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Need suggs on amp headphone practicing

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by superfly, May 25, 2005.

  1. superfly


    Aug 4, 2004
    I need suggestions on how to practice under headphones.

    I want to take a line out from my cd/radio player and mix it with my bass signal so I can practice under headphones.

    My amp does NOT have a headphone out and does NOT have a cd/aux input. It DOES have a balanced DI out.

    Any suggestions on how to mix my bass signal and a cd player signal together so I can hear them under headphones? With or without using my amp.

    Can I get a cheap "mini mixer" and accomplish this? Will the mixer "amplify" the bass sound if I go directly into it? Or do I need to send the mixer an "amplified" signal?

    I tried the Ctech Pocket Rockit mini headphone amp, but I thought it was kind of cheap and cheesy. I'd rather have alittle more control over the sound I get. Any other suggs without breaking the bank?

    thanks, and sorry if the ? is kind of stupid.
  2. bigbeefdog

    bigbeefdog Who let the dogs in?

    Jul 7, 2003
    Mandeville, LA
    Of course it's not a stupid question.

    Do you have, or are you interested in, a portable recorder, such as a Minidisc unit? One of the ways I practice late at night, when others are sleeping, is by connecting my bass to the "line in" of a Sharp minidisc unit (this requires a 1/4" to 1/8" plug adapter), switch the portable to Rec or Rec/Pause, and plug the headphones into the output jack of the portable. Presto - battery-powered headphone practice amp.

    Seems that you could take this a bit further... grab a Y-adapter to allow you to connect both the bass and the CD/radio to the portable's input at the same time, adjust your relative volumes at the bass and the radio, and be able to hear both through the phones.

    And the bonus, you can record these practice sessions as you go for later review, or use the recorder (with mics) for practice/gig purposes.
  3. the pieman

    the pieman

    May 22, 2005
    Durham, UK
    Sorry for hi-jacking, but I have a similar question: is it at all possible to damage an amp by plugging headphones into the balanced DI socket? (I know you can damage the headphones by turning it up too loud, but I don't intend to do that) If that's possible, I think you should be able to get some sort of adaptor to enable you to plug one set of headphones into the amp and CD player simultaneously.
  4. I'm guessing the DI output designed for a much higher impedance load than a pair of headphones. I think it would at least sound like crap, and there'd be a slight possibility of damage to the DI. Ask the amp manufacturer to be sure, but I wouldn't bet on it.

  5. bigbeefdog

    bigbeefdog Who let the dogs in?

    Jul 7, 2003
    Mandeville, LA
    This is *probably* OK, considering the low voltage levels of headphone outputs. Only thing to consider, when you hook up this way, is that you are back-feeding the output of one device with the other (you're effectively tying the two devices' outputs together to connect them to one headphone pair).

    If you were doing this with higher-powered equipment (one speaker cab connected to two separate amps, for example), it would be a BIG no-no. At the <1volt level, you can probably get away with it.

    But if I were superfly, I'd still mix the signals to the input.
  6. seanm

    seanm I'd kill for a Nobel Peace Prize! Supporting Member

    Feb 19, 2004
    Ottawa, Canada
    I almost never bother to setup my amp at home anymore. Here are some ideas:

    1. Get a Tascam BT-1 or BT-2. You plug in the bass, plug in the headphones and go. You can also plug it into a CD in on a stereo.

    The bass sounds ok, but usable. The extra bonus is the slow down and pitch change. If you get this, get the power supply or you will go broke buying batteries :meh:

    2. Get a cheap mixer. This gives you way more flexibility. I couldn't live without mine. I got the Behringer MXB1002, very compact.

    3. After you have the mixer, get a modelling pedal such as the SansAmp. The mixers sound a bit sterile and I really like going through the SansAmp.
  7. superfly


    Aug 4, 2004
    If I get the small behringer mixer, can I plug the bass straight into the mixer? Will the mixer amplify the sound through the headphones?
  8. Folmeister

    Folmeister Knowledge is Good - Emile Faber Supporting Member

    May 7, 2003
    Tomball, Texas
    My .02:

    1. Bass Rockman - I love these things and am constantly finding them for quite reasonable prices

    2. CD-BTI or II

    3. Computer sound card
  9. Bob Lee (QSC)

    Bob Lee (QSC) In case you missed it, I work for QSC Audio! Commercial User

    Jul 3, 2001
    Costa Mesa, Calif.
    Technical Communications Developer, QSC Audio
    if you plug headphones into a balanced output, so that the + leg goes to one side of the headphones and the - leg goes to the other, you'll have the left and right sides out of polarity. It'll sound weird and probably even bothersome and fatiguing.
  10. peabody

    peabody Supporting Member

    Oct 31, 2002
    La Crosse, WI
    I use a Johnson J-Station, which is an amp modeler, similar to a Bass Pod. I like the Johnson because it a bass modeler, electric guitar modeler and acoustic guitar modeler all built into one. It works great for me. I can plug into my CD player and play along with the CD or use it as a standalone...all through my headphones. My guess is they are available used for less than $100. My two cents......
  11. seanm

    seanm I'd kill for a Nobel Peace Prize! Supporting Member

    Feb 19, 2004
    Ottawa, Canada
    Straight to the mixer. The channels have small preamps in them. I find it best to run the bass into one of the mono channels.

    You can also use a DI if you want.

    P.S. I got your email, but you have emails blocked so I could not reply!

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