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Most modern bass tone debate.

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by BackonBass13, Mar 13, 2014.

  1. I am always in search of the most modern bass tones. What basses would you put in this list?
  2. catgut


    Jan 15, 2014
    Seattle, WA
    How about the tone 2 seconds ago? What do you mean by modern? To me it means compressed and sterile. Clicky clack string noise $12,000 basses made from endangered trees. You may want to define some parameters for the folks.
  3. skwee


    Apr 2, 2010
    I know this could start a throwdown, but I feel that pickups + electronics + EQ + amplification have way more to do with the tone than does wood & strings. An old bass with the right combination of the above mentioned things will sound modern, but a new bass played through a vintage Ampeg or direct will sound like the seventies.
  4. freatles


    Jan 9, 2014
    Semantically, "modern" was an era that ended somewhere between the 1960's and 1980's, depending on who you ask or read. "Post-modern" started to pop up somewhere around 80's.

    Co-incidentally, around there synth-bass-lines started replacing ebass lines.

    Perhaps you need to look at contemporary electronica to find the freshest bass tone?
  5. Dingwall, zon, Ibanez, Sandberg always seem to sound pretty damn modern...And as said all those boutique basses made out of Rudolf the reindeer's horns, laced with some other material unknown to man until the creation of the bass in question:p

    "modern" bass tone always seems to make me think of a bass with an active on-board EQ, 24-26 frets, more than 4 strings usually with extended scale. Deep lows, high crisp highs, and a midrange (to me) which leaves much to be desired.
  6. Hobobob

    Hobobob Don't feed the troll, folks.

    Jan 25, 2011
    Camarillo, CA
    Get yourself a neck-thru 35" scale 5/6 string with either a graphite or 5/7/9/whatever piece neck with some pretty & exotic wood species. Use EMG X series pups and electronics. Plug into a rig that's either super flat or scooped in the middle mids just a little, like a GK MBFusion or a Genz-Benz Shuttle/Shuttlemax. Use just a touch of very transparent compression ala MXR Bass Comp or Empress.
    Voila, modern tone.
  7. peledog


    Jul 9, 2010
    San Diego, CA
    There's a debate?
  8. Mystic Michael

    Mystic Michael Hip No Ties

    Apr 1, 2004
    New York, NY
    MTD 534/535/536
    Peavey Cirrus (and maybe the Millennium)
    anything by Ken Smith, except perhaps the Burner

  9. I think the amp is going to have at least 50% influence on your tone. But for the bass a MusicMan Stingray sounds modern to me. Did back when it came out and still does today.
  10. I think this is a pretty great answer, if you want specifics.

    To me 'modern' only really means clean and hi-fi; so, not wooly in the low end, and plenty of upper mids and treble/presence (available, if not necessarily dialed all the way in).
  11. Matthijs


    Jul 3, 2006
    Actually modern is not about a certain time frame. Modernity refers to the idea technical innovation is always better. In bass-tone terms: technical innovations give the possiblity to produce more lows and highs, so the new-hip tone you should use is one with a lot of lows and highs.

    Post modernity is about the idea that we're past that: technical innovations are not always better and sometimes less (technology) is more. Post Modernity has been around since the 60's.

    Well this stil all semantics that are not helping the op. I think he ment the most hip/or new sounds. Not referals to the basses with biggest, larger than life, 80's sound. Wich is getting old for a lot of us.

    What I think is the forefront of new sounds now are those bass builders that manage to recreate oldschool sounds with just a subtle touch of new finesse and hifi quality to them. Like the De Gier basses Richard Bona's using, or maybe Dingwall.

    The other really new thing are probably those Dubstep noises my son produces on his I-pad.
  12. What do you mean by "modern," OP? It can mean any number of different things to different people.

    I mean, in terms of bass tone, I think of it as meaning something very, very clean, with lots of brittle top end, and not as much midrange as in the 60's and 70's. Ironically, it seems more bands I see these days are using bass tones more like those of the 60's and 70's, whereas "modern" bass tones were more popular in the 80's and 90's, making them... well, not so modern anymore.

    Or just bass that goes "wub wub wub wub"
  13. bass nitro

    bass nitro

    Feb 21, 2011
    To me every bass with electronics has "modern" sound.I think that you should ask if this modern sound is better compared to classic P,P/J or J passive-basses or not ( i mean if you do not like it) ?Have Ibanez SDGR 1000e - good bass probably it had been very modern and stylish one back in 90's but to my present taste it is sounds a bit muddy and somehow artificial.This modern sounds you talking about is set of bass pickups,strings,amps and players ability to make good tone out of these things not only basses produced -let say after 90's.
  14. mongo2


    Feb 17, 2008
    Da Shaw
    A good place to start is the '51 Precision with roundwounds.
  15. Zooberwerx

    Zooberwerx Gold Supporting Member

    Dec 21, 2002
    Virginia Beach, VA
    +1 on all 3 counts...not too sure about the Millennium, though.

    My most "modern" 5 banger is an MTD Saratoga import (MIK) which just goes to prove that the apple doesn't fall far from the tree.

  16. Fuzzbass

    Fuzzbass P5 with overdrive Supporting Member

    This is absolutely true. I had a MusicMan Cutlass I, which was nothing more than a Stingray with a graphite neck, and it sounded little different than a standard Stingray. Steinberger basses don't sound plastic... back when they were popular I heard many players get traditional tones out of them.
  17. Fuzzbass

    Fuzzbass P5 with overdrive Supporting Member

    Again, it's pickups, pickup placement, electronics. When I think modern I still think of Alembic, Ken Smith (the ones with soaps rather than J-style pickups), the Sadowsky Modern 24.

    And... it might surprise you, but the bass below (Nordy custom) has the most modern sound of any I own when all four coils are on simultaneously.
  18. BassChuck


    Nov 15, 2005
    You want the most modern tone? No problem. Forget about style, music, rhythm, harmony, lyrics, melody and all that other stuff. Just go to the bar that features the most modern 'sound' and see what the bass player is using. Talk to them during the break and ask what they are GASing for. Then buy that.
  19. Bitterdale

    Bitterdale Natural Born Lurker

    Dec 4, 2010
    Ocala, FL
    Man, that is beautiful.
  20. BowserBass


    Jan 18, 2012
    I would love to hear some sound samples of this. Looks interesting.