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sansamp bass driver DI and BBE sonic maximizer

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by candede, Apr 13, 2009.

  1. candede


    Apr 13, 2009
    Hey Folks,
    I'm a newbie and wanna learn as much as I can from you guys.
    My problem is, I used to plug my guitar to a sansamp bass driver and using sansamp's XLR output, I bypass any EQ's of the amps (I face with different amp's at every gig, therefore I use 2 outputs as: from XLR output of sansamp to the mixer and from 1/4 output of sansamp to bass amp [then the amp acts like a monitor]). and I recently bought a BBE sonic maximizer, and I wanna have the following setup

    bass-->tuner-->bass synth-->BBE sonic max.-->sansamp bass driver DI(from XLR or 1/4 output)-->mixer(or to amp, bypassing EQ's)

    but in BBE's manual it's strictly told that, one should use sonic maximizer as "the last pedal in the chain". But I don't know whether I can use the same setup with BBE as the last pedal. I mean:
    bass-->tuner-->Bass synth-->sansamp bass driver DI-->BBE sonic max.-->mixer(or to amp, bypassing EQ's)
    With this setup, I cannot use sansamp's XLR output, however I still don't know, whether sansamp still can act as a "preamp"

    I mean:
    is "...-->sansamp-->BBE-->mixer" possible?
    Hope I didn't mix up everything while trying to explain. :)
    Thx a lot in advance,
  2. blubolt


    May 18, 2005
    Turlock, CA
    I believe it will be fine between the Synth and the DI but the only real way to find out is to try it... What sounds best in the band mix?
  3. fightthepower


    Jan 7, 2008
    San Diego
    What are you looking to gain with the BBE? Or what did you feel like you were missing with just the Sansamp? I think the Sansamp does a good enough job of 'maximizing' (eq'ing) as it is (eq'ing in relation to what the BBE is capable of anyway).
  4. candede


    Apr 13, 2009
    well, as a matter of fact I use sansamp just for the "blend" control. BBE will be responsible of punchiness and overall "take-the-blanket-off-the-amp" feeling that everyone on internet talking about. As I said, sansamp is just a tube simulator for me, yet BBE will be more like a "frequency fixer".

    I'll try btw synth and DI as you said..
    Thank you for the replies fellas!!
    note: I just got BBE, and haven't tried yet. that's why I'm concerned as hell...
  5. candede


    Apr 13, 2009
    I still have the question:
    you know sansamp can be used as a stomp pedal as well as being DI box.
    so does it act like a DI box still with the following setup?

    "bass-->tuner-->sansamp-->effects-->bbe sonic maximizer-->mixer channel"


  6. Sansamp is always a DI - whether its on or off, whatever you run into it will be DI'd, so by your suggested chain, you'd probably need another DI box at the end to get it to the mixer.

    are you using the sansamp as a overdrive or as a virtual amp or just a DI?

    As far as punchiness goes with both a Sansamp AND a Sonic Maximizer, id say good luck, as both tend to scoop the mids out of your tone, and the mids are what provides punch.
  7. candede


    Apr 13, 2009
    Thx DosiYanarchy,
    I thought it's better to put all the pedals in the fx loop, and yesterday I tried the chain that I talked about. It was like:

    Bass (or fx send)-->Sansamp Bass Driver DI-->some other fx's&tuner-->BBE sonic maximizer-->(fx return)

    and I kinda got what I wanted.
    First of all,on Sansamp I always use flat EQ, and "blend" control is at maximum, drive and presence is held at low values, therefore you get a warm tube-like tone, my bass is good lo-mid one, therefore scooping some mids out of it: no problem :)
    then, I got some fx's that are synths and stuff but no need to mention (as long as I don't need a noise gate or smt, but I just wanted to see if there will be any buzz or humm with that kind of a crowded setup, but everything was ok), then finally, i mean just before the amp, I plugged bbe in.
    On contrary, I don't feel that BBE kills the mids :). I actually enabled me to have a good punchy tone as I imagined, and in a way BBE and sansamp completed each other for my taste. Because sansamp gives you a smoother, warmer tone, but "eating up" some of your mids (well, may be eating up is not the word, "balancing the frequency range" or "taming you wild cat" is better :), and I strongly suggest any bass player to try this DI).
    BBE (with flat controls!!) increased attack characteristics of my tone, I really felt the punchiness. when you hit the note (either finger or slap), it's really like hitting you back.

    Furthermore, I mailed to BBE yesterday as well. They responded like a couple of hours later, that's great. Anyways, I asked them what must be the pedal chain sequence like with the setup I got.

    the answer is pasted:


    Actually the Sonic Stomp can also be used through an effects loop of an amp, not just the front of the amp. If you wanted to combine both the Sansamp and the Sonic Stomp… put the BBE before the Sansamp if you putting this in front of the amp."

    Today, I'll try that configuration.

  8. bongomania

    bongomania Gold Supporting Member Commercial User

    Oct 17, 2005
    PDX, OR
    owner, OVNIFX and OVNILabs
    The DI output on the Sansamp is a balanced (3-connector, XLR) jack. That's what needs to go to the mixer. So if you put an unbalanced (2-connector 1/4") device after it, that would be a mistake. Your choices are:

    1) Put the BBE before the Sansamp. Not ideal, as the Sansamp might defeat some of the BBE process, but if it sounds good to you then that's all that matters.

    2) Put the BBE in your amp's fx loop as BBE suggested. This means the DI output of the Sansamp contains none of the BBE effect however. If you want the BBE in the PA mix, then you'd need to use the DI output of your amp head, and set it to "post" the fx loop (if possible; it's not always possible with all amps).

