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Mesa Boogie questions (vs Eden)

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by mrWr0ng, Jun 10, 2004.

  1. Hey guys, I wanted to ask a couple of questions about Mesa Boogie stuff compared to the WT400 I have now.

    I like my Eden head a lot, and it puts out a nice warm bass tone, but I can't really dial in a 'fat' enough tone with it. It's all very kind of... sterile. It's a good sound, but I often get lost in the mix with the band, and while it's a nice mix of highs and lows, I'm just not really getting the kind of sound I would like out of it. I've spent a lot of time dialing in tones, and I've minimised my rig as much as I can (just WT400, mackie power amp, and a 410XLT) but it's not comin through fat enough for the sound I would like with my rock band.

    The bass is a Musicman Stingray. I hear such great, thick, fat bass tones in like Chili Peppers songs and the like, but I can't seem to get that out of my rig. Would a Mesa Boogie be able to cut this cheese? Or would I be in the market for something else? Or would it simply be a matter of trying to fine tune my current setup? I've had it for years and I definitely have a 'rich' sound, but it just doesn't seem big enough to fill the spot my bass needs to fill.

    Thanks for any suggestions
  2. MJ5150

    MJ5150 Terrific Twister

    Apr 12, 2001
    Olympia, WA
    Grab yourself an Aural Exciter by Aphex. You can keep that sweet Eden tone, and thicken up your sound. I used an Aphex 104 Aural Exciter C2 with Big Bottom in my rig that ran to a 410XLT. Amazing piece of gear. I'd try that for around $100 before you go buy a new cab/amp. Once you let the Eden gear go, you'll regret it.

  3. Benjamin Strange

    Benjamin Strange Commercial User

    Dec 25, 2002
    New Orleans, LA
    Owner / Tech: Strange Guitarworks
    I personally hate any of that BBE/Aural Exciter stuff. I find them cold and sterile sounding. I guess many see them as a quick fix, but I don't think they really do much to your tone that's too beneficial. :spit:

    I personally don't think of Eden as much of a "rock" amp. Ampeg and Boogie are generally known for more of that type of sound. I don't want to say get rid of your current rig, but - I usually find that tubes are best for a "rock" setting. I'll put 300 watts of tube power against just about any PA power amp any day - they're just much more musical and thicker sounding to my ears.

    Try some things with your current setup first, though. Turn your horn off - they thin out your overall sound. Turn your mids up a smidge, especially the low mids. Turn your treble back down if you've got it boosted. Think about that oftentimes a good solo sound can be a bad sound with a group. Think about what frequencies you take up vs. the rest of the band, and tailor your sonic spectrum to them.

    If might also help to get the group to tune to you a little bit. Rock guitarists are notorious for turning the bass and treble all the way up, and scooping their mids out. This makes for nothing but mud, which makes them and you sound bad. Try to convince them they don't need to stop on your sonic territory and ease up on their bass knobs. EQ the band as a whole, not just yourself. You will all sound better that way.
  4. I have my higher lows and my low mids pumped pretty good now, though they're balanced out with some highs so I can pull back on the treble.

    I can definitely try turning down the horn, too, and see if that helps out much.

    Hopefully at some point I can take my bass down to a guitar center and try out some of their tube amps. I could probably get a really good deal if I traded my PA and Eden for a tube amp somewhere, if I manage to find a good sounding tube amp that would replace my current gear.

    I think really there is that overdriven tube sound just missing from my range. Especially when I want to play highs, my bass lacks the 'umph' to have it compete with the guitar when it's thundering out chords. I'll look into it and see what I can pull out, I was looking at a sansamp bass DI for when I need it, but it may be better just to have an amp that can give me a fatter, fuller bass tone overall instead of relying on something else.

    I think the Eden makes a great rock amp, but a different kind of rock amp... I play tool-ish music, primus, deftones, whereas the Eden is a much smoother tone for lighter rock or jazzier blues rock. Great sound, but not quite giving me what I need for this band.
  5. MascisMan


    Nov 21, 2003
    Dallas, Tx
    If you want a fat sound my first recommendation is getting a tube amp like a Mesa 400+, Ampeg SVT, or Yorkville YBA200, or even an Orange AD200
  6. ihixulu

    ihixulu Supporting Member

    Mar 31, 2000
    South Shore MA
    It may be a setup issue with your Stingray. The upper register can get lost if the pickup isn't close enough to the strings.
  7. vacman


