Gig an amp too quiet to be heard onstage?

Discussion in 'Amp Central Station' started by charlie chitlin, Feb 7, 2019.

  1. haggardfan1

    haggardfan1 Friend of Leo's

    Mar 17, 2014
    Texas and Louisiana
    This does not describe a band; merely some musicians attempting to play the same song.
    I'm an old goat as well, but I can tell you there's a heck of a difference.
    Honest Charley and keithb7 like this.
  2. keithb7

    keithb7 Friend of Leo's

    Jan 9, 2010
    Western Canada
    When I was new to bands, same thing. Everyone was sodamn loud trying to hear themselves.
  3. jsnwhite619

    jsnwhite619 Friend of Leo's Ad Free Member

    Sep 10, 2013
    I love low volume stage setups. 15 watts and under club right here. I would suggest that if he likes low volume and you are concerned, just focus on setting & positioning the amp so it is optimal for YOU and let him work around it. If that means it's pointed at you like a floor monitor away from the crowd, so be it.

    I always say if a singer can be mic'd enough to be heard and hear himself, a guitar amp should be easy.

    Sent from my XT1585 using Tapatalk
  4. charlie chitlin

    charlie chitlin Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

    Mar 17, 2003
    Spring City, Pa
    OK...I didn't do it.
    We were the 3rd, of 3 bands, things were running late, the stage was small...I didn't want to take a chance of having to switch amps if it wasn't working.
    OTOH, it was a great night, huge crown and my '56 Deluxe DELIVERED THE GROCERIES!!
    The night ended on kind of a weird note, though, when the street was crawling with cops and ambulences because some guy was thrown out of a multi-level parking garage into the street.
  5. chris m.

    chris m. Poster Extraordinaire

    I just played a gig on Saturday night. It was on an outdoor rooftop terrace at a local Hilton. It was cold for these parts, but they had
    propane heaters going everywhere so it wasn't too bad. I was wearing a sweater and hat, and luckily my fingers don't get cold easily, but I
    was still feeling it.

    Anyway, I've been using my original '82 SuperChamp for gigs lately, mainly because I had shoulder surgery last September and have not wanted
    to haul my heavier Super Reverb. We were moderately loud for us-- we're a funk band. Two guitars, keys, sax, bass, drums.

    The only things miked to our little Yamaha StagePAS PA were the saxophone, the kick drum,
    and one vocal mic for making announcements (we're an instrumental band). That means everyone uses their amp both as their monitor and the sole
    source of FOH volume. I don't know if I'm getting old, or what, but that keyboard amp was blaring, the cymbals were clanging, and the two guitar
    amps were piercing my brain, too. I had musician's earplugs on but even so I found the whole thing grating on me. Part of it is that it seemed
    like all the amps were pointed straight at me, being the front guy. The SuperChamp with its 10" EV is very beamy, and it was pointed strategically
    right at my head. The only thing not bugging me was bass, because those low notes just aren't very piercing.

    I was at home with my SuperReverb last night and the dispersion of the four 10" speakers is so nice. I think I will definitely put it back into
    rotation. Related to this thread, the issue was that in order for my SuperChamp to be loud enough for the house, it was like a laser pointed at my
    head. I suppose I could have adjusted it a bit, but it is so beamy that if it's not pointed right at me then it's much harder to hear.

    I do think that a better solution would be to somehow get everyone's stage volume lower and mic everybody to FOH. I think I will work on that
    for next gig. But the drummer will always be loud on stage.

    The good news is that even though I had ear fatigue the audience loved it.
  6. Salsg

    Salsg Tele-Meister

    Apr 12, 2018
    Conversation levels on stage?
    My Gretsch 6120 played acoustically is that volume.
    What's a drummer supposed to do? Play with wet noodles?
  7. chris m.

    chris m. Poster Extraordinaire

    Worship bands have figured out how to keep their stage volume low. Plexiglass baffle around the drummer,
    in ear monitors, sometimes no amps but everything going direct box to the P.A. It definitely can be done.
    At the end of the day musicians should adapt to the space and the audience, not the other way around,
    in my opinion.

    I was annoyed by the stage volume levels at our last gig, so in some cases it's for the musicians, too. I don't want to invest in more gear and the time it takes to set it up, but I might have to give in and do it if I don't want to keep dealing with the current situation.
    Last edited: Feb 12, 2019
  8. strat a various

    strat a various Friend of Leo's

    May 9, 2008
    I've worked with literally hundreds of sound guys over the years, and can count the good ones without taking off a shoe. If you trust the sound tech, you are asking to have a depressing gig. They generally don't care that much that you sound right in the room, just that they are the ones that control how you do sound. I've seen too many live gigs ruined by hack sound engineers ... most of the older ones are deaf and most of the younger ones want your band to sound like their 10,000 watt car stereo ... Hippety Hoppety bass and no definition.
    I've never had a rewarding experience gigging an amp that couldn't inspire me on stage. I need it to sound good in my ears ... directly from the amp ... in order to play my very best, and that's what sells tickets.
    Bring a back-up amp and find out at the sound check if the little amp has the cojones to be heard at stage volume. Put it on a chair or a rack box ... get it up near your ears.
    thegeezer likes this.
  9. thegeezer

    thegeezer Tele-Holic

    Jul 5, 2010
    West Michigan
    Charlie, it’ll work. I use my ‘54 Deluxe on outdoor stages in the summer. I set it up a little higher off the stage just in case the monitor feed is a bit off. And I don’t turn it up that far either. Works fine.

    Sounds like you had an interesting night, by the way...
    Last edited: Feb 12, 2019
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