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XLR(DI) vs Mic

Discussion in 'Live Sound [BG]' started by Dragzole, Jun 1, 2014.


  1. Most venues will be able to use a DI, but are there venues that you'd have to use a mic at to put your bass through the PA? If so, how common is this? Hasn't DI made micing up your bass virtually obsolete. I'd like to know because im thinking about getting myself an aguilar tone hammer (preamp/DI), and thought that it might mean that I wouldn't have to lug my amp around
     
  2. buldog5151bass

    buldog5151bass Kibble, milkbones, and P Basses. And redheads.

    Oct 22, 2003
    Connecticut
    I've never seen where theydidn't prefer going di, but some people like miccing better.
     
  3. TomB

    TomB Supporting Member

    Aug 24, 2007
    Vermont
    DI vs mic is an endless debate - just look for any of many threads on this on TB. Going direct with no amp is certainly possible - lots of good threads on this too. Usually the decisions come down to how much control you want over your stage sound and how much do you trust your mix operator to get the sound you want both to your ears and your audience. There is not one answer.
     
  4. It's always good to have an option. Many artists take small amps and mic them to get the sound they prefer.
     
  5. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    I like really great DI's, like my REDDI and the XLR outs on my Ampeg tube amps, but otherwise I'd prefer a mic. But no, it's not what you'd call "common" for a soundman to use a mic instead of a DI. It's very much a DI world for bass.
     
  6. can someone please sticky at least one of the 1000 threads on this topic...i agree this would probably make for a less people posting as a result, but seriously...this come up like every week i swear!
     
    dskissel likes this.
  7. WashburnAB95

    WashburnAB95

    Nov 18, 2013
    You are guys are missing the question...


    Are there venues where you HAVE to mic and have no option to DI?
     
    Geri O likes this.
  8. Dave W

    Dave W

    Mar 1, 2007
    White Plains
    I've never heard of one that did.

    There is no reason whatsoever where you'd have to use a mic instead of a DI. As mentioned, it's usually the other way around. Most sound folk don't want to deal with micing a bass cab and would strongly prefer to use a DI.

    Just keep in mind that if you want to go completely ampless you'll still need some sort of monitor to hear yourself. Most venues will not use their floor wedges for this purpose, hence why you'll see a bass amp on most stages unless you've got IEM's.
     
  9. WashburnAB95

    WashburnAB95

    Nov 18, 2013
    I suppose if a venue didn't have a good subwoofer or didn't have good moniters they would want your speaker cab there. Otherwise you should be able to survive without it.
     
  10. jimfist

    jimfist "Cling tenaciously to my buttocks!" Supporting Member

    Mar 28, 2011
    Boston, MA (USA)
    The question posed was also: "Hasn't DI made micing up your bass virtually obsolete?" To that end, the links I provided share a wealth of historical and current experience with respect to live sound reinforcement of the bass guitar, via DI or mic. I think these threads are very pertinent and informative. If you don't think they have any value, then it's really easy to just ignore the links and respond with something you think DOES add value to the conversation. =)
     
  11. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    Never happened even once in 35 years of playing gigs. And I agree with Jimfist. The question was answered in the way it was asked.
     
    Last edited: Jun 2, 2014
    jimfist likes this.
  12. will33

    will33

    May 22, 2006
    austin,tx
    Mic and DI use the same type of cable to go to a board channel. The only reason some place would say you MUST use a mic is if they did not have some cheap DI box laying around. Any soundman will have a spare DI box laying around.

    No, I've never seen a place that said you MUST use a mic, there is no DI.

    Plenty of reasons to argue back and forth over the benefits/downsides of either way of doing it, but the only reason for absolutely having to use one is because you physically do not posses the other.
     
  13. fokof

    fokof One day ,I'll be in the future

    Mar 16, 2007
    Here
    I give 3 days before someone else starts a new thread about Mic Vs DI.

    Search function anyone ?
     
    jimfist likes this.
  14. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    Yes, and then you'll all complain that they posted in a zombie thread. You can't win for losing around here.
     
    dropbass and Vlad5 like this.
  15. WashburnAB95

    WashburnAB95

    Nov 18, 2013
    It is impossible to have a civil conversation with a toipic like "....mic........di box" everbody has an emotional argument and re hash all the old tired arguemnts. People won't even read enough to find out if the question is actually more specific than "mic versus di".

    Any question that even remotely gets close to one of these old tired arguemnts is subject to this same effect.
     
  16. jimfist

    jimfist "Cling tenaciously to my buttocks!" Supporting Member

    Mar 28, 2011
    Boston, MA (USA)
    my intent for posting those links was not to start another sh!tshow, but so that the OP could spend some of his own time doing some valuable reading and research. Rather than rely on the opinions and experiences of a couple dozen posters to this thread, the OP can read the experiences of (probably) hundreds of performing bassists, which would inform the OP not only of what can be expected in a variety of performance situations, but also the DI gear choices that others have made, why they made them, what works, what doesn't work., etc. (as a logical EXTENSION of the line of questions presented). I see that the OP is also asking about a gear choice, and appears to not have a wealth of experience with such matters (all apologies if this is not the case), thus the reason for the post to begin with.

    Now, to answer the burning question: no, generally, you will not find situations where the sole means of getting the bass signal to the PA is exclusively via a mic. I have seen it though, but not much recently. It was more common 30+ years ago when direct boxes were still a relatively new thing. Of course, back in the day, a couple of SVT 8x10 cabs usually made this discussion a moot point in many nightclubs. ;-)
     
  17. Dave W

    Dave W

    Mar 1, 2007
    White Plains
    Having a good sub has nothing to do with it. All of the house speakers, except for the monitors, will be in front of you. You'll be standing behind them.
    If you can survive without it, great. Most can't play a gig without good monitoring, it's simply not fun at all to not hear yourself. And like I said, most clubs don't put bass in floor wedges.
     
  18. pan1k

    pan1k

    Sep 16, 2011
    Las Vegas, NV
    One thing that many musicians, especially guitarists and bassists lose sight of, is that at a certain point, and with the right player behind it, the average listener will not be able to tell the difference between an amp, DI, Amp emulator. That being said, a mic is preferred by bass players, a DI is preferred by FoH. A compromise would be a nice DI like that of a ReddI or Avalon. The HoB here has backline but I never truly know what I'm getting so instead of bringing an amp (until i got my micro head) I would just bring my Zoom B3 and use its built in DI and one of its Amp simulators with audio coming into my monitors or IEMs. A relatively inexpensive compromise at $200; though I'd like to get a Reddi. Not to mention setup / tear down is a breeze.
     
  19. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    Sorry Pan, but I don't pick out my gear based on what the "average listener" thinks. I may play cheap gear sometimes, but there's still much thought going into the process.
     

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