Jump to content
Left leaderboard
Sign in to follow this  
bassatnight

High End Fretless Question Wal Vs Pedulla Buzz

Recommended Posts

I am toying with buying a high end fretless, my heart tells me Wal but my brain (and wallet) are plumming for a Pedulla Pentabuzz.

A second hand Wal will cost around £2500 and a Pedulla about half that, is a Wal really worth twice the price my ears do not hear a great deal of difference, I know Mark Egan goes for Pedulla. Any Thoughts?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I played a GWB-35 the other day, no longer made and about 400quid second hand, but honestly it was effortless to play, and I have never heard a better fretless tone, so why bother spending all that much? Killer looks and never-go-out-of-tune tuners too!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

[quote name='dc2009' post='1371315' date='Sep 13 2011, 12:56 AM']I played a GWB-35 the other day, no longer made and about 400quid second hand, but honestly it was effortless to play, and I have never heard a better fretless tone, so why bother spending all that much? Killer looks and never-go-out-of-tune tuners too![/quote]
Because you obviously haven't played the pedulla :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

[quote name='dc2009' post='1371315' date='Sep 13 2011, 12:56 AM']I played a GWB-35 the other day, no longer made and about 400quid second hand, but honestly it was effortless to play, and I have never heard a better fretless tone, so why bother spending all that much? Killer looks and never-go-out-of-tune tuners too![/quote]

well said Dan, i ve owned a pedulla buzz, great bass and great sound sold it and got a gwb35, sounds fantastic and i wish the tuning pegs where on all basses.
to be honest im gonna get (in future) a roscoe fretless to match my fretted one
never tried a wal before, but im sure they are quite fun to play too,if i had to choose one i would def go for the pedulla.
another great fretless for me are the marleaux i regret i ve sold mine.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Both are very well made and I susepct the main differences lie in the feel (my Wal has a slab of ebony on the neck whereas the Pedullas I have looked at have some kind of high polish on their necks) and the electronics. The Wal has a distinctive mid-dy tone that is different to most other basses, albeit its pretty versatile (I can get a convincing DB or dub sound as well, so its not just about the mids). I really like my Wal and am only selling to free up funds

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I had a Pentabuzz and it was excellent. Really singing fretless tone with loads of mwah and sustain. Nicely voiced eq as well. Only got rid of it as I wasn't using fretless much at the time. The polished fingerboard is a bit of a moot point. Mine needed to have the fingerboard dressed and I got the guys at Overwater to do it - but that meant the epoxy type stuff had to come off. I thought about having it re-coated but to be honest I didn't notice any massive difference in sound (maybe lost a little bit of high top end) so I didn't bother.

Big thumbs up for the GWB35 as well - I've got one and they are a bargain. Great fretless tone. Not as nice as the Pedulla but great for the price and for how often I needed a fretless. Very light too. Narrow string spacing tho and now I'm using fretless a lot more I'm hankering for something else with a bit more room.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Two entirely different basses with different USPs. Other than both being quality instruments made by great luthiers they have little in common in their sound, feel or construction. The Pedulla is all about the small body shape, all-maple through neck construction and the coated fingerboard, whilst the Wal is mostly about the pickups and pre-amp.

For me the Wal has more of the sound that I want from a fretless bass but all the Pedullas that I've played have felt better. To that end I now own a Pedulla Buzz fitted with an ACG filter pre-amp. It's not as good sounding IMO as a Wal but it's a good enough compromise for me.

However the only way you'll know what is right for you is to try both instruments and make up your own mind.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

And the reason that's there's such a second-hand price discrepancy between the two is because for some reason the Pedulla Buzz doesn't hold it's value very well (no idea why as it's a high quality instrument) and the Wal until recently was technically out of production and therefore the only models on the market were second-hand ones. Plus Wal has a handful of big name players with distinctive tones (although two of them aren't really representative as one did the majority of his well-known work on a different bass and the other's tone is as much dependant upon the amps and effects he uses as it is on his bass).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It's all down to the sound you want to achieve. The best fretless I've owned for replicating a double bass sound was a Zeta Crossover. The fretless I currently use that gives me the sound I like (Alembic) in a carcass I like (Aria) is an SB900 fitted with AXY pickups and an A/E1 tone circuit. The SB started out fretted, but I had the original touchboard replaced with an ebony one. Circa £700 in parts and labour to make a bass I loved the feel and playability of to sound much cleaner across the whole output spectrum and more focused in the low end.

