About tube amps going through a PA.....

Discussion in 'Guitars in General' started by webe123, Jun 26, 2006.

  1. webe123

    webe123 Member

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    I was wondering for those of you that play tube amps (older ones with NO XLR) through a PA system ....how do you mic yours up?
    You see, I have a Line 6 Vetta II and it does what I need it to do going through a PA...however, I really miss the sound of a good, clean Fender all tube amp like the twin reverb.
    If I ever replaced my vetta II with a tube amp, there are a few concerns that I would have to address:
    First, I use different effects, so I would more than likely use something like a POD XT Floorboard and this would be plugged into my tube amp.
    Second, I would need a way to hook up the tube amp to the PA system (with my vetta II, I just go straight in XLR on the back of my amp. ) Could I just use the POD XT floorboard and go XLR out from it?
    Third, the MAIN reason I have used Line 6 products, is because I can SEPERATE my AMP SIGNAL from the PA SIGNAL. On my Vetta II, I have a master volume that only controls the volume of the amp itself....it does not effect the volume at all of the XLR that goes out to the PA board! (that is another knob)
    This is a MUST for me, because when I used a regular tube amp before that was mic'ed and I needed a little more volume onstage, I would krank up my amp....but this was a double edged sword...because when I did this, the PA guy had to adjust the guitar again. Either up or down depending on what I adjusted the amp to.
    I do not have a professional soundman where I play, so the Line 6 amps having a seperate volume that allowed you to use your amp as a monitor and leave the main signal volume that you send to the PA board untouched was a Godsend. Is there a way to do this with a line 6 Pod XT floorboard?
    As you can see, I do have a vetta II and I love it, but I would love the warm sound of a tube amp, if I could seperate the signals from the tube amp and the PA system that it is going to.
    So, how do you have YOUR tube amp (old or new) set up to go through the PA system?
     
  2. John Phillips

    John Phillips Member

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    There are quite a few tube amps that have DI outputs - some like some Fender models (eg 'The Twin' and the 'Evil' Twin, I'm not sure about the newest series but I think so) use XLR jacks, although theirs aren't speaker-emulated, and some Mesa and Marshall models use 1/4", and do have built-in speaker emulation. None of the ones I know of personally have independent level controls for the DI though - the Mesas don't, which is something that annoys me too.

    One thing you could do is use an attenuator - that way you could set the amp up (louder than you need) and get a consistent level going to the desk, then dial down the stage volume with the attenuator alone. Some attenuators have line outputs, so you don't even need an amp with a DI output, you can do it all from the speaker jack. You'll need some sort of speaker emulation as well though.
     
  3. onemind

    onemind Member

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    Obviously if the venues you play have a 'monitor' system on stage you can ask for more level in the monitors. This way you aren't changing the tone you've dialed in at the amp by raising the volume.
     
  4. LaXu

    LaXu Member

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    Tried the attenuator line-out -> computer soundcard and it did sound like ass, so speaker emulation is very important to have. You could consider getting a unit that has both in the same box, if I remember correctly Groove Tubes makes one.
     
  5. webe123

    webe123 Member

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    The only monitor I have is a small hotspot...that is not enough to use as a monitor...I only use it to hear the other musicians and singers.....I use my vetta II as a monitor because I can seperate my amp from the house signal. And the venues I play at are all church related, so it is different than a bar setup.
     
  6. michael patrick

    michael patrick Supporting Member

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    Step 1: Put a 57 on my cab
    Step 2: Commence to rock
     
  7. trisonic

    trisonic Member

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    That's pretty funny considering his gigs are "Church related"!

    Back to the questioner if the Vetta works in Church why change it?
    Are you getting complaints from Parishioners that are members of TGP?

    Seriously, how many of your audience would notice?

    Best, Pete.
     
  8. bailnout

    bailnout Member

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    Are you going to be using the amp models in the PODxt Live to get your amp tones or are you just going to use it for effects and get your amp tone from the tube amp?
     
  9. michael patrick

    michael patrick Supporting Member

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    I was anwering this question:

    And that's how I do it... :AOK
     
  10. Oggy

    Oggy Member

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    Webe,
    I play extensively in churches, and use a tube amp. I originally started with a Peavey Classic 30, then a Mesa Maverick, now a Dr. Z Maz 18 Jr 2x12. All three are big amps. All three have more power than probably what is necessary or even what I can utilize. I have always miked my amps, none of which have XLR outputs.

    I use my amp as my personal monitor as you do, and have also used hotspots in times past. To be perfectly honest with you, you are partially responsible for your sound and the levels at which you play at, but you have a PA and someone who is responsible to make that PA do what it was intended to do.

