What a bizarre rig rundown video this is. Premier Guitar shot this interview with Deftones guitarist Stephen Carpenter and bassist Sergio Vega. The latter half with Sergio is all as it should be, but Stephen seems to be at an odd place with his rig. It seems that he just switched to the Axe-FX and hasn’t dialed in his tone yet, so he spends most of his time talking about how he just got it sounding halfway decent.
Take for instance his cab setup. He’s moved away from the Marshall tube power amp, and is using little 20-watt solid state Electro-Harmonix power amp pedals to send the signal to his cabinets, and he describes the tone as “ppppssssbbbbtttt.” So I’ll take that as a negative. If he’s going for solid state portability I’m surprised he’s not using the single rack space Matrix amps that Sergio is using.
It seems that part of the trouble he was having was that he originally set up his rig in stereo. I feel like that’s a trap a lot of guitarists fall into with the limitless horizons of the digital cyber ampscape etc, but it just doesn’t make sense if you think the acoustics of a big venue. You want everyone to hear an even mix. It’s rare for anyone working sound to run anything other than a mono live mix.
But anyway, Stephen’s setup is obviously still in a transitional state. Note the now unused subwoofers still in his cabinet road cases. I wonder if he’ll just ditch those cabs entirely in the future. That seems to be the way of things once players start using the Axe for a while.
A final interesting quote from Sergio at the very end of the video: “I know there are exceptions but I can’t think of one. There’s not a bassist that I’m a fan of in heavy music that uses their fingers.”
Source: Premier Guitar