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! :)

Guitar amp for distortion

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by TaySte_2000, Jul 15, 2004.

  1. TaySte_2000


    Jun 23, 2001
    Manchester, UK
    Endorsing Artist: Mojohand, Subdecay, Overwater, Matamp
    Recently been reading and alot of rock bassists use guitar amps for distortion effects you know blended with there own signals.

    Wondering if any of you guys do it or is it a bit useless live, how does the distortion compare to most pedals so on and so. I presume this is an effects question but feel free to move it.

    Thanks guys
  2. i've never done that live, but i've done it at home. i did it a lot when i first got my dod bass30, which has biamping on it. i sent the bass to the swr combo and the treble to my crate combo, complete with distortion. it sounded cool. really cool actually. i really kinda think i could have done it with a pedal (i just don't know which one!) it did sound pretty cool though.
    if you have heard any john entwistle (spelling?) in any of his later live shows, thats what i got for a sound, only not quite the ashdown quality! :D

    btw, i never did it live, because 1.) i don't have a loud enough guitar amp, and 2.)it would be more equipment than i'd like to haul on and off stage!

  3. motorhall


    Jul 1, 2004
    I have done this in the past. I split my signal three ways: a Lab L-4 head into a 15" cabinet (clean low end), a Lab L-2 head into a 4x12 (clean mids and highs), and a Lab L-5 2x12 guitar amp for high-end distortion. It sounded great and I got lots of compliments on the sound. It was obviously a lot of junk to haul around, though. Even so, I still ponder the possibility of going back to something like this because it does sound good (I currently use a Carvin stack). It doesn't take a lot of the distortion to sound good. I've found that I can't get as good a sound by adding in distortion with a pedal.
  4. The Lurker

    The Lurker

    Aug 16, 2002
    It works quite nicely live, actually. There's a few variables of course.... best to use a crossover or eq the lows out of the signal going to the guit amp so you won't blow speakers. Whether you use a guitar cab or a bass cab also matters-- a 50w tube amp won't drive a bass cab very well, etc. That said, smaller amps generally work better for this application, since you can push them hard to get the nice sounds while the overall volume they put out stays at a reasonable level. Wouldn't do to use a 100w marshall and drown yourself out!

    The best ideas are to use one clean amp for the lows and one OD'd amp for the highs (ala Entwistle or Chris Squire) or to run two amps full-range at the same time, one clean and one dirty (ala Tim C, geddy lee, etc)-- the dirty one gives you the color, but having the clean amp backing it up keeps it all from turning to mud with no lows.