Hi Everyone - and thanks for accepting me into BassChat.
I started out as a bass guitarist in a very heavy rock three-piece band "Medusa" back in the 70's, and since have played in show bands and function bands. I had several decades as a guitarist, singer and band leader, and returned to bass to play in a three-piece original-music reggae/ska band from Coventry.
After "losing" the brass, backing vocalist and keyboard player and deciding three-piece was the way to go, I've been experimenting with bass effects and midi synth to beef up our sound. As a guitarist I'm very experimental - and often play out using an Axe FX dsp.
Using the Axe FX with the bass wasn't ideal, and I didn't want to mess up my guitar set up. So I've developed a rig using Ableton Live with a Sonuus midi pickup on the bass, plus McMillen 12 Step foot keyboard and a Novation KeyLaunch; plus some stomp boxes.
I use Ampeg neodymion cabs: Pro Neo 4x10 and Pro Neo 15. I started with the Ampeg class D head. But on the first gig it cut out randomly for a couple of seconds. This turned out to be a common fault with no clear solution, so I replaced it with a Warwick LWA 1000. This has two channels: one for the dry bass, and the other for the synth if there's only a vocal PA. A really nice big sound.
However since adding a EHX Mini POG to the stomp boxes, I use the second channel for the wet effects signal. I've also got a Big Muff Bass, plus compressor, flanger and delay - but I'll probably remove the delay, or swap for a chorus.
Ableton allows me to play patches of all sorts - that can sound like a keyboard player, or huge bass synth stuff. If fills out the sound and can equate to keyboard chords. But more importantly, I can set the Sonuus pickup to need quite a high velocity before it triggers. I'm still experimenting, but this allows me to play bass passing notes and hammer the chord change notes.
I use a volume control pedal to send the wet effects to the Warwick's channel 2, so I've always got clean bass playing. The POG can produce an octave below as well as an octave above. The combination of 4x10 and 1x15 is more or less full range, so I get a high quality sound despite the wide frequency range.
I've also worked out how to use Ableton Beatseeker, so that we can link the delays and modulations to whatever tempo the drummer plays. This works reliably even though he pulls and pushes the beat in finest reggae tradition. No click tracks required.