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Slap setup- what should i change?

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(@almightyalmich)
New Member
Joined: 16 years ago
Posts: 2
Topic starter  

When I play slap I feel like the sound I am producing isn't right. The high notes don't have enough twang, they sound almost muted, yet when i boost my treble they become way too bright. Same goes inversely for the low notes. Im playing a pretty lame fender squeir through a peavey MAX 115 combo, i keep my eq at about center on all ranges, some boost on the bass and mid.

My question is, to get a better funk tone, should i change amp, strings, style? I know i need a new bass but... thats just a little out of my price range at the moment. Any advice would be great, what's your setup like?


   
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(@slejhamer)
Famed Member
Joined: 20 years ago
Posts: 3221
 

A kid down my street has that amp, so I'm a little bit familiar with it. Try switching between the "max" or "modern" voice options and see which one does better (probably "modern.") Also on the EQ, try cutting the mids, and bumping up the bass and treble. Start with lows and highs at around 2:00, mids down to 10:00 or 11:00. Scoop the mids further as needed.

Also if your amp has a compressor or limiter, you'll want that turned on to smooth out the volume spikes. I don't think yours does though.

"Everybody got to elevate from the norm."


   
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(@almightyalmich)
New Member
Joined: 16 years ago
Posts: 2
Topic starter  

Yeah im 99% positive it doesnt have any limiter, im not near it though so i cant be sure. Ill try the different eq and see if that helps. What should i do with the tone on the guitar?


   
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(@slejhamer)
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Joined: 20 years ago
Posts: 3221
 

What should i do with the tone on the guitar?

If it's a standard passive tone knob, just open it up to 10 - you typically want as much treble output as possible.

If it's an active onboard EQ system, then keep it flat or scoop the mids a little - which may or may not eliminate the need to change anything at the amp.

Experiment; have fun!

Oh, by the way, many slappers use light-gauge stainless steel roundwound strings instead of the typical nickel. Those will give even more trebly bite, but can sometimes sound very clanky as well. Check out DR Hi-Beams, 45-100, which get very good reviews and are a tad warmer than other stainless strings. (These are low-tension strings because of the round core wire, so you may need to adjust your truss rod slightly once they settle in.)

"Everybody got to elevate from the norm."


   
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(@howtoplaybass)
New Member
Joined: 16 years ago
Posts: 2
 

for a good slap sound you need round wound strings and pref a bass with active electronics
I have a free website on bass check it out if you wish
http://www.play-bass.com


   
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(@katmetal)
Prominent Member
Joined: 17 years ago
Posts: 726
 

You didn't mention what strings you have; Roundwound strings, which have a "rough" feel to them will produce the best "slap" or "pop". Smooth or flatwounds strings just don't seem to cut it.


   
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(@cerberus)
Estimable Member
Joined: 21 years ago
Posts: 94
 

For what its worth, the last time I was in guitar center the sales rep recommended the Regular Light Top/Meds Bottom D'Addario strings- http://www.daddario.com/DADProdDetail.aspx?CodaID=638&ID=3&Class=ACBA -as a better alternative for slapping than the regular light gauge I currently use.

I pity the fool, but also suggest ways he might better himself.


   
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(@xylembassguitar)
Trusted Member
Joined: 16 years ago
Posts: 66
 

Everyone has given really good suggestions so far.

Keep in mind that a lot of getting a good slap tone lies in how you strike the strings. You don't want to hit the strings too hard or too soft, you want your thumb to be relaxed yet firm when it hits the strings. Also, every bass is different, a lot of them have a "sweet spot" that may be right over the fretboard, or more towards the pickups. Try to find this spot on your bass.

Of course, your amp has a lot to do with the tone, and active pickups always help.

Xylem Handmade Basses and Guitars


   
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(@alexskol)
New Member
Joined: 9 years ago
Posts: 1
 

my experience
- lower impedance single coil pickups are more twangy and wooden. With high output pups somehow it becomes more middy.
- If the guitar is a H-H configuration, keeping middle position (combining both pups) produces a sweeter twangy sound. With only bridge or neck I've found the sound to become too thick.


   
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