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One Final Compressor Question From Me...

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by IcedEarthWOM, Dec 30, 2005.

  1. IcedEarthWOM


    Oct 2, 2005
    Will a compressor fatten up my tone or will it just even out my playing.

    After this, and depending on the answers, my rig will be determined....

    BTW I must thank all of you here for putting up with my questions.
    Thanks :D
  2. Tedintheshed

    Tedintheshed Banned

    Oct 8, 2004
    Columbus, Ohio
    Depending upon the compressor, it can do one or both.
  3. Ben Clarke

    Ben Clarke Liquidating to fund a new business. Buy My Gear!

    Jan 6, 2005
    Western NY
    Or neither!
  4. Helstar


    Nov 26, 2005
    Depends on what the compressor was designed to do I think that my Digitech does just because of the way it was designed
  5. fretlessrock

    fretlessrock Supporting Member

    Aug 8, 2002
    The "tone fattening" thing is going to be a toss up. It could help but it depends a lot on the signal coming out of your bass and any other gear in the signal chain. It can even out the dynamics in your playing, but that still depends on your playing style.

    I consider compression a tool, and it isn't always the right tool. It also can require other adjustments in your signal chain to sound good. Just throwing a compressor onto your pedalboard and hoping for some magik is a good way to be disappointed and come away with a bad feeling about compression.

    I'd suggest trying a few and if you are looking for a "fatter" or "warmer" sound then check out an optical unit like the Demeter or the JoeMeek, for example.
  6. IcedEarthWOM


    Oct 2, 2005
    If It helps all I have in my chain now is a noise gate. I've been down-sizing my bass rig :eek: All my other effects including my wah just seemed to work better with my guitar :meh: So the other day I decided that one of my new years resolutions would be to make myself a bass rig from the ground up.

    My bass is some generic piece with both a P and J pickup. the P is in the neck pos and is the only one I use now. I also rolled off the tone knob. BTW turning off the J and rolling the tone killed the high squeel I was getting. Man I hate single coil pickups :scowl: :spit:

    Hell, I even re-eqed my amp and discovered that cranking the bass sucks the volume level. The bass is now flat, the mids are boosted a little, and the treble is cut completly. Suddenly the only GAS I have is for a compressor (if it'll do what I need) and a SansAmp Para Driver (cus of the mid knob).

    Are there any other effects that can give me a fatter sound? I've ruled out synths and octavers because of tracking error problems and the fact that I would like to keep the rig as analog as possible. I like the tone I have now and just want to make it "fatter" :D
  7. Tedintheshed

    Tedintheshed Banned

    Oct 8, 2004
    Columbus, Ohio
    Did I ever thank you for educating me on compressors? :)

  8. fretlessrock

    fretlessrock Supporting Member

    Aug 8, 2002
    I can really feel the love, Ted. Anytime, bro.
  9. IcedEarthWOM


    Oct 2, 2005
    Just finished fiddling with my wah and found that I'd set the Q too high by accident :oops: :eek: :scowl: :mad: :rollno: :bag:

    I origanally took it out of my rig because it was giving me some squeeking during the attack time of the note :( . To correct it I rolled off the tone knob, but then found that I couldn't get the "wah" sound I had before :( :( . When I had it set up before it wasn't doing that, but I'd forgotten that I'd played around with it using my guitar :oops: :bag: I'd givin it a higher Q because it sounded better but forgot to change it back :oops: :scowl:

    The low-pass effect I get from rocking the wah back gives me the fatness I was trying to get :D AND I can wah with it :D :D AND get a more trebbly cutting tone rocking it forward :D :D :D

    Now I just need to get a limiter to controll the speaker damaging "click" sounding attack when I use a pick. I think I almost blew my eardrums when I first did that :(

    Oh BTW a very heartfelt thanks :D to fretlessrock for all the recent compressor help (even though I won't be getting one :scowl: )

    EDIT: man with all the smilies in this post I should probably be known as the Smilies King :rolleyes: :D :bassist:
  10. PhilMan99


    Jul 18, 2003
    US, Maryland
    A clean compressor will mostly even-out the volume-peaks. On the other hand, something like the DigiTech "Bass Squeeze" will add tons of *meat* to your sound.

    If your looking for that hefty/thick bass you get on a lot of recorded music, for me, getting away from round-wounds and going with flatwounds is "step 1". After that, I like to use my Bass PodXT to provide:
    * Amp modeling (colors the sound)
    * Speaker/cabinet modeling (colors the sound more)
    * Distortion modeling, based on a simulation of the SansAmp
    * Compression

    If you want "meat", I'd start with your strings and distortion. By distortion I do NOT mean a Jimi Hendrix big-muff (!), but something more subtle like the gentle overdrive you get from a nice tube-amp.

    The main way a compressor adds "meat" to your sound is by allowing you to crank-up the low EQ, and compensate for the low-strings sounding so much louder than the high strings.
  11. My feeling is that a pure compressor will not in itself fatten up your tone. But, by squeezing your dynamic range, it may allow you to adjust other parts of your rig (namely your amps EQ) to make a bigger sound without causing distortion or overexcursion.
  12. luca


    Nov 22, 2005
    Try using a low ratio (2:1) and a low threshold, to get a 6-8 dB attenuation for a fattening effect :)