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New Bass Reccomendation

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by dpaulb, Dec 6, 2018.

  1. I have a 2016 Fender Deluxe Active Jazz Bass. It feels good and plays well but the tone of it doesn't sound good to me. Live or recorded it gets lost in the mix. It's muddy and too fat. The high end is clacky not smooth. This is all my opinion of course. It may sound just right to someone else. My wife is a classically trained pianist and flautist, she agrees with me. Whether the built in eq, amp eq, or any other eq it just isn't working for me. I've tried different strings (nickle round wounds, Labella Deep Talkin' Stainless Steel round wounds that i like the feel of a lot). My style varies... classic rock, classic pop, blues, classic country, jazz. What other basses should I look into?
  2. One more thing you could try is turning the bass EQ knob down 30-50% while raising the volume. Many onboard preamps have too much low end. That is, the bass knob at center detent or "flat" is still too much bass. This will have the exact effect you're describing. The solution is to get those low frequencies out of the way so that the natural midrange of the instrument can breathe. Then you just turn up the volume.

    If that fails then you could get a passive jazz or P bass and probably have no problems ever again.
    dpaulb likes this.
  3. dmt


    Apr 19, 2003
    Orbiting Sol
    That was pretty much my thought.

    dpaulb, have you tried any passive Precision and Jazz basses, and if so, what were your thoughts on those?
    dpaulb likes this.
  4. The thing is, buying a passive bass is going to be almost the same thing as doing what I described with turning down the low freq. It's likely that the sound OP wants is in there, just masked by an overbearing preamp. In a sense, an active bass contains a passive bass and gives options on top of that. The problem is that preamps usually have more than you need even in the flat position, but people are afraid to use it subtractively because it feels like you're nerfing the instrument. But that's how a passive bass would sound. What you're really doing is the heimlich maneuver on the poor thing.
    Combat Wombat and dpaulb like this.
  5. Nedmundo

    Nedmundo Supporting Member

    Jan 7, 2005
    This is consistent with my experience playing my G&L M-2500. While I normally prefer passive basses, I love the mighty M, but I normally cut the bass about 25% and I often cut the treble so it's barely on, with just a hint of zing. This avoids the dreaded "low boom/high click" tone I've sometimes heard from active basses that sounds terrible in a band mix IMO, but I still have all the clarity and power of the MFD pickups and 18v pre. (Of course, YMMV depending on the pre; the M's is three-band, so cutting bass and treble preserves midrange punch.)
    jd56hawk and dpaulb like this.
  6. Bagelish

    Bagelish Supporting Member

    Jun 4, 2016
    I tend to just recommend getting a Valenti. Best feeling and sounding basses (IMO), and can easily get any sound you're looking for and have a great classic / modern look.
    Kevdel and dpaulb like this.
  7. s
    I will try what you suggest today. I may also try boosting the mid whilst cutting the lows. What you wrote makes sense.
  8. This is my first active Fender. I may go back to passive. I have seen passive Fenders in a couple of shops and G&L Tributes in another.
    dmt likes this.
  9. Nedmundo

    Nedmundo Supporting Member

    Jan 7, 2005
    The newer version of your bass operates in passive mode, which was a nice change. I tried one last year, and thought it sounded great. I liked the relatively flat 12" radius fretboard too.

    Deluxe Active Jazz Bass® | Electric Basses
    dpaulb likes this.
  10. I have that version.
  11. Mark76


    Dec 1, 2015
    Given your wide ranging tastes in music and your wife's multi-instrumental skills you should absolutely start a Prog Rock band together :D

    Also, yeah, don't be afraid to cut
  12. Mark76


    Dec 1, 2015
    Also. Hmm

  13. jd56hawk


    Sep 12, 2011
    The Garden State
    Surely someone recommended getting one of these, right?
    Active when you need if, passive when you don't.
    I stick to passive most of the time, the MFD pickups are quite potent even without the preamp.
    Last edited: Jan 4, 2019
  14. basstones

    basstones Supporting Member

    May 24, 2005
    Houston, TX

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