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Time To Get Serious

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by D*J*S, Apr 10, 2015.


  1. D*J*S

    D*J*S

    Mar 20, 2015
    Hello TB! Guidance needed! Although I've played bass sparingly for over 30 yrs, I've only recently been reunited with my high school musical mentor, and at 47 yrs of age, I'm new to gigging. We're a loud 4pc band playing cover tunes from Journey, AC/DC, KISS, Bon Jovi, Eagles, Bad Company, Warrrant, Ratt, G&R etc.
    I have only one bass - a 1982 Fender Precision Special (active) with GC recommended Ernie Ball roundwounds. I mainly use my fingers (playing with much passion - I pluck the He!l out of those strings). I have no P.A. support yet. My first, economic attempt at filling the bars we play with strong bass was a newer Peavey T.N.T. Tour with a Peavey Headliner 210 ext. cab (600 so-called watts in all). My second attempt is a Markbass CMD121P with a New York 121 ext. cab. Still not happy (farting out the E string too much). I've been heading in all different directions (researching way too much) and was just about to drop big cash on an Ampeg tube head and 810 cab (our frontman's suggestion). Then I looked at Bergantino and Traynor. Now I'm fixated on fEARful. I'm quite handy in the shop and would take great pride in putting something together. I don't know what kind of tone I'm after, or which head to look for (like the Markbass sound - never heard an SVT). Not a big fan of bright sounds, although sometimes they're needed. The thought of a tube amp sounds good, but SS would work too (even a hybrid, I suppose ). Probably go with two individual 15/6 enclosures (for portability and vertical height) with a 6" mid in at least one of them (not sure about the horn thing though). I have trouble hearing myself on stage (no monitors yet, but thinking of IEM's) but am told by credible audience members that I'm too loud (frustrating).
    Everything I read about fEARful sounds great. I'm sure I'll get something from that outfit. Power source, on the other hand, I'm not so sure of. I've been recommended the Ampeg PF 800, Peavey Mini Mega and the Orange TB1000.
    I should also mention that we do play larger rooms on occasion and will most likely play outdoor events this summer (hence the desire for 2 cabs).
    I need to spend more time practicing and less time researching.

    Thank you!!
     
  2. A dual 15 fEARful stack and any of the amps you listed will get just about any job done.
     
    D*J*S likes this.
  3. Jim Carr

    Jim Carr Dr. Jim Gold Supporting Member

    Jan 21, 2006
    Denton, TX or Kailua, HI
    fEARful Kool-Aid dispensing liberal academic card-carrying union member Musicians Local 72-147
    I'd point out that all 15" fEARfuls except the sub15 have a 6" mid-range driver and a crossover.

    The mid-range driver and crossover are essential to solving your problem of having trouble hearing yourself on stage.

    This makes it less likely you will be too loud in the house.

    I'd second the recommendation of the PF-800. Have you been here? Featuring Eminence Speakers, Crown Amplifiers, DIY Speaker Kits - Speaker Hardware, over 30 years Audio experience
     
    D*J*S likes this.
  4. The Chuck

    The Chuck

    Dec 11, 2013
    Wilmington, NC
    I own a PF800 and I really like it. Can't go wrong there IMO.
     
    High Camp and D*J*S like this.
  5. D*J*S

    D*J*S

    Mar 20, 2015
    I've seen that they are the place to go to order everything needed for DIY. Do you recommend a different cab plan other than fEARful?
     
  6. Jim Carr

    Jim Carr Dr. Jim Gold Supporting Member

    Jan 21, 2006
    Denton, TX or Kailua, HI
    fEARful Kool-Aid dispensing liberal academic card-carrying union member Musicians Local 72-147
    FEARful is only DIY-type cab I have tried—so I can't comment on the others. The Bill FitzMaurice designs are well-regarded by many.
     
    D*J*S likes this.
  7. If you want a huge low end outdoors with just your rig you're looking at big stuff.

    I suggest the Fearful 15 with 18sound mid with the half power switch in one cab, and the sub version for the other. It puts the mids up nice and high.

    Or build the big dog, but then you cart more cab than needed most of the time.

    BFM's big dog O15TB is a very efficient design. Less expensive horn loading one sub, but woodwork skills needed.
     
