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Looking into Bi-amping

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by SMB13, Mar 5, 2013.


  1. SMB13

    SMB13

    Feb 15, 2013
    Ohio
    Hey guys, this is my first post. Nice to meet you all! Like the title says, I'm looking to setting up my rig for bi-amping but am new to it so I need some help/pointers.

    Right now I have a Carvin BX500 running into a Carvin 8x10. Ideally, I would like to get either a 1x15 or a 1x18 with a 4x10 on top of it being pushed by a Sansamp Tech 21 rack preamp + power amp. I'll use the Carvin rig for the cleans-y/tapping/more middy based toned whilst using the other for a more distorted, modern, mean and heavy sound. Here's where my questions arise though.

    1. What would be a good power amp to get for this setup

    2. 1x15 vs 1x18 - how big of difference would tone be between these two? The only reason I'm thinking an 18 is because Vader cabs only have an 18 and I like what I've heard from vader cabs. I just want to make sure I can get some solid thump and body to handle the low end I'll be pushing.

    3. What are some good 4x10's, 1x15's/1x18's to look for?

    4. If I decide to replace my Carvin head, what is another good head that can get good, round, warm tones that is also rack mountable?

    I think this is all my questions for now... Thanks for the help all :)
     
  2. JimmyM

    JimmyM

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    Low end response is completely unrelated to speaker size. Don't believe me? Play an Ampeg SVT 410hlf sometime ;)

    To do a biamp setup, it works best if you use speakers designed for it, for example, a low end cab, and a cab with a mid driver and/or tweeter. And you need two heads or a head with separate power amps and EQ so you can EQ each cab differently. I've heard people do biamp setups with bass cabs, and I've even done it a couple times myself, and there's no advantage to biamping when you use bass cabs IMHO. All you end up doing is creating a response hole where the frequencies overlap.
     
  3. JimmyM

    JimmyM

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    I'll also add that doing a clean/dirty rig is a different story, which sounds to me like what you're doing. And then you can use whatever you think is suitable.
     
  4. basscooker

    basscooker Commercial User

    Apr 11, 2010
    cincy ky
    Owner, Chopshopamps.com
    bi-amping can be tricky. also, with the advances happening in bass cabs, it really might not result in an improvement over simply spending the same coin on a really good cab (or pair of identical cabs). also, just about any 4x10 will absolutely crush most 1x15's and a good amount of 1x18's. the newer cab designs can really thump like nutz, and some have good high end as well, eliminating the "need" for biamping the system.

    if you're set on biamping, i'd rec you don't use two "bass cabs" per se, since you'll be "wasting" some money on a cab that is meant to use frequencies far below what you're using it for, and the other won't have the best mids and highs to complement a dedicated sub.

    $0.02

    d'oh. jimmy got in there before me.
    i used to biamp a peavey 3620 cab. it worked well about half the time, and sounded like doggypoo the other half.
     
  5. SMB13

    SMB13

    Feb 15, 2013
    Ohio
    So would you recommend running two amps into one cab instead? What would that do number wise to watts, volume, and possibly peaking the cab load?
     
  6. Bi-amping is using a crossover and specific cabs for the highs and lows. It can work very well in my experience.

    What you're talking about is dual amps. Those frankenstein rigs are a suck and see deal. Try this and that together until you find something you like. If you can find used stuff to trade in and out it won't cost the earth to do some experiments.

    On the negative side, no way I would buy new gear to try out combinations, and good luck re amping it on a big stage. Until you get into the big leagues sound guys will laugh at trying to mic two cabs and blend it.

    Pedals and a good full range cab will get you the variety of tones you want a whole lot easier.
     
  7. basscooker

    basscooker Commercial User

    Apr 11, 2010
    cincy ky
    Owner, Chopshopamps.com
    noooooo, wait. if your cab has inputs for high and low frequencies, then yes you could. otherwise, no way. i may have confused you mentioning the biamp setup i used to use (the 3620 cab was a pair of 18's and a pair of 10's, with available inputs to use each pair seperately).

    i would think just finding a suitable rig that sounds good to you could simply be "a/b"-ed for the dirty/clean thing. biamping requires alot of tweaking, and trial and error, and like i edited into my first post, the situation from gig to gig can throw variables you don't see coming at you. for example, a super-quick set-up without sound check can make setting up a simple rig a bit of a guessing game. a biamp rig in an unfamiliar venue??? fugettabottit.
     
