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Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Sonic, Dec 3, 2002.

  1. Sonic

    Sonic Lord of the Grump

    Hey guys, I was just wondering for my own amusement(and the fact that I need one:D), whatwould you say is the bass with the best mid-range sound to it. I just joined a band that oplay a lot of tool stuff, so I'd like to know. Thanx

  2. Geoff St. Germaine

    Geoff St. Germaine Commercial User

    From what I hear, Wal is one of the best.

    That is what Justin Chancellor plays as well, so go figure.

  3. Sonic

    Sonic Lord of the Grump

    thanx geoff, but I don't have big $$ to spend, if I did, I would probably buy a Wal.
  4. joetiii


    Oct 27, 2002
    Under a grand, I'd say you would want to check out a Warwick in Wenge or Bubinga.
  5. Brian Barrett

    Brian Barrett

    Nov 25, 2001
    Murfreesboro, TN (Nashville)
    Dealer LowEndBassShop.com, Builder LowEndBasses.com
    well if your talking about a grand why not save 200-300 more and buy a used wal.

    Wal 4 string's run around 1200-1500 tops! 5 string for some reason bring quite a bit more, anywhere from 1600-2000. 4 string's aren't bad though.
  6. PollyBass

    PollyBass ******

    Jun 25, 2001
    Shreveport, LA
    I have asked this question so many times it's not even funny. Go do a search, and you will find my thread on midrange basses. Wal's are the god of midrange. But, i don't have those bucks. for awesome midrange, the consenus seems to be that jazz basses have a buttload of it. Rickenbacker basses have AMAZING midrange. But i found my own little midrange glory. the Ibanez ATK. Tons of midrange. It's amazing....it should hold me till the rick comes......
  7. Bryan R. Tyler

    Bryan R. Tyler TalkBass: Usurping My Practice Time Since 2002 Staff Member Administrator Gold Supporting Member

    May 3, 2002
    I also think that Ric's are probably the best midrange-y basses out there.
  8. Oysterman


    Mar 30, 2000
    When questions like this come up, I always ask "which PART of the midrange?". Mids range from (approx.) 250-1000 Hz... where e.g. Stingrays live in the lower region and Ricks in the upper.
  9. geshel


    Oct 2, 2001
    Exactly. As far as "bass guitar" midrange, Tool recordings have very little. Both Paul and Justin used a pretty much "smiley face" EQ. Lots of low-end, and a good deal of chiming high-end. The high-end is somewhere in the "mid-range" of the audio spectrum (500Hz to 2 or 3kHz), but when you say "mid-range" to a bass player, it probably means something lower. IOW, the frequencies that the midrange knob on my basses alter. (250-800Hz).
  10. Hugh Jazz

    Hugh Jazz

    Sep 13, 2001
    Atlanta, GA
    Justin mainly has a lot of high-mids in his tone (700 Hz-1.2 kHz).

    Some basses (other than Wals) that might help you get there are:

    Stringray/Sterling (From what I know, a Stringray5 or a Sterling in series will give you more mids, but I'm not quite sure on that.)
    Fender Jazz
    G&L L-2000/2500
    Warwick Thumb/Dolphin

    Other than Warwicks, a good bass with a maple top and ebony (or maple) fretboard will help you get the high-mid/high-end snap that you need, as will using a pick.
  11. I second that notion! thta's why ive got a pair of 'em.
  12. Stingray 5s and Sterlings have serious midrange bark and growl in the series (neck) or single coil (middle) pickup selector positions. You can pick up either used for less than a grand. The G&L L-Series basses have great growly mids as well. These can be gotten astonishingly cheap on the used market.
  13. PollyBass

    PollyBass ******

    Jun 25, 2001
    Shreveport, LA
    I always thought stingray's and the like leaned more to the "Scooped" thing than any bass ive heard. sure, it has that thin HONK that gets on my nerves,,, but hey,,, it cuts...never considered them when looking for a midrange bass. But i do lean more to the high mids anyway. so i'll just shut up know.....BUT NOT BEFORE I THROW IN ANOTHER VOTE FOR THE IBANEZ ATK. high AND low midrange.... by the BUTTLOAD. let's see,,,,who can vouch for me.... Hey Oysterman.... you got an atk don't ya? what do think of the mids one it???..oh wait,,,,, you took out the stock pickup,,,,,, NEVERMIND.:eek: :p
  14. PollyBass

    PollyBass ******

    Jun 25, 2001
    Shreveport, LA
    I agree with you. they DO use alot of midrange, but it is highmids. from looking at justins rig in person, i can tell you it does. It is sorta a scoop,,,, but not really. instead of a "smiley" think of A smiley with a Slice rather than a valley in the middle.

