Bottom End on backing tracks and jams? Too much!

  • I have read some posts about people being told by PG that the bottom end issue is not actually an issue with the Spark 40... I guess as musicians, we don't know anything about tone!... but jeez, it's a real problem. The amp sounds pretty good and I have been able to get some great guitar tones on it... but when jamming or playing to tracks from YouTube etc, the amp has WAAAAY to much bottom end, rendering it useless for that kind of thing - which is why I bought it. I have 12 guitars and the problem happens with every single one of them, so it's not a guitar issue - the guitars sound fine - the amp's ability to control tone from streamed music is not... we need a tone or EQ control on the app - we need to be able to dial back the low end on this thing. It may be a problem with the way it streams via Bluetooth or the way it bypasses the tonal controls on the amp itself. I don't know. I'm not alone. I have two friends who have received theirs and complained about this issue, and there are plenty of posts out there in the 'net referencing the problem. Part of my upcoming review is focused on the mud coming out of the amp when using it as a jamming tool or just for streaming music. I won't issue my review until I have some reply from PG, or given sufficient time, they ignore this post. It's a great product but this is a huge issue. I'm sure the app can be updated with an EQ... Make it happen.

  • So... in the meantime, anyone who is having this issue, here's my workaround... I downloaded a third party EQ app that works with Bluetooth streaming: Music Volume EQ on the play store. The only drawback is that when you swap to it, the Spark app stops playing the backing tracks (which does not happen with YouTube, Spotify or Accuradio etc). You can save EQ presets, which you need to do because the Spark app is overly bass laden compared to other apps.

    The other issue I'm having is that there seems to be some kind of compressor/limiter built into the streaming on the amp itself... it sucks and blows (changes volume) depending on the dynamic on the track being streamed from any app.

  • I have the same problem. Before i upgraded the firmware everything was fine. Now it is super bass heavy with no definition. On top of that, the music volume control was fine before and i could match them very well. Now it is much too quiet in comparison to the guitar. Wonder if factory reset would help this?

  • @brettcjamieson I opened a ticket and I'm guessing they are either working on it or still don't know it's an issue. But I use the Spark for a speaker on my PC when I want to have audio in the room instead of using my headphones as I don't have regular speakers connected to that PC. When I first play a Youtube video, the volume is 3 or 4 times what it should be and most of that is low end for some reason. But if I stop the video for 30 seconds or so and the push play again, the volume is at a normal level and all the muddy/distorted bass is gone. And it seems like that "feature" shows up when you send bluetooth audio to the Spark. I've opened a ticket with support but not heard anything. I have a work around when sending audio over USB to the Spark, and like you figured out that I can use an EQ on the phone, but yeah, they still have some kinks that they haven't worked out yet. Lot's of people have asked for an EQ feature, but if they would fix what is clearly a bug, that would solve the issue for a ton of people, although an EQ would be nice, but that's a new feature and there is an existing bug, so 2 different things. (Pausing the audio when sending over bluetooth for 30 seconds and then starting it back up doesn't fix the issue on a phone like it does from a PC over USB, so a phone EQ app is your best bet until they figure out they have an issue and fix it.)

  • Have you checked to make sure you don't have any bass enhancement or super bass effects turned on on the phone?

  • @stinger0625 I didn't when I started checking it's what the issue was, but ironically, when I searched for an app, I landed on one called "Bass Boost". But, it's not just for boosting bass. It has a simple 5 step equalizer and you can dial back the bass as well, which seems to help a lot. I guess it's possible that I have some kind of flaw with my Spark. I know somebody that's got a Spark. Next time I get a chance, I'll do some comparisons, but with this virus and him being elderly, not sure that will happen any time soon. I have work arounds for the PC issue and the phone issue, so it's not as big of deal for me as it once was.