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Single Rig For Amplifying Bass and Keys

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by ryromofo, Oct 12, 2010.

  1. ryromofo


    Oct 12, 2010
    I'm looking for a rig that I can use to amplify bass and keys on stage. I need a solution that can compete with 2 guitar amps and drums.
    Ideally, I'd have a separate keyboard amp and a separate bass amp, but there's just not enough room in my car (or my strained back).
    So far I have an Alembic F-1X preamp in a rack for my bass, and I've been running it's signal and the keys output into a keyboard amp (and it's output to FOH), but the poor amp's tweeter can't handle it.

    Are there any great sounding compact solutions you guys know of? Here were my ideas so far:

    1. Get a nice full-range bass cab (I've been eyeing the Accugroove Tri 115L or the 210L) with a nice rack mount power amp, and a mixer to mix the keys and bass signals.
    I'd send a mix of the keys to the FOH, and the direct out of the Alembic to the FOH too (or mic the cab).

    Seems like bass would sound great, but keys might not? Would the keys have a muffled high end, or risk blowing out the tweeters?

    2. Get a powered PA speaker, like the QSC K12 or the KW112, and run the Alembic output and the keys output into a small mixer which would go into the powered PA speaker. Also run the keys direct to FOH and Alembic direct out into FOH (or mic the cab).

    With this option, it seems like the keys would sound great, but how would the bass sound? The K12 seems to only go down to 52Hz at -6dB.

    3. Other options??
    Maybe a stereo rack amplifier that runs into 2 small cabs? One for keys and one for bass?

    Thanks in advance for any suggestions!
  2. 4Mal

    4Mal Supporting Member

    Jun 2, 2002
    Columbia River Gorge
    Something like a K8/10/12 on top of a powered sub, and a rack mount line mixer would work fine. If the line mixer had some assignable / defeatable effects loop/send - I'm thinking Reverb, leslie emulation, etc for the keys - if it isn't already on board would be sweet ...

    I've done something a lot like that with my bass and Roland V-Drums. In my case I used Aux send 2 off my PA board and sent the signal to a cross over & power amp (actually an Eden WT-800 in biamp mode) and to a small sub and small top box. It worked really well. To the point that the next time I get the opportunity, I'd like to do that with key's as well.

    Cab wise the tri115L is a great sounding cab for bass. I would have to hear key's through one to be sure, however I expect that would be a killer setup. Again you'd power it with some amp and use a line mixer to bring the bass & key's together.

    Last real tours I did (in the early 80's) - I used minimal amplification on stage. Key's drums and bass where present in the side fills so what you're talking about here isn't real new...
  3. MrDOS

    MrDOS Gold Supporting Member

    Jan 4, 2006
    Colorado Springs, CO
    I think keeping it simple is a good idea. When I do this same scenario, I have my bass rig, and get keys through the floor wedges (which are Yamaha SM15Vs). If your monitors are not up to snuff, I'd say a good bass rig with a mixer for the keys signals.
    I am pleasantly surprised how good keys sound through my Bergantino HT310 bass cab.
  4. billfitzmaurice

    billfitzmaurice Commercial User

    Sep 15, 2004
    New Hampshire
    Owner, Bill Fitzmaurice Loudspeaker Design
  5. RickenBoogie


    Jul 22, 2007
    Dallas, TX
    Yes, I do this often with bass/synth, both run through my modest bass rig, Walkabout head, Aguilar DB112 top and GB Uber 212 bottom. Very rich sound from both instruments. The trickiest part is the AB switch, which I am currently re-thinking. Perhaps a Lehle 3@1, which would allow for 2 basses, plus the synth, and all three could be routed to 2 rigs, if I were ever inclined to carry that much gear.
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