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Why have a nice rig just to be run direct? PART 2

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by BassyBill, Jan 16, 2014.

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  1. BassyBill

    BassyBill The smooth moderator... Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 12, 2005
    West Midlands UK
  2. BobaFret


    Jan 22, 2008
    I guess I just like it to sound good for me. No matter your rig, it's unlikely it will be used to amplify sounds for the entire room.
  3. dukeorock

    dukeorock Owner BNA Audio Supporting Member Commercial User

    Mar 8, 2011
    Nashville, TN
    Authorized greenboy designs builder/Owner of BNA Audio
    I did a show last night. The second half of the set was just my Reiner 6SL7 pre into the house...sounded better than I thought it would, but when your power amp fries midway through a set, you do what you gotta :)
  4. BurningSkies

    BurningSkies CRAZY BALDHEAD

    Feb 20, 2005
    Seweracuse, NY
    Been there with cascade speaker failure with a 410...Luckily it was in a good room with a decent soundman who had no problems pulling the bass up in the monitors from my post EQ DI.
  5. rolandm

    rolandm In search of the lowest note.

    Aug 8, 2010
    Peoria, IL
    If you're asking "why model vs. just bringing a DI or mic'ing a rig, because it's really kinda the same thing," there are a couple of reasons to consider modeling. Done correctly, with the right interfaces and with the right software/app, you can get studio quality tone and the malleability of having a boatload of modeled gear at your fingertips. Literally.

    But that seems to be the fundamental misunderstanding of what's in a good modeled rig, and exactly how malleable the apps are these days, as well as how user-friendly the software interfaces have become, both with WiFi and Bluetooth integration as well as wired MIDI controllers. But the key ingredient is a smaller footprint and much better stage volume control, along with an IEM mix that goes with you wherever you are.

    In my instance, I run mine via my iOS device, but others run theirs via their MacBooks (my guitarist just switched his whole rig over). What you get by doing that isn't 3 clicks into a menu. If I need to change something on my rig (rarely happens, but let's say I do), I tap the specific item I need to adjust, and twist the knobs necessary to adjust the parameters. My modeled amp needs more bottom end? I change the settings on my HPF to allow for that. I need a cab or mic sim that is a bit less boomy? I tap the cabinet and it displays not only which cabinet I have, but a scrollable list of other cabinets, mic option, mic distances, and in Mac OS run environments with some software, dual mic capabilities.

    Essentially, I pack a whole lot of tonal control and variability into that rig, because I can bring a modeled SVT, or a B15 or an 800RB, a load of compressors or fuzzes or distortions, etc., into one small device. And the models are surprisingly close to the real thing.

    And then there's the physical interfaces one must compare in terms of mics and preamps and DIs. My guitarist and I both use Focusrite products, mine is an iTrack Solo and his is a Scarlett 212i. Insanely good, studio quality preamps, and very fast, high quality 24bit 96kHz processing. In mine, that gets sent to an ART Cleanbox Pro 2-channel DI. One channel is sent to the board, one receives from the board and patches to my IEM rig, which encompasses a compressor/noise gate, EQ, BBE Sonic Maximizer and then to my IEM transmitter.

    My entire rig, which encompasses my iOS rig, my wireless, my DI send and DI returns, return processing and IEM transmitter all sit in one 8 rack space box and weigh about 32 pounds. And out front, it honestly sounds like 3200 pounds of gear.
  6. BurningSkies

    BurningSkies CRAZY BALDHEAD

    Feb 20, 2005
    Seweracuse, NY
    I understand and I've seen it in action. But for my uses and philosophy, it doesn't work. I don't want the option of 20 cabs, or 15 heads. I don't really want my band live to sound like my band in the studio (and when I go to a show I don't want to see other bands sound that way either). When I adjust my high pass filter, I do it with one knob. I don't want to have to carry an ipad, use my phone, etc. I also have very little interest in IEM, and given the shows I've played in the past year alone, it would be really quiet in many of the rooms if all I had was IEM and a DI send.

    I just want a great sounding rig that covers stage sound or FOH if needed. I want it to have enough adjustability to make it work with a bunch of rooms. I don't use loads of distortions, fuzz, phase, flange, rig compression, delay or reverbs. I want to set up, sound or line check (make those adjustments) then turn around and ignore my setup for the rest of the night while I play and pay attention to the other musicians and the crowd.