With Pedulla, all the examples I've played have been fitted with Bartolini pickups, so is that the biggest part of the sound you're hearing? Would you prefer another design but with those pickups/tone circuit? Again, with Wal, from the two that I've owned, the pickups being very much biased towards the mid range with a slightly distorted top end was probably the biggest factor of the sound. From what I can see, Overwater build similarly high quality instruments, but with a less limited sound, with used examples picked up for a third of the price of a Wal.

As I said, ask yourself what it is you want to achieve with your sound, as, for me, Pedulla and Wal are chalk and cheese.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have owned both and there is something to say about each one..
Wal basses are a bit harder to play, the neck isn't as "fast" as a Pedulla but there's a distinctive tone which is its trademark.
I found that the sustain on certain Wal-basses wasn't as good as on other fretless basses like for instance a Pedulla or a Lefay.
I've been playing Pedulla-buzz basses for quite some time and I really like the sound, its sustain and the feel of their necks..
I sold my fretless Wal because of the sustain but now I have again a Pro defretted because I do miss that special Wal-sound..
Both fretless basses do sound different in the clips I have recorded so it all depends on your personal choice..(I do wear stockings in the second clip)


Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

[quote name='wombatboter' timestamp='1315922652' post='1371928']
I have owned both and there is something to say about each one..
Wal basses are a bit harder to play, the neck isn't as "fast" as a Pedulla but there's a distinctive tone which is its trademark.
I found that the sustain on certain Wal-basses wasn't as good as on other fretless basses like for instance a Pedulla or a Lefay.
I've been playing Pedulla-buzz basses for quite some time and I really like the sound, its sustain and the feel of their necks..
I sold my fretless Wal because of the sustain but now I have again a Pro defretted because I do miss that special Wal-sound..
Both fretless basses do sound different in the clips I have recorded so it all depends on your personal choice..(I do wear stockings in the second clip)



[/quote]

Wombatboter,

I posted on your Youtube link also...

Great playing! Really enjoy your melodic sensibility.
Question for you....seems that your Wal is very punchy...is it so in itself or do you have your amp adjusted to gain this? I have Wal 5s and they don't have the immediate attack/pop you have. Curious how to acquire it as I play with a light touch and want that fast attack/punch. I do get close by adjusting my amplification...but it's interesting as I still don't get that immediacy. I can quite easily on my Zon fretless...

Thanks.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

[quote name='JakeBrownBass' timestamp='1315867164' post='1371264']
My bass tutor uses a fretless 5 string Pedulla Pentabuzz and it is easily one of the best basses i've played.

IMO one of the best fretless basses ever produced.
[/quote]

Wal fretlesses are very fine instruments, especially if you have one that is a little brighter sounding. For a standard fretless tone - soft highs, lots of deep mids Wals will do it easily and with bags of sustain. They're very organic sounding basses.

Pentabuzzes are also fine instruments, however I suggest replacing the bartolinis with something more neutral, avoid the Pentabuzzes with soapbars as the sensing field of the magnets is weaker on the G and B strings at the end of the pickups. You may also like to consider a preamp that allows you to dial in and boost the mids for extra control. An East Pro preamp with mid sweep would be ideal.

I guess the clincher is, you could get a Pentabuzz to sound like a standard fretless but you'd never be able to get a Wal to sound as bright and singing as a Pentabuzz with the mods I've mentioned above.

The other thing I'll mention as an owner of a Pentabuzz is that I managed to get a gentle feedback effect onstage with one of my GK RB700 tiltback combos. It was like having a sustainer and was one of the most intensely satisfying live playing experiences I've ever had. There was warmth, loads of growl and soaring highs. The mwah was very slow and the notes literally felt like they were blossoming under my fingers. Utterly intoxicating...especially with stereo chorus and a touch of delay.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

[quote name='bassatnight' timestamp='1315866939' post='1371259']
I am toying with buying a high end fretless, my heart tells me Wal but my brain (and wallet) are plumming for a Pedulla Pentabuzz.

A second hand Wal will cost around £2500 and a Pedulla about half that, is a Wal really worth twice the price my ears do not hear a great deal of difference, I know Mark Egan goes for Pedulla. Any Thoughts?
[/quote]15 years ago those same Wals would be a fraction of the price of the Pedullas, funny how that changes. Personally I'm not blown away by Wal quality though I find the electronics stunning. Every Pedulla I've played has been top notch construction wise but with a more familiar electronics package. The Wal is tonally very versatile and the Buzz comes with either PJ, JJ or soapbars in standard sizes that are easy to change.

