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What would be better to improve my sound?New amp or new bass?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Bayonet, Jan 23, 2012.

  1. Bayonet


    May 10, 2011
    Hey guys!i currently own a 55w amp and my yamaha rbx170 bass that i picked up to learn the basics about 10months ago.my amp is not a great one and is quite noisy for practice so i keep it at 15% of its volume most of the time,i'm saving some money but i'm not sure what i should do.I could buy another amp,or i could buy a Squier Jazz bass or an Ibanez(not sure wich)in december(maybe in july if i find someone to buy my current bass).i'm not sure what would be best to improve my sound.Also i live in brazil the bass here is costing about 500USD,the amps i might buy are something between 200-250usd

    what do you think would be best for my sound?
    also some amp suggestions would be good to help me choose something but you should think something that costs about 125usd,stuff is always more expensive down here :atoz:
  2. sevdog


    Mar 2, 2008
    Do you need more volume?
    Do you like the way your bass plays/feels?

    If you don't need more volume from your amp right now and you like the way your bass plays but want a "better sound" then I would say just get some different pickups to put in your bass. For years I've played "cheap" basses and just swapped out the pickups. That Yamaha would sound like a prol level instrument with new pickups.
  3. Hactar


    Sep 25, 2011
    Boulder, CO
    What is your current amp?

    I have an RBX170 and I think it is an excellent bass, especially for the price.
    I would personally upgrade your amp before bass.

    Also, how is the used market in Brazil? Is there a decent selection of used bass amps?
  4. Bayonet


    May 10, 2011
    My current amp is "Oneal OCM 208".. i think i'll keep it even if i get a new one,because it is quite loud and may be useful someday.. but no i don't need more volume i'm actually thinking less volume hehe :)
    Use stuff here is kinda hard to find,specially for bassists.i mean i guess i could find that kind of stuff if i knew the right people because most bassists here play some music styles i don't really like so i don't know many other players that could talk to me about this kind of stuff,and i don't know of any places that could sell used stuff here(at least where i live i never saw a pawn shop or something like that).

    Actually i like my current bass but i love the tone a jazz bass has,and i daydream about having a rick(lol) but a rick is too expensive.. so i was looking to get something that would help me get this kind of sound.. i'm still fooling around my settings here trying to get a sound i like by boosting the mids and cutting some treble/bass

    Also,if i just bought new pickups and took them to a luthier along with my bass he could just put them there for some money? also this bass has split coil and a single coil pickup that means i can only change my pickups to those of the same kind?
  5. username1


    Dec 28, 2005
    alberta canada
    I wouldnt waste my money on changing the pickus. It will likely cost you $200 to $300 for both pickups and the labour to have them installed. I would put the money toward better amplification which will maker a bigger difference in sound than a more expensive bass will unless your bass is really bad.
  6. oldcatfish


    Jan 8, 2011
    Quote "I have an RBX170 and I think it is an excellent bass, especially for the price.
    I would personally upgrade your amp before bass."

    --I don't have a RBX170, but I agree. Actually though, you may look into upgrading the pickups (like was suggested by sevdog), if they are noisy or you don't like the tone. Try running just the P-pickup and see if there is still noise...that will tell you if the pickups are noisy.

    If your current amp has a decent, loud, relatively flat, clean tone--I'd get a good pre-amp instead...something like the Tech 21 VT Deluxe, or Sansamp BDDI would likely sound great with it.
  7. Bayonet


    May 10, 2011
    Now that you said,it has come to my mind that yeah it has!The thing thats bugging me is that the J pickup on my bass is noisy and doesnt change much my tone,the P is great and serves me well when i'm playing heavy stuff.

    Before i made this thread i was thinking about preamps but i don't really know what they actually do...anyone care to explain?:help:
  8. A preamp takes the instrument signal and amplifies it to where a power amp can send it to speakers and make real noise. Along the way bass preamps shape and colour the basic tone of the instrument. A bass amp is a preamp and amp, add a speaker, it's a combo.

    Some pedals are preamps also, sansamp is the most common.

    I have a RBX fretless, at least that's what a local bassist told me. Looks about right but no markings as such. It's not flash but well enough built for me.

    +1 for getting a pedal or two. If you're happy with the basic sounds of bass and amp you can spend a lot on a bass to give you a sound that won't be amazingly different, but I can plug my trace eq in front of my practice amp and get a familiar sweet sound of my big trace rig.

    Work on the playing technique too, lots of tones come from your hands.
  9. lomo

    lomo passionate hack Supporting Member

    Apr 15, 2006

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