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Using Subs for a Bass Rig...?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Count Bassie, Oct 23, 2017.

  1. Count Bassie

    Count Bassie Supporting Member

    Jun 10, 2006
    Smithfield, RI
    Anyone done this? Someone in my neighborhood has these, and the power amps aren't working. I just wonder how they'd be for speakers in a bass rig? Not full-range enough I'd guess, but I'm asking anyway. Cause it's Talkbass. :cool:
  2. Grumry


    Jul 6, 2016
    It would work to enhance your sub frequencies but fail at full range by itself.
  3. I'd go with not so much. You play a bass, not a sub bass.
  4. JGbassman

    JGbassman Supporting Member

    May 31, 2011
    I do for almost every show. Of course someone else has the throttle though...
    Aqualung60, Sixgunn and Count Bassie like this.
  5. Count Bassie

    Count Bassie Supporting Member

    Jun 10, 2006
    Smithfield, RI
    I do dig me some deep lows though, not too loud, but present, underneath...
    wes stephenson likes this.
  6. I suppose with the right amps and other cabs that handle the higher end stuff, you might be able to make em work.
    Count Bassie likes this.
  7. You’d need to know the specs on that speaker. Subs have built in crossovers that roll off above a certain frequency, so as long as you don’t use the electronics, you could alright, if the speaker can handle higher frequencies.

    You don’t see them too often these days, but 18 inch bass cabinets were once common.

    Another option is using the cabinet in a biamped rig.
  8. Ampslut


    May 15, 2017
    I suppose you could use them as part of a bi-amp/tri-amp system. More trouble than it's worth (imo)
    Coolhandjjl likes this.
  9. Korladis

    Korladis Banned Supporting Member

    Bass guitar drivers are woofers, not subwoofers.

    Subwoofers will have rumble, but no tone, because tone is in the mids. For an idea what it will sound like, roll off the tone knob on your bass, turn the highs and mids on your amp all the way off, and if you have a graphic EQ, cut everything above 200hz all the way.
  10. JimmyM


    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    I remember hearing about Radiohead's bassist using an 810e and a sub.
  11. BadExample


    Jan 21, 2016
    Try the sub + sat diagram on the back with your existing cab. Post eq DI out from your amp if you have it.
    Count Bassie likes this.
  12. While I've seen and played rigs that have, let's say, a crossover and something like a 4x10 for the mids on up, and either 2x15 or 1x18 for the lows. It can work wonderfully. My rig (way back in the 90's- one 4x10 and one 2x15 sub cab) was once "enhanced" by the substitution of a pair of 18" subs for a large stage. AS soon as I kicked in the Boss OC-2 during one section of a song, the whole stage was just rumbling as if I had a set of Taurus Pedals, ala Geddy Lee! It was awesome and scary at the same time!

    However, I wouldn't under any circumstance use something like a home theatre or home hi-fi subwoofer- the surrounds are designed much differently than those of commercial speakers used in PA or musical instrument gear.
    Omega Monkey and Count Bassie like this.
  13. With an 8x10 and a BL of power for the subs, sure.
    The 8x10 is for your ears.
    The sub is for your bowels.
  14. jazzbass_5


    Sep 1, 2007
    NY, Albion
    Or Billy Sheehan using Servo drive Subs.
    basses51, JimmyM and Count Bassie like this.
  15. agedhorse

    agedhorse Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 12, 2006
    Davis, CA (USA)
    Development Engineer-Mesa, Product Support-Genz Benz
    Sure, they will work fine and provide plenty of LF extension.

    I believe the drivers are 2242G which are 4 ohm, and you will need to remove the electronics (you say they don't work, assuming the amps have failed).

    With these cabinets, the acoustic alignment and HF rolloff might be adequate that you can simply parallel with a larger ported bass cabinet.

    You will want to check polarity, be sure that the driver is in phase with the bass cabinet you use.
  16. Wfrance3

    Wfrance3 Supporting Member

    May 29, 2014
    Tulsa, OK
    When I play at our church I have a pretty big sub behind me. It's huge, like 18" or something.
    Also have 2 slightly smaller FOH speakers that are wall mounted up high right and left of stage. I'ts a pretty nice setup.
    The whole setup is run by power amps running into a main board. Something loopy there tho. The speaker setup is great, but I think people mess with the board for meeting PA and such between Sundays. Every week is a mystery as to what my tone is going to be....
  17. agedhorse, are you encouraging hodgepodgery?

    Is it a coincidence that two built-in JBL subwoofer amps failed? Without doing any research on these particular subs, I wonder if it would be worth trying to find out what is wrong with them. Maybe it's something not too difficult to resolve.
    Last edited: Oct 24, 2017
    Omega Monkey and Count Bassie like this.
  18. fishstix


    Feb 28, 2006
    I have a couple of the non-powered versions of these laying around. I did try running them with another full range cab (Mesa Powerhouse 212) once upon a time and decided after a gig or two that it wasn't worth the extra hassle of schlepping it around. My perceived volume really didn't increase much at all and the frequencies they reinforced just got in the way of the kick drum mostly, IMO. FWIW, I tried running them in parallel with a 2 ohm friendly head as well as with an external power amp and crossover @120 hz.
    Coolhandjjl and ObsessiveArcher like this.
  19. Doug Parent

    Doug Parent Supporting Member

    May 31, 2004
    San Diego, Ca.
    Dealer Nordstrand Pickups.
    I agree with your conclusion that sub can muddy the waters although of course it depends on the circumstances. Playing outdoors it could be a real positive, but the trick is mixing it into the overall voice of the instrument in such a way that it comes across still having the punch of a bass guitar. Now if you are playing key-synth bass parts, you are likely to burn out voice coils if you are not careful. In that scenario I'd almost always go with a sub.
    fishstix likes this.
  20. BurningSkies

    BurningSkies CRAZY BALDHEAD Supporting Member

    Feb 20, 2005
    Seweracuse, NY
    In most cases adding a traditional 'sub' to your rig probably will provide low end trouble in the FOH. Additional sources of deep lows beyond house subs can get things strange really quickly. I actually high pass even though one of my cabs is a dedicated sub.

    ...or if you're not playing with legit FOH sound...deep uncontrolled lows can create infrasonic wash in the room which isn't all that pleasant for audience or band.
    Ampslut, Coolhandjjl, klokker and 5 others like this.

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