Tonelab for Bass

January 14, 2008

I finally got around to making a bass patch for the Tonelab (thus far I had been bypassing it when using bass). It worked surprisingly well, and I got a number of compliments on my sound from the music team at church when I played this week. To review, my rig is set up thus:

EBS Multicomp -> Tonelab -> Hush pedal -> Epifani PS-600 -> Dr. Bass 2260 Neo

I came up with a good, clean patch using the “Boutique Clean” amp model and the “No cab” setting. I figured the cab models would be mostly an EQ hump and filter anyway. I decided not to use any of the effects (except light chorus and reverb).  It turned out really well, as I said … kind of a best of both worlds. The Epifani kept it clear, tight, and awesome-sounding even at high volumes, and the Tonelab’s 12AX7 gave it a surprising amount of added warmth. The low end was tight, even going through the certainly-not-designed-for-bass Tonelab. I have a feeling that using a cab model would ruin this, though I didn’t test it. All in all, a success … I am now confident having only one amp and one pedalboard for bass and guitar. The only (minor) drawback is the footswitch — perfect for guitar (I only really need four channels), but as it doesn’t have a bank control, I can’t really use it for bass unless I overwrite my guitar presets. Not really a big deal, as I have never really had occasion to use channel switching on bass before.

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One Response to “Tonelab for Bass”

  1. Ben Says:

    UPDATE: Don’t use Tonelab for Bass. It uses a high-pass filter that cuts out everything below 40 Hz. I discovered this, thus. The sound guy at church said, “It sounds like you’re losing your low end!” I said, really? He said, next time I’ll bring in my frequency tester. Which he did. And lo and behold, there’s the readout … dropping off completely at 40 Hz.

    The Tonelab sounds good, but you need to biamp it or run it in a parallel loop. Luckily, on my Epifani head I can run it through a parallel loop and use it for a little tube warmth. But it’s kind of a pain to set it up in the parallel loop for bass, it’s easier just to not use it. Ah well.


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