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BigRedX

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BigRedX last won the day on April 18 2018

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About BigRedX

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  1. Your Mac doesn't need to be expensive. I'm running not quite the latest version of Logic Pro X on a 2010 MacPro that cost £650 second hand and that's only because it had 64GB RAM and a high-end graphics card capable of supporting 4 large monitors (I run 3). I've seen the same Mac with less RAM and a more sensible graphics card sell for about half that.
  2. In that case it's going to be much easier and what you will need to do is work on the chord voicings to give the best compromise between overall clarity and the notes you want to play. And a lot of the time it works best if you keep it simple. You don't need to play every note of the chord. Lot of the time just the root and an upper register note or two that define the melody will be fine. If you must use lots of notes try and keep the intervals between them as big as possible - i.e. more than a third.
  3. In the day when I owned A LOT of basses, I found that even though the ones I liked playing the most all had quite different string spacings at the nut and bridge, when I looked at the string spacing at the point where I plucked the strings they were all almost identical. The only time I've made a conscious effort to find a bass with the string spacing I liked was when I started playing Bass VIs. This is probably because most of them appear to be designed for guitarists and I'm approaching it as a bass player, and for me the necks are narrow even by guitar standards. However I'm sure that had I started playing these 40 years ago I would have adjusted to manage whatever I could find and (more importantly) afford. It's only now that I no longer have to put up with instruments that aren't exactly what I want through a combination of far wider choice, availability and disposable income.
  4. Are you a Window's expert? Are you happy setting up complex system configurations, or are you simply a switch it on a use it kind of person? While running a DAW under Windows is a lot easier these days, it's still not as straight-forward for most people running one on a Mac. You may be swapping one set of relatively trivial problems (a general unfamiliarity of the "Mac way" of doing things - although it's not that different to Windows these days) to a brand new set of potentially greater ones using Windows. Mac OS is designed to give audio the priority it requires especially when running a DAW. Windows, although better than it used to be, still does not without specific configuration and often 3rd party drivers. There is a reason why there is still a viable business providing music optimised Windows machines, while the same is almost unheard of outside of serious high-end Mac systems. If you determined to press ahead with the Windows route, than as Dad3353 has said, download some trial versions and see which one suits your way of working the best. Reaper is nice and cheap, but IMO you get what you pay for, and if you are after lots of options for processing and instrument plug-ins, you may find that cost advantage quickly disappears if what you want isn't available for free. As an example the cost of a Reaper licence plus a decent drum plug-in is pretty close to the cost of the whole of Logic Pro X which comes with nearly all the plug-ins that most people could ever want. If you are using your DAW simply as digital multi-track recorder and for processing recorded audio, then any DAW should have the facilities you need. Just find one that suits your way of working. If you intend to use a lot of plus-in instruments and be editing the MIDI performances for those, then you should be looking at a DAW that has it's roots in MIDI sequencing - Cubase, Logic, MotU Performer. HTH.
  5. I think it's probably more likely to be the player rather than any particular feature of a bass that makes chords on this instrument sound good. Chords play a big part of my playing style and I can't say I've ever noticed that they sound better on any particular type of bass. These days I play long scale 5 string basses in one band and short scale Bass VIs in another and both do the job equally well. From a playing PoV these are things I keep in mind when using chords: The more complex the chord the higher the register you are going to need. For simple two note chords I can go all the way down to the open low B string on a 5-string. As the chords get more complex I find myself needing either a higher register for all the notes or at least those that are the "less obvious" notes in the chord. Failure to do this results in a poorly defined mush no matter what the bass. Don't try and do everything on the bass. Use the arrangement of the music and the other instruments to add in the extra notes required. Then it's much easier to adjust the volume and timbre of each note to give the effect you are after. Think of the arrangement as a whole and not just what one instrument is doing in it. And of course that leads to the well-known fact that works when solo'd is not necessarily best when part of a bigger music picture. This more true than ever when playing chords on the bass. Work on the bass sound in the context of the whole arrangement not on its own.
  6. What exactly is the problem with the Mac that you think will be fixed by moving to a computer with a different OS?
  7. That's neither reliable nor low-maintenance.
  8. All my basses have been far more reliable and low-maintenance than any car I've come across.
