Splitting cabs on outdoor gig

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by denton57, Oct 12, 2021.

  1. denton57

    denton57 Supporting Member

    Nov 1, 2005
    Drummer and guitar player had an idea..Any issues with splitting two bass cabs on an outdoor gig? Thinking main cab by me (next to the high hat) and one on the other side of the drummer for the guitar player to hear me better. Ideally, we’d be plugged into the PA, in ear monitors, etc. We aren’t on this gig. Only vocals and a little guitar in the PA. Drums unmiced and bass amp carrying all the bass. Amp will be a TH700 and main cab is a DB410 8 ohm. Was thinking running a separate cab on the other side of the drummer off the second output and run 4 ohms. I believe it would not work well indoors with the sound waves bouncing around, but what about outdoors?

    It may not be an issue hearing me with the TH700 and the DB410 as is, but thinking out loud about it. I just don’t want some cancelling waves or other tonal issues
    Last edited: Oct 12, 2021
  2. SJan3

    SJan3 Supporting Member

    Dec 8, 2010
    What is the 2nd cabinet?
    BOOG likes this.
  3. chris_b


    Jun 2, 2007
    This is not really a good idea. You will get cancellations. The issue would be better solved by improving your PA's monitoring system.
    inthevelvet, red_rhino and stigbeve like this.
  4. two fingers

    two fingers Opinionated blowhard. But not mad about it. Gold Supporting Member

    Feb 7, 2005
    Eastern NC USA
    Might be terrible. Might be awesome. I know that's not what you wanted to hear. But mixing cabs is a roll of the dice.

    What is the second cab?
    stigbeve likes this.
  5. denton57

    denton57 Supporting Member

    Nov 1, 2005
    I don’t have one yet (or at least one that could handle the 350 watts of the TH700). I’ve been looking for a db210 in 8 ohm (preferably in chocolate), but they are really hard to find used. I need a 2x10 or 1x15 to use for when the 410 isn’t practical as a stand alone.

    I was thinking if I bought another DB cab, it would blend together. Maybe not.
    Last edited: Oct 13, 2021
  6. lug

    lug Supporting Member

    Feb 11, 2005
    League City, Tx
    2 famous sayings.....

    Don't cross the streams, it would be bad.

    Don't split the cabs, it would be bad.
  7. basscooker

    basscooker Commercial User

    Apr 11, 2010
    cincy ky
    Owner, ChopShopAmps
    IME, any square box 410 presents too many nodes to carry the house; exacerbated by being outdoors where wind and fewer reflections are present. You'll have a relatively narrow "bass tunnel" in front of the cab, and boomy or wimpy off to the the sides. Adding the second cab might help or might not, sorry. Depends. What you may find works, though, is to kinda cross-fire the two from opposite sides.

    Would the dough be better spent on a sub for the PA?
  8. el murdoque

    el murdoque

    Mar 10, 2013

    Lemmy did it for 40+ years.
    As you can see on the pic - on each side of the drumkit, there's a stack of 4x12, 4x15 + Amp head.

    You could also set your amp up as a side fill. Bass amps have quite some reach and I always liked it best to have some distance between me and the amp. Setting it up on the far side of the drums pointing at me worked more often than not.
  9. None that I can see. But if you have a decent monitor system, have the sound guy give the other side of the band a little bass in the mix.

    As for being outdoors (no walls no roof) you need to have a good stage present and may need that second cab on your side.
    Have fun at the gig.
  10. I think it will work. I'm used to use two little cabs, stacked, but turned in different directions. One at me, second at the band. Never had a problem with phase cancellation.
    What you describe is a bit different, but I think that if you face both cabs the same direction, there will be no phase cancellation. And if there were, it will be on lowest lows; this should be solved by moving the cabs closer or further from each other.
    Just common sense however, I never tried it. I think that if the bass works onstage when put through monitors, it must work through cabs.
  11. denton57

    denton57 Supporting Member

    Nov 1, 2005
    Yeah good point..if you have bass going through the monitors, isn’t it the same thing?

    I was thinking a 2x10 behind the drummers right side and firing towards the guitar player. Only problem I can see is it wouldn’t have its own volume control...same watts and volume as my main cab. So not even really facing straight ahead...slight angle away from me. Of course, it might create dead spots in the crowd depending where you sit, but that’s going to happen regardless with a single 4x10 facing forward
    Hounddog409 likes this.
  12. I don't know a ton about Lemmy, but I assume on many of his gigs he's running into the PA? If so, that's different from the perspective the audience out front than if the bass amp is carrying all the bass like the OP. 2 different scenarios that will likely need a different solution. A lot depends on the venue etc...If the amp is covering all the bass sound, generally splitting the cabs will not result in the best sound for the audience. The reality though is that checking how it sounds out front split and non-split will tell the story for that particular venue.
    el murdoque likes this.
  13. I tried without success to convince band mates to stack their amps for a single point of sound source.
    Bass on the bottom, keys/guitar on top.
    All sitting behind the drummer.

    This lets the guitar player hear his cab at ear level, so he stops his chronic turning up and up and up.
    The same works for the keys.

    Everybody on the front line is equidistant from all the cabs, and hears the same mix.
    Sadly, egos got in the way "it's my tone, man..." so the guitar player was always too loud.
  14. funkinbottom

    funkinbottom Supporting Member

    Apr 23, 2006
    Northern CA.
    This alone should have been the first red flag:woot:

  15. silky smoove

    silky smoove Supporting Member

    May 19, 2004
    Seattle, WA
    Most live sound engineers suggest clustering low frequency drivers together rather than spreading them out. I'm assuming this would hold true in this case as well if the bass rig is carrying any of the FOH sound.
    dBChad, Wasnex and Passinwind like this.
  16. Yes.
    You will not hear that smaller cab crying to be turned down while you are having a good time feeling the bigger cab.
    Need to be extra careful when mixing a lower power/preforming cab.
    Slough Feg Bass likes this.
  17. Slough Feg Bass

    Slough Feg Bass Supporting Member

    Sep 28, 2007
    San Francisco
    In the past I have split the signal from the bass and run it to 2 different amps, each amp running it's own cab. it worked well for me.
    I also have a rack with PLX amp with 2 channels, and that worked excellent, pushing a fridge on each side of the drums to thunder volume. Everyone heard bass that day.
  18. Ggaa

    Ggaa Supporting Member

    Nov 26, 2018
    Sometimes I angle my 115s in different directions but always stacked, 45 degrees or less.
  19. Wasnex


    Dec 25, 2011
    I have tried this and it does not work well from a monitoring standpoint IMHO (YMMV). The problem is everyone wants to hear "more me" to the order of at least 6-10dB. Even with the amps spread out across the stage it's impossible for everyone to get the full 10dB, unless you are a large stage where everyone can really spread out.

    Keep the Inverse Square Rule in mind. Sound drops off at a rate of 6dB for each double of distance. So if you are 3' away from your amp, the next person must be 6' from your amp for the sound to drop off by 6dB. For the sound to drop another 6dB, the person needs to be 12' from your amp.

    Here's a diagram in metric:

    On most occasions where I tried this, the lows from the guitar masked the bass and made it very hard for me to hear what I was doing.
  20. Wasnex


    Dec 25, 2011
    This approach makes it easier for everyone to hear on stage, but it can result in uneven frequency response for the audience.




    The pattern is a result of the wavelength in relation to the spacing. For example, the preceding pattern emerges at 50hz if you double the spacing between the cabs. The wavelength of 50hz (22.51') is 2x the wavelength of 100hz (11.25').

    Zarcsby, Rumblin and denton57 like this.
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