    At home and in the studio I'm happy using VST and AU and a fully digital suite for things.
  7. chadds


    Mar 18, 2000
    In studio I've had engineers say how easy it is to use a model of a Vox AC30 rather than spend all the time with mic placement. On the other hand they never say it sounds the same. Just visited a studio under construction. They have a purpose built hall with a curved wall on one side and an 8 channel snake prewired. Know what it's for? Cranking guitar amps and having different mics at different distances from the cabs. Why if samples are so readily available & cheaper?

    In the spirit of respect to each his own.:):)
  8. groooooove

    groooooove Supporting Member

    Dec 17, 2008
    Long Island, NY
    i know i'm late to the party but..

    not all of my gigs are in big clubs with a nice sound system. i do a lot of acoustic jazz trio gigs, and sometimes i'll play electric bass and just use a 1x12". i have a nice rig because i need to project a nice sound. i also have started to like the sound of a mic'ed up amp instead of running direct. i used to think mics in a live situation were dumb, but something about the sound and punch that the speaker itself can produce, is really nice.
  9. BurningSkies

    BurningSkies CRAZY BALDHEAD

    Feb 20, 2005
    Seweracuse, NY
    Yeah, and one of the reasons I revamped my rig into what I have now was that there were minimal PA gigs and I'd step out into the room and have a serious lack of bass presence. For a bit I had a 115+212 setup and I traded that for 'near PA' style rig that could really support a room as needed.

    The good news is that it has a volume knob. ;)
  10. jimfist

    jimfist "Cling tenaciously to my buttocks!"

    Mar 28, 2011
    Boston, MA (USA)
    in the end, all of this is just "different horses for different courses" and such...

    I'm not in the business of judging another person's happiness, or their means to an end. It's only gear, and there's no need to get overly emotional about it. It either works for you or it doesn't. And that pretty much sums it up for me: I use mics, DIs, cabinet emulated DIs....it's all good. Sometimes I prefer one over the other, but that doesn't mean that in 100% of the situations, one is ALWAYS necessarily better than the other.

    I'm just glad that I found IR-based cab emulation a few years ago. It's another tool in the bag of tricks that often makes my life easier, and in the case of the cranky sound tech who doesn't like to mic bass cabinets, it helps me avoid the conflict entirely so that in the end, we both get what we want. In my book, that's a good thing.
  11. In case someone wanders in from Mars wondering why bass players are chatting about cab emulation as a substitute for mic'ing, here's 10c worth of summation:

    Mic bad, DI good!

    No! DI unrepresentative of tone, mic good!

    No, mic not picking up what bass player hears, mic not flat response!

    But mic sounds damn fine out front!

    But mic may bounce on bouncy stage!

    Cross that bridge when I come to it!

    But mic still isn't flat!

    Flat enough bud!

    Here's how to spend 3 grand to make a processor mimic your rig...

    Gee thanks, I just spent 2 grand on a rig and $100 on a sweet Akgp2 mic, can you run through the $500 emulation option in some more detail please?
  12. BurningSkies

    BurningSkies CRAZY BALDHEAD

    Feb 20, 2005
    Seweracuse, NY
    That's what you get from playing on a bridge.
  13. woodyng


    Dec 19, 2007
    Oregon coast
    I use a VT pedal going into the front end of a markbass amp,so the sound coming out of the Markbass DI is the same.....seems to work pretty well.
  14. Because a nice rig sounds nice and makes for a nice stage monitor - but unfortunately some deaf bass players also bring huge overkill rigs to little venues and crank them up way to LOUD too.
  15. JimmyM


    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    And part 2 will be "My $50 Zoom pedal kills your $2500 Kemper."
  16. Sonny did a lot of practice on a bridge.
  17. secretdonkey


    Oct 9, 2002
    Austin, TX
    I haven't read the previous part of the thread but I'll guess I'm not the first to cite these two good reasons:

    1. A stage monitor that sounds exactly the way I want, which makes me feel at ease and comfortable right out the gate. And if the sound man is only interested in dialing in the "thump" frequencies, I have a chance to maybe project some presence otherwise lost in the mix.

    2. I play gigs where only the vocals are miked, or only the vocals and kick drum. I like having an amp that sounds good and allows me easy control of the lows and low mids, which seem the most sensitive to different rooms, placement, etc. :)
  18. jimfist

    jimfist "Cling tenaciously to my buttocks!"

    Mar 28, 2011
    Boston, MA (USA)
    now you're catching on. It very well could.;)
  19. How about the $500 emu-lite version? Can you give us a rundown on how that works please?
  20. BurningSkies

    BurningSkies CRAZY BALDHEAD

    Feb 20, 2005
    Seweracuse, NY
    Hey now. Leonard Cohen doing Tower of Song. That's what I'm talkin' bout.

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