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Help me choose the more suitable bass preamp DI

Discussion in 'Live Sound [BG]' started by Bihari Botond, May 14, 2019.

  1. Bihari Botond

    Bihari Botond

    Aug 21, 2018
    I did a huge research from Preamp DI-s but still can't find what would be the best choose. I tell you what i need, and maybe you can help me(of course you can) :
    -I'm not using anymore amp and cab, i have got a Behringer BDI21 and i'd like to upgrade it and get a better pedal maybe rack, however i am okay with the sound at concerts ( i think you are suprised now :D ) .
    - The new preamp need to have DI out, cab sim ( i think i need it because i try to achieve alway a vintage slightly overdrived tube sound)
    - I don't need to have so much eq option as i usually use the eq knobs flat.
    - I want ot use it as an always on preamp, i want only one sound and not change it during the gigs
    - I am not a "big bass player" and usually play with pick(sometimes finger) on a SQ pbass in a indie,pop,rock band, and i also use an active stingray in hardcore metal band with pick only

    The cab sim is tricky thing ( i know it's a low pass eq thing...) because the BDI21 doesn't have but still not harsh and poopie the overdrived sound FoH or from the monitor on the stage (however i hear some fuzz trough headphone when i am practicing at home)

    I would really appreciate if you could help me, i tried to give the most important details about my needs.
  2. Wasnex


    Dec 25, 2011

    Did you consider an OmniCabSim? https://www.dsmnoisemaker.com/omnicabsim-deluxe
  3. Bihari Botond

    Bihari Botond

    Aug 21, 2018
    Thanks for this. I watched videos from this product and i's a very nice cab sim, but first i might find a preamp and if the choosen one has not really good cab sim, or it doesn't even has one, maybe i could buy one of this. Thanks again
  4. s0c9

    s0c9 Supporting Member

    Jan 9, 2014
    1964 Audio artist, Fractal Audio Beta Tester
    The challenge you face is that your question (other than the cab sim requirement) is basically the same as asking which bass, or which amp?
    There are so-o-o-o many variables, many of which involve personal preference and music style - not the size of the band or where you play.
    I have a few pre-amp DI pedal's (BDDI, VT Deluxe, SCRDI, ..) none with cab sims and was ampless for about 18 months. I've since gone back to my Ampeg rig because of other band members demands for bass-on-stage!
    As a FOH guy when not playing, I've concluded that for LIVE work, unless there are HUGE (noticeable) differences in the required bass tone from song to song, subtle changes (like cab sims) are simply lost in the mix. Why go to that length when 99.99% of your audience won't know?
    There's far more variance required in a bass tone to be noticed than with a guitar, because of where they fit in the mix with kick (and possibly keys) trying to carve out the same space!
    That's my $0.02, and many on here will [likely] disagree with me.

    Often, you need to try them out yourself and see what works.
    Here's a fairly highly rated one for you to look at and review (no affiliation with the vendor).
    big-boss-bass, Amano and WayneP like this.
  5. Zbysek


    Mar 23, 2017
    Czech Republic
    These come to my mind as satisfying your requirements:

    Tech 21 VT Bass DI
    EBS MicroBass II
  6. Bihari Botond

    Bihari Botond

    Aug 21, 2018
    Thanks for your answers
    Zbysek likes this.
  7. 92aceshigh


    Feb 11, 2017
    Brighton, UK
    Check out the Darkglass Vintage Ultra. If you want a vintage-tubey sound with a cabsim, this should fit the bill perfectly.
  8. Zbysek


    Mar 23, 2017
    Czech Republic
    I don't see cab sim on version 1. So you probably mean version 2, correct?
  9. 92aceshigh


    Feb 11, 2017
    Brighton, UK
    Yes correct :)
    Zbysek likes this.
  10. derrico1

    derrico1 Supporting Member

    Apr 12, 2005
    Charlottesville, VA
    Agreed with soc9 that most gigs don't live or die on the bassist being able to switch between 20 cab sim IRs. But because you build a gritty basic tone, there's value in having either a cab sim or a low-pass filter.

    A decent FOH SE will typically roll off the top-end fizzyness at the desk. But those FOH choices aren't always reflected in the stage wedges and/or IEMs. So having cab sim (or another tool for low-pass filtering) in your chain can make a big difference in the gritty bass tone that you hear all night. The other upside of a good cab sim for players who like a little dirt on their tone is the ability to dial back in some of the complexity from preamp tubes and power amp tubes interacting.

