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Everything posted by Osiris

  1. The Aguilar TLC is a very transparent compressor, which isn't a bad thing if that's what you're looking for. However, if you're looking for a compressor that adds some punch, character or tonal magic to your sound it's definitely one to avoid. If you're looking for those qualities the Cali is the obvious choice. But there's plenty of options available depending on the style of compression that the player wants.
  2. Hopefully it'll work for you as well as it works for me! And as with a comps, you're likely to notice or feel it more when playing along with other musicians or to some recorded music. Just ignore the Enhance control knob as it can get noisy, although I sometimes dial in just a little, around 8 o'clock, to add a slight presence to one of my darker sounding basses.
  3. I've not tried the Behringer myself, but it's a clone of the Boss LMB-3, which I have just been bigging up on another thread a minute ago . The LMB-3 a very underrated comp pedal IMO and a great starting point for those new to compression.
  4. I don't have any recent experience with the onboard Ashdown compressors so I can't comment. But I'm not surprised that you didn't get on with the Ampeg Opto-comp if you're looking for a fast attack because as its name implies, it's an Optical circuit that is doing the compressing. The main characteristic of optical comps is that they have an inherently slow attack time, relatively speaking, and tend to swell into the note as it crosses the threshold. They are often used on bass to make the tone bloom more, as it seems to be called, but like you I don't care for them personally. If you want a fast attack, one that you can use that to help clip the initial transient, which in turn reduces the initial attack of the note thus softening it a tough, you'd be better off looking for a FET designed unit. I believe the Cali 76 is a FET based circuit but not 100% on that! The Boss LMB-3 is also a FET based comp and a very highly underrated pedal in its own right. Over the years I've been all round the house with compressors and got down lost down the rabbit hole of multi-band comps with and without parallel compression as well as loads of pedal and a couple of rack units along the way. But I started with the Boss (if we ignore the hideous experience of my Trace Elliot SMX years, the dual band comp on that being about its only saving grace) years ago and thought to myself "oh, it's only a Boss, there must be much better options out there" so I moved it on and spent the next few years going through as many different comp options as I could get my hands on. Then I picked up another one a couple of years ago as a cheapy pedal to use at home. It was then I realised that on some level I'd been trying to get every other comp to sound like the Boss! It has a fixed attack and release, but they are perfect IMO, they're pretty quick (to my ear) but they are spot on for keeping the transient in check while still allowing the character of the bass to come through. They're dead cheap to pick up used, really simple to use and just sound great, big and punchy and they help the bass sit just where it should be in the mix.
  5. It could well be. Some compressors can darken your tone depending on what type they are (VCA, Optical, FET etc) and whether they're multi-band or not. The low frequencies in a bass signal have much more energy than the high frequencies, so assuming it's a single band compressor, when the signal crosses the threshold the compression clamps down on everything and pulls the highs and lows down equally by the ratio value. This results in a perceived loss of high end frequencies. It's not a fault, it's just how some comps work. If you're using the compression all the time you can just EQ some treble back in if you want it
  6. My experience over the years of playing with both fingers and a plectrum is that to get a similar tone when switching between the 2 techniques is to use a thicker plectrum. For me, a 2.0mm plectrum retains the depth of tone you get from playing with fingers but has some extra bite in the high end. Not all plectrums sound the same - I find that the thinner the plectrum, the thinner the bass tone is. And conversely, the thicker your plectrum the thicker your tone. In my experience anything under 1.0mm just makes the bass sound thinner and more guitar like. For year I used 1.5mm which have more tonal weight than anything under 1.0mm, but once I'd tried 2.0mm I knew I'd found the balance that works when switching between the 2 techniques without losing the depth and weight of the bass tone. These are my current go to plectrum, virtually impossible to drop and they don't suck any low end from your sound. Jim Dunlop 450P2.00 Prime Grip Delrin 500 Picks, 2 mm
  7. Me again. Just completed another easy peasy transaction with Ben, this time I bought a pedal from him. Bargain price, well packaged, fast and friendly comms and quickly dispatched. Awesome!
