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ahhh! where did my tone go?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by bigpappabuddah, Jul 10, 2004.

  1. Okey, i need anyone's help and suggestions. I have a Geddy Lee Sig bass, a Gallien-Krueger 400RB (one of the older ones) and a Hartke TP410. Now that you know my rig and everything, i need help, i need to find that jazz bass tone, the growl and the warmth. I had it at one point, but the guitarist and drummer from my old band decided to change it (i did leave that band) but now i can't seem to get it back. its just not that great tone. i dont know what to do, i've been playing with it for the past few days for many hours trying to get this to sound right, but if anyone has any suggestions maybe just give me an idea about what you have your amps set or something that would hel belpfull so much.
  2. When's the last time you've changed your strings, and how's your EQ set?
  3. vacman


    Mar 8, 2004
    portland, or
    +1 and try the mighty Rotosounds...
  4. Could it be the placement of your amp in a different room?
  5. Assuming your strings aren't dead, it sounds like an EQing issue to me. I'd say try less mids and more highs and lows and go from there.
  6. Rock&Roll


    Jul 21, 2002
    I don't know if this will mean jack to anyone else....but here is the advice I give myself on such things as finding a "lost tone."

    My theory. Don't sweat it. I've never sat down and dialed in the perfect tone instantly on the first time I've entered a room. I've found it best just to try to have fun playing with whatever sound you've got. Then needed changes will become appearent slowly and gradually.

    Once I've learned the sound I want from my amp in my main practice area, it makes it a whole lot easier to rember what I'm supposed to sound like when I enter a new room, or when I use someone else's gear.

    In the past, I've done the "ohh piss!!!. My tone isn't right. Ohh man!!!" I'd stop playing ever 10 seconds to turn some knobs and get nowhere. Luckly I learned my lesson. That wasn't the way to go about it.

    Tone's worth finding. But you've got to go about it the right way. It's there, and it will be had. Just give it time. :cool:

  7. Yeah, thats what type of strings i'm useing, but my tone's getting better, i've come to the conclusion that it'll be hard to get it perfect so i'm working with what i have and its getting better each day. so yeah, thanks all
  8. There's been days when I felt I had dialed up the perfect tone at home practicing. Later (sometimes even the same day) I would come back and turn on everything...and it didn't sound the same at all, yet not a single knob had been turned, the amp still was in the exact same place, same cord, same instrument...go figure. Invariably I would then tweak knobs, going from one extreme to the other...then wind up exactly where the knobs had been set initially. :eek:

    Psychological? Hormones? Alignment of the planets? The initial stages of insanity? :meh:

    Now I've almost given up, I just plug in and try to play.
  9. Stephen Soto

    Stephen Soto

    Oct 12, 2003
    another +1, look into D'Addario XL's (nickel) also.
  10. Agreed with Soto, TOTALLY disagree with lonote. Most of the musical information your bass is putting out is in the midrange frequencies...no small stuff here, we're talking about what makes the listener realize they're listening to YOU.
    The smiley-face EQ curve may be trendy, but it doesn't sound very good, especially when the bass is played alone. Sure, boost the bass a bit to fill out the sound but leave everything else flat and listen, very carefully, to the sounds your fingers/pick cause the bass to make.
    The trick of the thing is to get the sound you want from your hands...good strings, a good bass set up well, and a good amp help but if you use EQ to do what your fingers should be doing, you're shorting yourself.
    Took me 12 years to realize that.
  11. Mudfuzz


    Apr 3, 2004
    Any more I just set my amp EQ: 6 - 5.5 - 5 and let my hans and my bass do their thing. I agree with a sting change if you are looking for the sound you had when the strings were new.
  12. Stephen Soto

    Stephen Soto

    Oct 12, 2003
    yeah, another thing that will really make your tone is if you use your fingers or a pick, do you slap also? like you said, there are a million considerations that could choose your tone. strings- new, dead? action- high, low? amp- solid state, tube, all tube? and with strings, it's not only new or dead, it's also the material and brand. are they stainless steels, nickels, flatwounds, roundwounds, coated, ect... theres too many considerations, best thing to do i would say, is get the action where you want it and everything, keep the same strings on, set the EQ flat (on your bass if it's active also), and just go from there, add mids, ect... but if you end up not likeing one of the ways you EQ it, go back to flat, and start from there again.