Mic-ing bass through the PA

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by Rockin John, Jun 13, 2002.

  1. Is it usual / sensible to mic (or direct inject, I guess) the bass through the PA?

    As we've not much gear - and the PA is really only for lifting the voice - the guitarist's opinion is that it's not a wise option. The reason for me thinking about doing that is because I can't afford a powerful rig: plus the fact that I've just restored a great little vintage Laney valve head. The head is only 30 Watts but sounds really good and I'd like to use it if possible.

    30 Watts is clearly inadiquate, though, but if I could mic up via the PA it might solve a few problems for me.

    Wisdom is greatly appreciated.


  2. CS


    Dec 11, 1999
    What happens 'normally' is that you would use your amp solely if you were playing in a small room/pub/club using a pa head affair. But most bass players I know use a min of 150w. If you speak to Munji 300w is a bare minimum until you get a WT800.

    If you want to use a 30w valve head and retain a clean sound you are going to have to use the PA as sound reinforcement.

    I would always recomend using a powerful amp to combat the sound desk attendant and guitarists who nornally conspire to make bass inaudible.

    BTW I use a TE V4 which is valve and 220w and have never been asked to turn up :)

  3. With 30 watts on tap you're going to have to mic the amp or DI it through the PA, especially if you want any clarity and bottom end. 30 watts is good enough for practising and small venues (depending on what else is in the band) - but for anything bigger you're gonna have to use the PA!
  4. brianrost

    brianrost Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 26, 2000
    Boston, Taxachusetts
    It's usual and sensible IF the PA is big enough to handle the bass.

    If you're using a typical "bar band" rig like maybe 200-300 watt powered mixer into a pair of 12" or 15" cabs on poles, the answer is NO, the PA is not up to the task. If you have a larger PA, 1000 watts or more and some large cabinets, then it would be OK.

    There have been threads here about gigigng without a bass amp. My advice: FORGET IT, get an amp that you can gig with even if the PA melts down.
  5. ZuluFunk

    ZuluFunk Supporting Member

    Apr 14, 2001
    Here, here!!!!

    Let alone, dealing with a sound guy who will give you crappy tone.

    The only way I'd do it, worst case, would be with a DI with tone control on board. Something like the Sansamp Bass Driver DI. I'd still have to deal with him robbing be of stage monitor volume. Nothing I can do about the house mix, but at least the drummer and I can hear the bass using an amp.