Amplifiers, effects and recording gear

I don't ask much from my equipment. I look after it reasonably well and try to keep it working.
On the whole, I have been quite lucky with my bass rigs. My current touring rig is the Hartke rig further down the page.

I am no longer an Endorsing Artist for BlackStar Unity Bass equipment. Enough said.

The Trace Elliot bass rig:
"See anything green?"

These two paired Trace Elliot 715 combos were my main bass rig since 1993.
I bought the first one from A1 in Manchester to use with my (then) band Go Crazy.

I hadn't reckoned on the awesome - and maybe insane - output of Gary Burnett's Marshall Valvestate combo, so when he got that, I was obliged to buy another bass combo, in order to have the slightest chance of making myself heard, as one of these beasts alone was not really cutting the mustard.

I wanted another one and it had to match #1. Trace Elliot had kindly (and suddenly) altered the whole look of the 715 combo in the six months between me buying the two, so I had to search around for another in the same style.

A1 in Preston had one in stock that didn't have the newly updated amp front panel. It also had a consecutive serial number. Fabulous.

I got a really good solid sound with enough thump and power behind me to keep me very happy indeed.

Gary then gleefully bought another Marshall Valvestate amp to go with his first one.
So then I ... no I didn't.

I did consider going up to a bank of four of these at one stage and was going through the maths on the likelihood of my finding another two matching combo amps, but then something happened...

Bass rig

The Hartke bass rig - "Shiny..."

The Trace Elliot rig was generally keeping me very happy indeed, until I took the Hamer 12-string bass out to a jam night and sat down to play it through someone else's 4x10 speaker cabinet. It was a complete and utter revelation to me when I heard how very different the bass sounded through a set of smaller speakers. Brighter and clearer.

So..... Off I trundled to Sound Control in Manchester, with a bee in my bonnet about finding a cab that would deliver the magical sound that I had heard at the jam night. They had a full Hartke rig comprising a 2x10 cab and a 1x15 cab, plus a rather ballsy 350 watt amplifier. There was a deal on the whole rig which made it quite attractive, so I took the 12er in and worried everyone in the shop with it and I thought to myself 'THIS is the answer'.

It wasn't. The 1x15 cab died on me twice while it was under warranty - once a couple of hundred miles from home when we were playing down the other end of the country in Hampshire, (across the village green from Alan Titchmarshes house) which was not funny at all, I can assure you.

The second time it died, I took it back and got my money back and then promptly replaced it with an incredibly heavy Ashdown 4x10 cab that always threatened to permanently bend my spine into a Z shape, every time I lifted it. While the Ashdown cab WAS indeed the answer sonically, I lived in dread fear of gigs at weekends and of lifting it unaided. So I sold that on and bought the (much lighter) Hartke 4x10 cab that I now use.

Funnily enough, we were playing in Oldham once and the guy who was employed to do our sound at the venue tried to sell us some gear, including some much heavier Hartke bass cabs. I politely passed on this most 'golden of opportunities'.

At one point I doubled the rig up for use at some of the larger gigs. It was terrifyingly powerful. (Half of the full Hartke bass rig was sold in June 2016, as it wasn't all getting used, as the band I was in then was a bit feeble).

Using a business-like bass rig may frighten the odd Concert Secretary to death (a really good reason for buying amplifiers if ever there was one), but despite them often being softies when it comes to the thought of volume, it's not too difficult to make them understand that the volume on them goes from a silent, brooding 0 to a blood-curdling 10. I usually have them set on 3 at the most. I get a great full-range bass sound with all the tone range I want and no-one's ears need to bleed.

No-one would be unhappier than me if I ever had a bad sound onstage.

Hartke bass rig Ian Edmundson  Ian Edmundson

VOX AC15C1 guitar amplifier

A brand new amp. In fact, it's my first decent guitar amp.

I've always had bass amps up to now. This one will see me out, no doubt. Custom 'Racing Green' finish. 15 watts and a nice Celestion speaker. Built-in reverb and tremolo.

It can be as loud as hell. I upset them in the shop, while putting it through its paces. Not quite loud enough for stage use, I use this for home playing and recording.

Ian Edmundson

Fender 'Champion 100' 100w guitar amplifier:

Bought in March 2017, basically because I had been using the Vox at the jam night on Sundays and I wanted something that was a bit more powerful with twin speakers and to save on wear and tear on the Vox and its valves.

Fender Champion 100 Ian Edmundson

Oh, now we are getting into a bit of a mire...

Here's BOARD 1: my studio guitar effects set-up.

Ian Edmundson

It runs like this:
Line In > Cry Baby Wah > Donner DT deluxe Tuner> Boss GE7 Equalizer > Marshall Drivemaster >
Danelectro Hash Brown Flanger > Behringer Noise Reduction > Behringer UC200 Chorus>
Behringer DD600 digital delay > Marshall Reflector Reverb > line out to amplifier.

Two power supplies are used.

BOARD 2: Stage board for bass with The Three.

JOYO NOISE GATE > line out.

I vary the basses that I take out by choosing to go either 'active' or 'passive' for the night and then select two or three to take out.

Ian Edmundson

BOARD 3: Jam night guitar effects board.

Line in > Behringer TU 300 tuner > Vox wah pedal > Donner tremolo > BOSS OD3 overdrive > TC electronic Hall of fame reverb > Nano LPB Volume pedal > line out.

Ian Edmundson

Roland GR55 Guitar synth:

Ian Edmundson

The GK3 guitar pickup is clipped on, not permanently attached to the guitar, nor built in.
The GK3B bass synth pickup looks identical, apart from a wider pickup piece and is similarly mounted.

Bass-wise, I have a Roland GK3B bass synth pickup which is sometimes mounted on my Westfield P-bass for home recording. To be totally honest, the range of bass sound supplied are near to useless, but some decent patches may be downloadable.

I also use custom-made 'The Kerbcrawlers' / 'F*ck Cancer' / 'The Three' picks, Sennheiser microphones, a Laney CXP 112 monitor, (sometimes a JTS UHF wireless transmitter system) and Hercules guitar stands.

Ian Edmundson picks    Ian Edmundson F*ck Cancer picks

THREE pick

Recording gear

Tascam 24-track recording console.

TASCAM Ian Edmundson

I bought this unit shortly after a friend of mine showed me the identical machine that he had bought.

We worked our way through the quite baffling manual - little of it is seemingly written in English - even on the English pages. Once we had done what should have been a few simple operations on it that way, after hours of swearing and throwing things about, we decided the manual was making it far too much like hard work. Once you've learned how to set a track to record and to hit the GO button and then the stop button when you want to stop, that's all that you need to do. The songs are recorded onto SD cards like you'd find in a camera. The remote control for this unit is an absolute blessing.

I use a Sennheiser microphone, both on stage and in the studio. A Soundcraft 8 channel desk (located beneath the recorder in the photo) for EQ-ing parts and adding effects before recording to the 24 track. Guitars are played through a Vox AC15 or Marshall MG15 amp. Bass guitar is put through a Zoom B2 Bass Pod, normally set to simulate the Hartke rig. Outboard effects: ART Proverb 200. Keyboard sounds are generated via a Roland D110 sound module. Any sequencing is processed via an Atari computer.

Recording the guitar solo for a song called 'Your attention