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My Markbass CMD 121 combo....

Discussion in 'Amps, Mics & Pickups [DB]' started by chancletarock, Apr 10, 2010.

  1. ...is motherf***ing amazing.

    Since my last post about my roland cube blowing up, I did some research and some research/testing and decided to go with this combo. I just wanted to post something here in case other people (like me, a week ago) searched for more than brief sentences on how much they liked it.

    I know there are a few heads/amps out there that do well for upright/electric doubling - and I know that I could have spent much more for this endeavor. Also I admit a large part of my effusiveness about the amp could be due to the fact that I've never owned (but have played many) an amp in this range. However I have to say, when hearing the sound that comes out of this little combo, I don't feel like I've compromised anything. The sound is warm, clear, non-distorted, and most importantly: natural. I didn't realize this is what I was missing out with my other amps: as close to nothing in terms of coloration as possible. Some really like having the ability to color the tone of their instrument with their amp. I never did, really; I always thought I had more than enough with just the eq knobs on my fender jazz, and didn't desire any modification of my tone on the upright. That's why this combo sounds great - as far as I can tell, its main purpose is to just let your instrument speak.

    For upright, my immediate reaction upon plugging it in and playing (at Guitar Center, which was hilarious in itself...) was "this is exactly the sound I've been wanting out of an amp," and exactly what I'd been missing: clean, punchy, articulate tone to match my punchy articulate bass. I play an Upton Hybrid that has a ton of growl and definition, and the amp really does it justice. It doesn't sound like a tin can like it did through my Roland; it doesn't clip, and finger noise doesn't get in the way of the tone. The VLE filter on it (treble/mid scoop) does a really good job of rounding out the tone - if you have a growly bass like me and sometimes you find yourself wanting to not jump into the front of the mix all the time, or just want to smooth out the texture, it really works. Most importantly, it is *warm* - really warm - Honestly I wouldn't even say "warm like a ____amp" or "doesn't sound like a solid state," cause really, it just sounds like your bass, but louder.
    Also- I wasn't hoping for it so sound even close to mediocre while bowing, since I've rarely gotten a good arco tone out of amp - But really, the bow sounds really natural, especially with that VLE filter. Not a lot of scratchiness or errant screeching that I normally find when plugged in.

    With regards to electric, it sounds great - and I'll stop there, 'cause obviously there are tons of amps that sound great with electric basses. With a hybrid electronics Fender Jazz, I pretty much get whatever I need through the bass' EQ - but the VPF (Variable Preshape Filter - Mid Scoop, Low/High Boost) does release a really punchy slap tone through the really dead strings I have (I'm not really into slapping, but if I need it on a gig I obviously want it to sound pretty fresh, right?). Also I will say I've used an AI Contra, which I obviously loved for URB - but I found it finnicky to use as a doubling amp - The electronics on my bass always overdrove it and made for some finnicky knob turning in between switching instruments. Nothing big, just a thought.

    Anyways, excuse the novel I just wrote here. I wanted to put it down in words in case any of you are debating similar things or someone searches the TB forums like I did down the line. Feel free to ask any questions.

    In conclusion:
    Markbass: yaaaaaaaaaaaaaay:hyper::hyper::hyper: :bassist: :bassist: :bassist:
  2. orbit2021


    Mar 12, 2009
    Spokane, WA
    Are you using a pickup or a mic? What kind? Etc

  3. i have a revolution II pickup from upton going straight in - i have heard though that a mic works really well for this amp, just don't own one/haven't tried that out.

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