tone needs help

Discussion in 'Ask Michael Dimin' started by thebassmuchacho, Sep 29, 2003.

  1. Im a bassist who has had lots of trouble finding that growl tone that i have come to love and fantasize about. Im talking about the tone that has that certain growl when you play those lows and still has the clear highs on it too. I have an ampeg head with the adjustable eq and cab, so im pretty sure i got the right equipment, but i just dont know how to get that grrrr i need. Thanks alot

    the bass muchacho
  2. Mike Dimin

    Mike Dimin

    Dec 11, 1999
    Clinician: EA, Zon, Boomerang, TI. Author "The Art of Solo Bass"
    Tone comes from each part of the signal chain. It starts with your fingers - how you attack the bass, moves onto your strings, pickups, preamp, amp and cabinet. Therefore:

    Look at different ways to attack the bass. Look at your finger placement, how hard you dig in, etc

    Try different sets of strings. A set of stainless round wounds will give you much more attack then a set of nickel Flats. The MTD strings and TI Powerbass seem to have a lot of oomph to them. I am sure there are others, I am just not familiar with them.

    Are you using a good cable? Cheap cables can really steal dynamic range from your signal

    Set your bass EQ flat, Play with the EQ on the amp. I am not really familiar with the Ampeg set up, but make very subtle changes in one bandwidth at a time. Plan on spending a few hours JUST working on the EQ. Most EQ's have SO much variability that you can really screw up the sound as easily as make it better. Make changes slowly, build your sound in increments. You will also learn a great deal about your amp in this way.

    The sound is in there (mostly in your fingers). Take the time to find it. Work slowly. make notes of the things that work and those that don't. You talk about having
    , this will often come from the midrange. It is your midrange that provides the tone that cuts through. Look at those frequencies from the low mids (200hz - 800hz) and hi-mids (800hz to 8k) for answers