    3) Put the BBE after the unbalanced 1/4" output of the Sansamp, and then use a separate DI box to send the signal to FOH. This might be the most ideal in terms of the processing, but it requires you buy and carry an extra DI box, and the DI output on the Sansamp is no longer used (as it does not contain the BBE processed signal).
  9. warwick.hoy


    Aug 20, 2006
    Spokane, WA.
    Beta Tester: Source Audio.
    Not to assume but is it a Sonic Stomp? Just Curious.

    I wouldn't be surprised if you looked in the FOH rack and saw a sonic maximizer in there already. If if is a decent PA then I wouldn't worry about DIing your BBE. It's make your "monitor" sound good for sure...but a decent PA will have all you need to make your bass sound good to the audience.....that is of course assuming the soundguy knows what he's doing.

    So: Bass-->whatever-->BDDI(^DI to Mixer)-->BBE-->Amp
  10. candede


    Apr 13, 2009
    Thx for the replies guys,
    Sansamp is not a DI-box for me indeed as I told, therefore I'll treat all of'em as stomp pedals and plug them to fx loop, therefore I can get a balanced out from the amplifier to the mixer, my ampeg allows me to bypass it's EQ while using fx loops. but this is the "heavy" way to do it, considering carrying the head and speakers to everywhere.

    As BBE people and bongomania told, putting effects and bbe "before" sansamp is seemed to be a good solution, yet it can diminish effects of BBE and other stuff. I'll give it a try...


    NOTE: I'll post as soon as I try
  11. candede


    Apr 13, 2009
    yes it is.. BBE sonic maximizer stomp pedal
  12. candede


    Apr 13, 2009
    Hi all again,
    I tried all combinations and I can say that, there's no noise or anything at all.
    Following setup gives sweet warm lows(sansamp bddi) with enhanced punchy tone(bbe smsp).
    bass->sansamp bass driver->limiter/fx->bbe sonic maximizer
    Final remarks: If you have a chance to try these two, do it.


    thx for that tip.
  13. SeanSaliSE


    Apr 30, 2008
    Vancouver, BC
    Endorsing Artist: SIT Strings
    I've done a lot of research on the BBE and I have owned a sansamp bass driver DI for a number of year, only recently have I bought the upgraded rackmounted version, the sansamp RBI, and added to the effects loop in my mesa boogie bigblock 750.

    The RBI has a dedicated midrange control, so if you spent the extra dough you wouldn't have a mid-scoop problem with the pedal version. When I was in the recording studio I bought the RBI and the difference in sound was very noticeable from the DI pedal.

    Every bass player here is right when they say the 'right' way to chain your effects is entirely subjective. Whatever sounds best to you is the way to go. However from what I've heard from BBE, the maximizer works best at the tail-end of your effects chain.

    That being said your chain could look like a multitude of things, but from what I've read it seems that you also want your DI signal to have the BBE's effect on it, and if you were to DI out of the sansamp with the BBE behind it in the 1/4'' signal chain, the DI wouldn't have the processed signal.

    This is what that signal would look like:


    So your bass amp would have the BBE's effect but the PA wouldn't. As far as im concerned with all the applications the BBE has, the PA would need the BBE more than your amp would. You said you have a sonic stomp model. It's probably the best first step to take when trying out BBE technology, but they have a multitude of devices that could be of use here. One in particular to your situation would be BBE's DI box that has maximizer built into it! So you would be killing 2 birds with one stone. But since you have the sonic stomp already it's kind of unecessary.



    Otherwise like someone else already stated, a separate DI box at the tail-end of your signal chain is the simplest solution to have all your bases covered by the BBE. It would look like this:

    BASS --> TUNER--> BASS SYNTH --> SANSAMP --> BBE --> DI BOX (XLR to PA) --> BASS AMP --> CAB

    Since my mesa boogie has its own XLR in the back, if I were to decide on the signal chain it would look like this:


    Yes I know this post is getting repetitive and annoying, well I'm bored and got nothing better to do. Lets move on to the amp's effects loop in the signal chain. =)

    Since my sansamp RBI is a rackmount (and I have a BBE rackmount currently being shipped to me), both the BBE and the sansamp are going in the effects loop of my amplifier, ofcourse with the BBE behind the sansamp. I use a MXR Supercomp and a Boss Chromatic Tuner pedal in my chain, and occasionally a Boss Flanger. I've yet to experiement with the flange in the effects loop but until then I would set up my gear like this.


    Above is the signal chain before the amp, and the signal chain in the FX loop is just:


    Hope this gives you enough ideas!

  14. candede


    Apr 13, 2009
    Thank you Sean,
    sorry for the late reply, as you said I'm using the effects loop, some of the amps just bypasses its EQ and let me use my chain, some others don't (flatting amp's EQ is sufficient). I've been using this for a month and everything's fine.
    I know that sansamp is whooping mid's ass but my bass' (a custom Mayones, a Polish brand, handmade awesome piece) mid switch allow me to boost it more than enough, therefore I can handle it.
    p.s. sometimes I switch on and off sansamp and bbe, that's why I need to keep them in front of me generally, but FX SEND --> SANSAMP --> BBE --> FX RETURN is wise...

    once I played with a old lousy amp, and I plugged 'the guys' to fx loop, hid them to back of the amp, flatted the amp up; there was just my tuner and the bass with flat EQ'ed amp. it was hillarous to hear that sound from that amp.. :=)

    anyways, thanks again,

  15. Placewithoutapostcard


    Jul 13, 2015
    For live I go: guitar - sans amp - sonic stomp into low gain amp, set flat, brightness off, bypass eq. Then 2 channels for Front Of House, DI cannon out of sans amp and 57 mic on speaker. BBE is only in the sequence for my stage sound but becomes a much different animal in the recording process. I've been using this set up for years now and it's just simply kickass.

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