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Old 29th August 2013, 02:33 PM   #11
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Amping acoustic basses is a nightmare - my daughter keep insisting on taking hers to gigs, feedback is a HUGE problem. In the end I told her either take an electric bass, or take yourself and all the gear on the bus

Trying to put an amp and speaker inside the bass wouldn't stand a chance, and would you want a bass that heavy anyway?.

Edit: for a 'solution' how about buying a double bass? - these are considerably louder.
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Old 29th August 2013, 03:30 PM   #12
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Well, buying a double bass sounds like a great idea if I wasn't on a fixed income and living from month to month barely making it as it is. I don't have $1000 or two laying around to buy one with.

I did order a "Headphone Amp" from musicians friend and I'm going to try using some small speakers like out of a set of headphones with good bass and building a sort of megaphone cone around each of them and mounting them on the inside. I don't need it to be loud, just a little extra push.

I will let everyone know how big of a failure (or with any luck, success) this turns out to be.
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Old 29th August 2013, 05:23 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by deepbass9 View Post
Well, buying a double bass sounds like a great idea if I wasn't on a fixed income and living from month to month barely making it as it is. I don't have $1000 or two laying around to buy one with.

I did order a "Headphone Amp" from musicians friend and I'm going to try using some small speakers like out of a set of headphones with good bass and building a sort of megaphone cone around each of them and mounting them on the inside. I don't need it to be loud, just a little extra push.
Headphones only have good bass because they are stuck in your ear, adding a cone around them is going to produce little or no bass, and VERY quiet levels.

But if it makes you happy, give it a try - but don't butcher your bass at all.

You would be better off with a little combo amp, it wouldn't break the 'no electric' rule any more than adding an internal amplifier to your bass.
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Old 30th August 2013, 02:21 AM   #14
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No, no, if it won't go through the hole without damaging the bass, I won't even try it. Like I said in another post, I played it straight and by plucking the strings real hard I got almost enough out of it, but ended up with blisters. It's got fair sound, I'm just wanting to see if I can get enough to not have to tear up my fingers. I know it sounds silly, but if nothing else, I can use this little headphone amp for sitting around practicing and no harm, no foul.

I really only mentioned the headphone speakers as an example of some sort of small speaker. I've also thought about a decent sounding computer speaker that doesn't need external power. Just something small with a little bit of bass. And using the cone like a megaphone might make some difference. Similar to those things they sell for ipods etc. Maybe using a plastic or rubber funnel that I can mount the speaker in the bottom of and work it through the hole. And if I can put 2 or maybe 4 of those inside and run the cord out to this little headphone amp, maybe it will add a little bit. I don't expect it to be booming or super loud, just trying to keep up with other acoustic instruments.

I used a pick for a couple of songs and got right much sound out of my bass, but I'm a two-finger walking bass player and a pick just doesn't work for me. I am thinking of trying finger picks if I can get coordinated with them not to get hung on strings when I play a bit fast. These bluegrass guys love to play fast, which is simple if I'm just playing roots and fifths, but if I'm walking between chords, etc, it might get a little tricky with picks.

Shoot, I'm retired, I got nothing but time, what the heck. lol
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Old 30th August 2013, 10:49 AM   #15
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Practicing helps against blisters !

But the headphone amp is a good hint. Have you ever asked anyone in the public if you are loud enough ? If yes, try a headphone amp just for monitoring in order to hear yourself better.

Regards

Charles
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Old 30th August 2013, 11:53 AM   #16
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To get any kind of volume from an acoustic bass you really need to use a pick, and probably a big heavy one.

If you're playing regularly your fingers should be pretty tough and shouldn't get blisters.

Back when my daughter was playing regularly both her hands had really tough fingers, but they soon revert if you don't play for a bit. If she tapped a glass with the pads of her fingers (either hand) the glass 'chinked' just as if you tapped with your finger nails - yet the pads didn't feel hard to touch.

She played a gig after not playing at all for a few months, which included a number of Muse covers (which are bass intensive), and I had to dash to the bar and beg a towel and a pint of ice cubes

Her fingers weren't blistered or bleeding, but they were serious red and throbbing
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Old 30th August 2013, 01:57 PM   #17
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I play electric bass all the time. I play anywhere from 4 to 7 days a week, depending on what's going on. I play at nursing homes, various jams, vfw, ruritan club, etc. The ONLY time I've ever ended up with blisters on the fingers of my right hand was from plucking so hard to get volume out of the acoustic. All four fingers of my left hand have real tough callouses, even the pinky, I get a little busy with the bass sometimes walking it around the chord changes, etc., so my left hand fingers stay tough. But using an amp, my right hand fingers don't have to pluck real hard, so they only have mild callouses on those two fingers. Even with the callouses, the blisters came up, I was shocked. I mean these blisters were calloused. Popping them was strange because the skin was so tough. It's not like the fingers were real tender or anything.

I understand y'all say it's impossible and I appreciate your input. It may very well be impossible. Although I have seen instances where debating the impossible with someone has sparked an idea of the possible. Call me an idiot for trying, but I'm not ready to give up yet.

Obviously, I realize there is no way to come up with anything good enough to use for a paying gig, but something to just thump around with at small jams would be cool. The world is full of "Impossible Inventions". It's a good thing Orville and Wilbur didn't give up when everyone told them that their idea was impossible. Before you flame me about that, no, I'm not in their caliber and I'm not comparing myself with them, just saying.....
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Old 30th August 2013, 02:59 PM   #18
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Just keep in mind that we know more about audio nowadays than there was known about flying back then ....

Maybe you could do some mean trick like putting something on the stage that is an amp but doesn't look like one. Some small FM transmitter and a small receiver shouldn't be abig problem to construct either ....

Regards

Charles
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Old 30th August 2013, 03:14 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by phase_accurate View Post
Just keep in mind that we know more about audio nowadays than there was known about flying back then ....
But there's not really been anything 'new' for a great many years, only variations on existing themes.

The "laws of physics canna be broken Jim", to get loud bass you need to move lots of air - so need big cones.
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Old 31st August 2013, 12:01 AM   #20
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Stage is not the point, this is just an informal gathering of bluegrass musicians at a local farmer's market. Nothing fancy. There are a few people sitting around listening, but not any major audience and definitely no stage. For stage jobs, I use my Aria electric bass and my amp.

Again, I'm not looking for loud, just a slight push. I'm probably ******* in the wind, but bouncing it around with you guys is helping with ideas, etc. I'm not real knowledgeable about decibels except it has to do with sound and how loud it is, so let me just pull numbers out of my hiney-hole. If for arguments sake, my acoustic now puts out around 10dbs and using my amp would put out say maybe 100dbs. I'm looking for a boost to about 20dbs or 30dbs. I don't need amp volume, just a little extra. I'm not trying to break or even bend the laws of physics, in fact, I'm hoping to use them and "move a little more air" around inside the body of the bass and push out just a bit more sound.

Does that make any sense? I'm not trying to make a stand alone bass that will part your hair from across the room or anything.
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