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smurfitt

Bass through pa

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Hi, I have a markbass LM800 and a soundman wants to put the whole band through the pa. We have yamaha dxr12 active tops and 2 x15 subs. Using a behringer xr16 mixer with ipad. Do I set my amp head to post or pre eq on DI if I want to use the settings of my gt10? Secondly, should tops be 120hz and subs 80hz? Lastly, should the soundman only put bass and kick drum through the subs and how does he do that  (in case he doesn't know).

Cheers 

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Pre EQ.

You should have a crossover point set which is common between the tops and bottom. In reality, the correct answer is the one that your ears say is right. Assuming you are using DXS15, you would probably choose to go with the 100hz setting on both the sub and the top.

There should be a crossover built into your speakers - so the sub will do the lows and the tops the highs... you just send a full range L and R to the subs. You can also implement an "aux fed sub" (google it)... but remember to high pass your tops if you do that. 

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I’d say leave it to the sound guy to decide; if he doesn’t know how to set things then he probably shouldn’t be putting you through the PA.

That being said I’d suggest pre-EQ (unless you’re using the effects loop for the GT10), and keep everything except bass and kick (and possibly keys and guitar depending on venue/genre) out of the sub’s. Not sure what you’re driving at with the crossover, but setting it around 80Hz would probably be fine. 

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Thanks for the replies. The soundman is learning so I want to help. The crossover is built in. Tops range 120hz - 100hz and subs 80hz - 120hz. On some songs I droptune the E string to D and use a low end sound from the gt10. So based on that which is the best setting for tops and subs? Last time we set up the low end of my bass kept cutting out of the foh.

Many thanks

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If you are cutting out the front of house, it sounds like you are driving the inputs of the speakers far too hard and the circuitry is cutting the speaker in order to protect the components. Make sure that your sound guy knows how to gain properly and the input is set such that the speaker doesn't not peak.

With regards to the crossover, you consider the PA system as a high and the crossover routes the frequencies coming from your bass to either the tops or/and woofers appropriately. An in appropriately set crossover wouldn't cause your PA to cut out - that would be the incorrect gain staging and pushing too hot a signal to the speakers from your desk's output.

Set your speakers to 100Hz but with all honestly, with what you've said, it sounds like your sound guy isn't... and could do with a crash course before he/she causes damage to your PA speakers. 

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Just now, Kevin Dean said:

Unless it's a 5K plus PA with active cross over  I wouldn't bother especially if the sound guy isn't sure .

We are trying to cut down on the backline volume because some venues are quite big and we end up loud to reach the far end so want to avoid ear damage. I do wear ear protection plugs though. Our soundman hasn't put bass through the pa before which is why im questioning whats best for the sub. As EBS said maybe he has the gain up too much from the desk. I will check today. Many thanks for your help

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It's not going to be just the desk - it's maybe that the trim on the speakers is too high. You may need to turn those down. Basically, your output on your desk should never be going into the red when the output is at unity. Likewise, your speakers should never be clipping when your output on the desk is at unity.

 

You are doing the right thing by using the PA for projection and keeping your stage volume down - I just think your gain levels are to pot.

Edited by EBS_freak
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Right - Run your bass amp on stage as you would normally

The soundman should then take a DI however your amp does it, through to the desk.
The Soundman then sets the input gain such that when you play as loud as you can, it just about hits unity or there abouts.

Soundman then puts some track from phone or w/e through desk , again at unity from input gain, into unity on the faders, into full powered PA and sets volume on speakers based on where he wants it to be for the venue - using a track that he is familiar with makes it easier to judge. Some speakers have an input gain - again here he should make sure the input gain is unity and then can adjust the output volume appropriately.

WRT crossovers etc, it really depends on the PA system you have, without knowing anything about what power amps / speakers/ active speakers/etc you have, its impossible to tell you. 

 

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Stuff is all above my pay grade.

I know I'm XRLed out of my anp. But we bo longer have that snake box on stage, no mixing board either. 

There's a lap top and a tablet?

Blue

 

Edited by Bluewine

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I use a Radial passive DI box with a splitter most gigs, but occasionally DI out of the back of my amp (pre EQ) so the front of house sound can be set differently to what I need to hear on stage.

If you use a splitter just think carefully about how/where you tune (if you do this between songs for example) as you may not want the audience to hear you dropping down to D or whatever you do.

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4 hours ago, Bluewine said:

...There's a lab top and a tablet?...