  8. It will. It's as inevitable as Thanos @ossyrocks This topic has been covered many time on Basschat as EZ alludes to above. It's definitely worth doing a search to see what turns up, but there is a lot of misunderstanding about compressors and compression in general so take some of what you read with a massive pinch of salt. But in short, no, you don't need one. BUT... if you understand what they do and how to use them then they will make your bass sound more consistent and polished, and, depending on which type of compressor you go for they can add a ton of punch and/or character to your tone too. FWIW, I always use them as it just makes the bass 'feel' better to me.
  9. Yeah, that was crap too, but it was cheap and very nasty - whereas the Trace rig was around £1200 even back then and had the bass response of a £50 mobile phone.
  10. I'm more than happy with class D amps and their light weight form factor. Yes, there are some that aren't so great but there are some that are. For the past 5 years or so I've been using a Genzler Magellan and it has all the heft - I might as well be the first to say it - that I need and then some. Very much a deep, clear and weighty sound. I also have the 350 as a backup amp and have gigged and rehearsed with it many times too and have never come close to running out of power or struggling to make the bass be heard, that's playing in a moderately loud pub/function band. Certainly no depth or projection issues at volume. I think I've posted this before but the most gutless amp that I've had the misfortune to own was a Trace Elliot SMX head through a pair of 15" Trace cabs, back in the early 90's. These amps seem to be regarded as something magical these days but I have no idea why, it was at best a 1 trick pony, virtually no grunt or projection in the low end or the low mids and a seemingly constant spike in the 2-4Khz region that got fatiguing on the ears really quickly. A million tone shaping options on the pre-amp but nothing that really translated through the speakers into anything other than trying to make you sound like a clanky Mark King wannabe, albeit without any noticeable low end in your sound. A truly awful amp, IMO and IME. And a couple of years ago I bought an Ashdown Little Stubby because we all 'know' valves are the best and that I must surely be missing out with my meager class D amps 😀. It was alright but nothing spectacular. It certainly didn't blow me away in the way that the internet had told me it would 😱🤷‍♂️😀. Trouble is that to get it sounding anywhere near what I wanted (classic 70's on the edge of breakup type rock tones) at home, the reason I bought it, you had to push it too hard and loud at to be unusable without annoying the family and the neighbours. But it wasn't loud enough to realistically use in a band context either. I'm sure it's a great amp if you're able to push it without annoying a lot of people around you but I wouldn't describe it as any sort of life changing mystical experience. Certainly nothing to sway me away from my Magellans. After returning the Little Stubby for a refund I picked up an Ashdown Touring 220 combo for a steal from eBay. It's an all valve pre-amp into (I think) a 220 watt class A/B power section - but I'm happy to be corrected on the technical details if that's not right. It's a much more pleasing amp to my ears than the Little Stubby was and the passive EQ stack is great once you get used to it. And as much as I highly rate the Touring 220 combo, it doesn't do anything, or have more heft or whatever, than my Magellans. We're all different, YMMV, horses for courses, each to their own, etc. Just thought I'd better get that in before the ratting of pitchforks starts 😁
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  12. That's probably it then, I married a sensible one but often yearn for a metaphorical one night stand.
  13. Agreed with all of that although the lack of a contour on the Mustang doesn't bother me in the slightest. The Sandberg (I'm still tempted to get Scratch-IT to make me a scratch plate with a photo of Lionel Blair on to fit to mine) is refined and oozes class and attention to detail in every regard. In contrast the JMJ feels much more uncouth - but it has a whole level of charm, character and an unquantifiable something about it that makes me pick it up more often than not over the 'Berg. To draw a particularly crap and inappropriate analogy, the Sandberg is the sort of girl you dream of marrying whereas the JMJ would do all manner of unhygienic things with you in a pub toilet if you bought it a Babycham and a bag of pork scratchings. Hope this helps.
