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Got a P, want more grind or clank, get a J?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by boristhespider7, May 16, 2019.

  1. boristhespider7


    Jan 27, 2008
    Love my P, the low mid hump and that classic P bass tone.
    However i'm on a quest for less high end roll off, more grind and clearer "piano" like tones.
    Should i get a J? Will it give me that? Not planning on ever selling the P, but pondering adding a J to the collection

    Also love Geddy's tone, a classic Ric tone (but will never afford a Ric) and some classic 80s tones that i'm fairly sure that were produced on a J eg. OMD, Skids etc
  2. MCS4


    Sep 26, 2012
    Fort Lauderdale, FL
    A j-style bass is typically going to give you a tone that is more flexible than a p (due to the inclusion of two pickups) and is potentially less mid-range-heavy (particularly if you run both pickups full on). Neither bass should have any high-end roll off unless you use the tone knob to roll off the high end. Neither bass should be "clearer" than the other unless you happen to interpret the mid-range focus as impacting clarity. It is possible that you might interpret a less mid-range-heavy tone as more like a piano.

    "Grind" means something different to everyone, but I would not say there is any objective reason why a j would offer "more grind." If anything I would go with the p for that.
    Arthur U. Poon, TH63, ScotRFM and 8 others like this.
  3. Koshchei


    Mar 17, 2019
    Peterborough, ON
    Start saving for that Ric.
  4. buldog5151bass

    buldog5151bass Kibble, milkbones, and P Basses. And redheads.

    Oct 22, 2003
    A P has more of what people usually refer to as "grind". A J will give you more top end. But before you spend the dough on a bass, consider trying some different strings. What is on the bass now?
  5. stingray69

    stingray69 Talkbass Legit

    Aug 11, 2004
    St Louis Area
    Sounds like a PJ instrument might be what you're looking for.
  6. Gaolee

    Gaolee Official leathers tester and crash dummy

    Angry piano = Thunderbird with stainless rounds.
    GonePlaid, chuckNC, activa44 and 23 others like this.
  7. Sid the Kid

    Sid the Kid Supporting Member

    Jun 7, 2013
    I’d recommend a fresh set of stainless rounds in a lighter gauge than you are used to.

    Less tension = more “grind and clank” in my experience.

    I usually don’t equate P bass and piano tone. A Jazz will get you closer to piano tone, where the P bass will always sound meaner if provoked.
  8. JRA

    JRA my words = opinion Supporting Member

    any instrument + competent pickups + piano-like strings = "piano like tones"
  9. mbell75


    May 23, 2016
    Rickenbacker-like tones (check the demos) on a budget, even kinda looks like one. Killer bass, especially for $399

    Epiphone Embassy PRO Bass
  10. Gaolee

    Gaolee Official leathers tester and crash dummy

    Those are Thunderbird pickups, so that works too.
  11. micguy


    May 17, 2011
    The P bass has a low mid hump (which is different on every string) due to the pickup location - that location gives you a comb filter, which means there are a lot of dips and bumps in the frequency response of each string, but the most prominent one is the low mid hump. Adding the second pickup, a J has a different comb filter (again, each string has a different filter) when both pickups are on. It has a dip (on each string) about the same frequency that the P has a hump, and a hump an octave higher. Then, more dips and humps ad infinitum.

    A P has more low mids than a J. But, an octave higher, the J has more higher mids.

    One zigs where the other zags. They're just different. And of course, one of them, if you dial back a pickup, hums. But I digress.
  12. mbell75


    May 23, 2016
    True, except most people don’t want to deal with the massive body and long neck on a T Bird. Not to mention the Embassy has a P nut width while most every T Bird has a Jazz nut width. Also, the Embassy features a blend knob which is preferable to the T Bird volume/volume/tone controls.
    mouthmw likes this.
  13. mongo2


    Feb 17, 2008
    Da Shaw
    For me grind and clank brings the Ibanez ATK to mind immediately.
  14. bolophonic


    Dec 10, 2009
    Durham, NC
    As suggested above: try some new strings.
    truebenjaman, oZZma, SJan3 and 2 others like this.
  15. mikeswals

    mikeswals Supporting Member

    Nov 18, 2002
    Seattle / Tacoma
    Grind? not even close.
    its get more 'Bonk'. turn up the tone knob and it's either bonk bonk bonk or gong gong gong depending on the strings. :D
  16. Holdsg

    Holdsg Talkbass > Work Gold Supporting Member

    Sep 10, 2009
    Alta Loma, CA
    Stingray for clank. It was made for that tone.
  17. Admiral Akbar

    Admiral Akbar

    Mar 12, 2013
    New York
    If you like Geddy Lee’s tone on Moving Pictures - then yes, there’s plenty of grind and clank there, and yes it’s most likely an early ‘70’s Jazz Bass (1972).

    I love Precisions, but I find the grind of a jazz bass (especially with a maple fretboard like Geddy’s) sooooo alluring and fascinating!
    HardNHeavy and JoshS like this.
  18. cableguy


    Jun 4, 2009
    North Bend, WA
    Spector Euro would fit the bill. Ultimate grind.
  19. Chrisk-K


    Jan 20, 2010
    Maryland, USA
    The 40-100 SS Hi-Beams on any bass will give you grind and clank.
  20. mbell75


    May 23, 2016
    Don't forget that the AMP is very important in that sound too. "Grind" and "clank" is Ampeg SVT all day.

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