[Patiently, clearly, slowly...] No, Blue, you're getting confused again. That's back at the Facili.... I mean condo. Have you taken your pills this morning..? [/Patiently, clearly, slowly...]

...

xD :P

Edited by Dad3353

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On 11/26/2017 at 01:27, smurfitt said:

Hi, I have a markbass LM800 and a soundman wants to put the whole band through the pa. We have yamaha dxr12 active tops and 2 x15 subs. Using a behringer xr16 mixer with ipad. Do I set my amp head to post or pre eq on DI if I want to use the settings of my gt10? Secondly, should tops be 120hz and subs 80hz? Lastly, should the soundman only put bass and kick drum through the subs and how does he do that  (in case he doesn't know).

 

I always give FOH a post EQ signal. They have never had a problem with that.

If the OP has a soundman who doesn't know how to do his job, trying to do it for him isn't going to work.

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I always send post EQ as well - the sound of the bass in our band is as essential a component of the bands sound as the guitar is, going pre EQ would completely destroy the sound of the band to the point where there wouldn`t be any point in doing the gig.

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1 hour ago, Lozz196 said:

I always send post EQ as well - the sound of the bass in our band is as essential a component of the bands sound as the guitar is, going pre EQ would completely destroy the sound of the band to the point where there wouldn`t be any point in doing the gig.

Interested to know why.  I find that the room dynamics dictate what the front of house needs whereas what I require is just to hear what I am playing and keeping the noise levels on stage pretty low.  I often just use my Barefaced Midget as a monitor which sounds radically different to the full PA.

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20 hours ago, Lozz196 said:

I always send post EQ as well - the sound of the bass in our band is as essential a component of the bands sound as the guitar is, going pre EQ would completely destroy the sound of the band to the point where there wouldn`t be any point in doing the gig.

:facepalm:

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20 hours ago, Lozz196 said:

I always send post EQ as well - the sound of the bass in our band is as essential a component of the bands sound as the guitar is, going pre EQ would completely destroy the sound of the band to the point where there wouldn`t be any point in doing the gig.

What if your sound isn't right for the venue? The room has an enormous effect on the sound of the bass and by going post EQ you are tying the sound guys hands behind his back. I've run sound for years and quite often in this situation you are left with little option other than to apply heaps of eq or drop the bass to a level so low it's barely audible just to save it from killing the mix. You can't compare it to guitar as that works in a much narrower sonic space so you have far more leeway. 

Edited by mrtcat

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On 01/12/2017 at 05:07, Bluewine said:

Stuff is all above my pay grade.

I know I'm XRLed out of my anp. But we bo longer have that snake box on stage, no mixing board either. 

There's a lap top and a tablet?

Blue

 

I feel that this is one of the distincitions between the British and the Americans (not just in sound but in life in general) - In the UK I get the feeling there is far more of an attitude of you should have a working knowledge of how (in this case a sound) system works from back to front whereas Americans tend to be far more specialised and know more about particular facet's. 

18 minutes ago, mrtcat said:

What if your sound isn't right for the venue? The room has an enormous effect on the sound of the bass and by going post EQ you are tying the sound guys hands behind his back. I've run sound for years and quite often in this situation you are left with little option other than to apply heaps of eq or drop the bass to a level so low it's barely audible just to save it from killing the mix. You can't compare it to guitar as that works in a much narrower sonic space so you have far more leeway. 

Basically this.

If you want your band to sound good, let the soundman do his job. If you have instructions such as - "I like to have a bit of boost here etc " that is good and gives them ideas to work with but ultimately if you want to sound good trust the man who can hear it all.

Going back to the previous comment I made - this is why I think the some of the best sound guys are musicians as well.

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19 minutes ago, gapiro said:

I feel that this is one of the distincitions between the British and the Americans (not just in sound but in life in general) - In the UK I get the feeling there is far more of an attitude of you should have a working knowledge of how (in this case a sound) system works from back to front whereas Americans tend to be far more specialised and know more about particular facet's. 

Basically this.

If you want your band to sound good, let the soundman do his job. If you have instructions such as - "I like to have a bit of boost here etc " that is good and gives them ideas to work with but ultimately if you want to sound good trust the man who can hear it all.

Going back to the previous comment I made - this is why I think the some of the best sound guys are musicians as well.

Gapiro is probably right.

I should know more, but as a sideman my imput is not usually wanted.

