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Posted by Nicolas P (126.96.36.199) on February 21, 2003 at 09:54:51:
In Reply to: Best set up for slap bass posted by BassPhil on February 20, 2003 at 22:03:31:
I had the same problem when slapping my first (and cheap) bass. I loved to slap (and still do) the bass, but had trouble having a good sound specially when playing loud with a band. The quickest and cheapest way to get around this was to drop the mids way down around 500Hz. In my Hartke 2000 Trancient Attack amp (a relatively cheap amp, but I've liked it) I have a wide EQ to make the adjustments, so that helped me quite a bit. If you try this out, see that the sound doesn't lose it's bottom end or have too much of the highs, cutting everybody's ears off! The problem with this solution is that the sound get's a bit unclear, but that can also be a good thing in certain backing situations.
If you have a similar liking with me, a clear and precise tone, then I'm afraid you might need a new bass. When I finally got my Yamaha I couldn't believe the sound I got from it, one of the happiest days of my life, no kidding! If, or should I say, When you start looking for a new bass it's probably good to see what your favourite bassists use and find out what kind of features their basses have and compare them with cheaper models, if you don't have the heart to spend all that money, as they can be quite expencive. If I remember correctly a Victor Wooten Yin-Yang bass cost's something like 6 or 7 thousand dollars! Or at least the 5-string version did..? Also you can put a message on this board, of course, and I'm sure you'll get tons of good advice on what to get.
Sorry, I wondered of a bit, you wanted more immediate tips. One thing, a very important one, to good slap tone is having new strings! (Thou again this is about what you're looking for...) I know it's not cheap to be always buing new strings, so I will give you a tip on how to get old strings sound like new ones, thou you might know this already. The thing is to boil your strings. Yes, just drop them in water and let the water boil for a while. This will give you a sound more like with new strings, thou unfortunately they won't be quite as good as new, but still you'll notice a big improvement! WARNING: Do not boil the strings in anything you'll be using to cook afterwards! The strings might leave substances that you don't want in your food. Some may just wash up but I like to play it safe and use an old metal dish just for this purpose.
Different things work in different situations so I encourage you to try out all kinds of different solutions. I hope you try out something I have written here, too.
Keep the bass slapping! :)
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