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What to use with Pub 280

Discussion in 'Amps, Mics & Pickups [DB]' started by Tom Baldwin, Jun 18, 2004.

  1. I picked up a used Pub 280 about 2 weeks ago, based largely on the adamant and convincing testimonies of Adrian Cho. This thing is freakin' unbelievable. Warm, fat lows, not muddy, an even response up and down the whole range of the bass. It's very realistic, transparent, and clean. I also got it for a great price, and Lou Roten was very helpful with post-purchase suggestions. It's got to be the best sounding rig I've played through for DB. (I had previously used an AI Coda, and before that a WW green light into an EA CXL-110).

    Now I am planning (when finances allow) to upgrade my other stuff to really get the most out of this bad boy. I currently have a Trinity mic/Underwood going into a Raven Labs PMB-II. My thought is to replace the Trinity with an AMT mic and the Underwood with a Dyn-B, as consensus seems to be these are the best mic and pickup respectively. But this raises some concerns.
    1. Since the Dyn-B is supposedly very "mic-like", will this be redundant to use in conjunction with the AMT? IOW, maybe I should consider something other than the Dyn-B, that is not "mic-like". Also, there are occasions when I have to play in noisy environments, or rooms with bad acoustics where the trinity just isn't cutting through, and I have to use more pickup, or even turn the mic completely off. Again, will the Dyn-B have the some problem cutting through that a mic does?
    2. I have heard of some people with very resonant basses having difficulty with feedback on the Dyn-B. Anybody else experience this? I almost NEVER have any trouble with feedback with my current setup, and I consider my bass to be fairly resonant.
    3. The Pub has just the one input, so I'll need to blend the AMT and Dyn-B into something first. But I don't want to have to monkey around with two separate preamps plus another box to combine them, and I understand it's not advisable to send the signal through two preamps anyway.
    4. Is the AMT really that much better than the Trinity? (I know we've been there, I just thought I might flush out some more responses.)

    I'd be specifically interested in comments from Pub users, though all are welcome. Those who have had their Pubs for some time, what do you find works best? Also, I'm interested to know about what placement - how high, tilted or not, where in relation to the bass, etc. you've had success with.

  2. anonymous0726

    anonymous0726 Guest

    Nov 4, 2001
    The AMT is great, but I've had no luck putting it through an amp. I have about the same problems that you get with the Realist, just more so (to put it short). It's great through a PA system, with a little back through the monitors. It' still a mic, so loud stage volumes will kill you, but it is better than most at cancelling out background noise.

    I've found on a few different basses that I've used it on that there are two good spots on the bass to use it, although the sweet spots will vary from bass to bass. On my bass, the best sound is about an inch higher than the bottom of the fingerboard, facing the body and about 1/8" away from the surface. The output is not great here volume-wise, so I found the best quality/volume tradeoff is slightly above the foot of the bridge on the G side, somewhere between the foot of the bridge and the f hole.

    The newer models have a high rolloff that should help with feedback, and next time I send it in for repair (soon, as the wire where it meets the clamp is getting pretty bad), they're going to put a low rolloff on it as well to see if I can get better response through the amp.
  3. Sam Sherry

    Sam Sherry Inadvertent Microtonalist Supporting Member

    Sep 26, 2001
    Portland, ME
    Euphonic Audio "Player"
    AMT --> Walter Woods WW-1 --> Euphonic VL-208. I put the AMT about 2" north of the G-string foot. No feedback problems as long as I make sure the speaker's not pointed at the mic. I love the sound of this setup and don't use my Underwood much lately.

