#1
Evenin'

Sorry if this shld be on a gear thread - I'm new to this forum.

I play bass in a pub band (doing covers of stuff people know ranging from Johnny be good to Pink) and it's going well. I'm using an 150 watt Trace Elliott (age unknown)and a Schecter diamond series 4 string bass which I purchased new in 06. Things are sounding a little boomy and foggy and I'm thinking about getting something better.

The amp is painfully heavy so I wondered if folk might recommend a bass amp that could still churn out the required volume but would be portable? You know how its easy to find which cars are the best through customer satisfaction surveys like JD power - I wondered if there's an equivalent source of info on amps? Someone mentioned Roland as a good make and the guitarist in my band suggested Line 6. I wondered what folk thought.

I probably have £400 for an amp, assuming I can get £100 for the Trace Elliott (from someone with a stronger back.) Don't spose it has to be outrageously powerful as it really is kind of a monitor in effect, with the line out going to the band's PA. It doesn't need to be new.

Apparently you can get bass pedals now for basses (Good God! When I started doing this in 79 aged 16 they were exclusively for the guitar players.) So I thought I might do that. Unless I buy an amp with effects built in? Again, if people have thoughts I'd be happy to note them.

And my schecter - love it, but realise now the fact that it's active brings only the nuisance of having to stuff batteries in it periodically. Unless I'm missing something I can see little advantage. Can't remember what I paid for it (£250?) but supposing I could get £150 for it on e bay I cld probably find another £150. What bass shld I move up to - I only need a fretted 4 string so nowt fancy. Yamaha maybe?

Soz for rambling. Grateful for any thoughts / advice/ ideas. Yours, Jonathan
#2
1) boomy and foggy? make sure you keep new strings on for max clarity. a month or two should do ya.

2) neither Roland or Line 6 would be my suggestion. I would try for Ashdown, SWR, Fender (not the rumble). as far as amps go, a good resource is this forum- just make a thread f you see an interesting brand.

3) effects like phasers, flangers, and the like work the same on bass as guitar. besides a quality tuner pedal however, you don't 'need' any such pedal. which ones would you like to be able to use?

4) if you want to save weight, stick wheels on the thing and tie a (short) rope around the handle.

5) Spector makes excellent offerings that are passive, as well as Fender. however, if you want to sound like an active bass, you need an active bass. there is no other way. did you like the passive basses you've owned? which ones? why? what makes the schecter good?
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#3
I don't think Line 6 makes the best bass amps. I would suggest Peavey or Ampeg Combo's.
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Black people play bass.
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Nevermind, that's a stupid pun for Australian pyromaniacs.
Just forget I said anything.

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THE PURE SEXUAL THRILL!!!!
And stuff...

^^^
On playing bass.
Gear:
ESP B-206SM
Behringer BRX1800H
Acoustic B115
Asher Custom 2x10
#4
In you price range for an amp I'd look into Ashdown for sure. They seem like they would fit what you want quite well. I'd actually suggest keeping the bass, putting new strings on it, learning how to EQ effectively and spending any money you may have spent on a new amp. As for pedals, unless you know what you want it's an exercise in futility. There's no point unless you have a specific idea of what you want to add to your sound.
#5
You could get a nice ashdown mag 2x10 combo and put a 1x15 under neath it for gigs. That would suit purposes great.
About your bass how are eqing it. If in doubt sell it and get a fender jazz or precision bass. Cant go wrond with them.
Effects for pubs, you dont want anything to upset the old men drinking. I would go maybe for a delay, chorus octave pedal and a little overdrive pedal with some light settings.
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#6
Thank you all for taking the trouble to respond. It's appreciated.

I've just put a set of strings on the guitar. And it does indeed sound much nicer! Heaven knows how they put them on so neatly at the factory, though. I had to fight these things on and although they're holding, the headstock looks like a big tangly mess now. And would it have killed the manufacturers to mark them EADG? I muddled them up initially and used rather more profane language than is the norm...