  8. Never connect two amps to one cab, even with an A/B pedal. One mistake and poof, you got two blown amplifiers.
     
  9. basscooker

    basscooker Commercial User

    Apr 11, 2010
    cincy ky
    Owner, Chopshopamps.com
    yes downunder is right. what i meant to say (thanks for pointing it out) was a/b a good rig you like with the rig you have now for the clean/dirty thing you mentioned. but don't ask me to help you shlep. :smug:
     
  10. funnyfingers

    funnyfingers

    Nov 27, 2005
    I did this with the Digitech Bass Synth/Envelope filter and I thought it sounded very cool sending the effects to one combo and the clean to the other. Unfortunately that was my only pedal where one channel was always clean.
     
  11. SMB13

    SMB13

    Feb 15, 2013
    Ohio
    So from what I've gathered from everyone, it would just be easier to A/B my signal chain for the dirty and the clean then? What if I run the A and B at the same time through one cab, would that still be a bad idea like running two amps through one cab?

    EDIT: Just read this

    So, the easiest way to get what I'm looking for is to A/B two rigs then?
     
  12. basscooker

    basscooker Commercial User

    Apr 11, 2010
    cincy ky
    Owner, Chopshopamps.com
    you just can't do it with two amplified sources unless the cab is designed to do it. if you don't KNOW it's designed for it, it isn't.

    ok now i'm cunfz'd. what is the intended goal? a clean and a dirty, a clean+dirty, or a biamp setup with clean lows and dirty mid/high??????
     
  13. SMB13

    SMB13

    Feb 15, 2013
    Ohio
    Sorry, I don't mean to be so confusing :p

    It'll be used for a clean and dirty, and a clean + dirty setup
     
  14. dukeorock

    dukeorock Owner BNA Audio Supporting Member Commercial User

    Mar 8, 2011
    Nashville, TN
    Authorized greenboy designs builder/Owner of BNA Audio
    lots of players try biamping at one point or another and very few stick with it...there's a good reason for that, sadly.

    There are a few great cab designers these days who use an internal passive crossover inside the cab, so each speaker is designed to do what it does best :)
     
  15. JimmyM

    JimmyM

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    That's what I would do. Either that or get a pedal and just go mono.
     
  16. basscooker

    basscooker Commercial User

    Apr 11, 2010
    cincy ky
    Owner, Chopshopamps.com
    so i'm thinking, like jimmym suggests, a pedal. you could get fancy and have two PEDAL chains, and a/b/y them. regardless, pedals are the less expensive way to go, and unless you're sitting on a pile 'o' bux, probably the smarter way.
     
  17. SMB13

    SMB13

    Feb 15, 2013
    Ohio
    Okay, thanks for the help.

    What kind of power amp would you guys recommend to go with the Tech21 rack preamp, and a good head for warm middy cleans to eventually replace my Carvin?

    Thanks again all
     
  18. basscooker

    basscooker Commercial User

    Apr 11, 2010
    cincy ky
    Owner, Chopshopamps.com
    i don't got this one. i'll just ask,"what's wrong with the head you've got?" and "do you already have the tech21?"
     
  19. SMB13

    SMB13

    Feb 15, 2013
    Ohio
    I've played through the tech21 and I love it. Just can't get it right now, though it's next up in my list of things to get.

    Nothing's wrong with my head. It gets me decent, passable tones but I'm not just getting the tone I'm looking for.
     
  20. basscooker

    basscooker Commercial User

    Apr 11, 2010
    cincy ky
    Owner, Chopshopamps.com

    .....who does?

    :bag:

    but really, ok, i get it. i don't have rec's for you, but i get it...:p
     

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