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Nice 500 Pre For Recording Acoustic Bass
Old 8th July 2015
  #1
Gear Maniac
Nice 500 Pre For Recording Acoustic Bass

Any recommendations for a nice sounding mic pre to track acoustic bass?

I prefer a British sounding pre .. maybe a Neve Clone?

Thanks In Advance
Old 8th July 2015
  #2
I love tracking acoustic bass with the Great River MP500, it has a very clear but still sweet/rich sound. It doesn't ever get all bloated and slow sounding
Old 8th July 2015
  #3
Avedis Audio MA5
D.A.V. BG-501
Lola 500
Old 8th July 2015
  #4
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Ma-5 by a long shot for me. Although I just got a capi vp26 that I can't wait to try out on upright.
Old 8th July 2015
  #5
Get yourself a nice vintage u87 and, as long as it's a quality piece, it really doesn't matter what pre you use.
Old 8th July 2015
  #6
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cheu78's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by phanlon View Post
Ma-5 by a long shot for me.
+1! Another vote for the MA5, if you want that N tone..

I do like also the Forssell on some acoustic stuff, but it's quite different.. much "cleaner"..



Cheu
Old 8th July 2015
  #7
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Burl B1

Nickel transformer, rich tone, clear and big - sounds like a great match for acoustic bass.
Old 9th July 2015
  #8
+1 on Great River NV and also APA Juggernaut. Both are tight and deep sounding, and just colored 'enough' (I love lots of color sometimes, but generally like my bass more clear). Preamp can make a huge difference, compare two polar opposite sounding preamps like a GML vs a Chandler TG-2 and it won't be a grey preference (even if subjective).
Old 9th July 2015
  #9
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Overdrive's Avatar
 

For me it would be Great River ME500 NV or the Heritage Audio 73JR. Both have the "clarity" I look for when a fast, dynamic, focused bass is called for.
Old 9th July 2015
  #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by [email protected] View Post
Get yourself a nice vintage u87 and, as long as it's a quality piece, it really doesn't matter what pre you use.
Got a great upright sound with a u87 into a ma5. Even better with a m269 into a ma5. The best though was a TM-1 into a ma5.
Old 9th July 2015
  #11
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Empire Prod's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Yummerz View Post
Burl B1

Nickel transformer, rich tone, clear and big - sounds like a great match for acoustic bass.
+1 Great on acoustic bass
Old 9th July 2015
  #12
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Tommyswami's Avatar
The p-1 by A-Designs sounds great. I think you'll enjoy the sound a lot .
Old 9th July 2015
  #13
Gear Addict
 

Not a 500 series I'm afraid but my go to acoustic bass setup is a Neumann U77 into a Seventh Circle Audio J99 (John Hardy Twin Servo style) preamp.

Lundahl's best micpre input transformer with a nickel Cinemag output transformer and a pair of Sonic Imagery 990 discrete opamps.

Great articulation, focus and weight without any mud and usually very little EQ is required.

The U77 has plenty of output (more than an U87) and with the J99 gain and noise are never an issue micing an upright bass.

Generally find a Neve on an upright can get a little too thick and murky and a SCA C84 (Millenia style) a little too clinical.

Yet to find anything better so far.
Old 9th July 2015
  #14
Quote:
Originally Posted by [email protected] View Post
Get yourself a nice vintage u87 and, as long as it's a quality piece, it really doesn't matter what pre you use.
Not sure what vintage means to you?

The challenge with Double Bass is that the instruments and players vary so much it would be extremely difficult to make any significant projection on what gear would work for any individual situation without being there. I speak from experience since I record almost exclusively Double Bass players. The microphone makes a difference - how much seems to depend on allot of things.

First and foremost, the environment matters a great deal with this instrument and that is only after the player's influence. The player has a huge amount of control over the tone of this instrument - much more in my opinion than electric bass players. The caveat is that electric bass players have tone controls, double bass players don't, at least not electronic ones usually. Double Bass players are constrained to always be creating their tone and as a result it is a moving target to some degree and part of the expressiveness that makes the instrument so wonderful and still so relevant in certain circumstances.

And lastly, what space is the instrument in. Isolated, not isolated etc. and so forth.

So you see, this constant knee jerk to throw in the word vintage as the cure all to recording needs seems a bit ill advised.
Old 9th July 2015
  #15
In fact, I'll add this. Consider - if someone asked you what microphone to get for vocals, would you offer that any particular mic would be THE one to get and would thereafter solve all you vocal needs? Wouldn't there be a laundry list of variations, wouldn't the chain be important, the voice, the environment, the desired sound. Recommending a microphone for Double Bass seems similar to me. Double Bass is as varied and sublet as a human voice in many ways (not quite but you get the idea).

It does raise the question as to whether we are all playing a trick on our ears when we believe that the only way to record a great vocal is with a vintage UXX microphone and, that you need a variety of very expensive but oh so subtlety different vintage and preferably tube microphones manufactured before 1970 or thereabouts for the different vocalists you will encounter. For all I know this is something the bigger studio owner subconsciously conceived because they know smaller studios can't compete if this is the perception. And yet who wouldn't want a variety of great microphones to try with whatever vocalist happens to be crooning away in your studios.

