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Why dont Luthiers advertise there bass tones???

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by bubinga5, Oct 12, 2010.

  1. bubinga5


    Jun 6, 2006
    Ok im no luthier.. ....my point is why oh why do bass builders not show what there basses can do...im aware that alot of bass luthiers dont do it because of the choice that they give (ie different pups, pre amps.) but Mr John Shuker does it and he gives a wealth of choice...

    this surely is a good way to promote your instruments,.. letting people know what they sound like...Lakland do it....im baffled???

    Ok its this simple...

    sound samples

    Ash body with..... Barts or BL's :

    Alder Body with...Barts or BL's :

    Ash body with... LF,s or Nords :

    and all the variants... you get the picture

    it would bring in so much business surely...i want to know what these basses sound like... i brought a Sadowsky RV5 once and i really wanted to know what they sounded like. but i couldnt..ok ive got youtube but it aint the same... i wanted to know what a Sadowsky sounded like... i bought it blind in the end from you tube clips and good word...ok it was a bad ass bass..

    i will give you a great example of a great builder doing it...this is the only ive seen BAR Lakland... John Shuker...the best in Europe IMO... apart fro the incredible bass playing its the sounds of the basses ia want to here to want to buy a bass..


    is there any reason why Roger and other companies dont do this?..

    the only company that i know are Lakland and it is soooo helpfull, in the choice of a bass.....i just cant understand why these bass companies dont do it..

    Before you say it im aware that alot of these bass builders dont have there own pup or amp/preamp brands, but alot do and still dont do it..Sadowsky for sure...

    im hoping Roger, Nino, or Brian will chime in here...or even John S if hes watching..
  2. Dub56

    Dub56 Supporting Member

    May 28, 2005
    I have to say I agree with you, but understand why they don't do it as well.

    I personally agree that hearing sound clips from different builders would be great. A lot of the time, you can get a good idea places like youtube and in the case of Sadowsky, from players out there in live recordings and the like. I have to say I did find Lakland's sound clips useful, especially comparing between the Lakland models.

    However, one bass could sound infinitely different depending on the recording circumstances, amp, settings, etc. Part of the reason I'm guessing builders don't always put them up is because it would be difficult to give a pure example of what the bass sounds like. In the same way a bass clip could cause a buyer to pull the trigger on a bass, it could also cause them to turn away. As a builder, it would be more harmful to put clips up that advertise the sound of YOUR basses and represent them negatively than having no clips at all and just relying on reviews and reputation.

    That being said, companies that sell effects practically live on sound clips and demos from what I have seen. I mean look at Proguitarshop, they do demos of TONS of products, and they help people see what they're getting into before they buy. With something like that, I won't even think about buying until I've seen a sample and rundown of a pedal, or had the chance to try it myself.

    Who knows, it would be interesting to be able to know how often clips of a bass were a deciding factor in someone buying it.
  3. Rodent

    Rodent A Killer Pickup Line™ Commercial User

    Dec 20, 2004
    Upper Left Corner (Seattle)
    Player-Builder-Founder: Honey Badger Pickups & Regenerate Guitar Works
    I was doing it for a while - taking most of my new bass builds to a local studio and having several sound clips made for different genres and playing styles.

    it was a load of added work scheduling studio and artist time, getting the gear to the studio, ensuring that the instrument was not damaged in any way, getting gear back to the shop ... all time that could have been spent building other basses. add to this the cost for studio time, bassist time, digital editing time, and production time. thankfully I never had a customer build damaged in this process - I can't imaging breaking the news to a client that the bass I was about to ship them will now be delayed 6 weeks so I can have the neck/body refinished

    in the end I received numerous comments on how great my basses sounded - but to date I know of no custom order that is/was a direct/indirect result from all of that effort and expense. I wish it were possible to justify continuing to offer sound clips of my new bass builds, as I agree this has potential to be an excellent resource and reference ...

    one thing to consider: think of all the sonic possibilities that can be had with a simple passive J-bass. how could one sound clip ever come close to capturing all of this? it would be a disservice to those looking for a bass to lead them to believe that every J-bass will always sound like this one, very limited clip

    all the best,

  4. bubinga5


    Jun 6, 2006
    i so agree.. but if you you have a consistent build like say.. Lakland...i cant say for builders like Low End etc...I know i listen to Shuker bass and just on that few sound clips, i would certainly buy.....ok maybe its not a range of tones you can deliver, but perhaps its a showcase for what you can do, even if its not very specific...

    i know if i want by bass..i want to know what the bass sounds like...its a mine field to alot of new bassists who cant get to Namm or get to hear the tone of a bass and all the preamps...its a gap in the market that someone should fill...
  5. bubinga5


    Jun 6, 2006
    i so agree.. but if you you have a consistent build like say Lakland...i cant say for builders like Low End etc...I know i listen to Shuker bass and just on that few sound clips, i would certainly buy.....ok maybe its not a range of tones you can deliver, but perhaps its a showcase for what you can do, even if its not very specific...

    i know if i want by bass..i want to know what the bass sounds like...its mine field to alot of new bassists who cant get to Namm or get to hear the tone of a bass and all the preamps...its a gap in the market that someone should fill...inow..
  6. Tampabass

    Tampabass Going Viral By 2080 Supporting Member

    Feb 16, 2006
    Why do grammarians keep their craft under wraps?
  7. Jason Brown

    Jason Brown

    May 1, 2000
    SLC, UT
    Advertise where bass tones?
  8. mr.mow


    Feb 11, 2009
    Endorsing Artist: BBE/G&L Basses
    Magazines man..

