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The story of the Evolution of my rig.... what I have learned meets my needs.

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by ::::BASSIST::::, Feb 8, 2006.

  1. ::::BASSIST::::

    ::::BASSIST:::: Progress Not Perfection.

    Sep 2, 2004
    Vancouver, BC Canada
    I don’t know about you guys, but I have gone thru a lot of money and time trying to figure out the rig that works best for me. I think I have finally found it.

    In the beginning I was going to send this as a private message to Esquillama as he is striving to put together the same rig I have (more or less). I thought that it might be helpful to him if I related some of my experiences. After realizing how long it was, I thought I should share it as a TB post as others may find some useful info in here as well.

    My rig:

    Fender “Geddy Lee” Jazz with Moses graphite neck. Wired in series.

    Acoustic Image Focus SA (series II)
    Boss EQ20 (as preamp).

    Various cabs depending on gig requirements. Schroeder 1210, EA Wizzy and Schroeder Mini 12 (neo version… its ordered have yet to play it.)

    power amp…

    The Acoustic Image Focus SA (series II 600w & 3.5lbs) is the best power amp I can buy for my situation. Light-weight and powerful. Yeah, maybe one of these days I will get the series III, but at this point I don’t think I really need it.


    At one time I decided I wasn’t extremely crazy over the mini 12. its side firing really thru me off (when I compared it to other cabs I am used to).

    So I got another EA wizzy. the wizzy is a great cab and I love the tone, however now that Jorg has the mini 12 in a neo version I am going back to it. I just ordered one. the wizzy is listed as 29lbs but mine weighs 33. Even though I like the tone of the wizzy better, the mini 12 neo is 400w and 21LBS. That cannot be beat. Besides the mini 12 tone isn’t bad its just not my absolute ideal favourite.

    I also have a 1210. now that cab is fantastic. it sounds incredible and is very loud for its size and weight. eventually I will order the 1210 neo. my current 1210 weighs 55LBS. when I bought it was listed as 47LBS so I was a bit ticked that it weighed more. I don’t drive and haul my gear on light rail transit or the bus so weight is critical to me. I don’t think I can get better than the cabs I have in terms of tone, volume, weight and size.


    I have tried the tech 21 bass driver, para driver and programmable bass driver. I liked the sound of all of them, but I didn’t like the user interface. I like things simple. with the tech 21 stuff I had four "volume" knobs. one on my bass, one on my Focus, and a gain and a level on the sans amp.

    As I play fingers and pick I am often switching between the two during gigs. so if I a song calls for my pick (I try to have my pick sound as close to fingers as possible, I only use pick because I cant play certain songs, such as Highway Star, fast enough with my fingers) I have to turn up the bass eq, turn down the tone pot, and turn up the volume on my bass. My goal is to keep my finger volume and my pick volume equal. With the sans amps I found switching between fingers and pick a hassle. My band likes to keep the momentum going so we don’t like to have a lot of downtime between songs. The less the better. My solution is to use a Boss EQ20. It has 9 programmable eq settings and you can change the volume in each setting as well. The result is now I just push one button when I go from fingers to pick (or vice-versa) and I am done. The other advantage is that the Boss EQ20 is +4 dbv while the sans amps are 0 dbv so the boss drives my power amp a little better.

    Some say, you could just use the programmable sans amp bass driver to do the same thing as the Boss EQ20. However, the bass driver has little control over the mids. If you want to turn up the mids you have to turn down the bass eq. Not ideal in my opinion. Other than that I liked the prog. SABDDI alot.

    The one drawback to the Boss EQ20 is that it has no DI (it also weighs about one pound more). Its actually not designed as a preamp. Since the EQ20 is $140 and the sans amps are about $260cdn, I used the extra cash to pick up a Behringer ADI21 ($54cdn). That unit is a copy of the para driver. Its quite good. I actually prefer the tube/blend of the behringer compared to the sans amps. To my ears it sounds more smooth and less artificial.

    Anyway, so if a gig calls for the use of a DI I will just bring my ADI21. I can just stick it in my jacket pocket and hopefully not even notice its there. Aside from that, I use it in conjunction with an old “ghetto blaster” I have hooked up to my computer for home practice. It acts as a gain stage, plus the sweepable mids allow me to get the right tone to cut thru when playing with a song on my computer.


    This area is not completely satisfactory to me yet. I love the bass I have, but I have been toying with the idea of getting a shortscale jazz (this idea is almost ruled out) or a 5 string SX. I don’t have much experience with a 5 string so I am going to go down to my local bass store and play one for awhile to see if it blows my hair back.

    My current bass is pretty bloody good. Sounds great, good action, looks cool… part of me thinks I should just be satisfied with what I have.

    Here is a pic of my rig in one of its “stages” of evolution:


    If you would like to share about the evolution of your rig I am all ears. :)
  2. SteveC

    SteveC Moderator Staff Member

    Nov 12, 2004
    Eastern North Dakota
    On another forum, I have a terrible reputation for going through gear. I have spent a ton of money doing it. It's OK as I had fun, but now I'm married, baby on the way, etc. It was time to find a great sounding, portable, small, light rig.

    I am using a Boss TU-2 Tuner --> Boss CEB-3 Bass Chorus --> SansAmp Programmable BDDI --> Acoustic Image Focus SA III amp --> Bergie HT112 cab.

    It all (except the cab of course) fits in my briefcase and works great. I have been tempted to get an Avalon U5 and a Bergie EX112 but I really don't NEED either.
  3. Thor

    Thor Gold Supporting Member In Memoriam

    A side note on the 5er.