All I'm saying is that the answer to what mic to use on Double Bass should be it depends on what sounds good. What works for you in your space and for your sensibilities and according to your experience of the instrument may not work for another.

On the other hand, if I asked which mic to sue on a snare drum there is a pretty standard answer. Yeah you can try variations but in this situation, there is a direct answer. Double Bass is closer to a voice than a snare drum (there's a sentence I could never have imagined writing before I started considering this question).
Old 9th July 2015
  #16
Just remembered the OP asked what PRE! Ha! All the above goes "Double" for preamps I suppose. But here I think there may be something interesting. I would thing a preamp with a a little filtering control might help.
Old 9th July 2015
  #17
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bullseye View Post
Not sure what vintage means to you?

The challenge with Double Bass is that the instruments and players vary so much it would be extremely difficult to make any significant projection on what gear would work for any individual situation without being there. I speak from experience since I record almost exclusively Double Bass players. The microphone makes a difference - how much seems to depend on allot of things.

First and foremost, the environment matters a great deal with this instrument and that is only after the player's influence. The player has a huge amount of control over the tone of this instrument - much more in my opinion than electric bass players. The caveat is that electric bass players have tone controls, double bass players don't, at least not electronic ones usually. Double Bass players are constrained to always be creating their tone and as a result it is a moving target to some degree and part of the expressiveness that makes the instrument so wonderful and still so relevant in certain circumstances.

And lastly, what space is the instrument in. Isolated, not isolated etc. and so forth.

So you see, this constant knee jerk to throw in the word vintage as the cure all to recording needs seems a bit ill advised.
I simply mean not an ai model.

But the key is actually listening to what the player is doing and placing the mic accordingly. Which I always do. I too have recorded a significant amount of acidification bass and have never had a problem with not capturing what I wanted using this approach.
Old 9th July 2015
  #18
Quote:
Originally Posted by [email protected] View Post
I simply mean not an ai model.

But the key is actually listening to what the player is doing and placing the mic accordingly. Which I always do. I too have recorded a significant amount of acidification bass and have never had a problem with not capturing what I wanted using this approach.
Understood - I was not trying to be rude so apologies if I seemed to be. What do you mean by acidification bass. Best I can figure is it is some atmospheric reference which works for me I guess.

I usually record Jazz trios and quartets with everyone in the same room. Kind of the VanGelder thing (still much beloved recordings thought to me they do not hold up sonically to modern recordings and retain popularity for the content and yet VanGlder gets the Kudos - go figure). Anyway, the last bass player I recorded was so quiet and had this habit of turning towards the drummer (the get down position I would think). What a mess it was to use a condenser. Should have used a dynamic with good bass response and good rejection - I think. Alan Sider claims to use an SM7 on double Bass. Haven't tried it but after that last experience I'm ready to head in that direction.

Last edited by Bullseye; 9th July 2015 at 01:32 PM..
Old 9th July 2015
  #19
No offence taken.

I've done a fair bit of jazz too. I did the music recently for a computer game called Pure Pool (which I think is on all the major platforms). I understand they just released the Official Soundtrack though I'm not sure which tracks they put on it.

Not sure what acidification means lol. I suspect it was an autocorrect gone wrong.
Old 9th July 2015
  #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bullseye View Post
Understood - I was not trying to be rude so apologies if I seemed to be. What do you mean by acidification bass. Best I can figure is it is some atmospheric reference which works for me I guess.

I usually record Jazz trios and quartets with everyone in the same room. Kind of the VanGelder thing (still much beloved recordings thought to me they do not hold up sonically to modern recordings and retain popularity for the content and yet VanGlder gets the Kudos - go figure). Anyway, the last bass player I recorded was so quiet and had this habit of turning towards the drummer (the get down position I would think). What a mess it was to use a condenser. Should have used a dynamic with good bass response and good rejection - I think. Alan Sider claims to use an SM7 on double Bass. Haven't tried it but after that last experience I'm ready to head in that direction.
Ever tried a HyperCard SDC?
Old 9th July 2015
  #21
Gear Maniac
You Guy's are Awesome!
Old 10th July 2015
  #22
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BluegrassDan's Avatar
Highly recommend an API-style pre, either API or CAPI. They will give the bass some punch and attack.
Old 10th July 2015
  #23
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I'm gonna second Trev's advice. Let the microphone choice dictate the colour and aim for a nice clean pre with good headroom. From my own kit, I'd probably reach for our Lolas, but there are plenty of options there. I'm really digging the Mojave MA-200 for this job. Check out their website - there's quite a few demos of one on acoustic bass
Old 10th July 2015
  #24
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edvdr76's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by [email protected] View Post
Get yourself a nice vintage and, as long as it's a quality piece, it really doesn't matter what pre you use.
That's exactly what I record it with. My chain for acoustic/upright bass is a 1978 U87> GML 8302 pre> Summit TLA 100
Old 11th July 2015
  #25
I've generally had good luck with an MA5 and U87, but as stated before, every player bring a different tone to the table so ears are everything.
Old 11th July 2015
  #26
Baz
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NV500 DI for bass is aces!
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