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How to dial in this bass sound?

Discussion in 'Recording Gear and Equipment [BG]' started by Peppers, Mar 11, 2018.


  1. Peppers

    Peppers

    Mar 11, 2018
    There is this bass sound that I hear in a lot of music that I listen to, but messing with tone controls, different picks, input levels, I still cant get anywhere close to this type of sound

    Stereolab:


    It's nice, clicky, picked sound...

    Klaus Johann Grobe:


    Forever Pavot


    Almost like a jazzy upright sound...but picked

    Julien Gasc



    My setup:

    Fender PJ Mustang Bass, everything stock
    Focusrite Scarlett USB interface
    Amplitube running on ableton with various ampeg bass amplifier emulators

    I know one of them uses a semi hollowbody...I hope thats not key to the sound or anything. If anyone could maybe steer me in the right direction (pickup selection, amp and tone settings to set, strings, technique) I would seriously appreciate it. I just really like the sound and it goes with a lot of different elements that I like.
     
    Last edited: Mar 11, 2018
  2. Mcgiver69

    Mcgiver69

    Sep 28, 2005
    England
    All I hear is a Pbass with flatwounds played with a pick and the tone pretty much in the middle. Then you apply a LP filter to remove all signal from something like 60hz-80hz and a HP filter to get remove some high frequencies too (maybe around 6k??)
     
    Iofflight likes this.
  3. Wasnex

    Wasnex

    Dec 25, 2011
    The bass sounds significantly different in each video to me. I would agree that flat wound strings are common to the sound, but I believe there is significant variation in plucking technique: some picked, some finger style, some muted.

    You can get a lot of variation in tone by moving the position of your plucking/picking hand. Try using your neck pickup and experiment with moving your plucking hand slowly from a position midway between the bridge and neck to a position over the 12th fret and note how the sound sounds.

    The video with the muted bass sound was probably plucked a little closer to the bridge than the others. The muting can be done by placing foam or some other dampening material under the strings or using the palm of your plucking hand to mute the strings while playing with your thumb like a pick.
     
  4. Jazz Ad

    Jazz Ad Mi la ré sol Supporting Member

    Generally the tone of picked muted strings.
    Stick a sock under your strings, use a thick pick, done.
    Flats can help, too.
     
  5. Peppers

    Peppers

    Mar 11, 2018

    Yeah actually I think its just the fact the stock strings (Fender .045's) on my mustang sound horrendous to me for some reason. I usually play in a very similar position to what you just described, I think l flatwounds like you said might be a step in the right direction. Thanks for your reply buddy. Off to get some flat's I guess.
     
    Wasnex likes this.
  6. Peppers

    Peppers

    Mar 11, 2018
    I will definitely try the LP filter thing, thanks for the reply, ex guitar-player here just getting started experimenting with different bass tones.
     
  7. Ender_rpm

    Ender_rpm

    Apr 18, 2004
    St. Louis MO
    Also keep in mind your Mustang is a shorter scale bass, which will tend to have a "tubbier" sound.
     
  8. Peppers

    Peppers

    Mar 11, 2018
    Thanks everyone! I'm trying all the stuff out you guys suggested, and actually getting sounds I like out of them. Slapped some La Bella flatwounds on that sucker and stuffed a sock above the bridge and getting some cool muted, deep, thumpy sounds. I actually think I'm going to get some sort of dampener though. I mean, it sounds great and all, but I don't think my Simpsons Duff Beer sock hanging out there is doing my bass any favors aesthetically.
     

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