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Does Warwick $$ actually achieve the "warwick" tone/growl?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by triggervision, Apr 10, 2009.

  1. triggervision


    May 24, 2006
    Got to sit down with one for a few minutes. Horrible set up and I was trying to cop the tone of my thumb but couldn't seem to do it in the short time I had with it. Can it actually recreate the "warwick growl"?
  2. theaterbass29


    Nov 14, 2003
    Nashville, Tennesse
    Endorsing Artist: Aguilar Amplification, Sadowsky, D.Markley, Spector
    In my opinion, the "warwick growl" that we all associate with these instruments is due in part to two things for sure, brass frets and a well tuned upper midrange frequency that brings out the zing between the frets, the strings, and the higher frequencies. Some folks attribute a low-mid eq around 240-400hz as "growl". This is usually accentuated with swamp ash bodies, or in the older padauk bodies. Warwick is now experimenting with so many different types of woods, I think it will be near impossible to retain "trademark tones" from bass to bass. I have played the double-buck, and was very impressed with the tone, and of course with a 3 band eq, swamp ash body, and brass frets, it definitely gets the "Warwick Growl" maybe even a little more than "today's" cheaper made Thumb basses. A Brass Just A Nut 1, which is available from any Warwick dealer, or online, is also a good way to bring out the growl.
  3. silky smoove

    silky smoove Supporting Member

    May 19, 2004
    Seattle, WA
    I think the so-called Warwick growl is over-hyped to a large degree. That said, I did find the $$ to be noticeably less growly than my old Corvette or any of the Thumbs I've played.
  4. SanDiegoHarry

    SanDiegoHarry Banned Supporting Member

    Aug 11, 2008
    San Diego, CA
    It seems to me that Warwicks are a bit of an acquired taste; You will find folks on TB who just LOVE them, and folks who really don't.

    I fall in to the latter category; I remember all the hype when they first came out, so I ran to my local GC and checked them out... Fat necks, heavy bodies... but nice looking with good tone... A buddy of mine bought one, held onto it for about 6 months then offered to sell it to me cheap... I didn't bite. Just not my thing.

    With all singular brands, there is hype - So to it is the case with Warwick... But there is some substance there - they can sound very cool.
  5. Ryan L.

    Ryan L. Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Aug 7, 2000
    West Fargo, ND
    I don't know that I'd say that it's over-hyped as much as I think some people are just expecting a lot more than what's actually there. I think sometimes it's more of a subtle thing than a huge, up-front, overly obvious thing. There definitely is a trademark sound with the Thumb basses and the Streamer SSI's and SSII's, and I would define that as a sort of growl to the sound.

    That said, I've found that, to my ears, the $$ basses are much less growly than other Warwicks--probably the most un-Warwick sounding basses they make when it comes to what most people consider the "Warwick tone".
  6. theaterbass29


    Nov 14, 2003
    Nashville, Tennesse
    Endorsing Artist: Aguilar Amplification, Sadowsky, D.Markley, Spector
    One thing that cant be denied about Warwick is the quality of the build. I have yet to see a Warwick, that hasnt been abused on a sales floor, or poorly taken care of by an owner, that didnt exude from incredible build quality, even on a mass production level. I do agree that the Thumbs have a unique tone, of which I have no idea what the secret is, but no doubt it has to do with the bass almost having more neck, than body. I believe that part of that tone is from Ovangkol, or Wenge necks and brass frets.
  7. when i had my 4 string $$ corvette, i didn't want to keep it because it didn't have the tone that people like dirk lance and the other warwick players have. that could be due to a multitude of other things, but it didn't do it for me.
  8. elBandito


    Dec 3, 2008
    Rotten Apple
    3 band eq was never an option on $$. The double buck is growly, but not in a traditional warwick way. You get alot more tone options, it's worth it.

  9. Earwigger

    Earwigger I'm a Roland man now.

    Aug 23, 2005
    Cleveland, Ohio
    The $$ sounds very traditional compared to other Warwicks. Mine growls pretty well (the NT) and some of the sounds I can get are really nice; it also sits in a mix far better then other Warwicks IMO.

    FYI, there's no 3-band EQ option for $$s except for one special edition which shipped to somewhere in South America (also had a piezo I think..).

    Some sounds I can reasonably replicate and that still sound great are below. How i did this was .. there are two switches for coil tapping. The neck pickup switch is listed first and the bridge is second and the positions are back (you would pull the switch towards you when you are wearing the bass) (b) ,mid (m), and front (f), and if I have the pickup turned off via the pan knob then a (-).

    P/J bass sounds (b/m)
    J bass sounds (m/m)
    51' P sounds (m/-)
    Musicman sounds (-/b)
    Lakland sounds (m/f)
    Thunderbird sounds (b/b)
    Normal P-bass sounds (b/-) (passive mode)
    EB3 (f/m) (treble cut)
    modern (MTDish) (f/f) with some EQ

    There are many more. They all sound great and usable in the mix.

    www.myspace.com/animatedrecords - the song Old Man was recorded in P-bass mode on my $$.
  10. RCCollins

    RCCollins Supporting Member

    Mar 23, 2008
    San Diego, California
    Strangely, they didn't have fat necks when they first came out... only since 99 or so

    and apparently they are switching back to the old, flatter neck profiles (if not back to wenge :( )
  11. Hammr


    Jul 11, 2008
    I have a Thumb and a Corvette $$. The $$ definitely has the Wick growl, not as growly as the Thumb though.

    B.t.w: The new "Corvette $$ LTD 2009" has the 3-band preamp.
  12. triggervision


    May 24, 2006
    Hammr just curious...which one do you find yourself picking up more? Thumb or $$?
  13. RedLeg

    RedLeg Supporting Member

    Jan 24, 2009
    Kaiserslautern, Germany
    Nov Shmoz Ka Pop?
    older thumb BO with wenge neck. The MEC's were lacking in my mind. I always had to roll on some bass on the 2 band. That and I don't like stacked buckers sound.
    This IS Growl. For those of you who have seen this bass posted on TB, sorry, I am still excited about the upgrade :)
    Delano JMVC's with aggy OBP-3 with selectable mids (400hz & 800hz)
    I too have tried the $$ and can get a wick sound out of it, but I think that if someone modified an older wick to a $$ they would have better luck with the wick sound. something about the ovangkol body and neck is lacking IMO.
  14. I would love to hear that thing if you have some sound clips uploaded or if you can, that would be quite nice.
  15. AngelCrusher

    AngelCrusher Supporting Member

    Sep 12, 2004
    Mesa Boogie, Tech 21, Taylor
    I had a Warwick Corvette for years. Awesome bass, but I hated how it sat in a mix. I'm simply just a Fender guy I suppose.

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