The world of impulse responses for guitar is monstrous and nearly unending but the market is still relatively small in comparison for bass players. I have rounded up the majority of the bass cabinet impulses out there and I wanted to share my thoughts to make the search a little bit easier for the guys holding down the low end.
3 Sigma Audio is a company owned and operated by the guys that brought you the Rosen Digital libraries. Since going their own way, Joe Quick and Chris Lucas have been extremely busy creating a very nice product line for guitarists and bass players alike.
Like the Rosen Digital line, the 3SA libraries do not include single mic files, they are all highly detailed mixed mic/position files. These libraries are ideal for those that want max quality with minimum time. I also recommend them to beginners often because of the ease of use and low maintenance ways of getting great tone. The 3SA line of bass products offers ten different cabinets from a variety of companies which shows the wide variety in the line.
My personal favorite in this line is the MES PWR based on a Mesa Boogie Powerhouse cabinet with Eminence speakers. This is a can’t miss pack for me when it comes to needing a punchy bass tone.
- MES PWR
- AMP SV810
- MBASS 410
- TRACE 410
- AGU 810
The name Celestion is such a recognizable name in the speaker world. The great reputation the company has was earned through many years of hard work and high quality products. When they started doing digital products they did so with a lot of high quality gear and experience behind the move.
When the company stepped into the impulse response world, they brought the same quality to the digital realm as they have brought to stages big and small around the world. The quality of their impulse packs is very high and they have a small but versatile and growing line of bass directed products.
The Pulse line offers 10,12 and 15″ speakers and the BN line offers options for 10 and 15″ speakers. The packs feature a number of mics as well as very nice selection of mixed files which are always appreciated. I can’t say enough good things about the sound quality and versatility of the Pulse packs. I had a lot of fun creating mixes / blends between the 10,12 and 15″ packs. I have not yet tried the BN series, I will soon and I will update the post at that time.
The Doctor has some seriously great sounding packs dedicated to bass but he also has a few products gear for both guitar and bass applications. The Hypereal mixes are some of the best mixed files that you will ever hear and I always reach for them first, not out of convenience but for the quality.
My personal favorite of the Dr.B bass collection is the MBGR-B 810. It’s like the Millenium Falcon of the bass impulse world in that she doesn’t look like much but she’s got it where it counts.
The prices are low, the quality is high, the selection is fantastic and the tones I get from Dr.B’s impulses are like no other.
- MBGR-B 810
- GEEK-T 410
- GEEK-RB 410
- AGI 115
- ORG 810
Lancaster Audio formed when Rosen Digital dissolved and Lancaster kept the Rosen Digital libraries in the split. The Rosen Digital libraries were rebranded Lancaster Audio. Before buying the Lancaster products, just make sure you aren’t accidentally repurchasing something.
Lancaster Audio have a nice line of great sounding bass impulse packs. Of the 10 or so bass products, not even one of them fails to deliver great tones with little effort. The cabs match up well with a number of amp sims and the finely tuned blend/mix files make sure it’s easy to get the tones you are after.
I recommend the AMPG SVT pack a little above the rest. It has true SVT versatility and great detail. The blended files also help to cover even more ground without needing to know anything at all about mics and positions.
- AMPG SVT
- Mes Powrhous
- GKAY 410
- Bill Jenkins
- SWR Workman
Ownhammer has a long standing history of top quality products. They have been doing it longer than most and their insane selection has something for quite literally any player. Their file depth, quick start guides, detail and experience create
The line of bass focused products at Ownhammer is quite simply, one product; AMPG Bass, but don’t let that fool you. When you open the pack up, you’ll notice that while it might seem like one product with two cabinets, it’s much more than that. The number of mics, speakers, files, mixes and more that you get in this package can help to create any type of bass tone. These packs also feature subkick files that I really like blending in.
My only recommendation at this time is the AMPG BASS pack but I get the feeling Ownhammer will have some more bass cabs on the way sooner than later. This is speculation but with more bass amp sims coming out all the time, Ownhammer will hopefully have something to add to the party.
Redwirez has a modest but very reliable and high quality bass impulse line. They currently have packs based on Ampeg, Aguilar and Hartke cabinets. These packs come along with their very popular BIG BOX pack that includes the entire giant line of Redwirez products for a very low price OR you can purchase them separately. My vote is always buy the Big Box when it comes to Redwirez.
For recommendations, as I mentioned, buy the big box and enjoy a huge wealth of high quality impulses for a price that will make your jaw hit the floor. However, if you want only bass impulses, I strongly advise the Ampeg SVT 810. I have read more than once that it’s one of Adam Nolly Getgood’s preferred bass impulse packs and I would agree with him on the pack’s quality. With a further recommendation, I advise blending in the Aguilar or Ampeg 115 files if you want more rumble.
Valhallir finally broke into the bass impulse market after years of success on the guitar side of the industry. Their products have always carried a high level of quality while also being a little outside the box in many ways. I have always been a fan of their guitar products so when I heard they were finally releasing a bass product, I was very excited.
The V2 line includes the GK410RBH and Goliath610 packs. These cabs are out shortly and HASR will be testing them rigorously until a review is in place. Stay tuned but I can’t imagine they will be anything short of great like the rest of their products.
Not a whole lot of free bass impulse response packs exist out there. Most of the developers that do free impulses don’t have bass offerings.
One notable exception is Seacow Cabs that offers a great Darkglass DG410C IR library as freeware.
The 7 Deadly Sins Impulse pack is likely still kicking around somewhere and I know there’s some bass stuff in it so if you don’t have it, start there. I will say that while free, I am not sure if it violates any piracy rules because it’s a mish mash of folders.
There’s a few HERE that really rock to get you started but google and hit the forums to find more. If you know of free bass impulse responses that I don’t, email us or contact us on social media so I can update. One night I googled “free bass impulses”, “free bass impulse responses” etc, and I ended up with about 60 free bass impulse responses made by random people as opposed to developers. Some of them are incredible, some are so-so but when they are free, who cares right? ALWAYS TRY ALL FREE IMPULSES!