Make flatwounds sound like rounds

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by Johnny Mac, Oct 11, 2017.

  1. Johnny Mac

    Johnny Mac Riff-finder General Supporting Member

    Sep 28, 2005
    Springfield, MA
    I've been brainstorming ideas for a possible wet/dry rig. The dry portion I would like to keep the sound of my flatwounds, but for the wet side, I was wondering if there was a pedal that could make them sound more like rounds to push some extra harmonics into my dirt pedals.

    OD pedals on their own don't quite get me there - my Dunwich ODB is probably the closest of the bunch. Would something like the FEA Growler get closer? And given that FEA doesn't make the Growler anymore, is there anything similar on the market?
  2. An EQ pedal maybe?
    Honestly, I think it's probably easier making rounds sound like flats, instead of the other way around.
  3. Johnny Mac

    Johnny Mac Riff-finder General Supporting Member

    Sep 28, 2005
    Springfield, MA
    I don't think an EQ will get me there. It's more about adding harmonics than boosting frequencies.
    Sixgunn likes this.
  4. There is a bass (I forget the brand) that you pull a lever and the frets disappear into the fingerboard and it becomes fretless.

    So if they can do that, now they need to make one where you pull a lever and the flatwounds rotate out of the way, under the fingerboard and roundwounds rotate up into place. haha - should be a piece of cake to design a bass like that.
  5. boomertech

    boomertech Frank Appleton Commercial User

    Apr 8, 2009
    Syracuse, NY
    Designer/Owner of FEA Labs
    Try adding a little HF fuzz to your clean signal.

    nerkoids and Johnny Mac like this.
  6. LSMFT6

    LSMFT6 We brake for nobody Supporting Member

    Aug 16, 2006
    Which brand of flats are you using?
  7. micguy


    May 17, 2011
    This isn't really a fix for your problem, but that never stopped anyone from commenting before.

    I wonder how mant guys have doubleneck basses just so they can have flats and rounds on the same instrument.
  8. Johnny Mac

    Johnny Mac Riff-finder General Supporting Member

    Sep 28, 2005
    Springfield, MA
    Regular Ernie Ball flats, but I have a set of La Bella Gold Alloys on the way.
  9. TheEmptyCell

    TheEmptyCell Bearded Dingwall Enthusiast Supporting Member

    Jul 16, 2005
    Los Angeles, CA
    Maybe the Iron Ether Divaricator would suit your needs.
    HaphAsSard, Klonk and boomertech like this.
  10. Atshen


    Mar 13, 2003
    Grim Cold Québec
    I don't think you can add what's not there to begin with... and that's coming from a die-hard flatwound fan.
  11. PunkRocker33133

    PunkRocker33133 Supporting Member

    Feb 11, 2008
    Northern VA
    I use a Fender TBX for the tone pot in my P-Basses and it does this surprisingly well. I use it to make flats play better with overdrive.
    fritzk9, Pbassmanca and Johnny Mac like this.
  12. TerribleLiar23

    TerribleLiar23 Anti-Scientologist Supporting Member

    Oct 11, 2011
    Steel Leather
  13. boomertech

    boomertech Frank Appleton Commercial User

    Apr 8, 2009
    Syracuse, NY
    Designer/Owner of FEA Labs
    Excellent suggestion!

    Pbassmanca likes this.
  14. Member8675309

    Member8675309 Inactive

    Aug 19, 2017
    Nashville, TN
    Try some EB Cobalt Flats. They sound like rounds, seriously, they do. But, they're easier to dial in the flat wound sound. Like someone previous said, it's easier to make rounds sound like flats, but it's even easier to make flats that sound like rounds to sound like flats.
  15. lz4005


    Oct 22, 2013
    I would be amazed if anyone ever did that. Identical except for string type.

    When would you need to do a quick change within a song between flats and rounds?

    I've only ever seen two doubleneck basses where both sides were identical (Tim Commerford has a double J and Billy Sheehan has a double Attitude) and both of those were set up EADG/BEAD.

    Most other doubleneck basses I've seen, and I've searched out a lot of them over the years, have been either fretted/fretless or had different numbers of strings, or a combo of both. Occasionally different scale lengths or pickup types come into the picture too. But never just different strings.
    Pbassmanca likes this.
  16. Just, no...

    MYLOWFREQ Supporting Member

    May 13, 2011
    you can make the rounds sound like flats easier than the other way around. just put some rounds on and EQ the clean side.
    Nev375 likes this.
  18. veryvery


    May 23, 2016
    I second the Ernie Ball cobalt flats. Flats that sound like rounds.
  19. Gizmot


    Mar 22, 2009
    Nashville area
    I've heard lots of good comments about the Cobalt Flats - and maybe someday I'll get around to trying them.

    What I use - and what I recommend to everyone is Thomastik Jazz Flats. I like them so much that I use them on all my basses and I have for years.

    The Jazz Flats have excellent definition and detail while maintaining the solid low end and zero noise that you want with flats. They have super low tension and incredible feel too.

    The only downside is that they cost at least 2 - 3 times what other strings do - but if you consider how long they last, they're actually a pretty good value.

    Read all the reviews - T-I Jazz Flats are the real deal.
  20. You won't find a bigger TI jazz flat fan than me, but honestly they don't really sound like rounds to me. Sure maybe closer than some of the super thumpy brands of flats, but quite far off rounds IMHO.
    AngelCrusher and Pbassmanca like this.
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