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How to get a punchy sound on bass

Discussion in 'Amps [BG]' started by Joey77, May 15, 2011.

  1. Joey77

    Joey77

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    Does anyone know how I could get a punchy sound out my bass but yet also clear enough to cut through?

    Thanks :)
  2. joshwilkesbooth

    joshwilkesbooth

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    Can anyone tell me what the best bass is for metal?

    Thanks :)
  3. SMILEYSIXX

    SMILEYSIXX

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    Low mids. Emphasize 'em. For punch, I use rotosound 77's too.
  4. rpsands

    rpsands

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    Link an example of what you want to sound like :)
  5. SMILEYSIXX

    SMILEYSIXX

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    BC Rich Warlock. Next question.
  6. pacojas

    pacojas "FYYA BUN" Supporting Member

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    play closer to the bridge and dig in alittle.
  7. Selta

    Selta

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    Uhm... not really... funny in this particular instance. I'm not even going to reward you attempt points.

    A lot of this is going to be technique / hand placement. EQ really won't get you "punch", per se. Good cabs help, though there's no hard and fast rule that xx type of cab is punchier than yy.

    The above is in my limited experience. Also, for me, rounds seem to get me more punch than flats. But, YMMV, and I'm sure someone has a bass that punches gorillas in the face with flats.
  8. gumtownbassman

    gumtownbassman Supporting Member

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    New strings and hard picks.

    What sort of punchy? To me that would be using the likes of an active bass through an Ampeg SVT amp..
  9. gumtownbassman

    gumtownbassman Supporting Member

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    ???:rollno:
  10. Joey77

    Joey77

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    alright thnks guys but what did u mean about dig in a little pacojas? Also the sort of punchy tht I like is like duff mckagan (back in gnr days) or flea or even geddy lee's present sound. :)
  11. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Total Hyper-Elite Member Gold Supporting Member

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    Give us your definition of "punchy." As rpsands said, give us a link to a sample. Otherwise, nothing you read here will have any meaning whatsoever.
  12. SMILEYSIXX

    SMILEYSIXX

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    Not sure if you realized, but that was a sarcastic comment to a sarcastic "best bass for metal" question, not the OP's punchiness query.
  13. Joey77

    Joey77

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  14. gumtownbassman

    gumtownbassman Supporting Member

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  15. Selta

    Selta

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    You realize a lot of that is kick drum, right?
  16. gumtownbassman

    gumtownbassman Supporting Member

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    Yeah I know :smug:
  17. Russell L

    Russell L

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    Aw, I know what you mean---punchy. Well, I had it tonight running the 15" in my Trace Elliot GP7 combo as an extra speaker for my Markbass 121H combo. The best sound I had all night was with the Little Mark II amp set flat while playing my '88 Jazz Bass Special only on the Precision pickup. (Ya'll stop and try to imagine that set-up, think about it). What I think of as punchy has only a moderate amount of lows below 100Hz, or so. On my Trace amp one of the sliders is 100z, and it's the one I boost, not the 50z beside it. I leave it flat. On other amps, it's the knob labelled "Low Mids" that gets used to get punch, but the frequency varies from amp to amp. For instance, I can't get 100z anywhere on my LMII, unless it's caught somewhere in the shape filters (VLE and VPF). Low mid knob is centered at 360Hz. Got to admit, that old inexpensive JB Special has some punch of its own, so you never know if it's the instrument you're playing that is what's giving you punch, or keeping you from getting it.

    Everybody wants punch. As a general rule, I'd say start flat and bump up whatever you have for Low Mid, and see what you get (maybe 2:00 on an active knob). Maybe add to that only half as much Low. The High Mids and Highs might be distracting, so you might wanna drop some of them a tad. Besides, when you get through with finding your punch, you will have to begin seeing how the heck to figure your philosophy of how you want your Highs.

    About the best I can tell ya.
  18. SMILEYSIXX

    SMILEYSIXX

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    When I tthink of quality punchy bass tone, GNR definitely is not what comes to mind, but to each his own, I suppose.
  19. Joey77

    Joey77

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  20. PaulMacCnj

    PaulMacCnj

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    A punchy sound to me means....

    Use a bolt-on neck bass.
    Use higher tension strings.
    Use a compressor.
    Play closer to the bridge.
    Use a pick.
    Maybe even use flatwound strings.

    I say maybe on the flatwounds because you can still get a lot of punch from roundwounds using the other things mentioned.

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