    Vegan, 2 weeks ago I took my Ibanez 81 Roadster 4
    and a new used Benavente 5 I got here from Todd 4TA a few months
    ago to a rehearsal gig. I plug the Ibby in, and
    WHOOPS, major hum. So I plug the Benny in and voila, no hum.
    So now I am stuck playing this 5 all night. That wasn't the plan.

    I thought the fretboard was a little too wide, I can't find the
    E half the time, but the tone is kick booty. Basically a super
    jazz. After using the low B for a thumbrest, I am starting to
    pickup on the low notes. 3 hours later I had it down.

    This week I bring both axes, having had the 4 repaired.
    I plug in the 5 to tune it up, but the boys are ready to go,
    so I went with it. In 3 minutes I had it, and guess what,
    3 hours later I haven't picked up the 4 yet.

    My attitude (quoted from Todd 4ta) is that he
    goes back and forth effortlessly. So go for it. I aspire to
    that and feel like I am almost there.

    As far as the rig went, I am building the 'Big' rig, and Tuesday
    I added a SWR 4x10 Goliath on top of a WM 4x10 I used the
    earlier week, bridged mono from a SWR 900. (A little 'surprise'
    for the boys ...) I was pleased with the results. Plenty
    of good usable bottom. No farting.

    My 'small' rig is an Eden WT-300 and the cab I rebuilt.
    (see sig link). This setup is pure hash. The cab is more
    cumbersome than the Schroeders for sure, but the tone is to die for.

    Total outlay on that rig together was 400 used for the Amp
    with the Eden padded bag, and 175 for the replacement
    Eminenence Delta 12 LF's and hardware.
  4. ::::BASSIST::::

    ::::BASSIST:::: Progress Not Perfection.

    Sep 2, 2004
    Vancouver, BC Canada
    Thanks for sharing your experience with the 5er. I strung my bass B E A D for a couple weeks. I liked it. But in some songs I absolutely must have that G string. I play in a cover band so I find the G necessary for songs like Pink Floyd's Money.

    I am a little concerned about the width of the neck and the string spacing of a 5 string. Right now I play a Geddy Jazz so I am used to a small-ish neck. The only way I'll know is if I play one for a good while.

    TalkBass gave me the idea for a 5. I was reading a thread about the advantages of a 5 and there are quite a few including ease of play as one can stay in the 5th position most of the time. I will rarely use the lower notes of the B string, but its nice to have them there just in case.
  5. Wow, I cant believe the size of that little focus poweramp! Have never seen anything like it here in Australia (unless you count those Crate guitar amp thingys). 600W through something that small and simplified has blown all my pre conceived ideas of poweramps being these ugly 30kg rackmounted blobs!

    oh no .. bought a new Mark Bass combo a couple of months ago and getting GAS already ... might have to sell the ABM500!
  6. Started with a Vantage P-bass and borrowed Hondo 115 50w amp. (-200 dollars.)
    Later bought a Gibson GSS100 head (-100 dollars)
    and Yorkville BC410 so I could jam with drums or gig. (-350 dollars)
    Traded the Gibson for a drum kit because I disliked it. (+drums)
    Sold the cab because I had no head. (+335 dollars)
    Bought a Dean Markley head, yorkville power amp and two homemade 118 bins. (-350)
    Sold that stack and made a profit! (+600)
    Bought a Peavey MarkVIII and Yamaha 610 at a pawn shop! (-400)
    Sold my Vantage (+150)
    Sold drums (+150)
    Bought a Washburn T-24(-550)
    Sold everything and evened out with a profit of 605 dollars just from the buying and selling of the gear!!!!

    I put that money along with some I had saved to buy a taylor 314ceL7 acoustic (-2200), G&L L-2000 (-1050) brand new from my work. Now that's all I own at the moment.
  7. CamMcIntyre


    Jun 6, 2000
    One day i'd like to have a light weight rig. E.g. one of those GK Micro bass Amps for DB gigs.

    Then for electric/bigger gigs, the AI head, and the GK Mirco-extensions. Total weight: 30 pounds [i think].

    That's all
  8. JoshB

    JoshB A great man is always willing to be little. -RWE

    Here's how it went for me...

    I started out with a Carvin 100 watt 115 combo amp
    Went on to an Ampeg B2R and a cheapo 210 and 115 (gooooooo Ebay!)
    I sold everything when cancer took over for awhile to pay for some hospital bills.
    When I got back into playing, my friend lent me his ampeg SVT-350 and ampeg 410.
    After I moved back to IL, I got the best I could afford...a peavey firebass 700 and peavey 412 cab.
    I then bought an Ampeg SVT-400T to go along with the peavey stuff.
    Sold the firebass head and traded the 412 for a traynor 215
    Traded the SVT400T for a bass when I bought a Hughes&Kettner BassBase600
    Bought an ampeg fridge
    Then my health acted up again and I ended up trying to go the lightweight route as many others have.
    I sold the H&K to Tombowlus and bought a Mesa/Boogie 400+ and bought an aguilar gs212
    After finding out that the mesa was a bit too much, I traded it for an aguilar ag500
    I then traded my ampeg for an avatar 112 a pedal and some cash and that's where I stand now.

    My live rig is the ag500 and gs212 and I keep the 112 at home for practice. The 215 is just sitting in my garage collecting dust. The only thing I might try to get is a schroeder 1210 or 1212. Woo Hoo!
  9. Primary

    Primary TB Assistant

    Here are some related products that TB members are talking about. Clicking on a product will take you to TB’s partner, Primary, where you can find links to TB discussions about these products.

    Nov 23, 2020

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