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How do you feel about "Optional Features" for your bass amp?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by 8mmOD, May 15, 2005.


  1. Basic Model=Yes, I don't want to pay for "extras" I don't use.

    10 vote(s)
    83.3%
  2. Basic Model=No, "extras" should be included, even if I dont use them all.

    2 vote(s)
    16.7%
  1. 8mmOD

    8mmOD

    Mar 20, 2005
    USA
    I endorse & use Tech 21 pedals, Eminence loaded cabs, EMG pickups, Jim Dunlop picks & Ernie Ball Strings, BC Rich Basses.
    I posted an earlier thread about graphic eq's on a bass amp & so far it seems that its about 50/50 on eq preference. So I will pose a new question...

    What do you think about a graphic eq as an "optional feature" for an amp? Lets say the amp has "Bass, Low Mid, High Mid, and Highs controls (thats just an example, I am implying a "simple" control setup), it sounds great is easy to dial in, but for a few bucks more (maybe $50-$100) you could add a "built in" graphic eq? This way keeps the overall cost of the amp down for the people that might not want the graphic eq.

    I also could include any other basic effects in this line of questioning... for example a compressor. I don't use a one, but I know guys do & prefer to have one built into their amp.

    So the question is how do you feel about a set price for a "basic model" amp and then being able to add on desired features for an extra cost. I know a lot of boutique guitar amp companies like VHT, Soldano, etc. do it that way. It keeps the selling prices lower for the players that want to add their own effects, or add none at all.
     
  2. Kael

    Kael Supporting Member

    Dec 26, 2004
    Oklahoma City
    I have never been happy with just plain bass, mid and treble knob setups. I personally need at least semi-parametric or graphic EQ. I am usually not happy with others deciding what frequency regions I am able to cut/boost. Given my choice I'd take a 4+ band fully parametric EQ.

    Now that I've said that, I usually use EQ very sparingly. More than anything else I gues I want it there "just in case" even if I don't use much.
     
  3. 44me

    44me

    Jun 17, 2002
    Bedford, NH USA
    I don’t know why a manufacturer would want to do that, as it adds unnecessary complexity to the manufacturing process, and would end up with a more expensive product overall. It makes more sense to offer perhaps a fully featured and a budget model that strips away a few expensive things. Pick-n-choose features is something more for boutique builders where cost isn’t the driving factor, but rather perfectly satisfying a customer’s wants and needs.

    - John
     
  4. 8mmOD

    8mmOD

    Mar 20, 2005
    USA
    I endorse & use Tech 21 pedals, Eminence loaded cabs, EMG pickups, Jim Dunlop picks & Ernie Ball Strings, BC Rich Basses.
    Soooooooo does this mean you would prefer a basic model amp thats sounds really good and you would like to choose your own brand/type eq to add to it? thats what i get from your answer since you said "not happy with others deciding what frequency regions I am able to cut/boost" No one single amp is ever going to have exactly what everyone wants.
     
  5. Fuzzbass

    Fuzzbass P5 with overdrive Supporting Member

    Some manufacturers, Ampeg in particular, offer graphic EQ's that are switchable. If you don't want to use it, leave it switched out. If you want to use it, switch it in. Or, use a footswitch to alternate between sounds.
     
  6. IvanMike

    IvanMike Player Characters fear me... Staff Member Supporting Member

    Nov 10, 2002
    Middletown CT, USA
    one has to consider that a fifty dollar eq will sound like a fifty dollar eq.... :meh:

    IMO, the best preamps/amp heads have rather simple circuits made with high quality (read expensive) components. some of those simple eq's (even the passive ones) have impressive range, but more to the point they are voiced very well, and even more to the point the preamp/amp sounds good flat. very good.

    way too many amps stuff all kinds of crap in them to lure consumers that muddy up the signal path and are of cheap or mediocre quality. this can radically detract from the tone. many of those cheap amps would sound better without all of the extra stuff in the signal chain even though the central preamp components may themselves be cheap. better yet, they could keep the final cost of the head where it is, and use the savings from removing the extra junk towards better components in the essential preamp circuit.

    rant over. ;)
     
  7. Kael

    Kael Supporting Member

    Dec 26, 2004
    Oklahoma City
    What I was attempting to say, in my own semi-literate fashion, is that I want control over which frequencies I am cutting/boosting as well as how many decibels I am cutting/boosting. I am not comfy with someone deciding the only mids I can cut/boost are say 750 or some such. I'd strongly prefer full control over the Q, as is possible with full parametric, but I'm not going to be anal about it. Well, probably not anyway ;) . Graphic EQ's are not my first choice, but I guess I'd opt for that over the three knob version (ie: Bass Mid Treb).

