*updated w/ pics* church worship, muddy tone, some complaints bass is too loud @ volume < 4

Discussion in 'Strings [BG]' started by Arch1medes, Jun 12, 2019.

  1. Arch1medes


    Nov 14, 2009

    Bass: MIM deluxe ash jazz 2018
    Neck pickup: full on
    Bridge pickup: 0 - 25%
    Strings: Chromes
    Amp: Ampeg BA210 V2
    EQ: Bass 11 o’clock, Mids 1 o’clock, treble flat
    Ultra high: off
    Ultra low: off
    Effects loop send >> DI box >> house board

    Hi! Trying to figure out how to have a clear & round tone without excess clack\finger-noise. I don’t like how the bridge position sounds with Chromes. Too ringy. So I go with neck position mostly. Flatwounds have been really great so far.

    Basically if I turn the volume up past 4 the worship team complains about the bass being too loud. I turn or move the combo amp away from the back wall and it gets better. I play contemporary worship in a small, somewhat old church of 150.

    I’m just kind of unhappy with my tone. I want that right round sound, and I feel like the culprit is the strings. I’d really like to experiment with compression, but not sure if that’s the right direction. I know my gear is decent, just need to dial it in right. Any suggestions are appreciated. I’m opened minded.

    Update 6\14\2019:
    I’d like to thank the TB community for the overwhelming assistance and advice with this situation. I should have come here months ago. On that note, attached are some pictures showing my amps location on stage, the church size, and a channel from our board (specifically, for the bass DI). Had to take panoramic photos to get the whole sanctuary, so please excuse the whonky perspective.

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Jun 14, 2019
    Steph Jackson likes this.
  2. JeezyMcNuggles

    JeezyMcNuggles Supporting Member

    Feb 23, 2018
    Santa Maria, CA
    I suck, but nobody really notices
    Well, the problem most likely lays in the hands of the sound guy. The main problem with my church (as a whole) is that there is no one that knows what they're doing in the sound room. It never sounds good, never mixed right, and a couple people are always overbearingly loud. It completely changes every week too. I'm really thinking about quitting playing bass, and just running sound for them instead.
  3. First things first... (before string experiments)
    Try sending the dry signal from the bass >> DI box >> house board, then run a 1/4" parallel from the DI box into the front of your amp. That way the FOH tech can EQ your bass for the house, while you can EQ your amp for the stage separately.
    SteveC, fjbass78, getbent and 10 others like this.
  4. Arch1medes


    Nov 14, 2009
    I know exactly what you mean. We had a former mega-church sound tech pass through our congregation a few years ago and he helped dial us in as best he could included consulted on stuff like power conditioners, under-stage wiring, etc..

    I sound decent to myself (a little boomy due to the flats and neck pickup), but out there in the congregation I’m either lost behind to super hot keyboard feed or the bass freq is pooling near some ultra sensitive old person.

    Possible solution: my amp has a balanced XLR out we’re NOT using because of an unknown hum it creates when plugged into the xlr floor port on stage. Instead I’m going unbalanced 1/4” out (effects loop send) into a direct box that has a ground lift to eliminate hum. I have a gut feeling this is the tone killer in the house bass sound...

    Anyway thanks for chiming in. Everybody is always really happy with my playing, it’s just these little things I’d like to chase down.
  5. JeezyMcNuggles

    JeezyMcNuggles Supporting Member

    Feb 23, 2018
    Santa Maria, CA
    I suck, but nobody really notices
    With the XLR out, it's your settings most likely. Try putting it on post, or flipping the ground switch. For some reason my amps have always hummed crazy when on pre. Completely silent on post.
    jfh2112 likes this.
  6. Arch1medes


    Nov 14, 2009
    Interesting. I think I understand 80% of that (almost there). Would the effects loop send be a dry signal? Or the xlr balanced out? I could probably find out in the manual, it just curious off the top of your head
  7. Roland GR 88

    Roland GR 88 Commercial User

    Sep 16, 2013
    Ontario Canada
    Retail store manager
    If moving the amp makes it better and your in a small or acoustically inferior room leads me to believe you're fighting the FOH which could be caused by your stage volume and/or the resonance of the room or stage.
    I would find a place on stage where your amp acts as a decent monitor for the band and take the time to let the FOH eq you to the room.
    I would also go bass - D.I. - out to FOH - thru to amp.
    Nunovsky, Clutchcargo and Scootbass1 like this.
  8. Roland GR 88

