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Tuning up my rig

Discussion in 'Live Sound [BG]' started by Jordan Ardoin, Feb 17, 2016.

  1. Jordan Ardoin

    Jordan Ardoin

    Feb 17, 2016
    Hi guys,

    This is my first post here. I'm hoping I can get some help both with specific hang ups I have with my rig at the moment and with general ideas about how to improve it overall.

    I'm currently playing in folk rock band that gigs regularly. As of right now, my rig looks like this:
    Switching between a Engelhardt ES-1 with K&k Bass Max pickup and a Fender American Jazz Bass > TC Electronic BG250. I use a Snark clip on for tuning. So, I have two real hangups with my setup that have been bothering me recently: 1. Tuning. The Snark is great for when I'm alone, but on stage, my upright (Which I use most of the set) picks up everything making it impossible to pickup the notes coming from my bass. Totally unreliable when I need to tune quickly. Plus, I have to switch the snark between each bass every time which leads to my next hang up. 2. Switching instruments. I have to mute my amp, unplug one thing, put it down, pick up the next, and so on. I usually do this twice in a set. It's super irritating. I dropped my tuner once and the top popped off and flew to the other side of the venue while I was switching it. Sometimes I put the upright down on top of my cable when switching to my electric, so I have to put down the electric and pick the upright up again to get the cable out from underneath (literal hang up hahah).

    My remedy: I'm thinking about using an A/B switch pedal with two inputs and using a Boss TU-3 I already own for tuning. I would never have switch cables or my tuner again. I'll have a tuner that's reliable throughout the show! Fixed! Instruments > A/B switch > tuner > amp.

    I was hoping you guys could help me figure out the specifics here: 1. What A/B switches might be best for this? 2. Now, that I'll be using a couple of pedals, how should I go about powering them? Single power cables to a surge protector or something like Voodoo Labs power supply? 3. Is there an alternative solution to my plan that you can think of?

    Finally, I would like to ask a few questions on generally sprucing up my rig from there: 1. Since I might be buying a power device and maybe even a board for those pedals, should I be considering any other types of pedals to add? My sound is pretty simple, so I'm thinking more of something that will tighten up my sound as opposed to effects. 2. Do you think my amp holds up on a professional level? I get a lot of feedback from this amp if I'm trying to get the levels right sans PA. Besides that, this amp does pretty well, and I use the D/I on it for most of our gigs anyway.

    Thank you for reading! If I have anymore questions, I suppose I'll just make a new thread as I feel this one has run on long enough. I look forward to your perspective!

  2. Rodger Bryan

    Rodger Bryan Supporting Member

    Jun 17, 2006
    My first suggestion would be to use a pedal type of tuner live- one such as the Korg Pitchblack or the TC Polytune 2. The signal coming directly from your pickup and the ability to mute and tune quickly is helpful.

    My second thought is to check out the switching solutions on the Radial Engineering site. I use the passive switcher called the Bigshot i/O, which allows passive switching, level control and output to a tuner (with a mute or always on option). For a lot more money, Radial Tonebone pedals are great all-in-one solutions, but the power supplies are an irritating 15v, instead of the standard 9 or 18v, which requires the use of a separate power supply on a board.
    Last edited: Feb 19, 2016
    dheafey likes this.
  3. Your BG250 has a built in tuner.
    lz4005 likes this.
  4. lz4005


    Oct 22, 2013
    If your levels are well matched between the upright and electric, a passive A/B would do you just as well as anything else.

    If not, you can't go wrong with Radial stuff.

    Are you clipping your Snark to the bridge of the upright? They work better that way.
  5. two fingers

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

    Feb 7, 2005
    Eastern NC USA
    Hey Welcome to TalkBass! Check out Rolls for possible switching, mixing and/or blending options as well
  6. dheafey


    Jul 22, 2012
    Cow Hampshire
    Yeah, I was heading in the same direction as Rodger. The recommended Radial pedals are literally made to solve the OP's dilemma.

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