    I dislike introducing external EQ's via the effects loop. If I can't EQ a head/preamp to my satisfaction then it is out of the running for me.

    My opinion, blah blah blah........
     
  8. LiquidMidnight

    LiquidMidnight

    Dec 25, 2000
    I tend to agree. When looking at amps, the main thing I'm concerned about is how good is the actual preamp section (and power if looking at self-contained heads). I really couldn't care less if the amp has a bunch of built-in effects (though I must admit, the effects in the Crate BFX series are surprisingly good) or whatever. Though I think a good built-in compressor (key word is GOOD) would be a great addition to any amp. My Bmax has two "extras", which are a compressor and the Sonic Maximizer. I like and use them both. The new Carvin heads appeal to me more than the earlier Red Head series because I always thought the Red Heads had too many bells and whistles.
     
  9. 8mmOD

    8mmOD

    Mar 20, 2005
    USA
    I endorse & use Tech 21 pedals, Eminence loaded cabs, EMG pickups, Jim Dunlop picks & Ernie Ball Strings, BC Rich Basses.
    I agree. Please forget I said $50-$100 add on and for now & replace that with "reasonably priced" :D

    Let me give you an example of what I am thinking... assume the hypothetical amp is rack mountable & you already own a rack mount graphic eq (or compressor or whatever) that you really like - or maybe you heard the amp & it sounded just great on its own. A "basic" model may be desireable because it doesn't have a bunch of bells and whistles that you don't need. But on the other hand say you own that same hypothetical rackmount head & decide you want to add an eq (or compressor, etc) to it... the amp company offers "reasonably priced, high quality" modules that basically plug right in... no messy cables, etc. Is that a desireable feature to you? I am just throwing this out there. I personally dont want extra crap in my amp if I don't use it, but it would be nice if I easily could add components that I do use.
     
  10. IvanMike

    IvanMike Player Characters fear me... Staff Member Supporting Member

    Nov 10, 2002
    Middletown CT, USA
    nope, just answered it in your eq thread too. while novel, the whole module idea wont happen in bass amps. (crown does offer some modules for its power amps BTW). the current system of rack mount, short patch cables, and the ability to mix and match just works too good as is.
     
  11. 8mmOD

    8mmOD

    Mar 20, 2005
    USA
    I endorse & use Tech 21 pedals, Eminence loaded cabs, EMG pickups, Jim Dunlop picks & Ernie Ball Strings, BC Rich Basses.
    Ok I am consolidating this before it makes me nuts. here is what IvanMike said over an the other thread

    "probably never gonna happen. and more than likely such modules would not be anywhere as good as a standalone eq. not to mention that making an amp with a plugin module area would be more expensive.

    as it stands you can easily add components you use. all manner of eqs, compresors. preamps, amps, etc are all rackmount, most preamps/amps have effects loops, and there are a myriad of little patch cables availabel to plug all that stuff together.

    BTW, thanks all for self policing and being pretty darned civil on such a potentially explosive topic. "

    #1. no worries on self policing. Its only the friggin' internet, people take this crap too seriously sometimes!

    #2. what if it did happen? quality components, reasonable price, easy to use... would it interest you? hey I am an optimist *laugh*
     
  12. IvanMike

    IvanMike Player Characters fear me... Staff Member Supporting Member

    Nov 10, 2002
    Middletown CT, USA
    nope, not at all. honest.

    in that case, you're stuck using one brand for everything, and you end up buying a head/preamp that ends up being more expensive and bigger than it needs to be because it has a plugin bay for extra stuff.

    say i like this new brand's preamp, but not any of its eqs. then i have a two space (instead of one space) preamp and then if i want an eq i need to use yet another rack space.

    say i like the graphic eq from this new brand, but not the preamp? too bad for me, as the eq is a plugin module and not a standard rack mount peice that i could use with any preamp i wished.
     
  13. 8mmOD

    8mmOD

    Mar 20, 2005
    USA
    I endorse & use Tech 21 pedals, Eminence loaded cabs, EMG pickups, Jim Dunlop picks & Ernie Ball Strings, BC Rich Basses.
    I understand where you are coming from & what you are talking about isn't "exactly" what I am trying to describe. I am just not being clear enough, but thats ok. I think what is important is that a lot of people agree that built in effects are often more of a lure than anything & would prefer not to pay for something that they don't use.
     
  14. Joe Beets

    Joe Beets Guest

    Nov 21, 2004
    Just kidding. I had a graphic 31 band for a while. I couldn't stop fiddling with it. Even after I got the sound just right, after about ten minutes or a couple of songs I got the feeling that if one of those 31 sliders was moved a little bit it would sound even better. :meh: