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i've found that playing and practicing my instrument is more important to me than worrying about the alleged deficiencies of my gear--i'll eventually buy another amp, but i'm happy!
that being said, i like a lot of midrange to my sound and the growl from my settings and jazz bass for most of my playing
...so, i set my eq for a slight mid hump around, you guessed it, 500Hz!
experiment with the preamp, contour and compression to get what you want to hear--your sound will depend greatly on your technique and your speakers as well
...Dig this-this is the kind of approach I like more: When you walk down the street, is every footstep the exact same way? Of course not. Musicâ€™s the same way-it has to breathe. My best ideas didnâ€™t come from textbooks or computers or synthesizers. They came from life. Just look at a flower, or a wave in the ocean, or the way someone walks, and if you really look close, youâ€™ll see music in those things. Visual images are very important to a musicianâ€™s creativity...
I can tell you what my settings for the 3500 used to be when I was using it for 4 to 5 gigs a week a couple of years ago.... I was using their 4 x 10 XL cab with the tweeter in the center. These settings were for a small club that seated about 75 people... Input: passive Preamp A (tube): 4 Preamp B (SS): 5 Compression: 5 Graphic: in Graphic sliders: 30 hz (+3) 64hz (+2) 125hz (-3) 250hz (-9) 500hz (-12) 1KH (-3) 2KH (0) 3KH (+6) 5KH (+9) 8KH (+12) Low Pass Contour: 10 (Note that straight up is 0) High Pass Contour: 5 Master: 8
With those settings I was using a 5-string Sound Trade bass, made in Osaka Japan, with active/passive Bartolini's....and the sound was delicious! Sounded like a cross between the old Acoustic 360's and the newer SWR stuff....I was always happy with the sound, until I started playing outdoors a lot more, and had to upgrade my coverage to a big rig, then decided to down-size my smaller rig to a combo and extension speaker. Sure hope this helps you!
By the way, the only reliability issue I ever suffered from was that the Graphic EQ slider lights stopped working about 2 years ago, right about the time I stopped using it, and I took it in a couple of weeks ago and had the entire amp gone over, because the subject of possibly selling it came up, and it took him 30 seconds to fix the problem, and he said that was the only issue the amp had, because I had already replaced the preamp tube last year....and I beat the **************** out of this amp, for about 4 years straight!
Current gig rig:
'00 MM Stingray 5
'78 Fender P-bass
Sennheiser WE-172 G1
Sabine RT-1601 tuner
Peavey BassFex effects unit
Genz Benz Shuttle 6.0
The main problems people have with Hartke amps are in their input jacks. They get dirty and act up. For example, they'll not power up properly and occasionally you'll have no signal and you'll have to tap your strings on your bass with your hand to send a hot signal to the amp to get it working... Pain in the ass, but not the end of the world. This can be fixed by going inside your amp and cleaning the jack with cotton swabs and rubbing alchohol... I've yet to get around to that. I simply got a new GK400rb head. If you feel like taking you're amp apart once a year to "CLEAN" it, you're fine with the hartke. The things really don't 'break', they just get used and get dirty.
But I've always been satisfied with the sound these things offer. I typically kept the lowest 30 hz boost flat, boosted the 64 hz and the next a bit, and boosted the last two or three sliders from the right up. You don't need to boost it a lot and it's reccomended you use your contour knobs first, and fine tune your sound with the graphic EQ. Good sounding amp with plenty of power for me.
Is the tube in the pre-amp a real-life tube or is it a 'starved-plate' design?
Many moons ago we had a forumite named Grendle who swapped the pre-amp tube with some real great results.
Modulus Mob Member #5
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