Either will do a great job but I've seen some buzzs selling quite cheap. I'd go for the Buzz today, tomorrow who knows :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

[quote name='JakeBrownBass' timestamp='1315872019' post='1371316']
Because you obviously haven't played the pedulla
[/quote]

Amen!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I still think after all these years of playing loads of great fretless basses, the one that stands out that I've never owned is a Pentabuzz with Bartolini P/J pickups. It just growled and sang in equal measure over every note. It really was a dream. As much as I love a fretless Wal, I'd say the Pedulla was the more entertaining fretless bass. It was just spectacular...and the EA rig I was playing it through was pretty awesome too (I also played a 5 string Spector Euro NT through it, which sounded great).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

[quote name='bassatnight' timestamp='1315866939' post='1371259']
....my ears do not hear a great deal of difference....
[/quote]
[size=4][color=#222222][font=Arial]My Wal sounds nothing like my Lakland, which has Bartolini pickups and pre amp.[/font][/color][/size][color=#222222][font=Arial][size=1][/size][/font][/color]
[size=4][color=#222222][font=Arial] [/font][/color][/size][color=#222222][font=Arial][size=1][/size][/font][/color]
[size=4][color=#222222][font=Arial]I'm surprised you can't hear much difference, but if that's the case then spend less.[/font][/color][/size][color=#222222][font=Arial][size=1][/size][/font][/color]
[size=4][font=Arial] [/font][/size][font=Arial][size=2][/size][/font]

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

[quote name='AndroWal' timestamp='1321414039' post='1438884']
Wombatboter,

I posted on your Youtube link also...

Great playing! Really enjoy your melodic sensibility.
Question for you....seems that your Wal is very punchy...is it so in itself or do you have your amp adjusted to gain this? I have Wal 5s and they don't have the immediate attack/pop you have. Curious how to acquire it as I play with a light touch and want that fast attack/punch. I do get close by adjusting my amplification...but it's interesting as I still don't get that immediacy. I can quite easily on my Zon fretless...

Thanks.
[/quote]

Thanks for the kind feedback..
I think the sound is there anyway ...the amp is flat and actually it all has to do with the fingers. I have owned around 12 Wal basses and I never had any problems to get this particular sound out of it. I do play hàrd so I don't have a soft touch when I play a bit faster. If you play with that hard touch (which seems to work for me) and play above the pick-up it's actually hard to not have this sound. I use a bit more "meat" when I play more mellow parts..
Have been playing the Pedulla ànd the Wal last week and it's still hard to pick one as a favourite...There's something in a Wal which is unique but the neck of a Pedulla plays like butter.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

[quote name='Kiwi' timestamp='1321414921' post='1438886']
It was like having a sustainer and was one of the most intensely satisfying live playing experiences I've ever had. There was warmth, loads of growl and soaring highs. The mwah was very slow and the notes literally felt like they were blossoming under my fingers. Utterly intoxicating...especially with stereo chorus and a touch of delay.
[/quote]

The Bass players Poet Lauriet :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Without sounding obvious, you need to play both instruments and make your decision. Maybe you could find a couple of BC'ers near to you with these basses and ask them nicely for a try. If your looking at shelling out £2500+ for a Wal, you need to take your time. Only your ears, hands and heart can make this decision for you.

Good Luck!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

[quote name='wombatboter' timestamp='1321469652' post='1439622']
Thanks for the kind feedback..
I think the sound is there anyway ...the amp is flat and actually it all has to do with the fingers. I have owned around 12 Wal basses and I never had any problems to get this particular sound out of it. I do play hàrd so I don't have a soft touch when I play a bit faster. If you play with that hard touch (which seems to work for me) and play above the pick-up it's actually hard to not have this sound. I use a bit more "meat" when I play more mellow parts..
Have been playing the Pedulla ànd the Wal last week and it's still hard to pick one as a favourite...There's something in a Wal which is unique but the neck of a Pedulla plays like butter.
[/quote]

And thanks to you for your reply! Good information and I partly suspected what you write about your touch.

I have a similar comparison going-on between my Wals and my Zon TJ5. The Zon is easier to play, less energy output, sounds wonderful and notes are crystal clear. Yet the Wals growl, are fat and I can leave all settings flat and only use the bridge pick-up. A bit less sing than the Zon, but more meat and of course the unique sound.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Sign in to follow this  

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×
×
  • Create New...