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Guitar through bass amplifier?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by flea173, Sep 5, 2003.

  1. flea173


    Aug 19, 2001
    Los Angeles
    I primarily play bass, and I have a GK bi-amp and a SWR workingman's 4 x 10. However, I was wondering if playing guitar through it could
    1)Do any damage, and
    2)If there are any ways to get the best out of a bass amp tonally while playing guitar.

    I know I am comitting a bass amp sacrilige, but I have little $$$$$ to buy guitar equip. Thanks in advance.
  2. CrawlingEye

    CrawlingEye Member

    Mar 20, 2001
    Easton, Pennsylvania
    Really, I don't see how it could hurt the bass amp, as generally the only real difference in the two is that a bassamp is designed to handle lower frequencies, while guitar amps aren't designed to handle the lower frequencies of bass. Generally, you can use bass amps with guitars but not vice versa, at least at a high-volume situation.
  3. Petebass


    Dec 22, 2002
    QLD Australia
    I'll let you in on a little secret. Come closer because I don't want certain people to hear....

    (whispering) Bass amps make KILLER guitar amps. Bass amps reproduce a much broader range of frequencies and are usually much more powerful than guitar amps. But don't tell anyone. The last thing we need is guitarists turning up with 400W monsters when they're 100w amps are already killing my hearing.

    Remember... ssshhhhhhhhhhh... it's our little secret.
  4. Scott D

    Scott D

    Apr 21, 2003
    Minneapolis, MN
    yeah, its totally alright to do that. i plugged my guitarists guitar into my amp (ampeg SVT-3pro>hartke 4x10 XL>Peavey 115BX) and oh my god- it sounded amazing. thats exactly how me and him want his guitar to sound like. too bad! its also exactly what i want my bass to sound like... i'm trying to get him to get a svt-3 pro.
  5. I used to use a Mackie board's preamp as an overdrive and play guitar through my BXR15. Loud as all get out and not bad metal tone.
  6. Petebass


    Dec 22, 2002
    QLD Australia
    Has anyone tried it with acoustic guitar. I did once, quite by accident.

    I played acoustic guitar for one song in my old band. I came across one ******* sound guy who refused to set up an extra DI for one song. So I decided I'd just plug into my Bass rig, turn the volume right down, and send the acoustic through the Bass DI. It means I'd hve no foldback and the EQ out front would probably suck, but it was the best we could do in that situation.

    In the heat of the moment at the gig, I forgot to turn my amp down. WOW. Loud, rich, full bodied acoustic. My cheapie sounded better that our guitarist's Martin through the foldback.
  7. jokerjkny


    Jan 19, 2002
    NY / NJ / PHL
    like pete said, acoustic guitars thru bass rigs are INCREDIBLE. loud, very punchie, articulate, full range.

    but dont use an electric guitar thru a bass rig. electric guitar pickups are notoriously lofi. remember they havent changed all that much since the late '50s. thusly, they sound like ass thru more full range systems. like listening to your electric guitar plugged direct into a mixing board.

    a better idea is to buy something like a Line6 PODXT and put it between your electric guitar and bass rig. the POD was made to be used into a mixing desk to simulate the all important guitar amp and guitar speaker cab setup.

    thusly, you'd be treating your bass rig as a studio or PA setup, where the rig is there to merely "amplify" the guitar sounds.

    i'm sure if you trall thru Ebay, you can find one that's cheap enough.
  8. McHack


    Jul 29, 2003
    Central Ohio!
    Guitar into a bass amp = Ok
    Bass into a guitar amp = dead guitar amp
  9. Davehenning


    Aug 9, 2001
    Los Angeles
    I love plugging in my guitars into my little GK MB112. Add a little reverb or delay and it sounds great.

    bass does not always hurt guitar amps. I have a few line6 guitar amps and plug my basses in all the time. You just have to use common sense. (don't crank it too loud)

    Some of Chris Squire's great bass tones came from guitar amps.
  10. Vintage strat, with EMG's + bassman 60 = MMM


    I play guitar too, but not as ambitiously as bass.
  11. BillyB_from_LZ

    BillyB_from_LZ Supporting Member

    Sep 7, 2000
    Ahhh, haven't we visited this two or three times in the past few months?

    Like Joker wrote, a guitar amp simulator between guitar and bass rig is an excellent way to go.

    I used a Behringer Vamp2 that way (I'm now waiting for GC to get a Vamp Pro in...) it sounds awesome!!!!

    I also found that a Mesa Dual Rectifier model into a 4x10 or 4x12 model makes a great distorted bass sound.

    Vamp 2s go for about $100 used...try it, you'll like it!!!!
  12. flea173


    Aug 19, 2001
    Los Angeles
    thanks everybody. I think i'll try a guitar amp simulator between the guitar and the bass amp. This means I can get another cabinet. YAY!!
  13. bdahlmann


    Jan 21, 2003
    Boston, MA
    The guitarist whom I play with goes through a SUNN0))) 2000S...it rules.
  14. Actually, I believe that Rob Wright from NoMeansNo plays an old Fender P-Bass through a Marshall guitar stack. I may be wrong, though. ;)
  15. Obsolex

    Obsolex Guest

    Nov 17, 2002
    I think you should be fine for a little while... I think the bass cab's are not made to support those higher frequencies though. What you could do though, is like, get a cheap guitar amp, with distortion and run it through the bass amp, that would be s|c :):).
  16. CrawlingEye

    CrawlingEye Member

    Mar 20, 2001
    Easton, Pennsylvania
    Contrary, bass cabs can easily handle the higher frequencies. Most all cabs come with tweeters...
  17. Guitar -> OD pedal -> sansamp DI -> Peavey MK 6 -> Avatar 210

    Just a bit of tweeter. Sounds great.
    And can go REALLY loud.

    A half-decent bass rig is a great general purpose mono-instrument amplification system. guitar rig generally is not.
  18. Obsolex

    Obsolex Guest

    Nov 17, 2002
    Contrary... Your right :p :D
  19. Dewees


    May 4, 2000
    Well, I confess that I was a guitar player first and it's still my main instrument. I LOVE the sound of my Yamaha DG Stomp modeling preamp through my little Eden rig. These units have been discontinued and can be found for under $150 on Ebay. The horn gives you way too much high end for guitar so I use the speaker models in the DG Stomp and get excellent results. In fact, this is now my preferred set-up and I also have a Mesa Boogie Mark III combo. Admittedly, part of my preference comes from ease of set-up, especially when I need to play both bass and guitar on the same gig. And part of it is this: Eden 210T - 60 pounds; Mesa Mark III - 83 pounds.


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