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String Click or Clipping?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by DruidsGlass, Apr 6, 2015.


  1. DruidsGlass

    DruidsGlass

    Mar 31, 2015
    Tennessee
    No commercial affiliations.
    Hello, everyone.

    The amp that I run at school (which is currently my main) has me a bit puzzled. First, it's an Ampeg BA-112. I originally got it to run my electric violin, but with my recent picking up of bass guitar, it seems rather fortuitous that I chose to go with a bass amp (because teachers are not even remotely made of money). When I turn up to 5 (noon) or a little louder, there is some clicking. I am having trouble discerning whether my bass' output (Sterling By Music Man Ray 35) is causing the amp to clip or if there is some latent string click in the way that I play (fingers) that is simply being amplified enough to be noticed. Does anyone have any advice for discerning what the source of the clicking sound is?

    Thanks,

    Druid
     
  2. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    Not sure, but you could be clipping the input with your bass. However, if you clack the strings, it does tend to sound exaggerated when you turn up louder, especially if you use a lot of treble. Experiment around.
     
    shawshank72 likes this.
  3. DruidsGlass

    DruidsGlass

    Mar 31, 2015
    Tennessee
    No commercial affiliations.
    Thanks, I've not had the time to experiment with this particular amp to my satisfaction. So far everything (bass included) is generally set to noon. Should I begin experimenting on the bass eq or amp eq first? They both have 3 band eqs.
     
  4. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    The amp, as I just like to use the bass' onboard EQ to make little tweaks here and there along the way. When I have one, that is...my main player these days just has volume/tone. But neither way is wrong, and if you get a sound you like coming out of the bass by tweaking its EQ, and then you do the amp, so be it.
     
  5. Try dialing back the bass controls some first, you could be bottoming out the speaker.

    Separate note, thank you for your dedication. I know many teachers and know just how much they have to spend of their own funds on classroom supplies. Not to mention the hours.
     
    BassmanPaul and JimmyM like this.
  6. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    I misunderstood. I thought you were a student. I should have known when you used the word "fortuitous."

    :D

    Anyway, I second B-String's appreciation for your efforts.
     
  7. DruidsGlass

    DruidsGlass

    Mar 31, 2015
    Tennessee
    No commercial affiliations.
    Thanks, guys.
     
  8. waltdogg

    waltdogg

    May 24, 2014
    MM basses tend to have some extra clack I think. Same for most basses loaded with active exposed pole humbuckers.
     
  9. DruidsGlass

    DruidsGlass

    Mar 31, 2015
    Tennessee
    No commercial affiliations.
    Is that something I should be looking to change or just be aware of its existence?
     
  10. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    Just be aware of its existence. Nothing wrong with exposed pole pickups.
     
  11. DruidsGlass

    DruidsGlass

    Mar 31, 2015
    Tennessee
    No commercial affiliations.
    Cool. Now if only I could play loud while I can't sleep.
     
    JimmyM and B-string like this.
  12. mrufino1

    mrufino1 Supporting Member

    Aug 2, 2005
    Nutley, NJ
    When I had my musicman, as well as a p bass with "clack" I covered the pickup with gaffer tape and the problem was solved. Nothing wrong with exposed pole pieces, and even better, nothing wrong with clean technique, but the gaffer tape worked very well.
     
  13. Russell L

    Russell L

    Mar 5, 2011
    Cayce, SC
    I had a click coming out of my Markbass 121H combo until I learned it was the speaker bottoming out due to too much low end at higher volumes and me letting my hand flop down on the strings too often between notes. It might not be what your problem is, but thought I'd mention it. Also, check your bass' setup to make sure you aren't hitting the pole pieces as mentioned above, or that it isn't fret noise due to too low action. The way you pluck the string might have an influence, too, if you pluck too vertically. And if you let your hand flop on the strings it will easily send a spike through the system. I found that I could keep the clicking at bay if i didn't let my hand do that. Anyway, could be any of these things. Just make a list and go down it. In case it's the speaker bottoming out, I've heard that it can cause the speaker to lose its springiness if it happens too much. For me, I just make sure I don't add too much bottom and keep my hand light.
     
  14. DruidsGlass

    DruidsGlass

    Mar 31, 2015
    Tennessee
    No commercial affiliations.
    Thanks! I'll check these as soon as I get back to school.
     

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