Bass tone vs. Solid State

Discussion in 'Bass Guitar Discussion' started by TedEH, Sep 9, 2021.

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  1. Screamingdaisy

    Screamingdaisy SS.org Regular

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    Rig-of-Doom (left) and Mini-Rig-Of-Doom (right).

    Clank to me is the sound of the string bouncing off the fret. What I dig about the SVT/810 is that the clank comes through in a very musical way that sounds like what we’ve grown up listening to. Add a bit of grit and compression from the amplifier, and the speakers to shape the sound, it just sounds like rock and roll. A P Bass into an SVT (or a J with the neck soloed) sounds very guitar like… it’s also eye opening as you’ll realize how many guitar riffs you could never get to sound right on guitar were actually bass riffs.

    The Mesa is a more HiFi sound. Cleaner/clearer with a less wooly sound. More articulation in the mids. The Mesa cabs tend to be punchier and more articulate. The sealed Ampeg cab sounds like a thick pillow of bass.

    What I dig about the Mesa setup is that as a self professed tube snob the WD-800 feels more or less like a tube amp. The D800 that I had before it was good, but when I really started to push it it felt like I was running into a wall. Hitting the limiter in that amp didn’t produce the kind of feel I was used to. The WD800 hasn’t given me that issue, the attack response and sag feel very natural to me.

    The high band on the WD800 parametric let’s me subtly dial in and fine tune the fret clank. I go for something that approximates the sound of the SVT, and it really helps the bass cut through without being irritating.

    Even though the WD800 can be clear and articulate, it can also be dialled in to be fairly wooly as well; and, conversely the SVT can be run super bright and clean. Just because it’s an SVT doesn’t mean it needs to be dialled in like you’re in a doom metal band.


    Finally, everyone talks about the SVT like it’s heavy, but it’s only 80 lbs. Just pick it up and carry it… do it enough times you’ll grow a bit and it stops being too heavy.


    Don’t know if any of that helps or hinders your search, YMMV.

    [​IMG]
     
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  2. TedEH

    TedEH Cromulent

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    Maaaaan it's been so long since I've seen one in person that I forget how monstrous those cabs are. Having the variety/choice sounds ideal though. There's a part of me that wants to try to find another 4x10 to match the one I just got, so that I have all the options. Big show? 2 4x10s and the biggest meanest amp I've got. Little show? Leave one of the cabs at home and bring the light amp.

    Part of my motivation to grab a smaller cab (if you can call 90lbs a smaller cab) was that I don't always have help around to move stuff, and I live alone on a second floor. Some might remember that I managed to break my big toe a while back by trying to singlehandedly bring my bigger cab inside (it's about 150lbs) and it just dropped right flat onto my foot. I'd like to think I've gotten a little smarter since then. :lol: I can manage moving the 90lbs cab on my own... it's unpleasant but doable without feeling risky. I imagine a 90lbs head would be about the same: unpleasant, but doable until I get older and start falling apart.

    Mesa stuff is definitely on my list of stuff to try out now. I did some googling and the TT800 and WD800 sound pretty compelling.

    So far the list of things to try includes:
    - Mesa stuff
    - Orange stuff (OB500? AD200B maybe?)
    - Fender Bassman
    - SVT or maybe V4B, but I suspect it's not very loud
    - Hartke and Eden stuff I know nothing about so why not
    - I've not been a fan of GK, I've had poor luck with their cabs (I forgot to include that in the history-of-my-bass-stuff) and any of them I've heard was really not my thing
    - Anything else I can get my hands on, I guess, 'cause why not.
    - A dolly (dolley? sp?) to carry all this crap
     
  3. Screamingdaisy

    Screamingdaisy SS.org Regular

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    That’s sort of what I went for. Can go from coffee shops with the 115 to festivals with the 810.


    Nice thing about the 810 is that it has wheels and sliders, so I can move it up/down stairs like it’s a dolly. Not going to say it doesn’t get old quickly, and there’s a lot of times I’d take the lightweight cabs because they were easier to move. I eventually plan on adding an Ampeg 212 or two as my lightweight option.

    I like the Mesa stuff a lot. Only reason I’ve been shifting from Mesa to Ampeg is due to slightly preferring the way an Ampeg sounds. I have zero complaints about Mesa.

    My buddy plays an AD200\410\115. Sounds awesome, but I’ve never played through it.

    I’ve played through a Fender Bassman 800/matching 410 and thought it sounded killer. I wish I had some time on the tube Super Bassman as it’s supposed to be very similar to the SVT on one channel with more flexibility and less weight.

    Problem with the V4B is that on the used market they’re hard to find and cost more than an SVT. It’s cheaper to just go for the big boy SVT.

    The Hartke I used on the band’s practice space was fine. A touch bland, I would bypass the preamp and use a SansAmp VTDI into the effects return to make it sound more like an Ampeg.

    Eden I don’t know much about. It seems more popular with the Jazz and R&B crowds?
     
  4. budda

    budda Do not criticize as this Contributor

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    Our svt never felt lighter unless adrenaline was flowing...
     
  5. TedEH

    TedEH Cromulent

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    I ended up going to an L&M yesterday and..... they basically didn't have any of the above to try out. I also made the realization that the SVT heads I keep thinking about are made for 2 or 4 ohm loads - which seems like a pretty big limiting factor. I guess the search continues.
     
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  6. TedEH

    TedEH Cromulent

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    For fun today, and to see if I'm crazy or not, I jammed a mic in the room (not properly mic'd but just pointed vaguely in the right direction) to see if I can pick out a difference between the Crown and the Mark power sections when A/B'd. And it's a little more subtle when listening this way, but it's still there.

    Here's three sloppy bits being played, alternating between the two amps. Both are through the IIP with the same settings. The only thing changing is the power amp. You tell me which sounds better:

    https://drive.google.com/file/d/1hddJFOQSCJ3h8Uy2nAJ1H0SLk-YrLiXi/view?usp=sharing

    Should be easy to hear where the switches are - every time there's a pause in playing, it swaps.
     
  7. TedEH

    TedEH Cromulent

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    Just spotted a local ad for a D800+, and it's tempting to go look at it. Voicing doesn't sound like what I'm used to, but who knows, maybe I'd like it.
     
  8. GunpointMetal

    GunpointMetal SS.org Regular

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    Maybe an EQ after the preamp. "Zing" to me is usually in the 6KHz and up area on a bass, where clank is 2kHz-5kHz (YMMV, use your ears, etc) and maybe the tube amps are compressing a little bit so that rolled off "zing" is more apparent.
     
  9. TedEH

    TedEH Cromulent

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    I did some fiddling the other day too and remembered that the crown can low-pass, which seems counter-intuitive, but if I low-pass at the highest it'll go (3k), a lot of the unpleasant clank goes away. But I assume a lot of the cut also will go away once it's back at jam volume. Maybe I was quick to judge the idea of just needing more EQ, but there's still something very unappealing to slapping another EQ in there.
     

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