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Getting a metallic, trebly tone?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by EXILE03, Mar 11, 2013.

  1. EXILE03


    Jan 19, 2013
    Vancouver, BC
    I want a tone that is clangy and metallic, yet still clear and punchy, sort of like a Gibson G3 or a high-output P Bass. What are the key factors in achieving that sound?
  2. Steel strings.
  3. DerekG

    DerekG Supporting Member

    Mar 9, 2006
    SF Bay Area
    First and foremost, new, stainless steel, roundwound strings. Second, don't eliminate the bass from your tone. Otherwise it won't sound like a bass. Third, experiment with where you play on the bass itself - most likely from the bridge to about half way between the bridge and the neck will give you the tone you're after. Then, add effects/outboard preamps, etc. But start with new strings.


    Jul 16, 2009
    low action on your bass, nickel roundwounds, boost treble on either your bass or amp. Also, running direct often lends itself to clank.
  5. wmheilma


    Jan 5, 2010
    Try D'Addarrio Pro Steels. They are affordable and very very bright! I did not see if you are trying to get this live or in the studio. If it's for live, use a cab with a tweeter in it. If you don't have a cab with a horn in it, work with the EQ on your amp. Add frequencies 4K, 1.6K, scoop 600hz, put some boost in the low end where it is punchy and not muddy for your rig. You also did not say if you have an active bass which might help.
  6. chuck norriss

    chuck norriss Banned

    Jan 20, 2011
    Equalizer. Pick near the bridge. Ss rounds. Ibanez atk.
  7. Jim Carr

    Jim Carr Dr. Jim Gold Supporting Member

    Jan 21, 2006
    Denton, TX or Kailua, HI
    fEARful Kool-Aid dispensing liberal academic card-carrying union member Musicians Local 72-147
    P-bass, Stainless Steel Round Wounds, stiff pick near bridge, powerful amp (~500+ watts into 4 ohms), good cabinet(s) with 410s or more and a horn/tweeter. Pound it. Wear ear protection.
  8. EnviroMetal


    Feb 16, 2013

    exactly what I am doing and it gives such a clear and cut-through-the-mix sound.
    Squier MF Sig, Hartke Lh500 amp, Fender Rumble 410 cab, Rotosound 66s

    my bandmates love the sound and so do i
    If ya want some clanky but still hold true to a bass sound that is a great setup
  9. Korladis

    Korladis Banned Supporting Member

    High mids will give it that really clanky sound.
  10. ejt


    Feb 29, 2012
    My sound changed dramatically when I went to biamping. Having 15's for the low frequencies and 12's for highs with an active crossover made it possible to layer crisp high end over a fat bottom end. Out of everything I've done, it's made the biggest difference in sound, giving me a combination Tool and Entwhistle vibe which is exactly what I'm after. Biamping is a financial consideration, because you need a suitable preamp, stereo power amp or two amps, and probably separate cabinets, but IMHO it may be the best way to get the sound you're after. I play Ernie Ball nickel steel roundwounds, use a pick, and have my Yamaha BX-1 humbuckers on the "parallel" setting, which gives a more trebly sound but still has plenty of punch. I'm pretty sure that it's a "parallel/series" switch; don't yell at me if I'm incorrect! I also recently got a DOD stereo graphic EQ so now I'm separately equalizing high and low frequencies, which is a bonus. My goal sound-wise is to have chunky ringing highs with teeth-rattling lows, and I'm pretty much there but always experimenting. I'm planning on trying Ernie Ball stainless steel strings soon, and am in the process of making some stainless picks in different gauges to see if they give an even better attack than celluloid ones. You're after a pretty cool goal, EXILE03, and good luck!
  11. P-bass...Steel Strings, tone knob cranked. A la 90s punk!
  12. ^^THIS^^
    Pro Steels are extremely bright and trebley. Love 'em!
  13. I played a Stingray with brand new rounds on it last week.
    Easily the most metallic sounding bass I'd ever played.
    Wasn't a fan since that's not my style, but it was all the guy had in his studio that wasn't a 5 or smashed.
  14. ejt


    Feb 29, 2012
    Thought I'd jump back in. I made the switch to Ernie Ball stainless hybrid slinkies and they sound even better than the nickels. I'm also using my home made 26 gauge stainless steel triangular picks shaped like a Fender 355. It is an awesome sound and I couldn't be happier. We'll, I'd be happier if I was a better player but that's for another thread.
  15. stonewall


    Jun 14, 2010
    Stingray for sure will get the job done DI out to board 12 oclock bass, amp and board channel clanky metallic city done deal..
  16. JoshAILD


    Mar 9, 2012
    Burbank, CA
    Endorsing Artist:Tech 21, Ibanez Basses, Line 6 Wireless, DR Strings
    Sansamp Bass Driver.....EQ Flat, Gain at 2-3 o'clock. Blend with gainy SVT Classic (VERY subtle OD pedal in front; i use an Ibanez ts9 tube screamer set very low). Steel strings. PASSIVE Jazz/P bass.

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