    T-Bal, for about $60 Daddy's sells four-channel mini-mixers by Behringer and Mackie to blend sources. For $100 they sell a "10-channel" Yamaha which has a slightly higher noise-floor (spec'ed at -65 dB) but has peak lights on the channels so you're not overdriving. I use the AMT --> Yamaha for recording into the Nomad Jukebox; with the Woods I don't need a preamp for amplification. Just a notion for your consideration.
  4. flatback

    flatback Supporting Member

    May 6, 2004
    I was just going to buy that pub from lue when he said someone got it...congrats it is a great box. Your raven labe straight into it should be a great sound...You might want to get a Realist or Full Circle pick up...something fairly feedback resistant but woody. The AMT alone should work great for a lot of gigs, with a blend or pick up for those loud jazz gigs where the conversation at the bar is your competition. I really like the Demeter tube direct box for a fat warm sound and I have been really happy with that sound for the pick up...But the Raven and the pub should be a nice small clean sound. I will say this, PA speakers to me sound best as a monitor if they are raised up on a stand of some sort, off the stage.
  5. anonymous0726

    anonymous0726 Guest

    Nov 4, 2001

    Hit your site, Flatback. Incredible work! I haven't taken it all in yet, but will!
  6. Flatback - sorry dood, I heard there were only one or two left so I figured I'd better move on it. I'd love to try a FC but my adjusters are too big and I'm just not ready to ditch my bridge. Maybe some day. I am curious about the tube direct box. Is this or is it not a preamp? I do have a Quik-Lok amp stand on which I lay the Pub sideways. It puts the speaker about 18" off the floor, and at steep angle so I can point it at my head. I wonder if still higher would be better?

    Sam - What advantage would a $60 mixer have over a $300 preamp (Raven) - is it just to avoid the double preamp scenario? Also, do these mixers have phantom power for the AMT?

    Ray - I have no feedback issues with the Golden Trinity, so I'm presuming the same for the AMT. Now, I use the mic up to a certain threshold, after which it just doesn't sound that good, so that's when I add more Underwood. Let me know if the low roll-off helps. And say hi to Bacas if you see him.

    What I would like to know is how the Dyn-B performs with the Pub and if it makes any sense to combine it with a mic.

    You guys are the best! :cool:

    AMJBASS Supporting Member

    Jan 8, 2002
    Ontario, Canada
    The direct box isn't a preamp...It does warm up the sound if you go through it however. I think the Raven Labs is already a warm sounding unit so you shouldn't have any problem. I think you will find that the AMT will be more feedback resistant than the Golden Bullet. You should be able to get a lot more out of it.

    I have used the Dyn-B through the Pub 2/280 and I don't think you will need to blend a mic into the mix. The Dyn-B is a contact microphone. I think if you pick up an AMT you may find you won't need the Dyn. I would keep the Underwood and just blend it in if you need some more pickup.
  8. anonymous0726

    anonymous0726 Guest

    Nov 4, 2001
    Feedback in general isn't a huge issue with the AMT, but you can get some real high squeal pretty easily if you do. Way up where there isn't much bass. If you have a graphic, it's up in the top bunch of sliders. On a PA I generally defeat these frequencies with no ill effect on sound, but if you're going through a cabinet with a tweeter you might lose a little enamel off your teeth before you can get your hand back on the volume knob.

    The low filter was a request of mine, as the amp issue I was having is that you get a lot of mush at any kind of volume because the mic is picking up ambient lows from the the amp and reamplifying them. The louder you get, the less definition, and so on, and so on, and so on.
  9. Monte


    Jan 9, 2001
    DFW Area, Tejas
    I'll second getting a good quality mixer with decent mic preamps. I have a Mackie DFX 12 that I use with 2 Pubs as a PA system; the smaller 4 channel DFX 6 should be the same. The graphic eq on the thing is amazing. I use it either alone with my Dyn B or alone with my AKG C3000; I've never seen any need to blend them. Most days I use the Dyn B with a parametric eq on that channel; I've gotten so good with the parametric settings that I have a hard time telling any difference between a mic and the Dyn B. The Behringer Ultra Q is awesome for less than $99; it gets rid of all annoying frequency humps. I use 3 of the 5 bands.

  10. Chris Fitzgerald

    Chris Fitzgerald Student of Life Staff Member Administrator

    Oct 19, 2000
    Louisville, KY
    Watching this thread with great interest, as I've been wanting to check out both the AMT and the PUB for some time now.

    Tom - you might want to look into the Full Circle even with your existing bridge. The bass I'm leaning toward buying has a FC installed on a bridge that was cut for bigger adjusters. The luthier who installed the pickup apparently just filled in the existing holes with wood, then redrilled for the FC diameter. There don't seem to have been any issues, and I'm surprised at how easily the adjusters turn as well as how well the pickup works.

