An Old Man needs Advice

Discussion in 'V.C.'s Parlor' started by Old Man, May 13, 2019.

  1. Old Man

    Old Man Squier-Nut

    Jan 2, 2013
    I am sort of confused or outdated I guess. I would like to know what most people use to play their backing tracks on. I have been thinking thru the aux plug on a ss amp, but have read that really is disappointing in sound quality. Then I have run across Bluetooth speakers with volume knobs on them. Please keep in mind, I only play [practice] at home and do not have any studio equipment.
    So, do I download tracks to my computer, burn to cd and play through cd player, or download and get a good Bluetooth speaker and play thru that? Please keep in mind I am on an extremely tight budget, but looking for some answer to get quality sound for my backing tracks.
    No matter what my cd player needs to be replaced to keep using that method, or replace with a Bluetooth speaker of which Sweetwater has what seems a few nice ones not priced too high.
    Any info or advice will really be appreciated.

    Thanks, Mike
  2. Papa Joe

    Papa Joe Squier-Axpert

    Dec 12, 2009
    Swanton Ohio
    Best advise I have to offer to an old man is never trust a fart..
  3. A-Zed

    A-Zed Squier Talker

    Oct 24, 2017
    Never walk past a toilet.

    Sent from my SM-G920I using Tapatalk
  4. dbrian66

    dbrian66 Squier-holic

    Jul 14, 2017
    Maryland, USA
    The Roland Micro Cube is a great little practice amp with a ton of effects and an Aux in that you can plug your phone (which I assume will have your backing tracks) right in. There is even an app for you phone designed to work with the amp that can slow down tracks for learning. And the amp really does sound good. Brand new I think they are only around $130.00. And it also can run on 6 AA batteries so you can take it to the beach or backyard or wherever your jam session takes you!
  5. Davis Sharp

    Davis Sharp Dr. Squier

    Jan 7, 2016
    Maryland, USA
    Is your computer close enough to the amp to run a male-male cable from the computer's headphone output to the amp's aux input?
  6. A-Zed

    A-Zed Squier Talker

    Oct 24, 2017
    I bought one of these to plug into my Mac and it works really well with Garageband. It suits me for working out stuff and jamming with tracks on headphones.|en)

    It came with PC software as well which I tried on my Windows PC and it worked though I was used to the Mac. Great for playing along with Youtube/Spotify.

    Sent from my SM-G920I using Tapatalk
  7. SquierTap

    SquierTap Squier-holic

    Jul 14, 2018
    Nashville, Tn
    I've got ya, Mike...

    I recently got one of those Boss Katana Minis... It was 99 bucks, and it is a REAL practice amp, not a piece of plastic junk/toy... Most amps nowadays come with a place to plug in an "auxillary cord", including this one... Matter of fact, this, my Katana 100 combo, AND my lil Peavey Vypyr 15 ALL have aux inputs... So I just take an "aux" cable (which is like a guitar cable, but with small "headphone" like plugs on either end) and plug one end into my amp and the other end into my cellphone... Bam, easy backing tracks...

    Edit to say, this lil amp ain't no joke, either... It has 3 "channels" for clean, crunch, and full-on Brown sound Distortion, gain AND volume, and the thing even has delay... And it's PLENTY loud enough to practice with...
  8. Triple Jim

    Triple Jim Squier-holic

    I use my phone to play them through my 25 watt Crate bass amp. Fidelity is amazingly good. If you have a bass amp or keyboard amp you're all set. If you're not trying to rattle the windows, you could play them through a stereo system.

    My 25 watt Crate was $45 on Craigslist.
    Last edited: May 13, 2019
    dbrian66, so1om and kenneth like this.
  9. kenneth

    kenneth Squier-Meister

    Aug 3, 2016
    I do the same. Phone or a little cheapo mp3 player.

