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Ebs microbass 3

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Posted (edited)

I've been using one for about nine months, and am happy with it.

My regular gig is function band, doubling on acoustic upright and bass guitar.  I don't want a large or complicated setup; the less, the better.

I can EQ and level-balance both instruments independently.  Black channel for bass guitar (semi-para mids + overdrive), white channel for upright (bass, treble, semi-para mids with notch option).  I previously used digital tone shaping, but decided I prefer having real knobs.  Although I don't really change my settings very often, on the occasions when I do need to, it's very quick and intuitive.

I use a small amount of warm overdrive on bass guitar; the MicroBass is pretty good and fine for live gigs, although ultimately I prefer my Mojomojo (but not so much that I bother bringing it to gigs).

DI to FOH.  Whether I'm on in-ears or have a powered speaker on stage, the MicroBass's volume control doesn't affect the DI level.

If on in-ears: there's a built-in headphone amp, and an aux input to mix in a monitor feed.

Sturdily built, and the muting tuner works well.  If you already have a favourite power supply, one thing to bear in mind is that MicroBass requires 750mA.

It's not the cheapest option (I paid £319) but for me it's worth it as I do use all its routing and channel/EQ/DI functionality.


Edited by jrixn1

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Posted (edited)

Managed to find a B-Stock one of these for £275 which is a good forty quid saving on a brand spanker. Just the same except someone has obviously bought it, changed their mind and sent it back. I can't think why, as I just received it and after fifteen minutes of messing around, I'm really enjoying it.

It really reminds me of my favourite amp - an EBS NeoGorm 212. Makes sense as this pedal is based on the HD360 head and so was that combo. 

Tuner works well for a kick off. Input gain has the usual clip light you see on EBS stuff so it's very easy to set the level. Can't understand why some manufacturers omit this as correct input gain is so important for playing feel (among other things) in my opinion. 

Basic sound is clean and clear and suitably 'EBS'. Really enjoying the EQ. It offers different frequencies than the onboard pre on my main bass. For example the bass frequency is centred at 60Hz on the pedal and 80/100Hz on the bass. Was pleasantly surprised at the results I was getting by dialling in various amounts of both. Quite a bit of hiss from the treble control when maxed out but I suppose this is fairly normal. I was wearing headphones and had the master volume pretty cranked to be fair. Anyways, you get the idea. I tried various cocktails of eq from my onboard pre and the pedal and found a ton of great sounds. This is just one of those EQ sections that seems to give pleasing results whatever you do. 

I like the simplicity of the compressor and it's nice and neutral. I've just sold an M87. I'm sure the MXR was more finessed but my ears weren't trained enough to hear the nuances of all the various parameters. It just ended up giving me option anxiety. The EBS has one knob and a light to let you know when you’re hitting it. I don't use compression all the time but it's nice to know that this could take care of the odd peaks when needs be.

Onto the drive channel. Great fun! Again, loads of options and everything sounded great. I tried a 'thin' distortion with the tone at around 9 o clock and a slight boost in the high mids. I then mixed in the clean channel letting the regular sound take care of the warmth and the overdrive channel sizzle on top. Not a sound I would usually use but it does a good job of impersonating a Darkglass distortion. Looking forward to trying some more subtle sounds tomorrow.

Anyways, you get the picture. I'm very encouraged by it after just a few minutes. Encouraged enough to jump straight onto bass chat and write a Bass Player Mag style review 🤓 

The same can't be said for the GK Plex I had a while back. This pedal seemed to be offering the same feature set (albeit a good couple of years before this new EBS was released) but many things about that pedal annoyed me. The knobs had such little resistance and most of them doubled as push buttons. The result was they felt like they were one knock away from breaking and they were never in the settings you left them at. The input gain was on a tiny knob (about the size of a pin head) in the corner which made it very fiddly to set. I suppose the idea was that it wouldn't get knocked accidentally. I didn't like it though. As for the really important stuff, I just wasn't sure about the tones I was getting out of it. I found myself scrolling through the various amp models and EQs thinking 'does that sound better now?'. That surprised me as I've liked all the GK amps I've ever played through but I wasn't getting that same character through the Plex. The tuner was indecisive and to cap it all, it had power issues the first couple of times I used it so it had to go back. This EBS seems to offer most of the benefits of that pedal with none of the drawbacks (yet)

I know all this stuff is subjective but I'm dead keen already. I'll play with it some more tomorrow while I practice but I'm pretty sure it'll have velcro on the bottom of it by the end of the day. 




Edited by willgatesbass

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Thx man very informative  thing is I'm an old rocker, for me nobody and nothing is going to convince me that the ampeg svt 2 pro is not the ultimate in bass sound I love it ! Thing is never sure if a valve going flipped until it does not gigging as much  and as I said not as young as I was lol found the tech 21 sansamp vt deluxe think for me it's going to be a winner 

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If you want an SVT sound in a DI, then I think there are better options, particularly the Tech 21 VT bass range you've identified. 

EBS are know for crystal clear, solid state sounding amps, not so much the all valve SVT sound

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