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Looking for that Crazy Fretless Growl FX

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by Touch, Mar 13, 2003.

  1. Touch


    Aug 7, 2002
    Boulder, CO
    Hi Folks,

    Thought I would come over from the dark side (DB) and ask a question about effects for electric bass.

    I play 99% DB, but sometimes dabble on fretless bass. I have a couple of custom 4 and 5 string basses. They sound fine even without an amp but my amplification is a Rane preamp and a QSC power amp with a SansAmp in the signal chain. Mostly put this rig together for DB, but it sounds fine on slab too.

    Is there a bass FX unit that can add "growl"? Is that the right word for it?

    Is there an FX unit that fretless bass players seem to prefer? Does anyone have any sound samples of "processed" fretless?

    Thanks and I'll go back to the other side now.

  2. alexclaber

    alexclaber Commercial User

    Jun 19, 2001
    Brighton, UK
    Director - Barefaced Ltd
    I don't think there's anything that can give you growl - it's of those weird effects caused by a combination of rattle/buzz due to a low action and growly harmonics being enhanced by the bridge pickup. What's critical is digging in fairly hard fingerstyle near the bridge - are you already doing that?

  3. i think he means a bit more "Grit" and "dirt" than Warwick/Jazz tone "growl".

    I would say to get a nice little overdrive unit, but what is your spefic price range?
  4. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Total Hyper-Elite Member Gold Supporting Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
    I think there's one or two Multi-FX units out there that have a "de-fretter." The Zoom 607 and Digitech BP-200 will do it. Maybe the Boss GT-6B?

    Ooops, my dumb. I misread the question. On fretless, I just like to EQ in a bunch of mid. Try it. I've tried a Boss CEB-3 chorus, and it sounds pretty cool too.
  5. zombywoof5050


    Dec 20, 2001
    I like using a chorus with my fretless bass.

    This site has some sound samples of FX on fretless bass:


    I don't use a lot of effect with my chorus though, I only have it adjusted to give a nice full sound and I also use both outputs in stereo.
  6. Brad Johnson

    Brad Johnson Supporting Member

    Mar 8, 2000
    Gaithersburg, Md
    If you have dual pickups, solo the bridge. Sometimes neck pickups can mask growl. Also watch how you strike the string... the angle can make a big difference. Another thing to watch is the fretting pressure of your fretting hand.

    As far as FX units... nope, not in my experience.