    'Try the new Lakson bass, while the competitions tone is TONK TONK TONK, you will find ours to be a more pleasing DONK DONK DONK with a mid range tunable BENK'
  9. ric stave

    ric stave

    May 6, 2006
    Buffalo, NY
    Remember when magazines useta have those pull-out floppy 45 records?

    Why don't they do that anymore?
  10. Playing style of the player, strings, and recording method add so much variance that my guess is there would be as many turned off by a given clip as 'sold' by one.

    Even a player with a moderate skill set like me has a 'voice' that carries through all my clips that I'm sure some love and some hate.

    And +1 to the post above about a more 'mass produced' line like Lakland versus custom one off's. Much easier to post various clips of a standard design that is replicated (Sadowsky, Lakland, etc.) than totally bottom-up designed customs. However, even with the more standardized designs, the player's voice still greatly colors any clip.
  11. +1
    A luthier's time is better spent building. You want sound clips? There's YouTube and Vimeo, not to mention a bunch of other online resources.
  12. Then make sure you don't do ANYTHING different from the options on the bass they recorded.
  13. Greyfin10

    Greyfin10 Supporting Member

    Sep 16, 2008
    Panama City, FL
    Wouldn't you say at least 80% of the tone in a clip (or more) is player dependant? And if that's true, soundclips are more a measure of the player you get to record the samples. It seems like you could easily have a situation where an SX clip actually sounded better than a boutique clip... that's not to imply that the added value of a quality bass isn't important, just that a clip probably won't show it.

  14. Man, I wish I still had my Gibson Ripper floppy demo from around 1970. It was COOL!
  15. The reality is that a good luthier can tweek the sound..

    Botiques are not production basses.
  16. mndean


    Mar 20, 2009
    I would think it makes more sense for a small luthier to just find clips of customers using their instruments and direct inquiries there. It's a lot less work than recording demos. Manufacturers who are big enough can go the Lakland route if they want. It's amazing you can watch people demo'ing Fenders all day on YouTube, since it's hardly necessary.
  17. T-MOST


    Dec 10, 2004
    NJ via NYC
    I agree with the OP. I remember Warrior and F-Clef both had very extensive sound clips for their basses. They broke them down by woods, playing styles & pup selections. It's a lot of work to do this I'm sure but extremely helpful in understanding the tones available from their products. Of course the tones can change depending on who is playing the bass but you can atleast have a solid idea of what you are working with.
  18. kjpollo


    Mar 17, 2008
    Builders like Valenti, Atkinson, and Certain could probably do clips because most of their basses seem to fall within a definite range of body/neck/fingerboard woods and the body shapes are pretty much limited to P's and J's. Most of these basses use ash or alder bodies, maple necks and maple, pau ferro or rosewood fretboards. Not all, but most.

    Builders like Stambaugh, LeCompte or Clement would find it much more difficult to do because of the wide variety of wood types used and body shapes produced.
    These guys use all kinds of woods in all kinds of combinations. For example, my Clement is made from 7 different woods- 3 in the body and 4 in the neck/FB. :hyper:
  19. TRichardsbass

    TRichardsbass Inactive Commercial User

    Jun 3, 2009
    Between Muscle Shoals and Nashville
    Bassgearu, Music Industry Consulting and Sales. Tech 21, NBE Corp, Sonosphere.
    Many sites have artist clips on them. Phil Kubicki does, all by Vail Johnson. I'm not sure if it really sells the bass though. I play NOTHING like Vail, don't do the slappity tappity jazzalicous thing at all (I play punk, like the Clash and the Ramones) and if I were to buy it based on the sound clips I wouldn't have any. The Ex-Factor and Factor have killer tonal variety and I can get the sound I need consistently with a killer good neck and feel.

    I agree with others. Now, with YouTube et al, you can get better range of sounds, which are absolutely player and amp dependent. Sorry to disappoint most of the people here, but most of your bass sound comes from your signal chain. That is why many people here are as happy with slightly upgraded SX as the rest of us are with Made in USA boutique basses.

    While wood choice and construction can definitely help define a particular basses tone (think the difference between vintage Danelectro and say vintage Gibson EBO) merely upgrading a pickup or adding a pre-amp pedal will give you exponential changes in tone and character from the same instrument.

    My 2 pennies...
  20. JTE

    JTE Supporting Member

    Mar 12, 2008
    Central Illinois, USA
    Because sound clips don't tell me anything about what the bass will sound like when I play it. Witness all the pointless debates about "what bass is this" on an audio recording. Why should I expect that hearing something on the 'net with computer speakers be in any way similar to what it sounds like through MY amp with MY strings when it's in MY hands?

    It's an expensive waste of time that doesn't really tell you anything useful.

  21. Primary

    Primary TB Assistant

    Here are some related products that TB members are talking about. Clicking on a product will take you to TB’s partner, Primary, where you can find links to TB discussions about these products.

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