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New Jazz bass sounds strange?

Discussion in 'Strings [BG]' started by Hollow Head Ted, Mar 26, 2015.


  1. Hollow Head Ted

    Hollow Head Ted

    Mar 26, 2015
    Okay, I'm going to start off by saying that I'm new to playing bass. So, maybe everything I saw is completely ridiculous and amateur, but I need help. Okay, so.

    I recently started playing bass. I played guitar before, and picked bass up because I was asked to be in a band and play bass, so I've been learning. I was borrowing a used Squier P Bass, and just picked up my own, a Squier J bass. I noticed that the strings on the J bass, right away, were more flexible and metallic sounding. So, I'm assuming that they are a thinner gauge than the ones on the P bass. But, as I got playing, I noticed that sometimes, while playing the J bass, that the frets didn't give the right tone, at all. The guitar is tuned, and everything, but something just doesn't sound right. I'll include a video of me playing Gigantic by The Pixies on both basses (the P bass being the one that sounds correctly), and you can hear where the J bass sounds different, and wrong. I really need help, guys!
     
  2. mmbongo

    mmbongo Five Time World Champion Supporting Member

    Aug 5, 2009
    Carolinas
    To me the Jazz bass sounds more right, it's more lively and almost twice as loud. The P bass sounds dull and muted.
     
  3. Hollow Head Ted

    Hollow Head Ted

    Mar 26, 2015
    yeah I know what you mean, but if you listen to the actual version of the song I was playing () you could see that when I play D then A, in the second fret, it doesn't sound like the original, I find te D string doesn't sound as high as it should or something.
     
  4. mmbongo

    mmbongo Five Time World Champion Supporting Member

    Aug 5, 2009
    Carolinas
    Well a Jazz bass won't sound like a P bass. Plus unless they have the exact same strings you really can't expect them to sound alike anyway.
     
  5. Hollow Head Ted

    Hollow Head Ted

    Mar 26, 2015
    fair enough, it just doesn't seen right that the tone is almost completely different when i'ts being played in the same fret. I think I'll take it to my local guitar shop, where I bought it, and see what I can do.
     
  6. Hollow Head Ted

    Hollow Head Ted

    Mar 26, 2015
    I think I may have found the solution, I found tabs playing the song another way and it sounded fine, but should I still get a heavier string?? for a less metallic sound?
     
  7. Hollow Head Ted

    Hollow Head Ted

    Mar 26, 2015
    here is me playing the original tab I had found on the P bass, and the newer one on the J bass
     
  8. tjh

    tjh Supporting Member

    Mar 22, 2006
    Minnesota
    Ted, if your strings are new, they will be very metallic sounding too .. give them some time and they will settle in ... also experiment a bit with where you are plucking the strings, and you will notice a significant difference in your tonal and tension response ...


    ... welcome to TB ;)
     
  9. Hollow Head Ted

    Hollow Head Ted

    Mar 26, 2015
    haha thank you, It's good to get some real advice from other bassists.

    But anyway, yeah I'll met my strings go through the new-string phase, and if I'm still not cool with the sound, I'll opt for some heavier strings
     
  10. Jazz Ad

    Jazz Ad Mi la ré sol Supporting Member

    Yes the metallic tone is from brand new strings. Just turn down your tone knob until they age a bit.
    As for your note issue, has the bass been setup and intonated properly?
     
  11. tjh

    tjh Supporting Member

    Mar 22, 2006
    Minnesota
    Ted, if is just too brittle sounding to bear through the break-in phase, you can stick a thin strip of foam under the strings just in front of the bridge to tame it down until they get some time on them, it will fatten up the sound for you too ... search 'foam muting' on here and you should find more about it if needed ... ;)
     
  12. chinjazz

    chinjazz Supporting Member

    Sep 11, 2002
    Atlantic Beach, FL
    Yeah, also g and d string notes in the first 2-3 frets can sound thinner depending on the gauge strings. If you want more meat on the note get onto the E string up some frets.
     
  13. Hollow Head Ted

    Hollow Head Ted

    Mar 26, 2015
    Update : I fixed the problem. I was using an electric tuner, so I wasn't paying much attention, and it turns out it was tuning as if I was tuning a 5 string, so it was telling me to tune them to a different tone than they should be
     

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