    For Adrian and Monte - I believe that this unit is as great as you guys say it is. But for the record, why did Schertler discontinue making it?
  11. Marcus Johnson

    Marcus Johnson

    Nov 28, 2001
    Has anyone tried the Side yet? No more PUBs in the US; wondering if I should call my friends in Switzerland should I decide to go with a Schertler product.

    PS...Chris, I think the PUB will continue to be marketed in Europe.
  12. Sam Sherry

    Sam Sherry Inadvertent Microtonalist Supporting Member

    Sep 26, 2001
    Portland, ME
    Euphonic Audio "Player"
    Interestingly, yes. The specs, features and sound of these units is surprisingly decent to those of us weaned on TAPCO 600s.

    Yeah, essentially that. All-in-one, size, less to break etc. It was just a notion . . .
  13. You guys all rock. Thanks for the ideas.
    Chris - As I understand it, Schertler wants to sell the Pubs for a ridiculously high price in the states, and no dealer thinks they will move at that price. So they are at a standoff. Part of their position is the dollar growing weaker against the...whatever they use for money over there.

    Since you've been test driving the FC, I've always wondered if it has the same problem as Realists or Bassmaxes sometimes have as far as less transmission of the D & G side. And if not, how did they manage to get around that problem?

    Anyone - so it seems I should pick one or the other (AMT or Dyn-B) Which would you recommend? I think I know the answer, because the AMT is apparently very successful when going through a PA at festivals and such.

    Ray - that description of ambient lows being reamplified is perfect. That's why I find the need to roll off lows at higher volumes. And why a piezo may be the only solution for those situations.
  14. Adrian Cho

    Adrian Cho Supporting Member

    Sep 17, 2001
    Ottawa, Canada
    Just picking up on this thread now.

    Sometime ago I sent Schertler (Switzerland) a rather strong message telling them that they really should give some serious consideration to the situation with the Pub in North America. They never replied (they have in the past) but I hope they will give it some thought.

    At one time, as you know, I used both the Dyn-B and the AMT. Rufus Reid also uses them both and at least to me has has said he likes mixing them better than using either separately. I ended up selling my Dyn-B to my teacher, actually before I got the Pub but I did later on have a chance to try the Dyn-B on my teacher's bass through my Pub.

    I think it really depends on your usage. If I had the money I would have kept the Dyn-B but I felt sort of silly having something so good and expensive just sitting around doing nothing. There's no doubt in my mind that the sound through the AMT is better but of course there may be situations where you can't use it. I've personally not found such a situation for my own playing - I use the mic all the time.

    Someone asked about phantom on mixers for the AMT. The AMT doesn't need and doesn't make use of 48 V phantom. The AMT preamp supplies power to the mic using a 9V battery or the optional wall wart. If you have a Raven PMB, I'm sure it would do great great with the AMT. I had one on order but ended up buying a far less expensive and just as functional LR Baggs MixPro. The advantage with that too is that I can (when I feel like it), clip it on my belt for easy access to the volume. I usually only do that in situations where I am unsure of the levels and want to be able to quickly change it without having to reach down to the Pub where I usually sit the MixPro on top.

    With the Dyn-B, you need to experiment to find the best location for the transducer. At least that's an option you have, unlike most bridge-mounted pickups. Of course it's that way with the AMT too - you need to find the best location for the capsule.

    The Dyn-B with the Pre-A II obviously is very well matched to the Pub. I know one thing for sure and that is that the AMT with the Pub is incredibly hi-fi and blows away anything I've previously heard. If you can make the mic work for you, you won't be disappointed. As is usually the case, part of the equation is whether you are willing to make the effort to make it work for you. Because sometimes it does take some effort whereas the Dyn-B is entirely hassle-free. With the mic you need to be a little more careful with where you are situated WRT drums and other instruments but for me, it's entirely worth the small amount of extra effort.
  15. Adrian Cho

    Adrian Cho Supporting Member

    Sep 17, 2001
    Ottawa, Canada
    The other thing to remember is that the Dyn-B does have its limits. The nature of the contact mic and the contact with the table does allow to work in a very different and arguably much more accurate manner than a typical bridge-mounted piezo, but you are still missing out on an important element of the sound that only a mic can get. I found especially for my own sound with gut strings that the Dyn-B didn't get everything I wanted although it was still by far better than any other pickup I've ever heard. The mic on the other hand has wonderful detail and character in the sound - really getting all the nuances of the pizz attack and the sizzle of the bow hair on the strings. However some people don't like those things - I do.

