recording direct bass


New member
I am buying a fairly cheap(250$)bass guitar to do some direct recording with. What else do I need to get a good sound. I was thinking the sansamp bass box or a direct box. I currently own an art tube mp, and a nanocompressor. Could I use these to get a good sound/recording?
Of course you could. Use the ART and if you need a little compression try the compressor. It would be crazy to buy a doohickey to record just bass with when you could have used the same amount of money and bought a better bass to begin with. Kind of defeats the purpose of a cheap direct recording bass.

Give a listen with the ART and monkey with your settings on your bass and record it all and find what sounds good. A key to good direct bass recording with cheap pickups is mess with the EQ. With enough of that you should get a passable sound.

If it still sounds bad. Instead of a device to make your cheap pickups sound good, invest in a good set of replacement pickups. If you go active there will be a built in preamp with good tone circuits. That is how pros record direct bass. You will get a better sounding bass all the time, And a cleaner punchier signal. The best thing to make a cheap bass sound good. Because that is the first thing that manufacturers skimp on (besides hardware). Good luck.

[This message has been edited by MADCAP (edited 12-21-1999).]

I have the SansAmp Bass Driver. It's not too bad.

If you just plug yer bass into it and start screwing'll probably be somewhat disappointed. I was. I found that I got best results by using the thing as an effects box running into my guitar amp, then of course micing the amp.

However, I recently recorded a bass line direct while working on a new song. I was really impressed with how real it sounded in the mix compared to how it sounded alone. I think I'm going to be doing a lot more with the Sansamp as a DI box in the future.

I'm sure you can get a decent bass sound with what you've already got, but you might want to check out the Sansamp. It does have a nice tube sound and the overdrive is really nice. I've also found that it works well with my guitar for a real punchy/twangy sound.

At $129, though, you definately want to shop around and try some of this stuff out.

Slackmaster 2000
The ART and NANO should do it.
I would definitely compress the bass, unless you are recording a really polished-pro bass player with excellent recording technique.
Anything less will result in quite a few 'peaks' that will cause clipping... They will limit your ability to turn the bass up. I always end up editing the .wav files to limit the peaks and get a higher average level.
Compression is totally ok when recording bass.. ART+NANO... go for it!
Thanks guys, I appreciate all the advice. I may go for the Ibanez with active pickups(around 335$) and see what I can get with the Tube pre and NANO.