  9. Are you a leader or a follower? So many players here seem to have picked their first instrument based on what their "hero(s)" played. I've never really felt like that. maybe it's because I see myself first and foremost as a composer/songwriter, secondly as a producer, and only thirdly as a musician. Also I've never really concentrated on just one instrument. I started on guitar and have also had spells playing synthesisers as well as bass guitar in bands. I'm interested in any musical instrument capable of producing sounds that I find relevant for the music I write. Also I'm not really interested in following the mainstream. That's not to say I won't be influenced by it (both positively and negatively), but I'm not intent or following it slavishly. I'll take on board ideas that I like and make a conscious decision not to be like bands I don't like, but all those influences get mixed up an hopefully something a little bit unique comes out of it. I'm very much the same when it comes to my choice of musical instruments. In many ways my tastes have been shaped by the "cards I have been dealt". My first guitar was an acoustic - my parents very much disapproved of "pop music" and this was as far as they were prepared to support my musical endeavours - that I modified over the years to incorporate pickups and various other things that would allow me to get closer to realising the music that I wanted to make. My first proper electric guitar was one I built myself during my last year of school when I really should have been working on my A Level studies. It was a mixture of originality and what I could afford. If I was influenced in my choice of instrument by the musicians whose bands I liked it was that the ones I found interesting (and noticed) all used non-mainstream designs. The guitar I built had obvious influences (Explorer, 345, Iceman) but the combination of influences made it a unique instrument. It was the same when I came to buy my first bass. It was a combination of what I could afford and a conscious desire not to have the same bass as everyone else. Ultimately it was completely by chance that I ended up with the bass that I did. I just happened to drop by a music store before I went back to university and hanging on the wall was one of the most unusual basses I had ever. Later research showed that it was actually a Burns Sonic from the early 60s, but in the state it was when I bought it I wasn't entirely sure that it wan't home-made. Probably the most important thing about was that I could afford it (if I spent a bit less on food for next couple of months), but it also looked interesting - particularly next to the Grant and Columbus copies. IIRC it cost £55 including the original had case and I persuaded the salesman to chuck in a strap as well. As an instrument it served me well throughout the 80s, and both it's strengths and limitations very much shaped my playing style and the bass sounds I would come to favour. When I finally decided that it time to "upgrade" in the early nineties having spent the previous years mostly playing synthesiser and guitar in bands I bought a second-hand Overwater Original 5-string. Again the choice was based almost entirely on cost (it was a complete bargain because apparently no-one else wanted it and the store was getting desperate to sell it) and the fact that it didn't look like any of the other instruments in the shop. Ultimately I have come to realise that I don't like "ordinary" looking instruments.
  10. For detail/delicate work you can't really beat a Dremel.
  11. I suppose it depends what you want out of live performance of the studio recordings. Myself, I'm very much a believer that, for rock and pop music, the arrangement is an integral part of the composition and to deviate significantly from the known recorded version can lead to audience disappointment. That's certainly been my experience with some bands - particularly Eurhythmics and Propaganda, who elected to replace the electronic perfection of their albums with a rather lack-lustre "full band experience" and were all the less impressive for it. If you want to try something different rather than subject your audience to massively altered versions of the songs they already love, then write some new ones in the appropriate style as Goldfrapp did when progressing from Felt Mountain to Black Cherry and play those instead.
  12. I don't get why The Doors felt in either necessary to have a bass guitarist on the records or not have bass guitarist when they played live. IMO they should have picked one instrumental line-up and stuck with it both on stage and in the studio.
  13. Last time I was playing guitar in a 3-piece band it was an acoustic fitted with a piezo under the bridge and a Schaller pickup screwed to the soundboard in front of the bridge. This was later replaced with an electric guitar in made myself in the woodwork shop at school while I should have been studying for my A levels.
  14. LOL... IMO "Heathen Earth" is probably their most accessible to the first time-listener who isn't already into late 70s industrial music.
  15. Fine for in the studio where they can be hidden away and so long as they have the musical ability nothing else is important. Unfortunately on stage is another matter. Unless your band has a big budget for hiring session players finding ones who also understand the importance of the band image and are willing/able to conform to it is IME very difficult. Even a simple instruction like: "wear black, no trainers or noticeable brand/band logos" appears to be too complicated for a lot of them to follow.
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