    The best thing is to get both and trial them together. These are expensive enough items that you should be able to get a place to allow you to do that so that you can make the most informed decision without wasting money.
  16. Adrian Cho

    Adrian Cho Supporting Member

    Sep 17, 2001
    Ottawa, Canada
    I don't believe that Schertler was trying to make a killing on the price of the Pub in the US. I believe it's just a reality of the small volumes for it and the high shipping cost due to the weight. My argument to them though is that the Pub is the Cadillac that they need as part of their completely product strategy and of course there will always be people who will pay for it simply because it's the best.

    As for the Side, I'm not sure it's got enough guts for what many of us want but you'd have to try it to know for sure.

    WRT the old Trinity vs AMT. I've never tried the Trinity but from everything I can surmise based on the reviews of others and my own experiences with the AMT, the AMT is far more practical and usable in terms of controlling feedback and bleed. You can have the most wonderful mic in the world but if it's not usable in performance situations then it's useless. I think the Trinity was designed and is sold for what it is with the assumption that it will be mixed with a pickup. The AMT on the other hand can be used exclusively without a pickup.

    The AMT capsule is a miracle IMO and Marty Paglione has an interesting story about how Rufus Reid was helping them test the prototypes in the old days and he took the wrong one for testing and loved it and that's the one they used as the basis for the production models. It is incredibly flat yet has a tight pattern. And the AMT preamp has a low-pass filter that seems to be quite effective. And if need be, the filter can be tweaked. I know they did lower the upper-end of the filter for Patitucci. At least I recall Marty said that Patitucci had asked for this to be done and Scott Colley told me recently that Patitucci was using a special version of the AMT and I assumed that was it.

    I feel pretty confident in claiming that the Trinity vs the AMT is another one of the cases where you get what you pay for.

    BTW as an AMT user (but certainly not an endorser) I am often encountering other guys that use their mics for horns, etc. and there's always nothing but positive comments on the products. I played with a clarinet trio (piano, clarinet, bass) the other day - first time I'd ever done that! The clarinettist had an AMT mic and it sounded great. One trumpet player I work with has an AMT mic and is very happy with it.
  17. Adrian Cho

    Adrian Cho Supporting Member

    Sep 17, 2001
    Ottawa, Canada
    One thing too is that with the Pub, there are various options for raising it off the floor if you wish. It can of course be mounted on a standard pole but Schertler also has a little stand that allows you to tilt it. I got one and have only used it once but it does work.
  18. Chris Fitzgerald

    Chris Fitzgerald Student of Life Staff Member Administrator

    Oct 19, 2000
    Louisville, KY
    I had the same concerns about the FC because of my negative experiences with the Realist, and because I prefer a "Double" Bass Max pickup to a single for balance. But on this bass - one of Arnold's LaScala hybrids which wil soon be MINE, MINE, ALL MINE - the balance is beautiful across all four strings, from the open strings to the highest stopped notes. I was blown away by the balance the first time I tried it. But the bass is also exceptionally balanced, so the pickup may simply be reflecting that.
  19. Adrian - Thanks for the BOATLOAD of knowledge. As I alluded before, your descriptive analysis in your own selection process was a big factor in helping me decide on the Pub. Now I have a bunch more to mull over...

    One more question (for now) - for you and other Pubsters. When using for stage volume, do you usually mount it on the PA stand, and if so, how high? You wrote something about reaching down to make adjustments, so I took that to mean the Pub was on or close to the floor. Where and how far away do you position yourself in relation to the speaker?

    Gracias, and whatnot.
  20. ur gettin ur shwerv on... :bassist: kewl!