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Low volume and good sound?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by nicoli, May 26, 2003.

  1. Is it possible to get good sound out of a cab at extreme low volumes (like with a head at 1 or 1.5 on the master)?

    I'd like to use my rack setup for practice purposes in my bedroom but at a reasonable volume so as to not annoy my room-mate. Neither my 4x10 nor the 1x15 sound anywhere near good at low volume, are there any 1x10 or 1x8 cabs out there that would suit my purposes? Preferably cheap ones?

    Right now the best sound I'm getting at low volume is from a 1x6 guitar practice amp, which really sucks to use.
  2. jokerjkny


    Jan 19, 2002
    NY / NJ / PHL
    EA used to make a killer VL208, which i thought was great. then there's Acme's B-1 1x10. its not as efficient as most other cabs, so you can turn up your tube preamps for a bit more tubey burn and compression for that tone.

    you could always just get a nice BassPOD, and plug in some headphones.

    but, if you're just practicing, IMHO, its not really that necessary to find something that sounds that super extraordinary. a friend of mine uses an old Fodera practice amp w/ headphones, and it seems like it'd be more than enough for me.
  3. godlikenothing


    May 25, 2003
    SWR has a workingman 1x10 extention cab that might work for you, it goes for $159.95 though
  4. cassanova


    Sep 4, 2000
    I use my 4x10 carvin at low volumes when i practice. Sounds good.

    Instead of spending money on a cab, Id recomend you buy yourself something like a tascam mkII 4 track recorder, they're relitivly inexpensive and you can also put in an audio cassette and record your practice, without ever needing an amp, just a decent set of headphones. Or Id buy the pandoras bass box and just use a set of headphones with it to practice. IMO either of these two is a more practical investment than buying a single 10" speaker cab.
  5. Hmm interesting, I could use a mutlitrack recorder too but that sounds expensive. I'd prefer not to practice with headphones on but it seems like it may be the best option.

    I guess I could always DI to my soundcard and line out a pair of headphones from that too.

    What's the pricing like on the Acme B-1?
  6. alexclaber

    alexclaber Commercial User

    Jun 19, 2001
    Brighton, UK
    Director - Barefaced Ltd
    Go to www.acmebass.com for more info on the Low-B1. It's a great sounding cab, just not very loud.

  7. brianrost

    brianrost Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 26, 2000
    Boston, Taxachusetts
    Geez, just use some EQ!

    Boost the lows and highs a lot more than you would at gig volumes and you should be OK.
  8. tombowlus

    tombowlus If it sounds good, it is good Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 3, 2003
    North central Ohio
    Editor-in-Chief, Bass Gear Magazine
  9. ESP-LTD


    Sep 9, 2001
    Only you can decide if the cab sounds OK; it's pretty subjective.

    If cheap is your goal, you might experiment with some garage sale stereo speakers; the bigger and older the better. Hifi stuff is much less sensitive (like 10db less) so you can push some power into it without much volume. I'd suggest using woofers with accordian surround or rubber surrounds in preference to foam surround- they still may fry occasionally so I wouldn't get too attached to one.
  10. Petebass


    Dec 22, 2002
    QLD Australia
    whenever I need to be really quiet, i practise throught the speakers on my computer. 2 small satelite speakers with a 5" sub (and I use the term loosley). Sounds ok.
  11. alexclaber

    alexclaber Commercial User

    Jun 19, 2001
    Brighton, UK
    Director - Barefaced Ltd
    I almost always practice unplugged, like 99% of the time. Keeps my fingers tough and makes me be much more precise with my technique, no hiding behind loads of woolly bottom-end.

  12. That Acme looks just about perfect but it's far more money than I'd be willing to shell out on something like this. Think I might just line out into the computer speakers and see what happens. Just hoping the preamp out or XLR out on my amp is after the effects loop, it should be right?

    I find practicing unplugged is just the opposite, I can't hear the mistakes as well as I could if it were amplified. It's not like I'm hiding behind a wall of distortion like some other stringed instruments :)

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