    I've had extended experience on both sides of the fence (being in the band & being a soundman). I've worked with unqualified soundtechs before, and it can be a pain, nevertheless, it is the sound techs responsibility to run the PA, not yours. If that person is not running it satisfactorily and it isn't your place to say something, you might find the person who is and recommend that they spend some time with the sound guy helping them understand what is expected and how the team should sound...afterall, the sound guy is just as much a part of the band as anyone playing.

    A good sound guy will not set & sit -- meaning he won't just set the board up and expect the board to just stay that way the entire set. Music is dynamic. Every song is different. Within every song there is peaks and valleys. That sound guy needs to be constantly adjusting and listening and adjusting. If you increase your stage volume the sound guy should adjust as appropriate.

    I don't know how realistic this is for your situation, as I don't know the specifics, but I really do believe it is everyone's responsibility to help one another improve and adjust.
     
  11. Marty s Horne

    Marty s Horne Member

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    Since 1990 when I started gigging again, I've used Boogies and running a line out to the P.A. sounded hideous. I stick a SM 57 in front of one of the speakers and life is good.
     
  12. B Vance

    B Vance Member

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    I echo Oggy,

    You can only do so much. You can regulate how you sound through your amp, not necessarily how you sound in the mix. I would highly suggest staying away from direct outs and use a mic on your amp as well.
     
  13. clothwiring

    clothwiring Supporting Member

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    Since you use your amp as a monitor not sure if this is 100% appicable. I throw a 57 in there and then put up a baffle in front of the amp. This keeps people ahead of my amp from getting directly blasted and I can bring it up in the PA mix as needed (and still hear myself as I am either using the amp behind me as my monitor or I'll put it in my monitor). It really works great for me and with a Matchless Chieftain (2x12 combo), I rarely get complaints. And we play places where we have to be very volume conscious so I would suspect if done correctly this method could work for you.
     
  14. webe123

    webe123 Member

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    Interesting! Could you provide a pic of this "baffle" with your rig and how you use it in your setup?


    Also, what kind of "baffle" would I need and how would I apply it to my situation? Where do I get one at?
     
  15. webe123

    webe123 Member

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    Oh, it was just something that I was wondering about....everybody likes my sound....I just miss that good, clean fender twin reverb sound I used to get years ago. I remember the tubes warming up and then the great sound it got!

    I also always wondered HOW you used a miced tube amp onstage with effects and yet could have some kind of control onstage.

    Anyway, it was just something I have been considering. I love my vetta, but miss the real tubes and their sounds from a tube amp.
     
  16. Tone_Terrific

    Tone_Terrific Member

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    Here's your "problem".
    The vetta xlr is basically out before the master level. You then control the master to feed the output stage (your stage volume). Tube amps do not work that way. You will not get the same signal processing from a pre-amp/pre-masterfader out of a tube amp. A hotplate will not help since its output level is amp driven (like a mic). If the Vetta is the required tool for the gig, you are stuck using it.

    Going to a pedal board will not help. You will not get the amp tone taking the feed from the POD.

    I think your best solution is already in place.
     
  17. webe123

    webe123 Member

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    Well the reason I use an XLR is because I am right beside the accoustic drums. It has plexiglass surrounding it, but it has a small doorway and all of the sound comes through that door way (and over the top of the plexiglass)

    But the problem is that I am right in the line of fire with that doorway and all of the drum sounds come out through that small opening. I am worried about bleedover from the snare, tom and cymbals if I use a mic right now, but if I DO switch to a tube amp, they are thinking of re-arranging everything on the platform anyway. So I will try to get as far away from the drums and anything that will bleed over into the mic as best I can.
     
  18. webe123

    webe123 Member

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    Yeah, that is what I kind of figured judging by the posts.....bummer....I really dig tube amps!
     
  19. trisonic

    trisonic Member

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    No, I was trying to be too smart!
    It's just I'm a great believer in k.i.s.s. - if it works stick to it. By all means get a tube amp - I love 'em - but use it somewhere else.
    Ideally anytime you're miced up through a pa it's best (there we go again) to have pro "time" effects added at the board but then you're opening another can of worms but I'm looking at it from the angle of a person used to more the recording side.....
    Good luck whatever you do.
    Best, Pete.
     
  20. Oggy

    Oggy Member

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    Don't worry about the drums bleeding. If you aim the amp up at your face (kind of like a wedge monitor) or place it behind you or whatever works, and place a SM57 right up on grille cloth aimed at the speaker, the tightness of the pattern will filter out most of the drum noise. Your amp even at lower volumes will be what that mic picks up, and drum noise will be negligible. If you hang the mic over the amp you might pick more noise up, but if it is straight into the speaker, you have nothing to worry about.
     

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