Thoughts on using Sarno BB -> Grace ALiX for electric bass?

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by NatNotKingCole, Apr 6, 2022.

  1. NatNotKingCole


    Jan 4, 2021
    I'm in a situation where I'll be playing occasionally in a worship band: some Sundays I'll be playing acoustic guitar and other Sundays electric bass (yes... I'm a guitarist who picked up the bass to play in a neighborhood band during the pandemic, and I'm aspiring to get my bass skills to the point where no one will suspect that I played guitar first!).

    I am hoping to run a fairly simple setup that, ideally, I can use -- with minor modification -- to run directly into the PA for both acoustic guitar and electric bass (Fender P/J, usually play in passive mode). I already have a Sarno black box, and am shooting for a fairly clean, tubey sound on bass. A dedicated bass pre/DI as beautiful as the Noble is out of my price range.

    I've been eyeing the Grace ALiX as a pre/DI that I might be able to use both for my acoustic guitar as well as electric bass. What do you guys think of running my bass into the Sarno BB (for some tube character) then into the ALiX for the HPF and any tone shaping needed? I know a lot of people use the ALiX for upright bass, but haven't read that much about its use as a preamp for electric bass. It has a reputation for being a bit sterile, but hoping that using the Sarno BB before the ALiX might warm up the tone. I've also considered an Avalon U5, although it's a lot to haul around and may not be as useful for dialing in a sound on my acoustic 6-string as the ALiX.

    Has anyone here tried using a Sarno BB with an ALiX for electric bass? Of course, speculation is always welcome as well :)
  2. fast slapper

    fast slapper

    Dec 11, 2001
    Fresno, CA
    That would definitely work. It's all down to features and preference at this quality range.
  3. The Diaper Geni

    The Diaper Geni Submissive. And loving it. Supporting Member

    Nov 22, 2005
    Central Ohio
    I've used the Grace and Alix a lot in the past with EB. Not sterile at all. Lows go lower. Highs go higher. No noise at all. The DI adds a certain sumpin sumpin that's hard to describe. They are among the best clean preamps you can get that'll fit on a pedal board. If not the best. You'll be more than fine.
  4. NatNotKingCole


    Jan 4, 2021
    Thanks! I appreciate the replies. I'll try to post thoughts once I've made my decision. Trying to decide whether to order a Nordstrand Starlifter as well for a little more color to A/B against the Alix, but Nordstrand's 15% restocking fee is a deterrent! Hopefully another one will show up for sale in the classifieds.

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