Using a PA system

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by BassPlayerRH, Jun 25, 2002.

  1. I've heard some of you talk about playing out of PA, and I'm wondering how this works. Can you play out of a PA and an amp? Can someone sing and you still play through the PA?

  2. JoelEoM


    Mar 11, 2002
    Lancaster, PA
    most larger venues have in-house PAs. PAs are also used for practices, but then usally only for vocals. some places you may need to bring your own PA. a band i played with a for a couple of years did this, and ran just vocals/horns, and guitars/bass used their own amps. basically, if youre playing thru the PA, there are a few options.
    1. mic'ing your amp. the sound guys put a mic on your cab, and run that to the board, then to the amps, then out to the PA speakers. youre still using your bass amp on stage, but you dont have to push it as hard, because you only need to supply stage volume.
    2. running direct. the sound guys run a line from the direct out on your amp(assuming you have one) and then that gets routed to the PA the same way as mic'ing.
    3. a combination of the above.
    to answer your question, vocals and bass(and whatever else you run thru the PA) can all be done at the same time, assuming the PA can handle it. ive played a lot of places where the PA is there for the sole purpose of amplifying vocals only, and you'll be forced to use your own amp. this is where having a larger amp comes into play. eh, im rambling now. hope this helped to clarify some things for you
  3. CYoung


    Nov 30, 2000
    Gainesville, FL
    Don't forget:

    4. Plugging the bass guitar directly into the mixing board or via a Direct box.

    It is possible to use no amp at all on stage and run direct into the mixing console. You better have some excellent monitor speakers, though!

    Personally, I usually run a pre-eq direct out from the head to the mixing console and let the sound man shape the sound.
  4. ZuluFunk

    ZuluFunk Supporting Member

    Apr 14, 2001
    I try to run a post EQ signal from my direct out.
    Often I have to contest with a sound guy who insists on my running bass direct and having me take a line from the direct box into my amp.

    I don't like that because I can't tell what I sound like in the house speakers. At least running post EQ from my out I have a clue. Running mic'ed is a good way to go if they have good equipment.