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Use of pre-amps with active basses...worth it?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by rickreyn, May 21, 2002.


  1. rickreyn

    rickreyn

    Jun 16, 2000
    Lutz, Florida
    What will using an Aguilar or Sadowsky pre-amp, or any other pre-amp do for me. I play a Cirrus 5 with active 3-way EQ.
     
  2. The way I see it, the active eq on basses is for adjustment on the fly and for minor tweaks here and there--Transistors are doing the work here. I prefer to let the amplifier take care of most tone adjustment, if needed at all, because the circuitry is better designed for amplifying a frequency, especially with tube driven eq on the Aguilars. Let amplifiers amplify and use EQ attenuation (cuts) when using transistor-based adjustments.
    G
     
  3. Nino Valenti

    Nino Valenti Commercial User

    Feb 2, 2001
    Staten Island NYC
    Builder: Valenti Basses
    In my opinion, it would be over kill. I'm not too familiar w/the Peavey bass. I've played them a few time but I don't remember if there is a pre amp by-pass on them. If there is, you might wanna try one of the 2 out board pre amps. Mast of my basses have either the Sadowsky, Aguilar or HazLab pre-amps in the bass & I usually leave my amp's EQ flat.

    If you're unhappy w/the pre-amp in the Peavey, why not replace it w/a Sadowsky or Aguilar preamp?
     
  4. FalsehoodBass

    FalsehoodBass

    Jul 22, 2001
    Denver, CO
    i think you need to clarify what you mean by pre-amp. Are you talking about a box you install on your bass, or the thing that you use with a poweramp as a bass head?


    Because i'm sure lost.
     
  5. rickreyn

    rickreyn

    Jun 16, 2000
    Lutz, Florida
    Talking about the outboard pre-amps such as Aguilar or Sadowsky. I realize that I already have one in my active bass, but can I put one of these in the chain for some worthwhile cause? I do not have an active/passive switch.
     
  6. Brian Barrett

    Brian Barrett

    Nov 25, 2001
    Murfreesboro, TN (Nashville)
    Dealer LowEndBassShop.com, Builder LowEndBasses.com
    out board boxes are really designed for passive basses or for private practice with headphones.
    If your nothappy with the sound of the bass then It might be cheaper to sell and buy something you like.

    I find the best way for people to actually find a bass with the tone they desire is to plug the bass straight to a power amp bypassing a rack preamp or head with tone controls. This all color's and changes the bass which gives you a false impression of the instrument. This also causes problem later when you hook up to your rig if different. PLUS its the only way to find out the true characteristical tone of an instrument.

    Basically its a good way to hear the bass and not the bass through a colored tone. I believe this is what many people have problem's with when buying a bass and after a week or so they get frustrated becuase it just doesn't have everything they wanted and what they heard in the store.

    added note, prefferably a clean cabinet and not a colored cabinet like an eden, swr, etc.
    To answer your question, YES you can but it inline but becarefull of all the volume nobs.

    thanks and good luck with your search
     
  7. Brad Johnson

    Brad Johnson Commercial User

    Mar 8, 2000
    Gaithersburg, Md
    Boom Bass Cabinets, DR strings
    Rick, you'd be adding a bass and treble boost only circuit between you and your amp. You could just as easily do it at the amp and save the money.

    As far as onboards go, I've heard Cirrus basses with replaced preamps. Probably seemed like a good idea at the time:(. The basses no longer sounded like Cirri (?:)) so if you're happy with the sound you have, I guess you have to ask yourself, what are you trying to accomplish with the outboards that can't be done without them?

    I typically leave my amp flat and make tonal changes at the bass. IME it works much better at the source than changing the amp plus in my case, with multiple basses I don't need to constantly tweak my amp to fit a particular bass. I only use basses that sound good with my amp set this way. Anal? Probably... but you wouldn't believe how much simpler my gigs have been since I went this way. Truly plug and play regardless of the venue.
     
  8. Brian Barrett

    Brian Barrett

    Nov 25, 2001
    Murfreesboro, TN (Nashville)
    Dealer LowEndBassShop.com, Builder LowEndBasses.com
    Brad

    Great point!!

    I'm affraid people have gotten totally confused with all the parametric control's and none-since on preamps or head units. Leave that to the sound guy!! The bass is what needs to speak not the rack you have. Preamps should be to drive the amp. just my feelings.

    I believe people that buy basses by hearing the bass and not some rack system tend to be much happier in the long run with there purchase.
     
  9. Brad Johnson

    Brad Johnson Commercial User

    Mar 8, 2000
    Gaithersburg, Md
    Boom Bass Cabinets, DR strings