  14. They're great basses, IMO although I recently sold mine - Yeah, I know, but only because I prefer my JMJ Mustang. Not noticeable neck dive but then again I use a 100mm wide leather strap with a suede backing so there's a lot of inherent resistance to neck dive. A few people online seem to moan about the stock pickups but IMO they were very good, clean and clear with classic Fender sounds on tap. I had mine modded to include a blend pot as the stock 3 way switch was too limiting, but the blend really opened up the tones available, my favourite being around 60:40 mix of neck/bridge. Slim jazz like neck profile. Very good basses, IMO, with bags more tonal character than the Performer bass which is twice the price but just sounded a bit bland in comparison.
  15. I've got no idea what the weight of a super light model would likely be but my ash bodied Lionel probably weighs less than 6 grams. I have to tether it to something substantial, like a drummer, to stop it blowing away in the breeze 😃
  16. I'd not heard of these before but they look like a great, reversible lower cost option. Having had a rummage around on their website, for UK buyers it's £9.99 for the sheet of low profile (0.02 mm) stickers as pictured in the above post. You need to add VAT at 20% plus postage from £4.99, so £17.98 all in. Further product details here. Glowtec also sell a couple of different UV torches to charge the dots up.
  17. As you say, it's about context. My band are weekend warriors, we carry our own PA and do our own sound. And while we all have enough knowledge and experience between us (150+ years collectively) to get what we think is a great, well balanced, and not stupidly loud sound from the PA, none of us are qualified sound engineers. But between us we've picked up a few useful tips and tricks over the years from performing and recording, with 2 of the band members having worked at professional levels. So what works for me in the context of my band is having my bass signal hitting the desk as ready to go as I can make it e.g. EQ'd to fit in with the other instruments, a touch of compression and HPF and that's pretty much it. That allows me to control my sound, including the compression, so that it's giving me what I want with little, if any, additional processing added by anyone else. We use a digital desk so the levels are saved and the PA usually only then needs to be tweaked to the room. But I appreciate that this approach won't work for everyone.
  18. I've been all around the houses several times with compressors and have in the passed used them set over the top, more as an effect, but back in a dad rock/sensible end of the metal spectrum band many years ago it was just the thing required when underpinning a pair of Marshaled up guitarists. These days I use much less compression but I always have some going on, more as a feel thing than an obvious effect, as my bass sound just doesn't feel right or sit where I want it in the mix without any compression whatsoever.
  19. Same here, I've had an account with them for 3 or 4 years now but have never seen anything on the Reverb site that I couldn't get cheaper, sometimes significantly so, from the various reputable online instrument shops. I've never listed anything on there to sell but my assumption is that their commission fees must be really high. Obviously that's only in regard to new items, anything used is up for the seller to decide the price and as we all know, some used prices are realistic and some are not. I have only ever made one purchase, a used pedal, but it was immaculate, at a bargain price and only a few miles down the road so I couldn't pass it up!
  20. Go for as thick a plectrum (as they were called when I were a lad 😀) as you can as different thicknesses sound different to one another. IME the thinner the gauge of plectrum the thinner your tone is. I play with a mixture of finger and plectrum during our set and a 2.0mm gauge allows me to keep the same EQ for both methods without losing the low end and lower mids, you just get more bite in the highs. A lot of guys on here seem to go for <1mm thickness but to me anything that thin sucks out the depth and weight from the sound and makes the bass sound more guitar like, which may be what they want, but I like my bass thick and chewy to underpin the rest of the band and 2.00mm is perfect for that. My current preference is for the Dunlop Prime Grip plectrum which has a 3D moulded texture so it doesn't slip from my sweaty hands. And don't cut out too many low mids with the EQ, it may sound great on its own but that's usually where the weight of the bass resides in the mix. If you're playing a jazz or other 2 pickup bass, a little push in the low mids adds a perceived thickness to the bass tone.