    Mar 8, 2004
    portland, or
    The Eden heads I have played have always had pletny of fat bottom end.... the guitar players need to lower the volume if ya aint getting heard with a 4-10 and an Eden head. I also preach the SVT solution. 8-10 to boot and you will own the mix :bassist: SVT for rock is the way to go IMHO. get the tubes glowing. Dont get rid of your Eden gear however, I have learned this the hard way. :bawl:
  8. Woodboy


    Jun 9, 2003
    St. Louis, MO
    A cheap tweak would be to try swapping the tube in your 400. From posts I have read on TB, I believe the tube in the 400 is a 7025. Eden 550's are shipping with a Ruby 12AX7. I had a chance to A/B a new 400 with a 550 thru some T, XLT, and XST cabs. The 550 sounded WAY different than the 400; more body, less "fret clack", an overall smoother sound with excellent pitch definition, and more punch. I bought the 550 and have been diggin' it ever since. I don't believe for one second that the differing tubes are accounting for the difference in sound between the 400 and 550. It might be worth checking into as a quick, low-cost tweak however. Another option would be to sell your 400 ($500-600 retail) and get a new 550 ($900-1000). I really like playing an "all Eden" rig. The mix-and match approach might work for some players, but I like the fact that one guy designed both my amp head and cabs and that they lock together in a way the designer envisaged.
  9. tombowlus

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

    Apr 3, 2003
    Fremont, Ohio
    Editor-in-Chief, Bass Gear Magazine
    I think that it would be very much worth your while to check out Mesa Boogie's M-Pulse line of amps.
  10. Trevorus


    Oct 18, 2002
    Urbana, IL
    Dude, you might try a sansamp BDDI. I like to blend in a bit of its warmth to fatten things up. I don't like turning it all the way up, because it gets a bit too muddy, but it is definitely worth a try!
  11. maxbass


    May 22, 2002
    Milano Italy
    Try with the Enhancer all the way left.

    But maybe you already did so
  12. Thumper


    Mar 22, 2000
    Syracuse Ut
    I really like my WT 300, but am having similar trouble with a 2 guitar band, which I'm trying to fix with a speaker change (need more punch post). I don't have the same problem with my Mesa 400+. However, don't expect a super fat tone from the Mesa either. What you have is a tonal range that will punch through just about anything you'll run across. To me the Mesa has a fatter tone than an SVT, but it also doesn't have the growl of an SVT. However, my Sansamp BDDI provides plenty! I can get over the top of guitarists who dial in too much bass, and force them to back it off :hyper:
  13. ubersam


    Oct 12, 2000
    7025s are essentially 12AX7s, from recollection, it's just named as such for the "industrial" market. They're supposed to be more rugged and have lower noise than "consumer" 12ax7s.

    On to the topic:

    I've done a bit of tube rolling in my WT600 (Eden Road Runner). I had a bunch of preamp tubes laying around. The input tube does affect the final output, albeit not dramatically. The best ones I've come accross was the NOS JAN Phillips 12AX7 followed by the Mullard CV4004, but both ended up in my Triaxis. The next best thing were Sovtek 12ax7 SLPs (Long Plate), although I had to try 6 different ones before I found one that I liked best. There were slight sonic differences between the 6 Sovteks. It may have just been me, but I have to like what I hear first, right?

    I agree with the suggestion to roll the enhance knob to the left, until you find a setting you like, if you haven't done so.

    I also agree with the mention of guitar players scooping their eq. As a bass player, I've managed to coach a few guitarist in the finer art of dialing tone that works within context of the band and it's music. Try that, if diplomacy don't work, just keep telling them they're too bassy/muddy/sounds like bass without the "b"/ etc.

    Different strings might help too, like DR Hi-Beams. Maybe you need some 15s and more watts ;)

    This: "the Eden is a much smoother tone for lighter rock or jazzier blues rock" I disagree with. Not saying you're wrong (well, you are mrWr0ng, but I digress) just not in my experience. I can get my Ibanez SR3005 strung with DR Sunbeams sounding sufficiently growly (aggressive or gnarly, though not overdriven or distorted) through the WT600 and a pair of EBS 210s.
  14. JOME77

    JOME77 Supporting Member

    Aug 18, 2002
    I'll second that suggestion. I've only owned one Eden amp (WT-800) and IMO it had similar sounds to my SWR-400S. Great hi-fi sounds! I purchased a Mesa M-Pulse 600 6 or 7 months ago and I fell in love with the tone. It's has a huge sound! Definitely the best rock sound I've found. I still like my SWR for jazz and playing with an orchestra but the Mesa rules for a rock gig! Also the M-Pulse gives you some nice EQ options (5-Band parametric) and some other frills similar to your Eden. If you want more of a plug and play amp check out the Mesa Big Block.