How to improve "feel" in the crowd

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by midnight, Apr 16, 2001.

  1. Hey,

    I've got a Nemesis NC-212P combo that I love. The problem is that it occasionally has a difficult time cutting through the screaming guitar in some venues (especially outdoors).

    I know just enough about low-frequency sound propogation to be ignorant. It's my understanding that, when you set a bass speaker on the ground, some of the sound is absorbed by the ground. If you bring that same speaker a few inches off the ground, you get more perceived sound. Is there any truth to this? Is it worth building a stand for my combo? Would tilting the unit make any difference? Is it all a wash in the end?

    Thanks for any input!

  2. Nope, that ain't right! Putting the speaker on the ground actually increases percieved low end. The reason for this is that the waves that hit the ground are reflected into the main wavefront. The wavelengths are long enough that these reflected waves are mostly in phase with the ones coming directly from the speaker so they add and increase low end. The speaker is said to be radiating into Half-Space. If you put it on the floor, right in front of a wall you get quarter space loading and thus more bottom end. Raising the amp off the ground effectively makes the low frequencies radiate into full space. This will decrease low end response. So building a stand will not give you more low end. Hope this helps. cheers!
  3. MikeyD


    Sep 9, 2000
    Spacegoat makes a good point relative to the low end; however, "cutting through" may have a lot to do with getting more of the midrange output to the ears, in which case getting the speakers off the floor might help. Midnight is correct in the sense that mids and higher frequencies often get absorbed by the ground, but Space is correct relative to low frequencies getting reflected by the ground. A lot of posts I've read in TalkBass seem to indicate that "cutting" through is more readily accomplished by smaller drivers (e.g., 10") at higher frequencies (i.e., roll off the lows). I guess I'd recommend trying both approaches: (1) set the combo on the ground near a wall, and (2) prop the combo up closer to ear level... see which one helps in the frequency range most effective in being heard.

    The other thing you might do is ask the guitarist to turn down his bass EQ because I know that often interferes with the bassist's sound.
    - Mike
  4. rickbass

    rickbass Supporting Member

    A not too expensive proposition - SansAmp Bass Driver. Besides a level control, it also has a Drive and Presence control that will really put some cahones on your sound. (It did for me and lots of others at TBass).

    In addition to what Spacegoat and MikeyD said, (two of the best sound honchos I know of), some DR Hi-Beams are another inexpensive way to increase your identity in the mix, if their cutting, sparkling, bright characacteristics are suitable for the music you play.

    Try out a SansAmp if you can. It adds so much muscle, short of getting an 8x10".
  5. rllefebv


    Oct 17, 2000
    Newberg, Oregon
    And... If all of the above excellent advice doesn't work, try boosting your EQ at about the 800Hz range. This brings the low-mids to more prominence, especially while cutting in the lower frequencies... Works wonders for me, allowing me to project without 'booming' the room.

  6. I.'.I.'.Nakoa

    I.'.I.'.Nakoa Guest

    Aug 10, 2000
    Fort Worth.
    how much are the sans amp bass drivers?
  7. rickbass

    rickbass Supporting Member

    Mine was $170 plus about $5 shipping from Bass NW. However, I didn't have leverage like a local Guitar Center to get some lowball quote. I remember someone saying they used that strategy and got Guitar Center or someone to go down into the $160-something neighborhood.
  8. Thanks Rickbass!
    I was in a bit of a rush on the last post, it's exam week and I'm in a bit of a spin. Boosting Mids is a very good way to get your sound to cut through a wall of guitar. The sansamp is pretty popular. I've never tried one but I'd like to. I've heard it adds a bit of SVT-ness, which is always good. Of course I have an SVT so I don't need SVT-ness :D I'd still like to try one! I tried the bass compactor compressor and thought the compression was nice but it was a bit noisy. I read a bunch of reviews raving about how quiet it was (by some respected people) so I suspect there was something wrong with it. Anyway, If you want to maximize the performance of a small amp, put it in a corner, on the ground and crank your mids up a bit! It's a bit of smoke and mirrors but if it works then Coolio!