  21. Regarding drinks on stage, it was probably in the early 90's, the guitarist in the band I was in was taking his new multi-fx pedal out on its first gig. Sometime during the second set a drunk punter dropped his pint right on top of the new toy and that was the end of that 😟 Since then I've always used a plastic sports type bottle on stage and tried to encourage other band members to do the same. I don't care what other people think, it's a kind of insurance policy. Any drinks placed on the subs or other equipment get moved ASAP too whether the punters like it or not. And as someone has already said, take a spare everything, or at least as many spares as you can, everything from fuses to cables to basses and amps. If you gig long enough something will eventually fail on you. Learn to use your EQ. It's thankfully not so prevalent now but back in the day you'd often see people with their 150 watt combo running at 11 with the smiley face EQ curve wondering why their massive 30Hz boost wasn't shaking the room like an earthquake. It doesn't matter if it's your sound, if you're not audible in the mix then you might as well not be there. EQ a sound that works with the other instruments and works in the room too. It might not sound so sexy on it's own but it's not all about you - unless you're a guitarist, of course 😃
  22. @dmc79 I moved to playing short scale basses exclusively a few years ago due to a damaged nerve in my left wrist, if you're getting pain in your fretting hand it could possibly be a similar issue. But for me it meant that I could no longer play a 34" bass for more than a few minutes without cramping up. But once I'd tried a short scale I could play for hours without issues. The shorter neck, tighter fret spacing plus me being a bit of a short arse meant that it was a revelation and something I wish I'd have done decades ago. Every time I play a 34" bass now it just feels huge, unwieldy and awkward to play. If you're a Fender guy I'd definitely recommend at least trying a Mustang, you mentioned that you're not too keen on the looks, I wasn't either but once I'd played and owned one I was a convert. There's now a number of different models, each with their own tone and neck profile so there's likely one out there that would suit you if you're willing give them a go. My suggestion for classic Fender tones would be the PJ Mustang although it has more of a jazz profile neck which you may not like being a P man. If you want a chunky necked Mustang then the JMJ is the one. Budget hasn't been mentioned (unless I missed it) but as Maude says the Ibanez Talman is a fantastic bass, more so for how cheap they are. I've been playing for around 35 years now and the Talman is one of my favourite basses I've ever played. It's got a chunky Precision like neck and the PJ pickups may be just what you're after. Mine has had some hardware upgrades as the stock stuff is a bit cheap and cheerful, but you're talking about an entire bass that costs half of what a set of boutique pickups or machine heads would cost. But even so I've only spent another £50 or so on it. Yes it looks a bit daft, like one of the Mr Men has melted, and it's not overly light. But it's solidly built, mine resonates better than just about any other bass I've ever played, and the neck is very comfortable to play and would likely feel familiar coming from a P. As the lovely @Adee says the Sandberg Lionel is sublime, looks great, attention to detail everywhere and impressively lightweight. Its inherent tone is more like that of a 34" scale, some short scales can be a bit deeper and darker sounding than a 34" but it's nothing you can't EQ out if it's not your thing. As for stings, I still use 34" scale on my basses as I had a job lot in my box of odds and sods when I made the switch to short scales exclusively. Depending on the bass you may need to snip off 50 mm or so off them to get them to fit, and again bass dependent, you may get some of the fat part of the E sting (before it tapers) wrapped around the machine head capstan but I've been doing it now for a few years without any trouble or snapped strings. There's a few people online who'll tell you that you shouldn't do it but my experience tells me otherwise. The obvious thing to do is to try and get yourself to shop that has a few short scale models in stock and try as many as you can, hopefully one of them will be right for you.
  23. Ian has just bought and collected a bass from me. He's a great guy and turned up when he said he would, we chewed the fat for a while and he left with a new to him bass! So I'm more than happy to recommend him to other Basschatters. Enjoy the bass, Ian.
  24. Same here, I don't do full bore distortion, just a bit of low gain drive to warm things up, because not very deep down inside I just want to be Geezer Butler*. * Rather than George Roper.
  25. I do like the look of the Digbeth preamp, it seems to be well though out. The only that put me off getting one, other than a lack of video clips online, was the trauma that my first proper rig which was a Laney (amp, 4x10 and 1x15 cabs), back in the late 80's, which - other than the Trace Elliott SMX rig that replaced it - was the biggest turd of a bass amp that I've ever played through. But 35 years later I'm slowly starting to recover... So anyway, you think it's good so far?
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