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Rig for playing through headphones?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by kristlik, Dec 7, 2006.

  1. kristlik

    kristlik Guest

    Nov 22, 2006
    Lincoln, NE
    I would like a high quality setup that will allow me to play my bass, hook up some play along tracks, get great sound and plenty of volume. Do I need to get a combo for those features, is there a type of amp or preamp type set up that will work?
  2. bigfatbass

    bigfatbass Banned

    Jun 30, 2003
    Upstate NY
    Endorsing Artist: Karl Hoyt Basses
    Cafe Walter headphone amps are exactly what you are looking for.
    Steve at the Dudepit is a dealer, but you can just google it and f
    ind them. Worth every penny!
  3. markjazzbassist

    markjazzbassist Supporting Member

    Apr 19, 2005
    Cleveland, OH
    +1 on Cafe Walter.
  4. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Retired Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
    Raven Labs' PHA-1 is great, too. They're not made any more, but they pop up fairly often in the ads here.
  5. mimaz


    Mar 1, 2005
    Wheeling WV
    Endorsing Artist: Crook Custom Guitars
    Sounds like you could use a Phil Jones Bass Buddy........mine will be here in a few days, and I can't wait!
  6. I use a Ampeg BA-115 and hook up my iPod for backing tracks. I think it gets great sound, but you might not wanna shell out that much cash.
  7. lug


    Feb 11, 2005
    League City, Tx
    For a real amp, I have the Ampeg BA112, for a headphone amp, a Korg Pandora. Both are great. The Pandora has a bunch of drum patterns to play along with as well, a nice feature.
  8. +2 Simple, high quality. Bass Northwest always has them in stock.
  9. Foamy


    Jun 26, 2006
    Sac Area
    The Korg Pandora sounds like what I read you're after. They are wonderful, and totally portable.
  10. romwarrior88

    romwarrior88 Supporting Member

    Oct 30, 2006
    Orange County, CA
    I am not familiar with the other suggestions here, but the Tascam bass trainer is a nice all in one unit that has a CD player built-in.
  11. high mileage

    high mileage

    Apr 17, 2006
    Rockford IL
    Another Cafe Walter fan checking in... It's got two knobs - one for bass volume and one for line-in volume. That's it, no eq so you hear your bass the way it sounds (and the way you play it). Read up on Cafe Walter's site about his theory on this, and I honestly believe I'm a better player from using it. Had mine for 1-1/2 years or so.
  12. I use the Cafe Walter too. I can take it anywhere with my headphones and bass and practice/play with a cd player etc and save lugging my rig around. I bought it from another bassist here on tb and had Walter upgrade it with an AC adapter. The unit was damaged because I put the batteries in the wrong way (it was an old model and didn't have the protection diodes) and he fixed it free of charge. Great customer service and great headphone amp.
  13. mimaz


    Mar 1, 2005
    Wheeling WV
    Endorsing Artist: Crook Custom Guitars
    UPDATE: The Phil Jones Bass Buddy I mentioned in my previous post arrived earlier today, and I haven't put down my bass(es) ever since I opened the box! Fantastic sound, beautifully put together. Previously, whenever I played through the headphones, I was using my Tascam Bass Trainer, but now that's like comparing a Squier to a Ritter....fugittaboudit! I plugged my iPod to the line in, sounds great, and easy to balance the music vs the bass, man this thing is the s***!!! :cool:

    The real reason I purchased the Bass Buddy is that I plan to use it for a preamp into my Bergantino IP112......oh, wait, I don't have the Bergantino YET. I am actively looking, purchase, trade, or combination, if you have a good clean IP 112 you're looking to move, please drop me a line! :help:
  14. kristlik

    kristlik Guest

    Nov 22, 2006
    Lincoln, NE
    Enchanter Tim,
    What is the sound quality of the Pandora?

    I was looking at them, they are a bit more that a plan headphone amp, but it seems like you can do so much more with them.

    Are the effects something that you can also patch on into a combo, so you can hear it out loud and not just through headphones?

    Is there something like a metronome effect that you can play along with (can adjust to a specific tempo)?

    I don't know what the price is of a cafe walter is, but this sure looks more portable, and less expensive than a Bass Buddy.

  15. Jim Carr

    Jim Carr Dr. Jim Gold Supporting Member

    Jan 21, 2006
    Denton, TX or Kailua, HI
    fEARful Kool-Aid dispensing liberal academic card-carrying union member Musicians Local 72-147
    I use mine a lot. The aux input takes Cd player, ipod, laptop, etc.
    You can use the effects as an input to an amp, like a pedal. :cool:

    Edit: You can take the effects out to an amp.
  16. lug


    Feb 11, 2005
    League City, Tx
    Pandoras have some of the better sounding effects in the low end price range, IMO. They also have MANY different built in drum patterns, can take short samples and slow them down w/o changning the pitch (great for quickly learning parts), they have an AUX IN so you can play along with external music sources. I record all my clips with them. You can even use them as a semi two channel mixer by recording a bass/drum part and playing it back into the AUX IN from your computer and record another part over the top. I think every bassist should have one. Great effect sampler that becomes a great headphome amp as well.
  17. fourstringdrums

    fourstringdrums Decidedly Indecisive Supporting Member

    Oct 20, 2002
    Slightly OT here, but can the Cafe Walter be used as a way to record simply to a computer? Say from the headphone out to the Aux Line-In on my sound card? Just a way to record bass lines for reference or to demonstrate the basse's natural tone? Or would the tone be distorted or not strong enough?
  18. lug


    Feb 11, 2005
    League City, Tx
    Should work fine. I do this with the pandora's headphone out all the time. You can definately overdrive the input so you need to play with the line-n levels a bit before recording.
    I like to use Audacity/LAME, but you can do it winth windows recorder just fine.
  19. bagman


    Sep 28, 2005
    SE Florida
    I bought the cheapest mixer that had stero in (RCA) and a headphone jack. I run my ipod in throught the stero in and my bass in one of the inputs, plug in headphones, adjust the levels, practice all night no problems.

    I shelled out about $ 100 for the mixer.
  20. +1 on the Pandora - I agree with lug's comments.

    I'll also give a +1 to the Bass Buddy.

    I use both for headphone practise. The Pandora is great for its versatility, the Bass/Buddy for a more pure sound. Admitedly, the Bass Buddy's primary use is as a preamp, the headphone capability is a bonus. On that basis - for headphones only - I'd go the Pandora, especially an older one (I've got the PX3B) as you can pick them up a bit cheaper on ebay and there's not really a great difference to the new one (so I've been told).

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