Picks vs. Speed......

Discussion in 'Technique [BG]' started by ZenG, Dec 30, 2013.

  1. ZenG


    Dec 13, 2013
    Near the fridge
    Anybody else notice the type of pick can determine 'speed of pluckability"?

    I have half a dozen different picks laying around of different thicknesses, lengths, shapes and flexibility......

    Of these there's only one I use on a regular basis...

    (Brand name looks like "DAVA".....partially covered with a rubber coating)

    Ordinary guitar picks seem to slow me (Like when I'm making a fast multi-note run-up etc etc) up as do other shorter thicker bass picks....

    Some picks I have are only good for plucking one note and little else.......

    Just posting this for those that are new to bass guitars......
  2. BillyB_from_LZ

    BillyB_from_LZ Supporting Member

    Sep 7, 2000
    I'm generally a finger player (although I always use a pick when I play guitar).

    For fast stuff (like Motorhead Ace of Spades) I use a more flexible pick. I use a much thicker pick for something like Symphony of Destruction.

    I like the sound of a pick...only marginally content with the sound of "me" playing with a pick.

    Something to work on in my spare time. That and to refine my technique so my right arm doesn't want to fall off after playing Ace of Spades. It shouldn't be that tiring!
  3. I've been using DAVA picks for about ten years; first on guitar, now on bass. I like being able to pinch them to "dig in".
  4. ZenG


    Dec 13, 2013
    Near the fridge
    I've read discussions on other sites about all the different materials people have tried for picks.

    Some good...some not so good (materials)

    I think the bass and guitar pick development is still in it's infancy......

    I can definitely see some revolutionary picks down the road in the future.......:)
  5. Bassdude15


    Feb 26, 2013
    Dunlop Ultex 1.4mm all the way baby!… when I can actually find one in my house that is…:meh:
  6. Tortex are the fastest that I've found, material-wise, but they sound very pick like. Really no way to nuance it out. For less of a pick sound, I've found that Gators work better, though they aren't quite as fast.

    Also, for many years, I only used heavy picks, but I've recently found that medium and even some lighter gauge picks work better for the fastest stuff. For me, less resistance equals faster.

    These days, I use a little of everything. Light, medium, heavy, felt... It's fun to mix it up and experiment a bit. My fingers are coming along, too, but I don't know that anybody is ever gonna call em fast.
  7. grendle


    Mar 4, 2011
    Central FL
    It's all what you get used to and what works for you. Seen picks go from ultra thick ( frock pick) to ultra thin and new point designs ( diva control) and everything else in between over the years. I prefer thinner picks for bass and thicker ones for guitar actually.
  8. Dan_reeves


    Jun 14, 2013
    Been trying some Mick's Picks that I got for Christmas. Both are really thick, but one is a green rubber type material, the other a felt material.

    They are both super thick but have give, so the attack is different. Haven't decided if I like them or not. When I pick I usually use 1.5mm Dunlops. Blue with grip.
  9. GabeXLeouz


    Jan 1, 2014
    Have you ever tried wooden picks? They are my favs, You get the best bass sound in my opinion, it doesn't get the crying sound from the metal ones, and a such better deep sound from the plastic ones
  10. Picks, like just about everything else in the bass world, are a personal preference, subject to experimentation until you find what's right for you. I prefer Dunlop Big Stubby 2.0mm picks. Made of lexan, I find them very quiet without the 'clackiness' a thinner pick makes when hitting the strings. I also like Dunlop Jazz III picks for electric guitar, but when it comes to acoustic guitar I like the large triangular Dunlop Tortex .50mm orange picks.
  11. I like the Dunlop Triangle Stubby 3.0mm right now. I've not been more satisfied with a pick than I am with these as they are very easy to manipulate for different sounds. I believe the speed thing is a matter of how hard and smooth the pick is and has little to do with thickness.

    As for those wood picks, I've always been curious about them, but at $20 a pop it's likely to remain a curiousity...
  12. GabeXLeouz


    Jan 1, 2014
    If you try them you are going to love them, but yeah thats true is very expensive, and you have to add that roundwood strings are like sandpaper for the wood picks so like in one month or two you would have nothing left from the pick :bawl: but the sound is just amazing :bassist:
  13. ImNotJoel


    Jan 12, 2014
    I personally use pick only guitar I am a strict flesh on string purist in the bass world BUT if you want to use pick for tone or if you injured your fingers great but I always hear bassist switch to pick for speed I recommend checking out technique for one I alternate my fingers I will let's say pluck and flick not just alternate but use the back of your fingers too takes time to keep the sound even but its beneficial if you like the finger sound but go to pick to just play fast
  14. ryco


    Apr 24, 2005
    I've been working on using a pick over the last few months to round out my tool box. Have gotten to the point where I don't drop them and where they are not spinning in my fingers so I end up not using the pointed end. So far like using a big stiff triangular pick I've had for years, a Fender tortoise medium, and one that is a light medium with a rubber grip with "cool" written on it. Like the Dunlop 1mm too, but the wife steals them to use on her guitars.

    Mostly wanted to devote the "all downstrokes" method ala Dee Dee Ramone that the punks swear by. Pretty damn tough to do above 170 bpm. Was watching him on YouTube and he's not playing as steady live as on record because he's jumping up and down putting on a show as well (which is fine). Makes me wonder if he was really able to do only downstrokes in the studio; or if he used up and down strokes or maybe was ghosted. Granted the studio tracks are a little slower. Have read in a couple of threads "up & down" is the way to go to avoid carpal tunnel syndrome.

    Also working on galloping, like in the intro to Deep Purple's Highway Star.
  15. FretlessMainly


    Nov 17, 2010
    For years I've been exclusively a finger-style payer on bass, but I got this set a few years ago and I've been using them off and on:


    It does seem a bit over the top, but it works out to ~$3.50 each and I really like most all of them.
  16. I´m actually faster skipping strings finger style (strict alternating with floating thumb technique) but I love the sound of a pick for certain songs and riffs.
    I used to use the yellow tortex pics(.73), then the purple ones (1.14) and right now I am happy with dunlop big stubby (2.0) I find I´m more accurate and faster with the thicker pick, experiment with the gauges ! I also like to play guitar and found I prefer the speed and accuracy of the thick 2.0 pick.