The "My amp does not SOUND like anything" Appreciation thread

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by mp40smg, Nov 18, 2016.

  1. mp40smg


    Aug 11, 2010
    Worcester, Ma.
    I know this may sound counter to many. But here it goes.

    I have gone though all sorts of amps over the years. Ampegs, Supro, GK, Trace, SWR, Mark, etc etc etc.. All of them had their own "sound". As I has always boosted the lows, cut some mids, boosted some HIs to compensate for the " sound" of my speakers. As such I always wanted my cabs Miced or at least to use the DI in my amp. Almost always, the sound man would just call the Amp DI unusable and DI the bass directly (no amp).

    At some point I ended up with an EA Iamp and Ea 10. And all of sudden, What I was hearing was what the sound man was hearing. And they were taking the DI our of the amp and liking it. All of a sudden, the sound I was trying to dial in, was pretty much what was getting to the sound guy and the mains.. And also, somehow, as the sound/ tone that I had on stage was very close to the sound/ tone that was coming out of the mains was the same, evrrything just sounded so much more clear and better (whoda thunk it?)

    Maybe at some point, I came to appreciate that the preamp In my basses running into my pedal preamp (affecting the tone) running into the OD/ Dist preamp (affecting the tone). Into my Amp preamp (affecting the tone) into my hi speaker ( affecting the tone) and Low Speaker (affecting the tone) actaully was "affecting the tone" and all my tweaking the Bass pre/ Pre pedal pre/ OD pre/ Pre amp Pre to balance the speaker outputs was actually doing more convoluted harm than good..

    i recently ended up with an LWA 1000 and am extremely happy. To me it is a "no sound amp" The tone is very flat. And I am ecstatic that I have 2 separate channels. I can use one channel (pretty much flat) and let my Fretted Bases do the EQ from the bass preamp and a separate channel that I can bump the 2 separate (very usable) mids to bring out the mwah of the fretless. All the while having separate volumes to keep switching basses easy and overall volumes in line.

    As an added benefit. I have found that it is also really nice and easy to "hear" what a bass actually sounds like. With minimal coloration I feel I get an immensely better idea of what the instrument actually sounds like. To me, ALL basses sounded the same through a GK with a disco smile and the chorus on (wow this Tiesco guitar with a boss octave pedal is Awesome! It sounds JUST LIKE that Alembic).

    So EA Iamp and the Warwick LWA 1000 (to me don't have "a sound") anybody else have any thoughts on other makes that would tend to fall into this category?
  2. two fingers

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

    Feb 7, 2005
    Eastern NC USA
    But......but..... Ampeg...... Fender......Flats....... you have to....... does not compute.....

    Nah, I'm just messing with you. Like what you like. Glad you found what you're looking for. Your "awesome" is my "sterile". My "warm" is your "muddy". But that's why they make different kind of amps.
  3. mp40smg


    Aug 11, 2010
    Worcester, Ma.

    My 51P with GHS Chrome Flats sounded sublime through the rig...
    It just did not have enough strings, so it had to go.
  4. deathness


    Jan 19, 2015
    Not sure an amp that doesnt make a sound is worth celebrating
  5. Al Kraft

    Al Kraft Supporting Member

    May 2, 2016
    Northern Virginia
    Maybe it's because I'm a clean player and don't use a lot of effects, but I don't recall a single amp I've ever owned or played (a very long list) that made my Warwick Fortress One, MM Sterling H and Warwick Corvette Standard sound the same.

    I would agree there are some very colored amps and cabs out there, but even with some of the more heavily "signature voiced" rigs, I can usually get enough of the sound of my bass that I'm pretty satisfied. I also agree that some set-ups are more inherently neutral sounding, but a touch of EQ usually lets me hear what like in my basses.

    It's probably also worth mentioning that I tend to judge "the sound of my bass" in context with the band mix and not so much on its own - if I were a solo player, it's likely I would listen for something different. In studio work it's usually my bass direct to the engineer and I monitor in MDR 7506 cans or something similar. In many cases, the bass tone/voice in final mix is often a surprise to me in terms of what the bass sounded like to me when I played it straight to the board via a clean DI.
  6. Thummel


    Jun 24, 2007
    West Texas
    Fortunately I was taught early on that whether you're recording or going through a PA it's always best to run a clean (pre EQ) signal to the board.
    Al Kraft likes this.
  7. Al Kraft

    Al Kraft Supporting Member

    May 2, 2016
    Northern Virginia
    +1. You have to give the engineer the full range of frequencies you're producing and let that person do their job at shaping them for the right/best overall mix.
  8. Killed_by_Death

    Killed_by_Death Snaggletooth Inactive

    One of the things I liked about the Aguilar Tone Hammer is the flatness when all knobs are at noon.
    Now I'm using a Quilter Tone Block & it is also easily set flat.
    paulraphael likes this.
  9. joebar


    Jan 10, 2010
    my old peavey's from the eighties. they were loud but had no tone
    mexicant likes this.
  10. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Retired Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
    It seems like your definition of "flat" and mine are very different.
  11. tlc1976


    Aug 2, 2016
    IMO running a clean flat tone is a good way to hone your technique of playing more cleanly and smoothly.
    Al Kraft likes this.
  12. TrevorOfDoom

    TrevorOfDoom Supporting Member

    Jun 17, 2007
    Austin, TX
    I think he's talking about the Tone Hammer preamp pedal, which is flat with all knobs at noon.
  13. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Retired Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
    Maybe, but still ...
  14. Kahrmine


    May 25, 2013
    i agree and that is whyi like acoustic bass amps. the
    are very flat and neutral sounding and that is a good thing in my opinion.
    jj4001 likes this.
  15. Killed_by_Death

    Killed_by_Death Snaggletooth Inactive

    G-K and H&K's idea of flat are different from actual flat, because when their knobs are at noon, it's scooped.
    A lot of folks think the Tone Hammer is mid-forward, but it's actually more honestly flat than other amps.

    The Tone Hammer pre-amp pedal & the amps are basically the same, as far as how the controls affect the timbre.
  16. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Retired Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
    Disagree. It's incurably mid forward, and not just a little.
    Linnin likes this.
  17. Killed_by_Death

    Killed_by_Death Snaggletooth Inactive

    That's because you're used to having the mids scooped on every other amp.

    I'm guessing you haven't seen the frequency response charts posted in the TH500 megathread.
  18. Linnin


    Jul 19, 2012
    Linningrad, Earth
    ^^^Agree 100%^^^
    Munjibunga likes this.
  19. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Retired Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
    Charts are fine, but I was never able to get a clean, full-range sound out of either the pedal or the amp, both of which I sold. I own seven amps now, and have owned at least ten others. Of those, the TH500 is the most "voiced" amp I've had. I'm not saying it's bad, but it's just not for me. I'm sure it works well for those who want a vintage kind of sound.
  20. Killed_by_Death

    Killed_by_Death Snaggletooth Inactive

    I can get decent sounds with a guitar through the TH pedal, but not at all with the TH350, which is why I sold it.
    The TH pedal is staying, because it makes my little Rumble 15 come alive.