I feel it's my job to play bass that enhances the bands sound.

It's the sound man's job to make sure the band sounds good.

Blue

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2 hours ago, mrtcat said:

What if your sound isn't right for the venue? The room has an enormous effect on the sound of the bass and by going post EQ you are tying the sound guys hands behind his back. I've run sound for years and quite often in this situation you are left with little option other than to apply heaps of eq or drop the bass to a level so low it's barely audible just to save it from killing the mix. You can't compare it to guitar as that works in a much narrower sonic space so you have far more leeway. 

Eh??

Whatever sound you provide to the FOH should be "your sound", the sound that you want out in the room. It's not about providing a sound that is convenient to the sound guy!

If the sound guy has a particularly difficult room then that's for him to resolve with his PA config and more powerful EQ. The "room" won't dictate and the sound guy won't have "hands tied behind his back" unless he's not up to the job. If that's the case then pre or post won't matter at all.

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I'm confused by some comments here too.  Last gig I did a month or so back was with my Darkglass M900 head, with the drive circuit engaged as a key part of my sound.  If I went pre-eq to FoH, FoH would have been getting a clean bass signal with no distortion.  Why would I want to do that?  Same would apply for any head with a real valve pre as well, being driven to give a distorted sound, if you go pre-eq none of this gets heard? 

If you are heavily shaping your EQ to get the best out of a Cabinet, absolutely understand the need to go pre, but I very VERY rarely feel the need to do that, as ultimately the sound on-stage at the kind of gigs we do is just for me, punters only hear FoH PA. 

Presume the Pre guys must be playing very clean?

On the other end of the spectrum, I also have the option (although restrict its use to recording at the moment) to send to FoH a cab simulated signal to mimic my cab being mic'd.  I have done this a couple of times live and certainly had no complaints.  I work hard to get my tone right, I wouldn't want a soundguy to change that to what he thinks is best as he is 9 times out of 10 not going to have a clue how I want to sit in the mix.

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I think it’s reasonable to provide a post-eq, effect-ed sound to the FoH if you have a specific sound in mind. But, and it’s a big but, only if you are willing to change it if it sounds like garbage out front. Notably what your amazing sonic signature sounds like 2 foot from your cab, will often sound like a boomy mess 20foot back in the venue as the bass propogates. Particularly if you’ve scooped all the mid frequency out. The bottom line is you need to work with the FoH sound guy to get the best out of the gig. 

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Why would bass be a boomy mess? I assume the sound guy has an HPF and will use it. He will have a parametric EQ that will knock the socks off anything a bass player has. He just needs to use that correctly and problem solved. I'm not talking about 5 band amateur nights, but proper FOH sound guys.

We were supporting Paul Jones on his album launch. We were in a church so the sound was difficult and getting it right was critical. I was standing behind the desk ans there was one slight squeak of feedback. The PA guy jumped right on the correct fader. Immediate solution. I was impressed.

I agree that we always have to work with the sound guy but unless either party is a total idiot I don't see how the bass tone on stage cannot be the tone out front. It must be, it's your tone.

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It's perfectly reasonable to send a DI to the FOH that is your sound, however if you want to do that, and have an amp on stage then it's best to send the FOH sound from a dedicated pre-amp, as the way you EQ for your bass cab, heard in semi-isolation will be different to the way the engineer will want to EQ for PA speakers for the mix as a whole.

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24 minutes ago, moonbass said:

I think it’s reasonable to provide a post-eq, effect-ed sound to the FoH if you have a specific sound in mind. But, and it’s a big but, only if you are willing to change it if it sounds like garbage out front. Notably what your amazing sonic signature sounds like 2 foot from your cab, will often sound like a boomy mess 20foot back in the venue as the bass propogates. Particularly if you’ve scooped all the mid frequency out. The bottom line is you need to work with the FoH sound guy to get the best out of the gig. 

This is all on the basis that your pre and sound is entirely based upon exactly what you say, the sound 2 foot from a cab.  I certainly don't set up my preamps this way and I'd expect any half learned bassist wouldn't!

It entirely depends on how you wish to adjust your pre for the backline on-stage.  Most of my gigs the backline is provided and I don't have a soundcheck long enough to tailor my EQ to get the best out of the cab; I don't need to, as again I am only using it for monitoring purposes.  If I heavily shaped the pre to fit the cab, I see where some of you are coming from.  Otherwise, I don't whatsoever.

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