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what should you upgrade 1st? best advice on TB

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by IvanMike, Apr 26, 2005.

  1. IvanMike

    IvanMike Player Characters fear me... Supporting Member

    Nov 10, 2002
    Middletown CT, USA
    hollowman227 wins the prize for best advice in this post in misc

    a must read. another member asks what's the most important thing to upgrade 1st, bass, amp, cab, or other. check out the answer. :cool:

    BTW, when i 1st linked this it was a new thread but since has been merged with an existing thread by the misc mods so i redid this to isolate the post in question in my link.

    here, i isolated it for ya

    madjazzbass likes this.
  2. SnoMan

    SnoMan Words Words Words

    Jan 27, 2001
    Charleston, WV
  3. popinfresh


    Dec 23, 2004
    Melbourne, Aus
    Now, you see. I always say get the amp first. I didn't, and spent a few months playing my nice new MM Sterling through a crappy 10 Watt practice amp, it did nothing for the bass.

    The ONLY time I would say go the bass first, is if you are gigging/practicing in spaces that allready have allright amplification on hand.
  4. BurningSkies

    BurningSkies CRAZY BALDHEAD Supporting Member

    Feb 20, 2005
    Syracuse NY
    Endorsing artist: Dingwall Guitars
    True about the bass...it's where the rubber meets the road.

    I recently upgraded and it made all the difference in both my playing, and my bass 'work ethic'. Of course, once I did upgrade my bass I loved it so much I needed to go on an amp and cab buying spree.
  5. RLT


    Jul 10, 2004
    South Central OH
    Make a good sticky or a FAQ post.
  6. In my situation, I had an average bass and a 100 watt combo and I was gigging regularly around the country. I thought about what would make the biggest impact to my sound initially... (as you will inevitably end up upgrading both eventually anyway).

    seeing as I have PA support at every gig, and my amp was merely a monitor (not that I could really hear it on stage) I decided that getting a new bass that sounded good would affect my front of house sound/tone more, as I was DI'ing straight in, and It would save me the initial pain of having to lug a huge amp to every gig just to get a good front of house tone.

    So thats really the decision - do you want "your" tone to be in your bass or in your amp? I can pretty much pitch up at any show, plug straight in and get the same tone at any venue.

    Now I have to find an awsome rig so that I can hear my tone just as well as the audience!
  7. el_Kabong


    Jul 11, 2005
    Once you start looking at the rig I reckon the cab is the thing to upgrade first. It probably has the largest impact on tone. I also think it's worth getting the highest quality cab you can afford. I was suprised at how much better a top line cab is when I upgraded recently from a merely 'good' cab. A great cab can also make it easier to evaluate your other existing gear and potential purchases because it's easier to hear the differences between bits of gear. So you end up with a setup you like sooner and (hopefully) cheaper overall as you don't turn over as much equipment in your search for great tone.
    dpaulb and The_Lucek like this.
  8. iceboxbass

    iceboxbass Living the Dream! Supporting Member

    Feb 22, 2010
    I upgraded both Bass and amp/cab combo at the same time. I plugged in the BASS I already had (Fender Jazz W/flat wounds GHS) into the newly purchased ampeg B-15T, and then plugged in my newly purchased Spector Legend 4. Liked what I was hearing with the Spector but something was missing. I put GHS flats on the Spector and WOW what a grand difference in the tone!So sometimes just making a simple and inexpensive change to your Bass can make the difference in the tone you're seeking i.e. strings,pickups. My previous amp was a Marshal 30. Really good but not really great.
  9. Holy Thread Resurrection Batman!

    On the other hand, that's great advice that lots of people overlook.
  10. TheGreatSealof

    TheGreatSealof Supporting Member

    Nov 15, 2010
    Deptford, NJ
    I have been learning the bass for 5 months. Newbie. I purchased a Fender Rumble 75 amp and a MIM p-bass. I also have an Ibanez SG300 active bass. The Ibanez is versitile sound wize, but the P-bass has a unique sound that I prefer over the Ibanez.

    However, I have been searching for reviews regarding amplification options to get the full, rich sound of the classic P-bass that I do not feel with the rumble amp. Is a tube amp better suited for the P-bass?

    Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.
  11. I don't think anyone can answer that question objectively for you... tone is a personal thing, my advice is go to a music shop and try out as many different amps with a P bass as you can then buy what sounds best to you.
  12. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    i feel a tube amp is better suited to all basses, even fancy schmancy 6 strings with active electronics. but not everyone agrees, so make your own decision about it.
  13. dose


    Nov 2, 2008
    I concur....
  14. naturalkinds


    Jan 22, 2009
    Savannah, GA
    I always suggest experimenting with different strings first. It took me going through a lot of amps to figure out that I really just preferred flatwound strings! Now I can make due with nearly any amps a rehearsal space has on hand.
  15. Hi Burning Skies. I am in the EXACT SAME BOAT!

    Interesting that I saw you on the Fearful web site first and then found this post when I was searching for more info.

    Also, found my way in to this boat when I bought my Music Man Big Al. Was not shopping for a bass at all but as soon as I played it I couldn't go without it. Then my amp and cab just couldn't compare.
  16. gillman


    Oct 24, 2018
    east coast
    I started out on a home built P bass with flatwound strings. The amp was a garage sale Crate single 10 inch speaker amp that i dont even remember the model . I was very poor and had no choice. I played and played until the amp finally quit one day. The sound was awful but at least i was playing, so by no choice of my own i had to get an amp. This is where it gets interesting,i tried every amp and speaker arangement available at the time. I took almost 6 months to decide and i had saved up for whatever i liked. I came home a SVT and a fridge. Way to much amp,i know,but now the sound was unbelievable! Flash forward 25 years, I have the same set up plus a small lightweight 2x10 eden cab and a wt500 for gigs. The moral to the story, same homemade bass,many different amps.
  17. BogeyBass


    Sep 14, 2010
    The Bass and the hands playing it.

    Straight in no EQ usually sounds fine.

    Doesn't require 2 grand of signal processing to sound good

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