Amplifying a double bass
There are days when the sound engineering job can be a walk in the park, days when it is hard to make ends meet and days when the job is demanding – and then there’s the days when you need to make a double bass sound good! Especially in a live situation this task can be VERY demanding.
In the audio business everyone has their own approach to make things work and it is no difference when it comes to amplifying a double bass.
- A condenser mic two feet in front of the instrument? It sounds like a double bass, sure, but the mic usually picks up way too much bleed from the drums.
- A piezo pickup on the bridge of the instrument? Usually too thin sounding – especially when combined with a preamp/DI that can’t handle the impedance of the piezo element.
- Even a SM58 stuffed inside a cardboard tube from a roll of toilet paper and then underneath the bridge? Well, this actually worked, but only this once…
Lots of possibilities, but nothing to really rely on…
It should be a surprise to no one that the choice of microphone, characteristics and placement is all important when trying to achieve nirvana in the audio business – but in real life it just doesn’t always get the attention it deserves.
In the videos below some different possibilities is demoed. Besides the double bass video there is a Cello tutorial video as well. Enjoy.