    1.Spotify is a small fee for unlimited music
    2. Spotify through phone
    3. Aux cable from phone to Yamaha THR

    As mentioned Katana mini, also Blackstar id core 10 is stereo and inexpensive.
    dbrian66 likes this.
  10. blackspider57

    blackspider57 Squier-holic

    Mar 11, 2017
    Great Falls Montana
    Blackstar ID core 10 has "full range" speakers which make backing tracks sound rich and full. Many amps do not, and backing tracks sound flat and dull. And a reasonably priced great sounding practice amp as well. Just my 2 cents!
    kenneth and dbrian66 like this.
  11. oneLOCOman

    oneLOCOman Squier-Nut

    Oct 2, 2018
    I use a Blackstar HT1. I run my desktop into the MP3/Line input. I can also use my headphones on the amp to keep it quit for da baby moma.
    dbrian66 likes this.
  12. Old Man

    Old Man Squier-Nut

    Jan 2, 2013
    Thanks everyone, lots of options. No, my computer is not in the same room with my guitars so not able to use them together. I do not have to use headphones, the wife does not mind my playing and practice, but I keep volumes down to a respectable level most of the time. Of course my classic 30 has no aux input, I don't think any tube amp does. I am going to check out the Blackstar ID core 10, if it will keep good tone and sound it might just be what I am looking for.
    I need a new practice amp as I gave my son my last one I had, I had almost settled on the Fender champion 20 but heard that the aux in was not real great. My cd player is giving up the ghost so I guess I am going looking.
    Thanks for all the input. PJ, I know not to trust any urge at my age and health:oops:, I wish there were cures for the things I suffer from.

    Thanks, Mike
    dbrian66 likes this.
  13. bgmacaw

    bgmacaw Squier-Nut

    Jan 19, 2018
    GA USA
    Right now I use my computer speakers, a nice Logitech 5.1 system.

    My alternative system is an old boom box that has an aux input. I can plug my phone into it and stream backing tracks from YouTube and elsewhere. You can put together this kind of setup cheaply by using an old smartphone (or MP3 player) and a used boom box along with a few cables.
    dbrian66 likes this.
  14. IronSchef

    IronSchef Dr. Squier

    Jun 18, 2012
    Flew here on my Dragonfly
    Hey Mike,

    I am perfectly happy w/ playing backing tracks from my phone, plugged into the aux input on my amp (a Katana 50). Sound quality is more than adequate on most SS amps (that is exactly why they put an aux input on those things) :)
    Bob the builder, kenneth and dbrian66 like this.
  15. ksandbergfl

    ksandbergfl Squier-Meister

    Sep 7, 2015
    What I used to do, for many years... I had a small 8-channel mixer in my bedroom, connected to the my stereo's Aux In jacks.

    Into the mixer I plugged my cassette deck (with my "backing tracks" on tape), my microphone, my keyboard, the Line Out/Preamp Out from my amps, etc, etc. Everything went thru the mixer, then to the stereo.
    drewcp likes this.
  16. duceditor

    duceditor Dr. Squier

    May 29, 2014
    The Monadnocks, NH USA
    I use two approaches. In my main music room -- where the bulk of my gear is out and ready to groove with -- I use a looper pedal, a DigiTech JamMan Solo XT.

    I chose that one because along with having a memory bank designed to hold a hundred tracks it also accepts micro cards each of which can hold another hundred.

    Screen Shot 2019-05-15 at 1.30.45 PM.png Geetsr Room.jpg

    The JamMan plugs into my voice/sound reinforcement system -- 4 channel mixer amp, 2 speaker cabs (each with a 10 inch woofer and a horn tweeter) plus a sub system.

    That set up gets almost club loud when I am in the mood and the stomach sock of sub gives the tracks a live feel. WooHoo!

    In my less formal (and less well-equipped) playing area -- a library loft -- I have a Fender G-DEC 30 which also accepts such cards.

    It's an amazing little modeling amp in its own right but has the added advantage of allowing its amp setting to be saved with each track.

    Screen Shot 2019-05-15 at 1.40.47 PM.png

    G-DEC 30s are no longer made, but used ones appear from time to time. They are worth looking for IMO. :)

    drewcp likes this.
  17. Jmv668

    Jmv668 Squier-Nut

    Feb 21, 2017
    Cd and sound system or iphone to sound system with bluetooth
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