Academy Dashboard Forum Production Mixing Dealing with a not so good bass tone

  • This topic has 31 replies, 4 voices, and was last updated 6 years ago by Anita Potter.
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  • #39854
    Anita Potter
    Participant

      I recorded a bass track straight to DI on my Tascam a few weeks backs and I've been fighting with it in the mix ever since. I have an Ibanez Mikro bass that have D'Addario nickel wound medium gauge (50, 70, 85, 105) a little too bright for my liking. Plus I couldn't really adjust my tone knobs because of frequency noise from the pick ups so I went in really metallic. I did a HP/LP on it which got rid of that but it just sounds meh and not exciting at all and the tone...well I'm not sure how to describe it. I also sidechained it with the kick but I think the bass ducks too much.

      I can get access to a different bass hopefully this weekend (if my daughter remembers to bring it) has the same strings so I can re-track and see but was wondering if I'm missing something with what I have now.

      This is a rough mix so some of the levels and the drums aren't quite right yet. Pretty please let me know what you think I need to do because I'm at a loss. I've uploaded it to Soundcloud and I can hear a frequency noise in the bass guitar which is weird can anyone else hear that or are my ears just too damn sensitive?

      [soundcloud url="https://api.soundcloud.com/tracks/413561748" params="color=#ff5500&auto_play=false&hide_related=false&show_comments=true&show_user=true&show_reposts=false&show_teaser=true" width="100%" height="166" iframe="true" /]

      #39882
      Arthur Labus
      Moderator

        I will check all that stuff Anita.

        #39908
        Anita Potter
        Participant

          Thanks Arthur. I should have the Dean bass on Saturday and run some tests with that through the Tascam. It's a full size bass so that should be interesting. I haven't played on that in about 3 years or so when I gave it to my daughter.

          #39921
          Arthur Labus
          Moderator

            Ok, so you recorded "DI" bass directly into Tascam, right ?
            But everything happens in Reaper, right ?
            And there is only HP/LP on it with sidechain ducking (kick), right ?
            What is your OS Anita ? I am not sure i asked before.

            #39950
            Anita Potter
            Participant

              I'll double check here in a moment but I think that's all I've got on the bass DI. Last night I tried a different EQ and only low passed then pulled a band down around 119. I honestly don't know what I'm doing when it comes to EQ. I'm on Windows 10.

              #39956
              Jason Davenport
              Participant

                Hey Anita, the DI sounds decent on the low end, but seems to lack in personality. You might try boosting 700hz, and or 800hz, and or 1khz, and or 1.5khz. All these frequencies help to bring out the personality in a bass. Also try some saturation, or distortion as well. Most of the time, a great bass tone sounds terrible when soloed, but when dropped in the mix, magic...

                #39963
                Arthur Labus
                Moderator

                  Bingo !
                  You are with Reaper on Windows 😀

                  Jason said almost everything. Great points.
                  I would recommend to try some (free) plugins. I think "just" DI is not enough.

                  Bass Grinder Free: http://www.vst4free.com/free_vst.php?id=2082
                  Don't be afraid of "metal" roots - it sounds awesome, mostly even with default setting.

                  TSE B.O.D. :http://www.vst4free.com/free_vst.php?id=1321
                  Sans Amp clone

                  my favourite:
                  Bass Professor: http://sonic.supermaailma.net/plugins
                  Look for the Bass Professor, not Bass Professor Mk II. Lot of nice plugins around by the way.
                  Works on almost everything.

                  I even try to use them together.

                  Hope it helps.

                  #39967
                  Anita Potter
                  Participant

                    Thanks Jason I'll give those EQs a whirl. All I've been doing is trying to get rid of things instead of trying to boost anything because my thinking is if I try to boost something that I feel sounds terrible it would make it sound even more terrible. But right now I'm game for anything 🙂

                    Yes Arthur I'm on Windows 10 with Reaper. I actually have the bass grinder plugin and have tried messing with that a little bit. I didn't like how it sounded but then again my EQ'ing was a bit drastic 😀 I just grabbed the rest of those plugins and will try them out.

                    Thank you both so much 🙂

                    #39968
                    Arthur Labus
                    Moderator

                      I tend NOT TO EQ bass if i am using amp plugins.
                      Just DI bass track and amp plugin - the i see if there is any need to do something else and very often it is not.
                      I have some other free plugins as well. So there is still something to come.

                      "Most of the time, a great bass tone sounds terrible when soloed, but when dropped in the mix, magic..." - this is totally true Jason 😀

                      #39971
                      Anita Potter
                      Participant

                        True my bass doesn't sound bad when other instruments are surrounding it it's just in those parts where it's by itself with the bell that makes me cringe. The original DI recording isn't the same one as on SoundCloud that one was EQed Stock - Bass Lopass [SNK] then moved the low pass around to get rid of the tinny noise from the strings and the frequency noise from the pickups.

                        I may just end up re-writing those quiet sections or add something else underneath don't know yet.

                        #39973
                        Jason Davenport
                        Participant

                          You could try automating EQ for when it goes by itself...

                          #39975
                          Anita Potter
                          Participant

                            Didn't know you could automate EQ. I know I automated some FX on Too Bad I just need to remember how to do that :p

                            I did end up using 2 bass amps without EQ and that got rid of the nonsense but it needs something else it's sounding too muddy. I'll get back to it this evening my ears are tired and so am I :p

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