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Most Transparent Sound

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Quap, Nov 18, 2018.

  1. Quap


    Oct 14, 2008
    Lubbock, Texas
    I’m looking at a RevSound RS210. The clips I’ve heard seem nice and clean. I play in an alt-country Americana style group and my current rig isn’t what I want anymore.
  2. bass nitro

    bass nitro

    Feb 21, 2011
    Turn the knobs to where it sounds good to you. If it makes you feel better, consider that setting 'neutral, transparent, and flat' - KJung
  3. chadds


    Mar 18, 2000
    Subjective here we come. :)
    Transparent isn’t always sterile. The Glock BAC pre and Summit disclose everything while not being at all sterile.
  4. Just came across this in Bass Muscusn Mag April 1998 about Stu Cook of CCR “These days, Stu only carries with him a James Demeter preamp, and Demeter HC1 tube compressor. "The HC1 is so transparent, it's the best piece of outboard gear I've ever used. The preamp warms up the sound, it has your basic Fender Showman controls. I can't speak highly enough about Jim (Demeter) and his company." Stu's cabinet of choice these days is the Ampeg SVT.”
    Bassist30 likes this.
  5. DaveAceofBass

    DaveAceofBass Supporting Member

    Feb 20, 2004
    Charlotte, NC
  6. chadds


    Mar 18, 2000
    Transparent to me means the pre etc allows any sound you want to be displayed through. Sound of your bass and any hand position. The opposite would be so much distortion, pleasing or not, from the output section or cab that the tone of the instrument is obscured.

    We all may place our sonic preferences somewhere along that continuum.

    The most transparent piece I’ve heard was the Millenia Td-1. For my uses it was just too clean. An Ampeg B-15 fits musically in some settings but in others it’s too coloured. YMMV.

    For me hi-end, by design not in snobbery, tube Pres and some tube power amps cover the range of accuracy with musical support. It’s a delicate balance and can be accomplished. In hifi audio reproduction there are many examples. While tube they aren’t designed to go into distortion.

    In modern preamps the Monique does it. The Summit as well. There are others that I don’t have first hand knowledge of. The Glockenklang BAC pre while SS bridges the gap from the other direction. Incredibly clean and accurate with enough colour to be musically pleasing.
  7. peterpalmieri

    peterpalmieri Supporting Member

    Apr 19, 2005
    Babylon, NY
    The short answer is Acoustic Image.

    The longer answer is that the cab is going to color the sound as much if not more then the amp. So if you really want to go down the transparent rabbit hole make sure you think it through
    S.F.Sorrow likes this.
  8. JohnnyBottom

    JohnnyBottom Supporting Member

    Nov 27, 2002
    New Jersey
    Actually pretty interesting concept. What is transparent ?
    Like How much does a kilogram weigh? There is some benchmark for it in some lab somewhere and a kilogram
    weighs as much as that sample in some lab. So to say something cuts certain highs, means you bench marked it against something else. that in your opinion doesnt add highs or must be 'THE' transparent etc. I guess noone knows what their bass really sounds like.

    BTW the weight of a kilogram is changing...
    The world just redefined the kilogram
  9. S.F.Sorrow


    Dec 6, 2014
    This. No amp+cab will ever be transparent because the speakers will ALWAYS color the sound A LOT more than any amp.

    DI only is probably the most transparent we can get but even two different super clean DIs will sound different. Take the Radial JDV as an example: The sound will vary quite a bit when you adjust the variable impedance. So which setting is the most "transparent"?

    To many variables everywhere. Just find something that sounds good to YOU.
    Ekulati likes this.
  10. Jeff Scott

    Jeff Scott Rickenbacker guru.......... Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2006
  11. Jeff Scott

    Jeff Scott Rickenbacker guru.......... Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2006
    Oh, that photo at the top is of my turntable, but someone mounted the platter wrong. I hate it when they do that. :rollno:

    Audiophile Turntable.jpg
  12. S.F.Sorrow


    Dec 6, 2014
    LOL, is it transparent???

    Actually, this discussion made me remember something I read a couple of months ago about someone (in Germany if I remember correctly) who had developed a new kind of LP with considerably less distortion. And all these years I've thought it was the higher distortion that made LPs sound WARMER than CDs??? Well silly me.... But then I like tube bass amps too so I'm probably a dinosaur.
  13. rwkeating


    Oct 1, 2014
    The signal you input is the same at the output but louder. It is probably an impossible goal to attain but there is equipment out there that gets really really really close.
    G Aichele likes this.
  14. grimjim


    Jan 26, 2014
    Chicago, Illinois
    Endorsing artist;DNA Amplification, GHS strings
    I use DNA. It's very transparent, unless you don't want it to be.
  15. rwkeating


    Oct 1, 2014
    You can measure the "transparency" or how flat a preamp is (with regards to frequency) with a free piece of software called Room EQ Wizard and a computer that has input and outputs for sound. In this post

    Carvin BX250 Frequency Measurements and settings for flat freq. curve

    I did it for a Carvin BX250. The tone controls didn't have a flat setting, but by experimenting I got it to be closer to flat. Another thing to note is the "pre" graph (without the preamp tone controls) is very flat. This goes along with other have posted that power amps are usually flat and preamps may not be.

    Note: be very careful if you try to do this on a power amp as the output could easily fry your computer if not properly padded.
  16. Jeff Scott

    Jeff Scott Rickenbacker guru.......... Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2006
    How'd they minimize/eliminate tracing distortion?
  17. S.F.Sorrow


    Dec 6, 2014
    I have no idea, I can't remember the details. I'm not even sure it was in Germany. It looked like something that would get pretty expensive and never get a market outside audiophile circuits and special editions. But I remember thinking that the technology looked legit and not just the usual audiophile snake oil stuff. I just couldn't understand why anyone would want it? I mean, we listen to vinyl because it sounds like vinyl, right? If I want cleaner sound I go digital. Both can be great. Like personally I love vinyl for 60s/70s rock but prefer digital for classical. But paying a fortune for "cleaner" sounding vinyl... I just don't see the point.
  18. Jeff Scott

    Jeff Scott Rickenbacker guru.......... Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2006
    Yeah, there only so much one can do with a sharp piece of diamond scratching across a piece of vinyl, anyway. :smug:
  19. ThisBass


    Aug 29, 2012
    Probably all of the amps which can provide real headroom in the range of
    2..3 kWatt which is independent of any class of the amplifier

    That's what I'd demand as sound engineer by default If a bass player would very insist on a real "transparent" sound.

    Fortunatelly they (almost always) don't know the meaning of headroom.
    Its our job to make them feel happy on stage rather than teach them with science.
    Last edited: Nov 19, 2018
  20. Bassist30

    Bassist30 Supporting Member

    Mar 19, 2004
    I agree with those who stated Demeter. Another amp is the Thunderfunk.
    bassbooty likes this.

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