    (think freq 650 BAD everything else GOOD)Even a little sharper of a eq cut. Because i use alot of high midrange, I lost the low end i wanted, so i turned ou putting the highmids in, and cranking that "40" slider. not a good idea...... it took a comprmise. I should record some stuff for you guys. i think this rig i have (sounds weird i know) hs more midrange than anything else ive ever heard. God, can we at least say we like midrange? LONG LIVE MIDRANGE! LONG LIVE MIDRANGE!........God i need to get out more......
  15. The stock wiring of the Stingray 4 is parallel and it's a bit on the scooped side for sure. The 5 and the Sterling have single coil and series options and have way more midrange than the parallel setting. The ATK sounds remarkably like a Stingray 5 in series to me. :D
  16. ldiezman


    Jul 11, 2001
    Yes I would have to Say a Stingray or sterling has some Dark Mid range growl..

    The MTD Kingston has some good midrange growl for less than $500
  17. PollyBass

    PollyBass ******

    Jun 25, 2001
    Shreveport, LA
    He said his band liked to play alot of tool. so i guessed he wanted high mids. thats what i was basing my opinion off of. True, i forgot the fact that justin from tool used a musicman before he found that wal's had a ton of more midrange.... but i still say he never played a ATK:D
  18. Hugh Jazz

    Hugh Jazz

    Sep 13, 2001
    Atlanta, GA
    Exactly. I haven't played either much, but the parallel stingray tone sounds QUITE scooped to me. It's got a ice thud with a clanky/tangy Zon-like sizzle in the highs. Great for slap, but not my cup of tea for fingerstyle.

    Pollybass: IMO, the "bad" frequencies would be 300-550 Hz. I have an M-2000 (which Justin uses himself), and the graphic EQ has the following sliders: 50, 80, 180, 300, 600, 1.2k, 4k, 6k, 8k. The rotatory EQ knobs are Bass: 50, Mid: 700, High: 4k for the tube side. Not sure about the SS side, but they're somewhat similar, except for the semi-parametric bass. MadSubwoofer could probably fill in the SS side knob frequency centers.

    Anyway, what I have found is that the 300 pretty much sucks when it comes to getting a Tool like sound. The 180 is not a great frequency either, as boosting it kind of muddies up the tone, and cutting it makes it a lot thinner, but gets you closer to the Tool sound. You have to be careful with it, as too much will make your sound lose all the power. So a slight cut in the 180, a boost of the bass below that, a reasonable cut at 300, and slight boosts at 600 and 1.2k will get you in the ballpark. Plus I always keep the midrange knob (700 Hz) maxed out.

    Basically, a cut in the mid-mids (250 < x < 600) and a boost in the high-mids (600-1.2k, the main points being in the 800 Hz region) will somewhat simulate that sound. A low-end boost and slight low-mid cut would probably help out.

    Since this is pretty much a Tool-related thread, it may help to look at the electronics of the Wal:

    The preamp assigns each pickup a low pass filter, and each "setting" of the knob (i.e. 1-10) changes the cut-off frequency. What this means is that if you pickup is on 10, then the frequency spectrum is flat (or relatively unaffected). But say you keep it at 3, which has a cut-off point of, say, 250 Hz (I'm just making that up), then what will happen is that everything ABOVE 250 will be cut by 10-12 db per octave. If you pull up on the pickup knob, then the preamp will boost the harmonic "at or near" the cut-off point, meaning that a narrow band at ~250 Hz will be boosted, and everything higher than that will be cut.

    Both pickups have this on them, and I think the frequency points vary, i.e. the bridge pickup is the "treble" pickup and may have higher cut-off points, while the neck pickup is the "bass" pickup with lower cut-off points. Each also has the boost thing.

    Then there's a blend knob, so you can blend the tone of the two different pickups and get a whole slew of sounds. I'm assuming Justin sets his bass pickup to around 100-250 Hz and boosts the cut off frequency, then sets the treble pickup to more or less 800-1.2k and boosts that cut-off point as well. I'm pretty confident that he boosts the treble knob, because when he turns the knob back and forth, it creates a wah-like effect (The Patient). With my BTB, I can do this by maxing out the mid boost knob and then playing with the frequency knob. Without a boost (or with a cut), the effect is too subtle to get the nice wah Justin gets, so I'm pretty sure he boosts the treble cut-off point.

    Oh, almost forgot, there's also a pick-attack switch (pull up on the master volume), which boosts a narrow frequency band in the high-mid/high region to simulate and/or accentuate the attack of a pick. I think he probably uses that too.

    Anyway, as you can see, he has a lot of stuff going on for his sound, and it's difficult to get all that going with a "normal" bass, as the Wal is simply a beast with a big range of sounds. And they have the biggest, baddest midrange known to man. And those two reasons are exactly why I'm going to get myself one... at some point....

    Hope that helped. :)
  19. PollyBass

    PollyBass ******

    Jun 25, 2001
    Shreveport, LA
    Bingo. Thats the same way i set my amp up. I was trying to say it's just those mid mids. right in the middle of the eq. i did draw a little font explaination, but it got screwed up so i just said it was a sharp valley in the eq rather than a "scoop".

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