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Post your bass synth / electronica / dnb / related rig

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by bovine mind, Apr 30, 2010.

  1. bovine mind

    bovine mind

    Jun 17, 2008
    San Francisco
    Ever since I bought my first Boss OC-2 and proceed to melt the 15" in my old Ampeg 1540HE pushing sustained sub frequencies I've been researching and augmenting [ with varying degrees of success and failure ] my ideal bass synth live rig using a bass guitar. I imagine every bass guitarist that decides to go this often expensive route has a few consideration to make based on the styles of music they're trying out and other factors. For me, it means finding a rig that can handle two very different genres of music that happen to have a few things in common, droptuned heavy guitar music of doom, sludge and the huge synthy lows and higher register ambience of techo, dubstep and other relate genres. While one amp or cab might sound great for a more vintage stripped down doom tone, it might not work at all for handling the deep lows associated with more contemporary electronic music. Aesthetical and cost variables that cut down what is commercially available on the used gear market. What does it for me is combining the vintage looks of 70s amps, cabs, and gear with the modern means to control synth bass sounds via higher power speakers, and digital control over analog circuitry when possible.

    Talkbass has been a huge resource for the effects approach to copping the sounds of synth bass, but I haven't seen many posts devoted to the amplification side of thing, especially live. It seems a lot of guys that go this route use the house system as much as possible but I'd love to hear how those who plays small bars without much PA support get around this, and what choices they make to keep their gear safe from the massive lows that come with this kind of music. Or even if you do use the house system, how do you use it? Passive DI to the house subwoofer system? small cabs mic'ed? boutique or modified gear?

    So to any that have photos or commentary related to this, I salute you.

    Here's my rig in progress, with some changes made since due to some of my gear taking a dump on me. The Sunn Coliseum died so I replaced it with an old Acoustic solid state amp, and I sold off the SVT-CL in favor of a Sunn 1200s after being over retubing and needing an amp that didnt roll off the lowest lows. The Jazz Chorus is for looped ambient higher register synthy textures, and the Peavy 1820 is for looped fake Taurus drones and wobbles. I just bought some Eminence Kappa 15LFAs to go in the Sunn 215BH after the EV's I had crapped out, and I'm gassing for an Emperor 4x12 with some very low frequency speakers to replace the Ampeg 810E which pops on some lower notes. The suitcase on the Jazz Chorus is a Simmons SDS 400 analog drum brain to turn the drumkit into a drum machine. I play in a three piece, and we've been playing for 6 months, my roles in the band are kind of like being a bassist, rhythm guitarist, and synth player all at once, so it's been fun and frustrating experimenting with gear.

  2. Ughhh... this might be the most jelous of someone's rig i have ever been on TB.

    Haha, i'm doing a 'Doom-Gaze' thing myself, but it's more delay/dirt oriented than synth... gonna get some inspiration from this though, for sure.
  3. bovine mind

    bovine mind

    Jun 17, 2008
    San Francisco
    Thanks man. My biggest source of inspiration lately have been Nadja and Benga. I've noticed we post on a lot of the same threads related to this kind of stuff. What's your rig looking like right now and where are you trying to take it? Have you played live with it yet?
  4. Woah... Nadja and Benga huh? That's awesome (i creamed the first time i heard Nadja cover Only Shallow)! Check out Alcest they've been my bigest inspiration with this stuff as of late. And Benga is awesome too! (I also <3 dubstep and can do a pretty good sounding live dubstep sound)

    I have amps and cabs for days (3 heads, 3 15's, 6 10's and an 18... details are in my profile).

    However, my pedals(and a few basses) got downgraded significantly last year due to financial difficulty, and THAT'S where i've been trying to beef up things.

    For now it's a whole buncha' Boss/MXR/DOD/Digitech + an Akai Headrush E2 (details also in my profile). It's been fine so far with the Boss ODB-3 + Digitech BSW + Headrush... awesome synthy dirty shoegazy sounds have been begotten from that. However, i've been trying to edge in a bit more synthyness with a midi/sampling keyboard i have along with my laptop/freeware.

    But the key-setup has been a bedroom only thing.

    Everything else translates pretty good in a live setting though... i know the direction i want to take it... i just need the $$$, haha... but isn't that the way it goes with ANY music stuff. A Moog LPF, POG2, EHX BMS, and a Memory Boy are high on my GAS list...
  5. That is one intense rig. I'm not even in the park, but I do have a JC-120. How do you keep from blowing it up, do you use a hi-pass filter for it, or just send it a small part of your output signal? I guess my question is how do you make sure it only gets the "looped ambient higher register synthy textures"?
  6. bovine mind

    bovine mind

    Jun 17, 2008
    San Francisco
    The Morley PWF functions as a volume pedal with the fuzz and wah disengaged. I run it right before the Akai Headrush to turn down the volume and "clean" up my effects from being too overdriven or hard on speakers. I loop the washy ambient layers and send the effect out of the Headrush to the JC-120, and turn the bass knob all the way down on the amp, always taking care to keep the volume knob down on the Headrush as well.
  7. mikeddd


    Nov 12, 2009
    San Antonio, TX
    From an outsiders' perspective (I don't play dub or dabble w/synths) but looking through a "sound guys" eyes, I'd say you would be better served by adding a PA sub or two to your rig. Asking a bass guitar cab, even a monster like the 8x10 Ampeg to reproduce sub bass freqs at sustained high levels is asking for blown drivers, IMO.

    Get a big old ported 15" or 18" sub, a poweramp and a cheap crossover and you'd be in business. Just some thoughts. :)
  8. bovine mind

    bovine mind

    Jun 17, 2008
    San Francisco
    $$$ is definitely king, I know those gripes. The hardest part for me has been mainting my gear. Once I get a great tone it seems it's only a little while until I blow something. Part of it is trying to find the fine line between vintage and modern tone/expectations from gear.

    Keep us in the effects board posted on your bedroom project.

    The couple times I've checked out Alcest I was a little off put by how dramatic the music was, but some of his tones were pretty sweet.

    This week is going to be a major gear swapping fest for me. Sunn 215BH has a crack in the speaker surround after I slipped pulling out the EVs and chipped a good chunk inside and needs to be glued. The Eminence Kappa 15LFAs i put in deliver some MONSTROUS vision blurring body bass. Getting rid of the Ampeg 810E for a 410HLF to handle lows and droptuning better and be able to stand up to some dubstep/low synth handling. Still trying to figure out what to do with my Sunn 1200s, it's almost too much power! I'd love a Sunn 300T or SVT-II, but probably am never going to find them.
  9. bovine mind

    bovine mind

    Jun 17, 2008
    San Francisco
    I've thought about going down this route and have been discouraged a few times by some very knowledgeable TB members with experience in mixing subwoofers with large cabinets like an 810E. Each time it was suggested I stick to full range cabinets that can go as low as I can find. I'm still very tempted to try a split sub rig.

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