Blindfold Test: Maple vs Rosewood

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Stereo Joe, Dec 7, 2007.

  1. Audio 1 is maple, audio 2 is rosewood.

    208 vote(s)
  2. Audio 2 is maple, audio 1 is rosewood.

    305 vote(s)
  1. In the vein of ibanezcollector's p-bass VS variax thread, I thought I'd do a little comparison of my own. To be honest, I did this more for my own benefit but then I thought it would be fun to get other bassist's opinions.

    Here's the story, I had a jazz bass with an Allparts maple jazz neck and a P bass with an Allparts rosewood jazz neck. I decided to switch the two and see which sound I preferred. My p-bass's electronics are acting funky, so the recordings you'll hear is of the jazz bass.

    These necks are identical - bound and blocked, same dimensions (both are JAZZ necks. They even have the exact same hardware on them - Gotoh tuners and a Hipshot 3 string retainer. Same white plastic nut.
    When I swapped necks I left the same strings on the bass - 6 month old D'addario XL's .045 - .105.
    The bass was recorded with both pickups maxed and tone control wide open directly into the soundcard of my Apple Powerbook G4. I recorded using Apple Logic 7 with no effects. I set the gain on the recording channel exactly the same for both takes.
    Basically, the only differences should be the wood of the necks and the slight variation in my own playing.

    Here's the audio! (Btw, either track could be the rosewood or maple, I place them in no particular order)
    Audio Track 1:
    Audio Track 2:

    Just for fun, here's how the bass looks with either neck:
  2. Blues Cat

    Blues Cat Payson Fanned Bass Strings Owner Commercial User

    May 28, 2005
    Katy, Tx
    Payson Fanned Bass Strings Owner
    1 Rosewood
    2 Maple
  3. +1
  4. DanielleMuscato


    Jun 19, 2004
    Columbia, Missouri, USA
    Endorsing Artist, Schroeder Cabinets
    I agree; #1 is rosewood, #2 is maple. Thanks for doing this thread. Can't wait to see the results.
  5. spencer

    spencer Guest

    Feb 22, 2006
    Can't hear it on macbook, volume is low...
  6. Stuggi

    Stuggi Guest

    May 7, 2006
    Pietarsaari, Finland
    #1 Rosewood
    #2 Maple
  7. maschine


    Sep 13, 2007
    #1 rosewood
    #2 rosewood
  8. No problem!

    More questions for everyone:

    How big of a difference can you hear between the two tracks? Do you think this difference is small enough to be compensated by a slight bit of EQ or part of the 'inherent sound' of the type of wood?
  9. DanielleMuscato


    Jun 19, 2004
    Columbia, Missouri, USA
    Endorsing Artist, Schroeder Cabinets
    Not even an EQ difference... a shift in technique could one into the other and back again. I don't think it matters, especially in a mix. I prefer the feel of rosewood but the tone difference is negligible IMO. If you'd played on clip 2 with your fingertips closer to the neck, I would have probably picked that one as rosewood.
  10. Drucocu


    Jan 24, 2007
    whew, thats a tought one, I must admit! voted 1 rosewood, 2 maple!

    IMO the difference is minimal, maybe it would be bigger, if the body wood would match the neck, (rosewood/alder and maple/ash)
  11. Jeremy Crockett

    Jeremy Crockett Amiable Crank

    1) Rosewood
    2) Maple

    Less warmth on 2 and a bit more clarity.
  12. Thanks! That's a good point about the technique. I hear a bigger difference than I thought I would, but I think it's because I KNOW which track is which.

    Not saying which is which yet, but I decided to keep the rosewood fingerboarded neck on the jazz bass for now.

    Oh, FYI, I played both tracks with my thumb anchored on the neck pickup, so there shouldn't be much difference from my technique in this case.
  13. aksu


    Jan 30, 2007
    1. Rosewood
    2. Maple

    If everyone is guessin right, you could tell us the answer? Right?:hyper:
  14. bump
  15. Nah, I'm going to wait for the North American day crew to chip in before I reveal all.
  16. Valerus


    Aug 4, 2005
    I'll go ahead and be a noob.
    1. Maple
    2. Rosewood

  17. 1. maple
    2. rosewood

    for me the second sounded a little rounder while the first sounded a bit harder. Like someone said before picking finger position could have the same effect. Only last week a friend and I compared our 75 J basses the only difference being the board material. There was an audible difference.
  18. Willem


    Dec 26, 2005
    One is rosewood, two is maple. I feel two has an edge and one has a little more body...
    I wouldn't know which to pick if I didn't think maple looks so much better...
  19. nemo


    Mar 19, 2004
    I don't know, I can quite clearly hear the first being more open and second being rounder - so I say
    1 - maple
    2- rosewood
  20. Fran Diaz

    Fran Diaz

    Mar 28, 2002
    Santander, Spain
    Provided everything but the necks is the same (levels, hand position, etc.) I can say that I like the 2 clip better: IMO more clarity and punch. But I can't tell you if that one is rosewood or maple.

    Waiting on the answer :)