HPF and a Nest of Angry Wasps

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Mark Andrew, Jul 17, 2019.

  1. Loving my HPF it's giving me more headroom less rumble and a better cut in the mix. All super. However on the occasions I use a distortion (not a big fan but needs must) if the HPF is on it sounds like a nest of angry wasps wants to escape from the tweeter. Tweeter is set really low and this happens with all three of my cabs with tweeters and all amplifiers. Admittedly the bas Muff I use is not a high end pedal but prior to the HPF it sufficed for the occasional song it gets used for. Any solutions? HPF is currently first in the chain. I'm going to buzz off now.....bzzz
    mikewalker and Stumbo like this.
  2. Put the HPF last.

    Putting HPF first must require a lot of extra gain dialed into the distortion to get it going ---> wasps, best guess.
  3. Zbysek


    Mar 23, 2017
    Czech Republic

    Or: put HPF/LPF last...
    thetragichero, Stumbo and /\/\3phist0 like this.
  4. GrapeBass


    Jun 10, 2004
    Graphic designer: Yorkville Sound
    IMHO, tweeters are the bane of existence for bass and only make overdrive and distortion sound awful. It also depends on the type of tweeter... piezo (bad) or compression driver (better).
    retslock, AdamR, MDBass and 8 others like this.
  5. Yes I know there are mixed opinion on this. A smidge is needed with two of the cabs I have and distortion was fine before HPF.... It's a strange phenomenon I will experiment with its place in the chain.
    dkelley, drumvsbass, Stumbo and 2 others like this.
  6. GrapeBass


    Jun 10, 2004
    Graphic designer: Yorkville Sound
    I know lots of people who love them tweeters on bass, for the life of me I cannot understand why. It's all good though. What your describing is odd, I don't think a HPF should do that at all, maybe it's an input/output impedance issue. Good luck and let us know your findings. What brand of HPF are you using?
  7. It's one my amp technician knocked up due to the price of getting one here posted and taxed from the US being a bit steep. Couldn't find a European manufacturer back then. It works a treat though. With everything except distortion. I will ask him when I next see him if he has an explanation. However he fell out of a cherry tree and has his torso in plaster at the moment so he won't be fixing anything for a while. I shouldn't find that humorous but can't help a small smirk. Maybe he got stung?
  8. Geri O

    Geri O Endorsing Artist, Mike Lull Guitars and Basses Gold Supporting Member

    Sep 6, 2013
    Florence, MS
    As with all things, a little tweeter goes a long way.

    I like hearing just a little string buzz and bite when I play and the tweeter helps with that. And tweeters are useful when doing slap-style playing. But it can be overbearing really quickly and I think that happens a lot which turns people off. And I get that.

    And I know I’m in the minority, if not a singular soul, in my thinking on distortion on bass, but for years we spent untold dollars and effort trying to get good clean bass tones, especially at higher volumes on bigger stages. Now we’re throwing distortion pedals at our feet. I don’t get it.

    But that’s okay. I don’t have to get it. To each their own (read that again in case some of you are inclined to give me guff over my feelings on distortion/overdrive pedals).
  9. GrapeBass


    Jun 10, 2004
    Graphic designer: Yorkville Sound
    It's all good, I just personally don't like the way tweeters reproduce the instrument and find the drivers I use to reproduce high frequencies fairly well. (I'm a huge fan for sealed cabs using 10-inch drivers). I also tend to use tube amps. I typically don't appreciate OD/DIST but it really depends on what your playing. I personally use a fairly transparent one, a Broughton Terraformer, but RARELY use it as the music I've been playing lately does not call for it.

    The O/Ps dilemma is interesting to me and I'm waiting to hear how it turns out.
    Last edited: Jul 17, 2019
    Stumbo and Geri O like this.
  10. That’s so true! In the late 70’s we were all trading in our tube amps, and getting almost nothing for them, to “upgrade” to clean , solid state rack gear. It’s almost funny how we’ve circled back.
  11. Yes not a tweeter debate or a distortion debate as TB had enough of these. But I think most of us can agree we don't like wasps. I can exclude the tweeter or the amp as the fault. Using crunch on my amp with HPF does not produce this effect and sounds way better than the pedal to be honest but it's not switchable. Oh wasp is me....
    Wisebass, dkelley, Stumbo and 2 others like this.
  12. 40Hz

    40Hz Supporting Member

    May 24, 2006
    A lot of that is because many if us tried to rely on engineering ideals and specs for awhile rather than what our ears were telling us.

    Not all distortion is unmusical. And a flat clean frequency response sort of sound is usually the last thing most people prefer to hear, even though it’s an old school engineering dream.

    As one audio engineer I knew put it: the human ear is not a precision instrument. So it makes more sense to design amplifiers and speaker systems that accommodate and play to those human imperfections rather than pursue some technical standard that looks great on paper but doesn’t sound very good.
    Wisebass, Kevin Wolfe and Stumbo like this.
  13. Passinwind

    Passinwind I know nothing. Commercial User

    Dec 3, 2003
    Columbia River Gorge, WA.
    Owner/Designer &Toaster Tech Passinwind Electronics
    Post distortion EQ is your friend. A cab emulator pedal is one fairly popular option these days that might be worth giving a whirl.
  14. BurningSkies

    BurningSkies CRAZY BALDHEAD Supporting Member

    Feb 20, 2005
    Syracuse NY
    Endorsing artist: Dingwall Guitars
    Many older style fuzzes work best with an unbuffered signal. Try your HPF at the end of the chain and your old tone will most likely be back.
    Mark Andrew and GrapeBass like this.
  15. 40Hz

    40Hz Supporting Member

    May 24, 2006
    A Muf is a perfectly fine fuzz pedal. But my experience with Muf type circuits is that they usually don’t like seeing anything (especially compression) in front of them. So I will always put a Muf first in the chain if I’m using one.

    I also found that a HPF works best (for me) if it’s dead last in the signal chain. So most times I’ll use mine in my effects loop. Try moving yours further down the chain past the Muf and see if things start sounding better.

    Luck! :thumbsup:
    SOUTH PAW and Mark Andrew like this.
  16. Will do fingers crossed :)
  17. Haroldo

    Haroldo Supporting Member

    Aug 31, 2005
    North Shore, MA
    @Mark Andrew

    For a flurry of opinions, it might be instructive to post your query in the Effects Subforum (tho' the advice given here so far is quite useful, IMO):

    Effects [BG]
  18. I'm not a great tap dancer and prefer less rather than more pedals but will bear it in mind thanks ;)
  19. seamonkey


    Aug 6, 2004
    Just curious, do you have some sound samples with the HPF in and out of the circuit?

    Not amplifying low notes does me more power across the band for other frequencies. It could be you're louder and overpowering the tweeters, but that's a long shot.
  20. I'm afraid of the effect guys;) .... If it's not to of topic I hope it can stay here. Familiar names and not to many contradictory opinions really helps me....troubleshoot
  21. Primary

    Primary TB Assistant

    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.

    May 28, 2022

Share This Page