    D*J*S likes this.
  8. D*J*S

    D*J*S

    Mar 20, 2015
    I was at a large gig last night at our local Jerzee's Grille watching a country act. They all used IEM's and the FOH was comprised of two, 215 mains per side (so eight 15's in all) on top of two, 218 subs per side (again, eight subs in all). Didn't care for the overall sound of the band, no matter where I stood. The bassist's rig was a small Markbass cab - possibly a Standard 102HF and some kind of GK RB series head. He had his cab mic'd. This newbie doesn't know why any bass rig needs to be on stage when they're all using IEM's...and why mic the cab when you can patch directly into the FOH with cables? Anyway, I didn't care for his sound, either.
     
  9. If you put a mic on a cab then the PA is amplifying the sound of the amp - theoretically how the bass player wants it to sound. If you use a DI then you are relying on the sound person and PA to determine the character of the sound. There are pros and cons to both approaches.
     
    D*J*S likes this.
  10. agedhorse

    agedhorse SUSPENDED Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 12, 2006
    Davis, CA (USA)
    Development Engineer-Mesa, Product Support-Genz Benz
    Micing the cabinet requires the same (or greater) amount of skill by the sound engineer to duplicate the sound the bass player is hearing from his rig off axis within the acoustic environment on stage to the audience area in the context of the mix, which has different acoustic properties, greatly different speaker system, and completely different mix of ambient sounds.

    For larger shows with multiple monitor mixes, with IEMs, it is common to mix monitors from a separate console by a separate engineer, with mixes bearing no relationship to the foh mix because the needs and sound on stage can be so different than what happens at foh.
     
    D*J*S and waltdogg like this.
  11. D*J*S

    D*J*S

    Mar 20, 2015
    Boy, I don't know. I think I may be developing a GAS leak. The only time I've used my Markbass rig (other than practicing at home) was at a pretty large venue. I just came home from rehearsal, where I only used the CMD121P (no extension) and it was very well received by the guys. My Peavey T.N.T. Tour never fully satisfied me during rehearsals. I think I may have been asking too much of the MB rig at the large venue, and may find myself GASing for a JBL PRX718XLF to fill in the void. We have no subs for P.A. and perhaps starting with one of these babies just might be the ticket. I'm still going to keep the fEARful option on the back burner, for when GAS builds back up. We'll see.
     
  12. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    If people in the audience say you're too loud, you likely are ;) I used to have one of those Markbass combos. It ain't quiet, especially if you use two cabs.
     
    D*J*S likes this.
  13. D*J*S

    D*J*S

    Mar 20, 2015
    People said I was sometimes too loud with my Peavey rig too, but at least I can hear myself more clearly with Markbass. Eventually, I want to try an in-ear.
     
  14. I usually play a bit on the quiet side to the point that my bandmates occasionally ask me to turn up. At one gig I had it a little louder and our soundgal said she had turned me off in the PA. I didn't know that until I talked to her during the first break. Anyway, one of the last songs of the night was "Play That Funky Music" and it was rocking pretty hard. After the song this guy came running up to the stage yelling, "the bass is too loud" repeatedly. I replied in louder than normal voice, "It's a funk song, the bass is supposed to be loud." The fact is I was rather annoyed because I had not touched a single knob. I was using my Alembic that night and it is a very sensitive instrument. I was just playing harder, slapping it actually. Everyone else in the place thought it rocked and was not too loud. My point is, just because one person thinks the bass is too loud does not necessarily mean that it is.
     
    D*J*S likes this.
  15. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    Ya, one person doesn't mean anything. Now three or four and maybe you might want to do some self-examination ;)
     
    D*J*S likes this.
  16. D*J*S

    D*J*S

    Mar 20, 2015
    Thanks everyone! This Talkbass has been the most instrumental tool of all for this noob. I think I'm also gonna break down and purchase a Shure GLXD16 so that I can go out there and hear for myself. (IEM's down the road, too).
     
  17. FFTT

    FFTT

    Mar 15, 2009
    If you're serious about buying the last bass amp you'll ever need to buy, the Reeves Custom 225 or 400.
     
    D*J*S likes this.

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