I know it sounds weird, but it feels like my low E string is too boomy compared to my other strings. I’ve got a compressor pedal and have spent a not-insignificant amount of time tweaking the settings of that along with fiddling with my amp EQ and the knobs on my guitar.
Songs sound like “duhn duhn doo dihn BWAAAAAAAM!! duhn duhn”
It seems like the only way I can get it so that the low E doesn’t overpower the other strings is to drop the low end knobs almost all the way down on the amp and the guitar and turning the compressor on or off doesn’t seem to make much difference with the boom.
Also seems odd that holding an F# or G on the E string causes everything in my room to rattle, no matter what I have the EQ knobs set to.
Gear: Fender Rumble 40, MXR Bass Compressor Pedal, Spector Dimension and Fender Jazz. Doesn’t matter which guitar I use. The boom is constant. The boom is eternal.
Is this normal? Am I trying to fix something that isn’t a problem?
That sound Entish. Careful, you might summon an Entmoot.
As for the F# and G on the E string that’s a physics phenomenon that I’ve always been fascinated by. I’m not sure if it’s a resonant frequency or something, but it’s a thing. Maybe these guys that are much smarter than me here on BB can explain that and why it happens.
Personally, one of the first things I do on any amp is drop the low end and pull up the mids and (depending on what type of bass I’ve got in my hand) adjust the treble down or up.
I have an OLD Fender Frontman 15B practice amp that I have to cut the low end on or else I’m rattling the printers in my home office. It is set: Low at 9 o’clock, Mid at 4 o’clock, High at 12. That’s a huge low end cut. I’m on a passive bass and it’s still got tons of low end to my ears.
Don’t know how helpful I’ve been, but I hope you figure out something that you like.
Have you tried to see whether a high-pass filter (HPF) with adjustable frequency could tame the boom??
This probably has allot to do with your pickups. Have you tried doing a setup on it? I’ll share a website that has a wealth of information. Part of it is setting your pickup height.
This was my first thought as well.
Hope the setup vid helps!
Part of this is the rumble 40v3. I’ve got one of those too.
Since I liked everything else about the amp I searched out and found a fix.
This makes for a rather expensive 40w practice amp but it sounds great.
getting the amp off the floor helps too.
Rooms (especially nice rectangular ones) will have resonant frequencies that can make certain notes jump out and boom…to test for this play with same settings in some different sized rooms and see if it is any different, if not go with other suggestions to see if they help…oh and if it is the room that is booming acoustic foam might be able to dampen its resonance somewhat
Easiest explanation is pickup height. After that I would go to the room acoustics too, yeah.
If after checking your pickup height the problem still persists:
Try placing your amp at different spots in your room. Place it at an angle to the walls (not 90°).
Try moving around while playing, try different distances to your amp.
Bass frequencies are rather long and reflections from the wall can create standing waves for some frequencies. You will then get the effect of bass being louder at some places in the room.
Ok, so for an update: I think it came down to 99.9% user error. I initially noticed the Earth shattering boom on my Dimension…with active pickups and multi-scale…which I don’t know if that was a factor but still. In tweaking the settings of my amp and such to try and tame it I wound up screwing up the audio for both guitars. This led me to think it was something else at the root of the problem. Helpdesk logic: if it happens with one user, then it’s the user’s computer. If it happens with ALL users, then it’s on the company’s end. In this case, because my screwup had caused it to happen with both basses, I was convinced it was something with my amp/pedals and such.
Returning everything to the closest equivalent to factory settings and starting everything from scratch, I got the boom tamed on my Spector. The problem is, if it sounds good with the Spector, it sounds very lacking with the Fender and visa versa.
So what I wound up doing is creating some custom presets on my multi-effect pedal: one for the Spector and one for the Fender that optimized the sound for both guitars without having to touch the amp at all.
If you have an EQ pedal I’d try to adjust the first two bands down slightly, you can probably drop the first band a lot more and that will deal with those subsonic frequencies that really BOOM
That’s what I wound up doing on the multi-fx. Put an compressor first in line followed by a EQ with settings tuned for each guitar.
The first thing that sound engineers will do to your bass in any mix is an EQ curve like this (image stolen from random site):
I usually start the high pass filter rolloff a bit higher, around 50-60Hz, and have a less pronounced notch and high boost; but then I also use adaptive EQ.
So don’t be shy about trimming away the mud in the low end. I know, it feels like sacrilege, but everything sounds much better in the mix in the end.
@howard thank you! Just took a screenshot and I’m putting that in my permanent notes. Awesome info!
Loooots of great articles online on this and other mixing topics, btw. One of the nice things about being a hobbyist sound guy these days is how easy it is to get in to it, and the tools available now are so damn good.
There’s also no hard and fast rules, but EQ like that image is pretty common advice today.