octave drop as bass

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bedbug
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octave drop as bass

Post by bedbug » Fri Nov 28, 2003 12:01 pm

I never thought it could be done. But I was just goofing around and discovered an awesome (to me at least) "bass" sound by playing an acoustic (6-string) through an octave drop. It kinda had that 60s-McCartney-out of tune sound.

There was a thread on this board earlier about way to get drum machines to sound more natural. What about bass? Any other inventive ways (besides a Rhodes piano) to replicate a bass sound?

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Re: octave drop as bass

Post by joeysimms » Fri Nov 28, 2003 12:26 pm

I used to record bass lines on my 4-track stuff all the time on my 6 string electric, because I didn't have a bass. It's all about the line you're playing anyway. If it "sounds" like something a bass guitar would be playing, i.e. root fifth octave, simple, loping.. then it works.

It's like playing string parts on keyboard pads. Even my lowly ensoniq mirage could sound convincing if you could "voice' it the way real strings sound, and play a part that strings would actually play. It's fun!


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Re: octave drop as bass

Post by I'm Painting Again » Fri Nov 28, 2003 12:50 pm

Roland Juno synths do it pretty well as far as the simple tone low bass sounds go..

if your going to be using an efx box to shift beware of latency, the cheapo one I have has this problem..

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Re: octave drop as bass

Post by llmonty » Fri Nov 28, 2003 1:30 pm

yeah i have dropped electric down an octave and it sounds pretty cool, especially using a guitar with long scale, neck p/u, bass turned up.

Also, I am the world;s worst looper/soft synth user but I have taken single notes or short phrases from songs and then cut them, reverse, pitch shift etc. to come up w new ideas. i first did it with my funny valentine and i couldn't believe how cool it came out. kinda dirty, lofi portisheadish. this is when i 1st got into computer recording, so i was just testing out the possibilities. You can do alot with one bass note with pitch shift, cutting etc.

not a plug, but you can see what i mean at adamrose.iuma.com (MF Valentine - i wish i could use the same techniques on my voice though - 1st thing i ever sung!).

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Re: octave drop as bass

Post by MC E2 » Sun Jan 18, 2004 9:36 am

Yeah I know what you mean. I was listening to a two year old demo of mine and was struck by the bass on it. After straining my brain a bit I realized that it was a session that I didn't have a bass for. I recorded the bass line with guitar and then used a plug-in in my sequencer (I was using Sonar at the time) to drop the octave. It ended up having this nice plucky sound that you might characterized as 60'ish.

I have also read that other artists have doubled their bass lines with guitar to add definition. I have read and would loved confirmed that the bass lines on Are You Experienced? were done with guitar.

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Re: octave drop as bass

Post by inverseroom » Sun Jan 18, 2004 10:54 am

I just got the Alesis NanoBass--so far it sounds fantastic! $60 on eBay but I think that's unusually low. I will try running the signal through the Bassman setting on my rack SansAmp to give it a little hair.

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Re: octave drop as bass

Post by jamoo » Sun Jan 18, 2004 1:50 pm

If you have a sampler, you can sample guitar notes played in double time and drop the sampling rate in half (this might be the same as playing the note a midi octave below). The result, esp. on the low E, is a real thick bass sound.


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Re: octave drop as bass

Post by permanent hearing damage » Mon Jan 19, 2004 4:19 pm

i have had pretty miserable experiences with this as an engineer

i've recorded three different setups for this. two were regular guitars thru an octave pedal and the third was a baritone guitar thru an octave pedal. perhaps the main problem was that the guitarists in each case were also playing thru a guitar amp and playing chords, so the octave pedal was really only there to thicken up the low end. which it was effective in doing, but the sound coming out of the amp was just a low rumble. i don't think there was a sound above 300 Hz.

each time, i had to keep it very low in the mix and EQ the hell out of it to prevent it from making the mix horribly muddy.

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Re: octave drop as bass

Post by JASIII » Mon Jan 19, 2004 4:27 pm

It's not a good idea to use an octave effect on a guitar playing chords, it just turns to muck since the effect unit can't track multiple notes. Stick to single note lines.
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Re: octave drop as bass

Post by ryangobie » Tue Apr 06, 2004 7:40 pm

i was wondering what kind of pedals you had used...my friend has a band where he takes both guitar and bass duties at once and does this...he uses a boss super shifter...do you have any other suggestions?
weeeee

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Re: octave drop as bass

Post by @?,*???&? » Tue Apr 06, 2004 9:42 pm

bedbug wrote:Any other inventive ways (besides a Rhodes piano) to replicate a bass sound?
Michael Hedges used to use a bass string (a G-string) as his low-E on his Martin. Tuned down, a heavier string like that will still vibrate and not slap off the neck. You have to string that through by going in through the soundhole and running the string out through the top of the guitar to do so. I use a B-flat tuning on my Yairi acoustic. Bb-F-Bb-F-Bb-Bb. Sounds pretty dreamy and very new-agey. Droning and deep.

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Re: octave drop as bass

Post by space_ryerson » Wed Apr 07, 2004 4:34 pm

before I bought a bass, I would fake a bass on some home recordings using a digitech whammy II and this strat I have that sounds very clear. I would pitch it down an octave, use my fingers, then phrase like I was playing bass, and it worked out. It wasn't anything phenominal, but it worked.
I have been using the whammy pedal for about 7 or 8 years, and have generally found it sounds much better on my more clear sounding guitars (not my les paul, that's for sure).

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Re: octave drop as bass

Post by andrew embassy » Wed Apr 07, 2004 4:55 pm

BEARD_OF_BEES wrote:Roland Juno synths do it pretty well as far as the simple tone low bass sounds go..

if your going to be using an efx box to shift beware of latency, the cheapo one I have has this problem..
I have really mixed feelings about Junos, but I'm pretty clear on how I feel about their bass: I don't like it. Compared to the older Rolands and such with the analog oscillators (as opposed to the DCO's), the Juno line doesn't stand a chance at bass duties. The Sh-101,09, etc, even the SH-2000 does bass way better than the Junos, In my experience.
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Re: octave drop as bass

Post by inverseroom » Wed Apr 07, 2004 5:09 pm

andrew embassy wrote:I have really mixed feelings about Junos, but I'm pretty clear on how I feel about their bass: I don't like it. Compared to the older Rolands and such with the analog oscillators (as opposed to the DCO's), the Juno line doesn't stand a chance at bass duties. The Sh-101,09, etc, even the SH-2000 does bass way better than the Junos, In my experience.
I have a Micromoog. It is not a great synth, but it is very good for bass--pleasantly detuned, esp. through some mild chorus. The Nanobass I mentioned earlier in this post (and much earlier this year!) has worked out well, and at this point I am using a different device for bass on every single song--Casios, an Ensoniq synth, a Kawai Synth, an organ, etc., etc. Hardly ever bass guitar, though!

I had a terrible time trying to use an octave for this on my Boss BR-8, when I had one a couple years back. It seems to me that there are other, weirder, funner, and better-sounding possibilities out there, if you're dissatisfied...

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Re: octave drop as bass

Post by spiral » Wed Apr 07, 2004 5:16 pm

joeysimms wrote:It's fun!
Man. You are freaking me out. What is this "fun"? I looked on google but all i found was a bunch sites about math. I searched the TO board, but no results came up. I think i need to check RAP.

On the bass tip: i used to own a Univox K2 Mini Korg and that thing was amazing at bass. Probably like the Moog (as some call it the poor person's Moog.) Like a dumbass i sold it.

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