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Ashdown B Social - really?

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[quote name='Ashdown Engineering' timestamp='1456223391' post='2986699']
Hey Visog,

Ashdown, thanks for responding... I'll skip the biscuit jokes

> Sorry to hear about your disappointment with the B Social. We don't seem to have had an email from you over the past couple of weeks so not sure what has happened there...

Yes not an e-mail - your web-form on the tech support page here: [url="http://ashdownmusic.com/support/technical/"]http://ashdownmusic....port/technical/[/url]

> However first thing we would say is that the B Social is quite a complex bit of kit

Then it needs a comprehensive manual.

> and the fact that you state that you owned the unit for 'two days' is a bit of a worry

And couldn't get a good sound out of my main bass.

> is a bit of a worry as we don't think that is really enough time to get to grips with everything...

Maybe so for all the features but unless a basic strong sound is available with a little input level tweaking, I'm not sure it's viable (for me at least).

> As regards your high output bass this is very odd as we have tested with countless basses over the past year or so including our 18v Status and Doug Wimbish's 9v Spector more recently with no problems at all. The active input is -15db compared to the passive input which should negate any high output issues. Are you saying even using the Active input its clipping on the front end regardless of input gain?

Not regardless of input gain, but turned so low as to be very quiet and considerably quieter than low output basses.

> AppTek works perfectly and has been a feature on a number of our amps for around 3 years. Did you spend some time to set the app up correctly as this is critical?

No as there was no guidance in the manual that this was necessary, what constitutes 'correctly', or how to go about it.

> There are a lot of parameters to set/play with and if this isn't done then the results won't be great.

Put this in the manual or on a support page for the product then. Oh and train your sales partners to alert potential customers to this too.

> First of all there is per saved set up an input level gain and output level that will need to played with to get the best out of things depending on the bass being used/amp sim chosen/fx etc. Once this is set and all is nice and clean/clear you can then adjust volumes on the actual B Social etc. It is also vital that you set the 'Noise and feedback filter' off to remove latency also turn off the 'adjust to prevent feedback' setting as well.

Once again this needs to be made clear. Have I missed this in your instructions somewhere?

[color=#282828][font=helvetica, arial, sans-serif]> 'amp cab variants just providing different levels of boominess - even their own Ashdown models' - again can only suggest things weren't quite set up correctly as there shouldn't be any 'boominess'. Using the EQ within the app and setting the B Social fairly flat should remove any 'boominess' pretty easily(Also turning off the filters I previously mention will help too. [/font][/color]

Well I know that now... Also, it would be a nice gesture to give a code for at least one Ashdown amp/cab in the Agile software. Having to lay-out another £13.50 for an Ashdown simulation for an Ashdown product you've paid £600 a bit much.

> [color=#282828][font=helvetica, arial, sans-serif]If you wanted to pop down and see us in Essex for a couple of hours one day we will happily go through everything with you in person[/font][/color]

That is a genuinely kind offer but I'm based in the North-West it's not such an easy trip to make.

[color=#282828][font=helvetica, arial, sans-serif]> bring your basses/Ipad/chocolate biscuits etc and we think that within a few mins you would have a different view on things. We know you've already returned your unit but you can come and have a play on ours and if your mind was changed enough you may decide to give one another go... [/font][/color]

[color=#282828][font=helvetica, arial, sans-serif]As I say, a kind offer.[/font][/color]

[color=#282828][font=helvetica, arial, sans-serif]> Check out the B Social videos that we did with Doug Wimbish on our YouTube channel, there was no tricks, no post production etc on any of the B Social videos and despite using a fairly high output bass there is no boominess or latency issues when using AppTek sims and FX....[/font][/color]

[color=#282828][font=helvetica, arial, sans-serif]Ashdown! I did which is why one of the reasons I bought it. I suggest your very next step is to film a 'setting up your B-Social/apptek' video to help your potential customers (after me) get the best from this unit.[/font][/color]

> Anyways let us know if you could pop down and see us as it would be great to be able to go through everything with you in person if we could...
[/quote]

As I say, thank-you for a kind offer and your response. I'd ask you to check your tech support form is working OK.. I'd update your set-up instructions for input levels and especially the apptek app with parameters you mention, and finally consider the set-up video. And a B-Social specific FAQ on your site.

Bravo for speaking up and responding...

(I've added my responses inside the quoted post from earlier.)

Edited by visog

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Has anybody else gone hands-on with the B-Social?

I am interested in a practice combo like this if all pieces of functionality are good at what they are supposed to do.

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I don't understand why so many people don't get this product. I don't personally see any use for it this for me, but Ashdown is trying to broaden out into a market which really isn't being served well. They have a name for Bass gear and they are using that reputation (like it or not) to expand their business. Its not a backline bass amp it is a tabletop music platform. British names are very marketable and if they can get a boutique product out there and make more cash then why not. I really don't think anyone who hasn't tried one should give them bad press and I think we should all be careful about being negative about a British manufacturer. If this product fails for them perhaps it might do them a real disservice and that would be regrettable. On the other hand if the market it as a viable bass amp for the bedroom or otherwise and it doesn't cut they only have themselves to blame.

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To be fair, I wouldn't have any need for this type of device, but, I have developed a lot of respect for their products over the past few years. I'd really like to try some of their (latest) 'normal' bass amp and cab range at some point in the near future.

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Is there any shop in London or Nottingham where it s possible to try one of these b-Socials?

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I recently bought an Ashdown CMT 300

This replaces my ABM Klystron which I bought new in 1998

The valve head is the best amp I have ever owned. The only amp I have tried comparable would be the Orange AD 200 watt tube model. Those that say Ashdown make rubbish gear must have far different needs to one.

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[quote name='basskit_case' timestamp='1465289643' post='3066734']
Pmt list them as in stock in Romford.

http://www.pmtonline.co.uk/ashdown-b-social-stereo-desktop-bass-amp-in-black
[/quote]
Thanks! That will have to be a weekend job.

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[quote name='pmjos' timestamp='1460535559' post='3026475']
I don't understand why so many people don't get this product. I don't personally see any use for it this for me
[/quote]

I know this post is a few months old, but that's a belter!

Edited by [email protected]

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I'll be trying one of these when I see one at a local music store.

I've got a house full of Sonos equipment and been considering replacing it with a decent Bluetooth speaker (£500) and I like the idea of being able to play my bass through it.

My main amp for the past 3 years has been my iPad so I'm keen to give this a try and see how it fits in my setup for playing at home.

I thought about trying the similar Line 6 device but that is a company that puts absolutely 0 effort into bass.

Well done ashdown for pushing the boundaries 👍

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So, 19 months on from my initial post, anyone bought one (and kept it) or tried one? I have..... (Tried not bought)....

They're still for sale at the original price though so I've been proved wrong about my 'discounted or discontinued inside 12 months' comment....

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