    Roland GR 88 Commercial User

    Sep 16, 2013
    Ontario Canada
    Retail store manager

    Sending the FOH a dry direct signal of your bass gives them the best chance to find its spot in the overall mix. What sounds good through a small 2x10 enclosure rarely works with a full range system.
    Regardless of whether the send on your amp is wet or dry use the out of the D.I. - it's why it's there.
    Last edited: Jun 12, 2019
    Scootbass1 and Steph Jackson like this.
  9. No. The fx loop send comes after the preamp section of the amp so the signal is already processed before being sent to the main board. That's part of the problem; the FOH tech is trying to EQ your bass after it's already been EQ'd by the amp.
  10. wheelsup247

    wheelsup247 Wherever You Go, There You Are. Wear it low. Supporting Member

    We use IEMs at our church. A Noble DI has really helped at one campus, though the tech crew are volunteers and at the other campus there is a bit to be desired. I’m going to take my LMIII and one NY604 cab to do something to ad tone on the platform that I can control. So, it will be like bass >>>>dual output direct box >>>>> xlr out to board and output #2 to my little kickback amp turned down just enough to move some air (which I first got the ok from the WL to try). It’s a delicate balance keeping the worship team, sound techs, congregation, and yourself appeased. Being a worship bass player musician (in many ways) is a tough gig that takes a special person and much trial and error.
  11. Room acoustics can be a big part of the problem, and pretty hard to eliminate.
    A few things that have helped me are:
    - get your amp up off the ground with a stand or box. This minimizes the floor boundary effect.
    - avoid placing the amp in the corner, and get it away from the wall if you can. The problem with these places is the reflections add up and create bass peaks and nulls throughout the room.
    - turn down the lows on your eq a touch, or lower your overall volume a bit and raise your mids to hear yourself.

    The advice about going through the DI before the amp gives you a good place to start too.
    pcake, Ggaa, Mugre and 5 others like this.
  12. DavC


    May 17, 2005
    Tallmadge , Ohio
    since you kinda solved your problem by moving away from the wall ... try to fix that issue of the nearby space adding more bass ..!!

    decouple the cab from the floor ... foam , tilt it back , put it up on something ...
    maybe acoustic foam wedge behind the amp , or a piece of foam behind the amp ..

    i always install humbucker ( split coil ) pups in my Jazz(s) ... then i can roll off the neck pup a bit with no single coil noise ..! or lower the neck pickup a bit , a little lower on the bass side & raise bridge pup a bit ...

    turn Bass down on amp a tiny bit , keep treble down on bass ( clank )

    i prefer play closer to the bridge ( less boomy )

    use a high pass filter ... or high/low pass filter = no boom , no clank
  13. Adienn7


    Jan 26, 2007
    You need to sculpt the signal with a high pass.. To control the bass..
    pcake, Dudaronamous, rohi and 3 others like this.
  14. I was having similar issues like yours a few years ago when I first started playing bass for our worship team. After I was able to convince the keyboardist to lay off the low left hand and getting a Gramma isolation pad it got better, but certain notes would bloom wildly no matter what we tried, hollow space under the platform. This was along with a DI and minimal stage volume. I eventually ended up with a pedal board that has a Korg Pitchblack pedal tuner, either a Tech21 BDDI/VTDI or my current is a Dug Pinnick DP3 preamp. Then into Zoom CDR 70 for effects as needed, followed by a Broughton LowPass/High Pass pedal, TC Electronic Sentry Noise Gate. And last a Radial JDI direct box. My bass is fed into the stage monitors for the team and myself. The Dug pedal is capable of much more than the Dug tone, I prefer it over my other Tech21 preamps. The most significant improvement, to where I no longer have issues no matter which volunteer is running sound, has been since I added the Broughton HP/LP pedal. No more blooming notes once I found the high pass cutoff frequency for our room, and the low pass is used to get rid of hiss and the annoying highs above 4k. I didn't want to give up my amplifier, but was very pleased after discovering that it was for the better. I get the important midrange from the stage monitors, and the omni directional lows I hear from the mains. I added the noise gate due to the sound persons forgetting to unmute my bass after whatever speaking or announcements are done between songs. This is what worked for me, and may work for you. Being part of an all volunteer worship ministry is quite the adventure. I have a couple of Fdeck HP3 high pass units I no longer use. DM me and I will send you one of them.
  15. Steph Jackson

    Steph Jackson Guest

    Sep 4, 2016
    You can always try compression say like at rehearsals, what kinda size room are you playing in? As a matter of interest, Best Regards Steph
    Scootbass1 likes this.
  16. I forgot about compression since the Dug pedal has a compressor in it. So, @Steph Jackson brought up a valid point with compression. I believe with the compression and filtering my headaches were alleviated. There have been several excellent suggestions presented for you to consider and try. It may take a while with much experimentation, but you will eventually get to where you are satisfied with your tone. After six years of worship team service I realized you can't make everyone in the congregation happy. Besides you are not playing to the people, you are playing to the Father.
    Do well in all of your endeavours.
  17. JW56789

    JW56789 Guest

    Feb 18, 2017
    'Bass is too loud'


    'Bass is too loud'


    'Bass is too loud'


    'Bass is too loud'


    . . . . . always worked for me . . . . .
  18. Wasnex


    Dec 25, 2011
    My experience has been the exact opposite. I recommend setting the DI to pre, so when you fiddle with your EQ it doesn't undo all the progress your incompetent audio tech has made ;).
  19. I’m an incompetent audio tech and I approve this message.
    pcake, Jon McBass, Wasnex and 2 others like this.
  20. Stumbo

    Stumbo Guest

    Feb 11, 2008
    IME, that's really not a good reason to give up trying to eq your rig to fit the room.

    Another option is to put your rig in front of you (on its side and tilted back) so it becomes your monitor and does not fight with the FOH.

    And, once you sound check, leave your controls alone.:thumbsup: