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If my basses all sound much better unplugged...

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Techmonkey, Apr 19, 2006.

  1. Techmonkey


    Sep 4, 2004
    Wales, UK
    Does it mean it's time I got a new amp?

    I'm packing a Hartke 3500 through a TP410 cab. It's my first "proper" bass amp - and even though I quite like the sound it gives, it just seems too... Too nasal. It doesn't cut through in the mix (it just sounds like another guitar) because it's not bassy enough, and it's not got enough top end to give the notes any clarity. Is this just my style of playing? I much prefer the sound I get when I run my Sansamp through my mixer into my PC and listen through headphones. That's my ideal bass tone - yet I can't get it on my amp!!

    What do y'all suggest I do? I don't really want anything bigger or heavier than what I have at the moment - it's enough to just carry this beast around.

    FWIW: I play ska, funk, metal and jazz mainly
  2. Plain Old Me

    Plain Old Me

    Dec 14, 2004
    Whats the price range?
  3. Lonnybass


    Jul 19, 2000
    San Diego
    Endorsing Artist: Pedulla Basses
    If you are digging the direct (or unplugged) sound yet hate your plugged-in tone, I'd suggest finding an amp setup that is a more transparent than your Hartke stuff, which are pretty well known for their distinctively bright (some, including me, would call it harsh) built-in tone.

    There are plenty of heads and cabinets out there that should give you a more naturally voiced sound, provided you understand the basics of EQing in order to translate the sound in your head to the sound coming out of your speakers.

  4. Mo' bass

    Mo' bass

    May 4, 2000
    Remember what you need on a gig might/will be very different than what you like when playing on your own.

    Also, are you using the Sansamp with the Harkte? Try putting the output of the Sansamp into the effects return on the Hartke. How does that sound?
  5. Basshole

    Basshole Banned

    Jan 28, 2005
    Try using another amp with your cabinet. I'd suspect the Hartke amp, before I'd suspect the speakers (which I consider pretty good, although TP is definitely not XL).
  6. +1 This can be a huge difference!

    But maybe you just need a bit more experimenting with the eq? I remember my first bass amp, an old samick 15' thingie, sounding horrible when I just started :rolleyes: . A while later some friend's dad, who was a professional guitarist, thought the same, and gave the knobs a turn when I wasn't looking. Should say I loved the tone it produced since then.
  7. Techmonkey


    Sep 4, 2004
    Wales, UK
    I sometimes use the Sansamp with the Hartke, which helps to beef up the sound, but it's still just polishing a turd, if you get me?

    Price range is under £300 I think... (Let's say $600)

    I like the sound when I play by myself - it's when I rehearse and gig that I get the real problems.

    I understand EQ'ing but I like to keep things simple - I mostly bypass the graphic EQ and just use the contours, and when I do use the graphic EQ it's only very slight, and it's always cutting, not boosting much.

    I'd like to sell my TP and save up for an XL, but they're somewhat heavier than the TP... and I find the TP enough of a challenge already :bag:
  8. Plain Old Me

    Plain Old Me

    Dec 14, 2004
    I'd get a poweramp and run your Sansamp into that, and maybe a new cab if you can afford one.
  9. Techmonkey


    Sep 4, 2004
    Wales, UK
    Thinking about it, I may well be able to do the whole poweramp thing... my bro is just about to buy a new 500 a side amp, so I can have his old 200 a side amp when he does, which would be perfect really. I'll definitely give that a shot first.
  10. Kael


    Dec 26, 2004
    Oklahoma City
    I'd replace the cab first. Those TP cabs are far from what I would consider even remotely acceptable. The 3500 heads, while not the greatest, will work though a decent cab. I'd look at upgrading to the absolute best 210, 115, or 112 you can afford. Then tack on another cab in the future, and finally replacing the head last.

    You will get more noticeable results quicker by replacing the cabs first.
  11. Techmonkey


    Sep 4, 2004
    Wales, UK
    If this is the case... If I'm looking at, say, 1x12"... will one cab cut it on it's own? Or would a 2x10 be better?? Can I get any of these things for £200 or so used? Bearing in mind portability is also a big issue
  12. pickles

    pickles Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 23, 2000
    Ventura, CA
    The sansAmp, if you're blending it "wet", is a rough approximation of the Ampeg SVT tone. If you like that sound you should hunt around for a used Ampeg setup.
  13. Techmonkey


    Sep 4, 2004
    Wales, UK
    I would LOVE to have Ampeg gear - but it's just so heavy! I mean of course bass gear is going to be heavy - but that's just insane! I'm sure it would give me what I'm missing in my amp though.
    Can Ampegs give a clean jazzy like tone when required though? :meh:

    There's an SVT with the 8x10 and all at a local music shop but I don't have the guts to ask to try it out as I'm blatently not gonna buy it so they won't let me turn it up enough to make use of it.

    Oh well, I can dream :)
  14. sedan_dad

    sedan_dad Supporting Member

    Feb 5, 2006
    Do not try out that SVT!!!!!!!!!!
    If you do you'll spend the rest of your life trying to duplicate the great tone and volume.
    You'll steal to buy one.You'll buy a trailer to haul it around.
    Please don't do it!!!!!

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