down' and it didn't sound that good. Then I had a luthier reinstall it 'threads up', and it was/is great! Just my experience, of course, but the difference was pretty huge on this particular bass.
    Ric Vice and neddyrow like this.
  5. Don Kasper

    Don Kasper Supporting Member

    Nooooo!!!! Please DON'T!!! You'll break the Internetz!
  6. Ergo EUBs - great design, no workable solution to the pick ups.
    neddyrow likes this.
  7. james condino

    james condino Spruce dork Supporting Member Commercial User

    Sep 30, 2007
    asheville, nc
    Every pickup I ever purchased and every synthetic core set of strings that claimed to sound just like gut.....
    dfp, DrMole, damonsmith and 5 others like this.
  8. Sam Dingle

    Sam Dingle Supporting Member

    Aug 16, 2011
    Realist pickups and evah pirazzi strings. I love how other people sound with those two pieces of gear. My playing style doesn't like those two pieces I guess.

    The shen basses I've owned have all been steller. I recommend them to everyone...but the 3 willows I've owned just didn't sound as good as my juzek, and I always feel like they are too nice to be my "backup" bass. Go figure... the reason I keep selling them is because they are too good to be my beater.
    Ric Vice and 210superair like this.
  9. RattleSnack

    RattleSnack Supporting Member

    Sep 22, 2011
    LR Baggs Gigpro preamp - I really wanted it to work for me. It has everything I could need in a small package: phase switch, variable HPF, gain + volume, simple EQ...
    But it has baked-in sound, muffled just like having a blanket cover. No amount of fiddling could make it sound natural. Too bad...
    210superair likes this.
  10. Carl Hillman

    Carl Hillman

    Jan 1, 2010
    Fishman Bass Blender


    Maybe I wasn't using the right combination of pickup and mic with it, but it never delivered on its implied promise of MBOL.
    Keith Rawlings and 210superair like this.
  11. 210superair


    Sep 10, 2019
    Ha, 1951 Kay model 130 cello.
  12. 210superair


    Sep 10, 2019
    You'll die with the old one still working E! Lol....
    dhergert likes this.
  13. statsc

    statsc Supporting Member

    Apr 23, 2010
    Burlington, VT
    Czech Ease Bass - sounded OK; could never bond with the look and feel of it.

    LR Baggs Para DI - too many variables; could never dial in a good sound.

    AMT 25b bass mic - great at lower volumes; too much boom and not enough definition at higher volumes; too much of a pain to set up, break down, and mix with a pickup at every gig. Makes good Tonedexter maps though!

    Zyex Medium strings - came with my Upton Standard; bows better than Spiros, but doesn’t have that signature Spiro sound.

    Rev Solo pickup - sounds OK at low volume; but increasingly midrangey as it gets louder. Couldn’t eq in a warm enough sound. Sorry Eric and Gary; I love my Upton Standard laminate, but just couldn’t bond with the Rev Solo.

    KNA DB-1 pickup - better than the Rev Solo, but still too thin. Guess I’m a Full Circle person.

    AI Upshot Speaker - loved the size and convenience of it; sound was always a little too thin (sorry, Rick!). May try the Doubleshot one of these days.

    Gear that works for me: AI Coda, Ten2, Clarus; Full Circle; Spiro weichs and mittels; MAS 16; Tonedexter.

    Gear that I hope will work for me: MAS 18; Sarno Black Box.
    damonsmith and neddyrow like this.
  14. birgebass


    Nov 7, 2011
    Revolution Solo pickup did not work on my bass at all. The KNA and Underwood both work well enough, and the Realist Lifeline has worked great. Not sure why the Solo sounded bad on my bass.
    String wise, the Gamut Red Diamond d and g did not work for me. I never liked the tynex wrap. The A and E are fine strings if you don't mind your board getting chewed up and the copper wrap. Really wish they would make a D and G without the wrap, I'd love to give them another go.
    james condino and neddyrow like this.
  15. Ric Vice

    Ric Vice Supporting Member

    Jul 2, 2005
    Olivette, Missouri
    You were probably using it correctly. The Crown Mini Condenser didn’t sound all that great and combining it with the BP-100 sounded worse. IME. I got better results with an Underwood/Crown combo but the Realist sounded better by itself.
  16. Keithunem


    Jun 17, 2018
    Bemidji, MN
    Quilter Bass Block 800. Was recommended to me by a very prominent bass cabinet maker. The only amp I’ve ever played that even my Grace Felix couldn’t make sound good. Tried all 5 of my basses and just couldn’t get the tone I wanted. Must have been a lemon because many people like it.
    neddyrow likes this.
  17. Countryman Isomax is a much better mic of the same convenient shape and size in my experience. I use the hypercardioid version.
  18. neddyrow

    neddyrow Captain of Team Orange Jacket Supporting Member

    Apr 21, 2011
    Cortland, NY
    did anyone else try to use a kick drum mic on a short stand?

    I tried the shure and AKG version and never had much luck. not well defined and a little too much air in the sound.

    worst part was that i did play one show where it sounded good and i tried to replicate with no luck. really stressful on the shows it didn't work and should have gave up before that. i thought that maybe it would work better if i had the mount-on-the bass clamp (h-clamp?) it might work better. but i gave up after all the time wasted by that point and gave to mic to a friend who needed it more than me.
    Povl Carstensen likes this.
  19. Ric Vice

    Ric Vice Supporting Member

    Jul 2, 2005
    Olivette, Missouri
    Not necessarily, could just be that the Quilter isn’t well suited to your style of playing and tone goal. If you were running the Felix into the front end of the Quilter you’re dealing with two EQ sections sections interacting with each other. Which is whole difference can of worms.:thumbsup:
  20. Keithunem


    Jun 17, 2018
    Bemidji, MN
    If I want to use just the eq on the Felix, how can I do that?

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