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Mic vs. DI

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by iriegnome, Oct 31, 2005.

  1. Mic

    17 vote(s)
  2. DI

    33 vote(s)
  1. iriegnome

    iriegnome Bassstar style Supporting Member

    Nov 23, 2001
    Kenosha, WI 53140
    OK! For the last 12 years I have been running direct, but I have never been able to get the sound I prefer, which just happens to be the sound comming out of my speakers. I have a SWR Bass 750 with Schroeder Cabinets. I have EMG's in my custom made bass. I want a thick full sound that is defined. I am not really getting that from the Direct out. So I am thinking about Mic'ing the cabinets. My question is: What Mic? AKG-D112, Shure Beta 52, Shure PG-52??
  2. fclefgeoff

    fclefgeoff Supporting Member

    Jan 3, 2002
    Is this for live sound or recording? Usually, the sound guys I work with don't give me an option. I usually run direct live. Recording is an entirely different matter and I have found that using a combination of the two often works best for me (as long as you have enough tracks). I go direct with my Sadowsky outboard and mic my cab with the Blue Kickball (it's a great affordable alternative for bass cabs.)
  3. iriegnome

    iriegnome Bassstar style Supporting Member

    Nov 23, 2001
    Kenosha, WI 53140
    Sorry I did not specify. This is for Live Sound and Recording. We use a Alesis HD24 for every show. So, This is Live and Recorded Live. We have played in some big venues, where the crew comes up to my amp with ****ty mic's and hacked up DI. I just tell them what I am going to use. Same with my Vocal Mic. I never use a House Vocal Mic. NEVER! Since my background is as Head of a Audio Visual Department for a University, I am able to talk to most of the crews pretty straight forward. None, to this point have had a problem with my own mic's, especially since mine are equal to or better than theirs.
  4. 6-3-2


    Sep 20, 2003
    I'm pretty sure I've heard the name Audix thrown around a lot, maybe look into their stuff too.
  5. iriegnome

    iriegnome Bassstar style Supporting Member

    Nov 23, 2001
    Kenosha, WI 53140
    Aren't Audix the Musicians Friend Brand Mic's?
  6. 4Mal

    4Mal Supporting Member

    Jun 2, 2002
    Columbia River Gorge
    Nope! an Oregon success story! Audix

    Where would you place a mic on the Schroeder cab ? The dual driver, side firing nature of that box would make mic'ing a challenge, me thinks. If the 12 is full range, I guess I'd start there but there could be some really weird stuff happening close by the front of that cab...

    My fav mic on a bass cab is the RE-20. Love it on bass drum as well. Not a real stage friendly beast though. I've heard good results in sound reinforcement with the Senn 421 and also with an SM 58. The Senn 421 is on of my all time fav mic's for sound reinforcement. Great sounding and they'll take a pounding for sure! Generally close mic'ed on a full range 10 or 15.

    Maybe a separate pre to drive the house would work for you ? I'm a DI guy live and when tracking. I'll occaisionally mic up a single driver cabinet for flavor, generally a JBL 15 and then split my signal betwen the DI and the mic. I've had some nice results that way but its way too fussy for live work.
  7. fretlessrock

    fretlessrock Supporting Member

    Aug 8, 2002
    Have you tried running the line-out from the amp to a better DI. I have used a few SWR heads, and have been using a SM500 for a while. While the SWR DI doesn't suck, it isn't up to par with a good stand-alone DI. I've been using an Aguilar DB900 and it seems to meet the 'thick full sound that is defined" requirement.

    My experiences with putting a mic on a bass cab on a live stage are all bad ones. There are so many other sources of low end banging around that you have to jam the mic right against the grille to get the S/N to a usable level, and that doesn't sound anything like what you hear at listening distance.

