Bass Cable vs Standard Instrument Cable

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by LowGo, Mar 1, 2009.

  1. LowGo


    Jan 25, 2008
    Being a former guitar player turned bass player, I have plenty of instrument cables. Before I run out to spend more money, is there really a noticeable difference between plugging in with a standard instrument cable as opposed to a bass cable?
  2. RobertPaulson


    Dec 11, 2008
    Des Moines
    Short Answer: No.
  3. NKUSigEp


    Jun 6, 2006
    Bright, IN
  4. Long Answer: No.
  5. tplyons


    Apr 6, 2003
    Madison, NJ

    Some would argue. Some would argue back, and it turns into a whole snowballing argument that never ends.

    But the short answer is really no.
  6. The only ones that would argue are Monster Cable endorsees.
  7. No.
  8. Unless one is defective or sub-spec; no.
  9. MEKer

    MEKer Supporting member

    uhh--unless its already been said, I'd say uhhh, no. Unless, that is one is broken and the other 'taint.
  10. Jim C

    Jim C Spector#496:More curves than Sophia + better sound

    Nov 29, 2008
    If you search, you will find that many here feel that the dedicated bass cables are not as good for tone.
  11. cnltb


    May 28, 2005
    There is a difference from cable to cable, but "bass cable" seems a mere marketing term.
  12. TrooperFarva


    Nov 25, 2004
    New City, NY
    I'm going to offer a different answer from everyone else.

    The Monster Cable Bass Cable, if I remember correctly, is constructed with higher-than-typical capacitance wire. The net result is like dialing back a tone circuit on a passive bass, but only slightly. So there's slightly less high frequency response. So when you actually use the cable, you turn up the volume on the amp to get the same high frequency response. Since the low end was unaffected, and the volume is now louder, the perceived total effect is 'more low end'.

    Basically, IME, there is a difference between a Monster Cable Bass Cable and a regular instrument cable, albeit only a slight difference, but the difference favors the regular instrument cable. Just one more reason why I won't use Monster Cable.

    Your best bets for a good, quality, instrument cable would be either Mogami, or a custom cable from Bayou Cables, IMO.
  13. Bongolation


    Nov 9, 2001
    No Bogus Endorsements
    The interesting part here is that because a bass is operating with less high frequencies to begin with, the increased capacitance in a non-optimum cable would matter less anyway.

    Just because someone sells you something on the basis of some self-serving claim doesn't make that claim true.
  14. DaveF


    Dec 22, 2007
    New Westminster, BC
  15. Bongolation


    Nov 9, 2001
    No Bogus Endorsements
    Yep, same as I said.

    Pretty much, as if anyone needs a reason to avoid Mon$ter.
    There is one problem here and that's that high-end Mogami, for example, has higher capacitance due to improved shielding (fact). Shielding and low capacitance are effectively a compromise in instrument cable.

    If your recording environment is "clean" enough, you can actually get better sound from cheaper cable with poorer shielding as it may have lower capacitance than the top-end Mogami or other premium cable (I don't remember the stock numbers, but the cheaper Mogami instrument cable has lower capacitance, according to their spec chart).

    Measure it and see. Easy to do!
  16. steveinohio


    May 27, 2007
    Ive got a monster cable. No difference to me.
  17. Fetzu


    Sep 6, 2007
    Tampa, Florida
    I buy Canare GS-6 cable and G&H Plugs and make my own.
  18. dj150888


    Feb 25, 2008
    Belfast, Ireland
    Short answer is apparently "No"

    Long answer is apparently "Nooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo!"
  19. i didn't realise anyone made bass specific cables, so i had a read. suffice to say that i almost wet myself... dual heavy gauge bass conductors indeed...
  20. Craig_S

    Craig_S Banned

    Oct 15, 2008
    Metro Detroit
    I just had this discussion with a sales person at GC, the other day. He was trying to sell me om Mogami and Monster (I already own two Monster cables). He insisted there was a difference one could hear in the studio. I told him I just got out of the studio, and I used my Planet Waves switched cable (5 years old). I never got a better bass sound. Heck, I just bought a Live Wire to see if I could tell a difference. I didn't notice anything other than cosmetic differences. The ends on the Live Wires make me wonder a bit. So far so good, though.