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My new gear, recording and live sound update

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Sanctum, Jan 9, 2004.

  1. After a few months of piecing things together and making decisions, I finally have been using my new rig for recording and we had a gig last night. Here's the setup:

    SansAmp RBI Pre
    QSC 1602 Power
    Sonic Maximizer 362
    Power conditioner and tuner in the rack too.
    Mesa 1516 Cab.
    All fed by a Lakland 55-02

    I ended up keeping the SansAmp over the BBE BMax I ordered and returned. I like the grit available with the SansAmp and the blending options. The BBE was also noisy .. I know others say its quiet, so maybe this one was defunct, but I didn't really like the EQ controls anyhow. The sonic maximizer will probably live with me forever now, no matter what goes on in the future.

    We've been tracking some new songs and got some great growl out of the Lakland, mic'ing the 15" and the 10" on the Mesa Cab. Its kind of a mix of Steve Harris and Geddy Lee's sound. I also learned a lot about tone controls on the Lakland for recording .. it took a lot of trial and error to get the sound, mainly because I was relying on the settings I usually use live. For recording, cutting the bass and treble on the bass really helped it sing.

    The gig last night made me equally happy ... got that same growl going with a tad more bottom end on stage with a little bass boost on the Lakland. We do a few songs where I add a bit more drive via the SansAmp ... and while it has to be done by hand on the pre itself, its not a huge issue for me, as long as I actually remember to change it back :) I really feel that the Lakland is a superb bass, even more so now than when I first got it. I generally leave the EQ on the SansAmp flat and change things on the Lakland. The soundman also commented how good the DI from the SansAmp was and he enjoyed my tones.

    The Mesa 1516 cab, while quite a bit more bulky to carry than my 410XLT, is just a great cab. And it looks cooler, which as we all know is SO important :p I'm only running ones side of the QSC into now (500 watts @ 4 Ohms) and have been wondering if I shouldn't bridge it but that seems excessive to me - the cab is 450 @ 4 Ohms. I can also run two 8Ohm lines into the cab, so I may give that a whirl and play with different volume settings - it splits the cab to one channel for the 15" and the other for the 10" and two 6"s.

    Anyhow that's enough rambling from me. I thought I would miss my WT-800 when I sold it, but I have no regrets. The sound I have now is much more what I have been looking for.

    Still need to unload this 410XLT sometime :D
  2. Schwinn


    Dec 4, 2002
    Sarasota, FL
    Nice review Sanctum...I liked the grit from the RBI too. I thought it was really smooth and musical. It'd be nice to be able to turn the drive on and off with a footswitch without having to get a BDDI. I never used the RBI DI but everyone seems to agree its great for live shows and recording.

    What do you think the BBE sonic maximizer does for your sound? I might get one somewhere down the road, since I have an effects rack lying around with two empty spaces.

    I tried mic'ing my cab once for recording and I wasn't happy with the results...I had trouble with muddy tone. So I won't go that route again...
  3. Well, I'm not a technical person really - what I hear the Maximizer do is make the sound "wet" - like if I turn it off, I get good tone etc. but then I turn it on - man, the bottom end just fills out - its like it sounds louder without having to increase ones volume. Add to the the sparkly higher end dynamics - its really sweet, and sounds plush - told you I wasn't a technical person :D Oh yea, and I mounted the Maximizer in the back of the rack so nobody can see the secret to my tone, hahhahhahahah.

    As far as recording, we have some really good mics (I'd have to ask the guitarist / engineer the actual model numbers). And I guess each cab will sound differently - the 15" on this Mesa really sounds nice mic'ed up. We tried everything too, mixing a mic line and a direct line, going just direct (which wasn't too bad either) mic'ing a 6", etc etc. There are so many variables though you know - like the preamps we use before the recorder and all that other BS. I let him do the knobs, I just tell him to stop when we find the sweet spot. We're recording into a Yamaha AW4416 Workstation FWIW.

    I really want a 4 string Lakland now ... thinking of the all passive Glaub skyline.

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