My gear

A page about some of the gear I’ve used down the years’ with links to: – 

My Basses

My pedalboard

Q: What was the first Bass guitar you played?

A: The ‘Pro II’ by Aria was my first electric Bass guitar and a ‘Cobra 90’ combo by Carlsbro was my first amp.

They were paid for with two weeks wages from my first job at 17 years old. Here they are in 1990: –

My gear | First Bass and ampThe ‘Pro II’ Bass had a high action, which made it difficult to play because I didn’t have much of an idea about making adjustments to the action at this time.

At first, I used ultra light gauge strings (90-70-50-30), so my fingers didn’t get too sore.

They would sometimes rattle around on the frets a bit too much. The combination of strings, bridge pickup, and the amp produced a bright, full and punchy sound.

The ‘Cobra 90’ amp was not too heavy and fairly easy to move around, but noisy (hum and hiss) and the 15″ speaker sounded boomy but did the job.

I remember the knobs were quite small and flimsy. They would fall off or break easily.

The Bass and amp were both moved on after a couple of years’.

Q: What’s your go to’ Bass?

A: My Jaydee Supernatural Series 2A Bass which was built by John Diggins in 1986.

Volcano red finish and fitted with front face LEDs by Martin Sims. This was my 2nd J.D. and I acquired it in 1995.

The original active circuit was replaced with an integrated circuit board in 2001.

My Basses | Jaydee | Supernatural | Series 2I Love this BASS! It has a fast neck, fantastic tone and it’s really comfortable to play.

I like playing this Bass with light gauge strings, which tends to bring a more percussive sound.

John told me that ‘The Shadows‘ Bassist used it when the band played on the BBC TV show ‘Pebble Mill from Birmingham’ in 1986. And here it is: –

Q: What’s your rig?

A: I’m using a pre-loved US-built David Eden WT550 Traveler amplifier head into a Trace Elliot 1048 (4×10) cabinet.

This is the most natural sounding head I’ve ever owned. I really like the warmth of valve/tube at the pre-amp stage, with a solid-state amplifier for the output.

I first heard the Traveler amps at ‘The Gallery‘ (Bass Merchant) in London during the 1990’s, and I promised myself that one day I would own one.

However, the amps were expensive and with rumors of reliability issues on early units, I put it on the back burner – for about 15 years!

My gear | David Eden WT550 | Trace Elliot GP12XV | 1048 cabinet

The WT550 has a 5-way semi-parametric equalizer, which I use with a fairly flat setting because I use the active EQ on by Basses. It also has a built-in compressor.

I’ve had my 1048 (4×10) speaker cabinet for more than 15 years and it sounds great, but weighs a ton!

Maybe not a real ton, but it feels like it. It has the original Trace Elliot speaker drivers and most of the vinyl covering is in good condition. It has castors and can travel.

In 1997, I was given a tip by Nick Owen and Chris Ward at ‘The Bass Centre’ (Wapping High Street, London) that Mark King from Level 42 would be moving on some of his gear through the shop. Would I be interested?

Trace Elliot GP12XV valve preamplifier

I managed to acquire a Trace Elliot GP12XV valve preamplifier from Mark’s home studio on the Isle of Wight, called ‘The Summerhouse’, which he has also used on tour.

1990s pre-Gibson, this is in effect, the front end of the Trace Hexa Valve amplifier. The GP12XV sounds warmer than the GP12 SMX preamp (which is all solid state).

I am very pleased to say I’ve used the preamp on almost everything I’ve recorded at home since.

My gear | GP12XV by Trace Elliot | by Simon Edward | Updated: June 21st, 2015.

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