    For approximately forever, the various Tech 21 SansAmp units have had baked-in LPF. Many different models, but the VT Bass DI is my favorite.

    In recent years, I've moved to more flexible cab sims. Of the still current units, I've owned and used the Mooer RADAR, the OmniCabSimDeluxe, the Two Notes CAB, and a Helix Stomp. The Mooer works if you value a small footprint, although the power supply is big. The OCSD is great if you value hands-on control, and it has a nice feature set. The Two Notes and Helix are cleaner and very flexible—but with preset-friendly features and optional software editing that might not appeal to you. With all but the Helix, you'd almost certainly want a preamp in front of the cab sim.

    The Shift Line Olympic is another preamp/DI to look at—it can load an IR, and it offers a solid vintage bass tone. But I'm not sure that it's the box I'd pick for metal. DarkGlass offers much more metal-friendly options, but not necessarily the pop & rock voice(s) I'd want.

    For my purposes, the Helix Stomp is the preamp/cab sim I'm using most these days. Sounds great, fairly small, and super flexible. But as everybody upthread has said, you'll have to decide what tones work for your gigs.
    big-boss-bass, s0c9 and Wasnex like this.
  11. For me I have been using a Zoom B3 for many years now, and say 5 years with no amp. Occasionally I have used a cab or amp sim with my preamp setting but always gone back to the mid shift Sansamp BDDI. I do a lot of FOH shows as well as the SE and I have to agree, the amp sound tends to get lost in the mix. I opened for an Aerosmith tribute band recently. Bass player was late for sound check and showed up mid set (mine). he carried in his 4 x 10 cab and a Hartke L1000 I think. I finished the opening set and helped him set up his cab after I cleared mine away. He started to play and the sound was terrible, middy high and distorted and it was so loud I had to leave where I was sitting and move (in case you are reading this you are an amazing player).

    Where am I going with this, with all of the above when the band started all that was lost and he was just another bass in the mix.
  12. s0c9

    s0c9 Supporting Member

    Jan 9, 2014
    1964 Audio artist, Fractal Audio Beta Tester
    Totally agree with you on all points. My earlier post was not meant to imply that one "shouldn't use cab sims" and you clarified that above. :)
    To be clear: I have no issues with cab sims being used on ANY tone.. My point was that IF you use 20 cab sims at a gig, the subtleties/nuances between each will [probably] be lost on the audience unless there is a huge audio disparity between them. If you have 2 or 3 wirth stark tonal differences, then go for it. FOH can accommodate that happily.. but please prep the sound guy AHEAD of the gig :)
    Thanks for clarifying :)
    derrico1 likes this.
  13. Pretty straight forward tone you want that slight svt overdriven tube amp tone of a p bass with a pick. The sansamp vt should be a perfect afordable option imho. I used that setup for years until i moved to a full tube preamp and redid my whole board.
  14. I have never heard a VT demo that wasn't full blown OD.
  15. walterw

    walterw Supportive Fender Commercial User

    Feb 20, 2009
    you're perfectly describing a plain old sansamp BDDI!

    i use one myself in just this way, set to create a slightly grindy "rock bass" tone that i then run to the PA and (if needed) into a power amp driving bass cabs. (blend dimed, drive backed off to maybe 10:00, the rest EQ'ed to taste.)

    the newer VT DI does the same job, maybe with a bit more tonal variations.
    i've played through them, you can set it up just like the BDDI for a good natural amp tone without a bunch of overdrive.
    cm3ohana likes this.
  16. walterw

    walterw Supportive Fender Commercial User

    Feb 20, 2009
    what tube preamp did you settle on?

    odd as it may sound i've never heard one that sounded like a sansamp's version of a "tube tone".
  17. Jack


    Sep 6, 2003
    Northumberland, UK
    I find the Sansamp bass driver a little too mid-scooped for my taste, but I love the Paradriver.
  18. Pulverizor


    Jun 14, 2018
    New Zealand
    The Behringer BDI21 is a copy of the Sansamp so maybe start there or try one of the different flavours, VT, Para or Classic.
  19. I went with a custom Verrelen meatsmoke preamp paired with a line 6 hx fx for my cab ir and replaced my black finger tube comp/pre for a darkglass hyper luminal comp. Here's a pic of my current board its completely killed any gas for new pedals atm.
  20. 20190515_151707.jpg
  21. Primary

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    Here are some related products that TB members are talking about. Clicking on a product will take you to TB’s partner, Primary, where you can find links to TB discussions about these products.

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