    And if the DI signal is going to a recording desk then I'd say put the cleanest full-range signal you can onto the track and deal with the bass sound in post-production. In a studio I wouldn't go that route, but in a live recording it solves a ton of problems.
  8. SteveC

    SteveC Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Nov 12, 2004
    North Dakota
    Right. 1" from the speaker and a few feet are totally different. In an ideal world we would mic the cab and get the full effect of our bass, pickups, preamp, effects, cab, etc. The best way to get a solid bass only signal to the board is a DI.
  9. iriegnome

    iriegnome Bassstar style Supporting Member

    Nov 23, 2001
    Kenosha, WI 53140
    Wouldn't the mic make any difference. A warmer fuller tone. Especially if you used a Super Cardiod patterned mic that does not have the 25 degree back 'bubble' so it would not be as easy for it to pick up "outside noise"
  10. 4Mal

    4Mal Supporting Member

    Jun 2, 2002
    Columbia River Gorge
    In a perfect world, sure. Stage life is far from perfect though. Mic'ing live is painful.
  11. Passinwind

    Passinwind I Know Nothing Supporting Member Commercial User

    Dec 3, 2003
    Columbia River Gorge, WA.
    Owner/Designer &Toaster Tech Passinwind Electronics
    You've got it backwards: http://www.shure.com/otws/tech/tech_directional.asp

    Pedants 'r us, what can I say? :cool:

    If I have the extra channel strip available, I am perfectly happy to run a DI plus a mike for the bass. It sometimes helps a lot to have a mixer with polarity switches in that situation, FWIW. Not many MI grade boards have that feature, unfortunately. I usually find myself using the mike channel for cut, and the DI for bottom, but YMMV.
  12. iriegnome

    iriegnome Bassstar style Supporting Member

    Nov 23, 2001
    Kenosha, WI 53140
    You know, I was just looking at the Beta 52 Specs and they are wrong. The Super Cardioid patern should have a back bubble for the pick up polar pattern
  13. RevGroove

    RevGroove Commercial User

    Jul 21, 2002
    Burlington ON Canada
    Manager, Account Services: Long & McQuade Ltd. (Burlington); MTD Kingston Basses International Emerging Artist; Bartolini Electronics Emerging Artist
    I like to do both...but if I have to choose one or the other, I'll go with a mic...surprised at the poll results, to be honest, most of the cats I hang with locally also prefer to mike than DI...different strokes, I guess...
  14. fullrangebass


    May 7, 2005
    I prefer the DI option. All my gigging/recording amps have a nice DI to start with. And for the best overall control, I run my bass through the Avalon U5 (uncolored is my middle name, thank you) to give the sound man MY sound, and then I go to the amp (either as a monitor in larger venues, or as a true sound source in smaller ones).
  15. ihateusernames


    Jun 26, 2006
    you could add a selection to the poll.

    some sound pros prefer di + mic. if you know what you're doing, it makes perfect sense to me.
  16. brianrost

    brianrost Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 26, 2000
    Boston, Taxachusetts
    I never mike the cab. In the studio I don't remember ever using an amp.

    Once you sit in the control room and hear what's coming out of the monitors, you'll want to take the entire control room to your next gig :D
  17. rockstarbassist

    rockstarbassist Banned

    Apr 30, 2002
    The Woodlands, TX
    Endorsing Artist: HCAF
    Now that I have an awesome bass and quality preamps, if I HAD to run with a DI box I'd be ok with it, and I never really complain about DI'ing from my preamp.

    However, I much prefer mic'ing if you have a quality cab (and the E-Dub definitely falls under that category!! :D).

    I just need to get a good mic that's worth it though.. SM57's don't cut it for me. :)
  18. i refuse to DI my bass at my shows, generally i use a sienhieser e609 but ive also had good results with a SM57....low b and all.

    reason why? my small rig (hartke HA2500 amp and BBE 482i) and cab (SWR Henry the 8x8) are where i get my tone from. if i DI i lose everything but the sound of the bass.

    as far as recording goes, a good technician will mic the cab one or two different ways and then DI also, gereally blending the best of the mix. at least in my experiance
  19. markjazzbassist

    markjazzbassist Supporting Member

    Apr 19, 2005
    Cleveland, OH
    DI for live and recording. If i had a Vintage Ampeg B-15 i would mic, but i don't so i use DI's.
  20. Markus Bender

    Markus Bender

    Dec 15, 2005
    Maybe you should think about reamping.
    I go DI live, and later in the studio I send the bass track through my amp. Check this thing out, it's absolutely great: