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  3. Monday, 12 March 2007
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:?: I just performed an A/B comparison of my ABII with a much less expensive Tobias Growler (with one Bartolini pickup). Although the ABII is a superior instrument in most respects, I found that the Tobias produces a clearer fundamental regardless of EQ. It's just easier to hear exactly what note you're playing (and therefore easier to tune the bass), and it sounds more solid. What I'm trying to determine is whether this is a setup issue, or something more fundamental to the pickups and body woods. Any thoughts?
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fullrangebass Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
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Any sound samples as to understand the exact comparison?

I own some basses that have a huge fundamental but they lack the clarity and detail of the sound (they sound blurred in comparison with my Dingwalls).
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Anonymous Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
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:D Thanks for responding. No, I have no clips. It was done in a bass shop. I can only say that the other listeners had the same reaction. And it was the ABII that sounded blurry in comparison to the Tobias. With the Tobias, you would know exactly what key you were in. A whole band could tune up to it easily. The ABII's pitch was less clear, and I guess I'm a fanatic for clear pitch. That's why I'm wondering if it could be a setup issue. Are there any strings I might try that are particularly precise?
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reddavid Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
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You might want to verify the configuration of the various tone switches. If the bluEQube was on, you'll cut much of the mids/highs (losing clarity). Also depends on what the pickup selector was set to.

for good clarity - stay in passive, take off bluEQube and perhaps go to series. that will give you maximum output across the spectum. make sure treble isn't cut (if it has that option). switching to active will increase output noticeably - also yielding clarity.

all this is outlined in the 'user guide'.

i find a great mix of good sounds - from 'groovy' to 'hot'. that's one of the many outstanding qualities of the AB II.
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Spiritbass Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
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I have never played a Tobias of any sort. Whatever mix of fundamental and overtones my AB-1 generates give me better definition than any other bass I've tried. This is most prominent on the low B. In simpler terms, it's easier than ever to tell what note I'm plucking. 8) Play what works for your ears, brother!

Ken
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Smallmouth_Bass Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
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Maybe the strings were dead. Even the best basses can sound crap with a muckied up set of strings.

I've never heard a clearer sounded bass than my Dingwalls.
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BurningSkies Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
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I have to echo what people are saying here. What you describe sounds like a situation where one bass has more mid than the other. I'd check the BluEQube and make sure that both basses were dialed flat. My Dingwall has a greater clarity than any of my others.
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Sheldon Dingwall Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
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Maybe it's the focused tone of a bridge humbucker that appeals to you in the Growler. Once you've replaced the strings and had a setup, you might try switching to the bridge pickup and adding a touch of bass boost to fatten it up to taste. That's one of my personal favorite settings.
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Anonymous Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
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:D Thanks, everybody, for your excellent suggestions--and to Sheldon, for being so personally involved. I'm all ears regarding any other thoughts you may have.
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Mark L Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
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I've played a few, and I would agree that the Tobias is punchier in the fundamental, but as for [b:fuum07z2]clarity[/b:fuum07z2] of tone and ability to produce overtones, nothing beats my Dingwalls. I have played the last few gigs with the bridge p/u soloed on my ABI and the bass bumped up on the amp, and it kills.


Mark
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Texas Bred Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
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Oh Yeah,

I've had my ABII for a while now and most of the time I keep my preamp flat, while using only the bridge PU and a little bass boost in active mode. That seems to be the main sweet spot for me.

TB
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SteelandBassPicker Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
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By definition, the tone and timbre of an instrument or voice is much more dependent on the overall harmonic content of any note, meaning the relative loudness of the multiple harmonics that ring when a note is played or sung. Certain overtones, when accentuated, can effectively make the fundamental sound louder (just ask the folks over at BOSE Engineering), but nothing is substitute for the real thing. Engaging the bluEQube should not change the fundamental frequency, as it is designed to scoop out some midrange frequencies. I would say that with a little bit of work on the tone stack, your Ding would blow the Tobias out of the water. Keeping the EQ the same (flat, ideally) on an A/B test would not do either instrument justice. I personally find that many sound engineers say they put no further EQ on my bass in the front of house (after my bluEQube) on a dry DI channel, and most say it's the best sounding bass they've ever engineered.

Your mileage may vary.

P.S. - After reading the original post, that may be true. These instruments are of such high fidelity, you are actually getting more overtones to the preamp, which means there is a more sophisticated waveform getting amplified. Personally I love the long wire piano sound my strings produce. That general mishmash of overtones is what sets us apart from the others.
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scpos Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
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I love the pianistic sound too--when I'm soloing. There's a philosophical and functional element to my concern. I started, 40-odd years ago, as a bass player. At the time I thought of bass as a co-equal solo instrument, a la Mingus, Jamerson, Bruce, Clark, and Pastorious (I pulled the frets out of an early rosewood-neck Precision, put maple slats in the gaps, and waxed the thing down in 1970 before I ever heard of Jaco). But after a time, as I expanded to guitar, piano and arranging, I realized that in many if not most contexts, bass has two main functions: to create momentum and to provide the harmonic foundation for everyone else in a band. I slowed down, letting other bandmates play lots of notes; I wanted to [b:2f2xkc80]control[/b:2f2xkc80] the band. To that end, I found it vital that everyone know exactly where the fundamental is. Overtones can confuse that. Moreover, bass overtones occupy sonic space that can often be filled with more color and variety by other instruments. For this reason, I need the power to provide a pure, rock-solid fundamental. There's a reason that Nathan East, who plays a Yamaha, of all things, has been Clapton's bassist for two decades. That's why I was so impressed when I heard the Fodera and A/B'd the Tobias Growler. It's not that I don't love the Dingwall's pianistic harmonics and overtones. I just want to be able to achieve the other as well , because it's important. The question is whether I can do it with the ABII (I'll never sell it; it's too fine an instrument), or whether I have to add an additional bass.
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Sheldon Dingwall Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
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Does your ABII have a Hybrid treble or is it boost only. If simply rolling off the trebles would work, then the Hybrid treble is a viable solution.

However it seems like you may need to investigate flatwounds. The flatwounds should mute the high frequencies moving that energy down the spectrum towards the fundamental.
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scpos Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
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:?: I believe it's a boost-only setup. I can't be sure but I haven't purchased any options. I do know that when I roll the treble down, there isn't much left. What did you send Guitar Player for review? -- because this is [u:2krrnqni]that[/u:2krrnqni] bass. Flatwounds may be the way to go, although I'd like to be able to keep what the ABII offers and so am reluctant. I guess I want the best of all worlds, but maybe I can't have it with one instrument. :?:
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lomo Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
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"[color=blue:1tybn4xg]Flatwounds may be the way to go, although I'd like to be able to keep what the ABII offers and so am reluctant. I guess I want the best of all worlds, but maybe I can't have it with one instrument"[/color:1tybn4xg]


I guess the above can mean only 1 thing......1 Dingwall with flats (preferrably passive) and another with rounds :-)
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scpos Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
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Well, I read the forum section on strings and it gave me some ideas, but I was wondering, Sheldon, if there's a particular set of half-rounds or ground rounds or flats or even tape wounds that seems to you most likely to accomplish what I'd like and fit on the ABII. Thanks.
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Sheldon Dingwall Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
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[quote="scpos":2nr2e4sv]Well, I read the forum section on strings and it gave me some ideas, but I was wondering, Sheldon, if there's a particular set of half-rounds or ground rounds or flats or even tape wounds that seems to you most likely to accomplish what I'd like and fit on the ABII. Thanks.[/quote:2nr2e4sv]

I'd start with the most popular brand which seem to be D'Addario Chromes.
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scpos Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
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Thanks. Do I rightly believe the right D'Addarios are the ECB81-5SL - Regular Light Super Long Scale?
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Texas Bred Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
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Has anyone tried "Rotosound's"? I would like to know how they sound 'cause I used to use them exclusively. I always liked the tension and sound of them.

TB
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SteelandBassPicker Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
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This thread is making me wish my ABI was back from the painter shop so I can roll off that tone knob and thump the hell out of it! Flatwounds my butt, I've got a 2 year old set of deader'en hell strings waiting to get wound back up!
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