Is this the golden bullet to rid us of the demons of bass amplification?
This little microphone system is great in many ways and is excellent value for money. It's sound is terrific -especially when considering it's price and how much other bass mic systems are. It is easy to fit/remove/position and seems to be relatively averse to feeding back, certainly compared with the mic system I persevered with about 20 years ago -what a relief it was when the realist reared it's head (I know that they are not everyone's cup of tea, but that's another story, or review.... anyway back to the bullet...) I have tried this on several basses and it seems to reproduce the sound faithfully and in a natural way which is exactly what I want from a mic. The two things that let this system down for me are the little preamp box, which I can see is a necessity, but which is just one more thing to remember/pack up/lose and means that another lead is needed (and a battery if phantom power is not available). The other more pertinent point is that the output from said little box is at mic not line level so if you are using a smallish amp/combo without a mic input then volume is seriously compromised unless you have a separate preamp which means more to carry, more leads and more power sockets needed. Even some amps with a mic input (such as a couple of Mark bass amps I've used it with) have to be cranked up quite high to get much level. Where I have found it most useful is when using my own pickup/amp on stage for the benefit of myself (and the band) and using the mic for the front of house pa system. Not surprisingly it also depends on the instrument being amplified as to how well it works. On the bass I'm playing currently (c. 19th German flatback) it really doesn't sound much better than the realist pickup for on stage amplification (especially when competing with a drummer!) and is not worth the extra hassle of using it but on the last bass I used (modern East European, carved back) the mic definitely sounded a lot better than the pickup. I have colleagues who have similarly experiences. One tried it on Kay bass but found it just too boomy/bassy... A good compromise would probably be to use a preamp/blender with mic and pickup and I know several bassists who get good results from this. My conclusion is that there is no golden bullet to rid us of the demons, but this can certainly help in the fight!
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