On the effects pedal, judging from your comments, I think I need to try out a few in shops and see what they actually do and whether it will enhance the songs my band does.

On a separate matter I notice that you are commenting from US/Canada. Wondered what the gig / venue scene is like where you are? Here in Yorkshire, UK, it's relatively easy for my band to get pub gigs and the occasional function job - but that's because we play covers. Being in originals bands (as I was previously) is significantly harder work. There are venues but they won't pay.

This tends to have the effect of decreasing the level of innovation in the local music scene, though.
#7
The end of your strings should go into the tuning peg, not around it if you have that kind of bass. Effects pedals are nearly always just added extras and never an essential (an exception is stuff like Meshuggah).

What kind of covers does your band do? I play in an originals band and we can't get any gigs, really. We're not trying that hard, though, the drummer is all obsessive about getting the myspace finished.

Ibanez SR506BM
Ashdown Little Giant 1000w
Peavey TVX 115+410
A big ass upright

#8
As far as the music scene goes in Portland Oregon [west coast] We can get quite a few paying gigs pretty easily. Our first six or 7 shows were unpaid, because we either were playing a benefit show, or were playing unpaid shows. We weren't to concerned with it as we just wanted the publicity, and we have shirts that we sell for some cash. We're an all originals band, and we might MAYBE do 1 cover [Straight Edge by Minor Threat]. If we tried really hard we could have at least 2 or 3 shows a month.

We've even played a show in Vancouver Washington so we're already out of state and we've been a band for 6 months.
Quote by JagerSlushy

Black people play bass.
Quote by isabiggles
Nevermind, that's a stupid pun for Australian pyromaniacs.
Just forget I said anything.

Quote by mac_attack
THE PURE SEXUAL THRILL!!!!
And stuff...

^^^
On playing bass.
Gear:
ESP B-206SM
Behringer BRX1800H
Acoustic B115
Asher Custom 2x10
#9
if you are looking for a light amp that packs a punch look into markbass. I love the way they sound and are virtually weightless.
#10
Thanks again all. M41666, to answer your question, my band plays commercially popular stuff - we're on you tube (Foxy Trousers) should you feel inspired to take a look, thanks for asking.

Playing through ropey pub PAs was becoming tiresome so the only way of finding the £1700 we needed was to borrow cash and pay it back with gigs. We're not far off now. And I'll not deny it, there's something uniquely satisfying about seeing a pile of well oiled people putting down their beers to get up and dance when I knock out the opening notes to Duffy's `Mercy.'

My mates who remain in originals bands find it harder to get paying gigs, as I say. But not impossible. The upside fo them - or one of them - is that by doing their own material they retain the possibility of taking their music much further than I can if they catch a break.

6string bassist, thanks for yr observations. What's yr band called? Are you on the net?

yours

JB
#11
Hi Jonathan,

Sorry I'm a bit slow to this thread, apologies if any of this is a bit late.

There's a few ways you can go on more portable gear - separate head and cabinet, a smaller combo like a Phil Jones or Markbass (these are pricey) or lightweight neodymium speakers. For your budget I'd usually recommend Ashdown, but it'd probably be no lighter than your Trace. If you want ultra-portable, you could give a Phil Jones briefcase a whirl if you can find one to try. They're louder than they look.

If you like Yamaha (and there's plenty of reasons to) the BB414 is the passive 4 string you'll probably want to look at. They're solid workhorses, obviously you'd have to try before you buy. Ignore this if you're happy now you've restrung your Schecter.

Your boominess (though now improved by new strings) can always be tweaked by turning the bass down on the bass itself. How are you EQing at the moment? I don't mean this to sound patronising but we do get people here with all the knobs on their active bass turned to max wondering why their sound isn't great.

As far as effects go, you're probably best off taking your bass to a shop and asking to try out a Boss ME-50B or something similar and just getting a feel for what each effect does. The staff in the shop will probably be happy to talk you through it, or take your guitarist if they're an effects head.

Hope some of this has helped
Last edited by smb at Dec 31, 2009,