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1  Sadowsky Basses / Sadowsky Basses / Re: slap bass tone on: April 13, 2011, 04:03:43 PM
Do you use the bass exciter pre compressor or post compressor? why?

By the way... maybe I'm just used to it, but I tried aguilar's TLC and I prefer my multicomp (pre-true bypass)

Sorry for my not so fine English... lol

I am a little late to return. In the interest of disclosure, I should say that I recently sold my complete pedal board. I am now using a TC Electronic RH450 that has everything I could want it with no need for a pedal board.

But, when I had the board, I used the Xciter post-compression. In fact, I put all effects post compression except when I used an envelope filter or some other dynamic sensitive effect.

The Xciter is a somewhat odd "effect". It somehow increases the low end presence without increasing the volume or the boominess.  It's one of those things that you don't know is on until you turn it off.  If I put it in front of any other effect, it seemed to get cancelled out altogether. Plus, it was a pretty DI. I play a lot of "ampless" gigs and simply plugged my board in the snake through that Xciter. Worked great.
2  Sadowsky Basses / Sadowsky Basses / Re: Strings to use? on: January 19, 2011, 10:46:41 AM
Have you had a chance to audition a Sadowsky outboard preamp pedal w/ your passive P-Bass? It's a great addition if a Sad' bass is out of reach at the moment.
B.

The preamp is a great item. I have one, and I only have Sadowsky basses. Not only can you use them to add some of the Sadowsky "character" to a passive bass, but the unit is also an excellent DI box. I use it for running to the FOH for "no amp" gigs, and I have done two or three studio sessions with it. It is a very functional tool for the average bass player.

Some use it with DB as well. I think it works well with my DB, but I do prefer another preamp for that application. But, if needed, I know I can get a good sound on about anything with it. I even loaned it out once to run as a DI for an acoustic guitar. It worked great.
3  Sadowsky Basses / Sadowsky Basses / Re: slap bass tone on: January 16, 2011, 01:14:16 PM
The  TLC gets really good reviews. I personally think the Markbass Compressore is the best I've ever touch. But, there are a few issues associated with it. Most remarkably the 12V power demands and the size.

BTW, here's my board. I finally got it together:

4  Sadowsky Basses / Sadowsky Basses / Re: midrange EQ on: January 11, 2011, 10:09:59 AM
. . . I think that's a big selling point to the Will Lee model so I don't see that changing anytime soon...however, never say never...

That's the way I see it.
5  Sadowsky Basses / Sadowsky Basses / Re: midrange EQ on: January 10, 2011, 07:33:40 PM
There's only one way to get a Sadowsky preamp with the mid-boost.

The bad news is that it is a very expensive preamp.

The good news is that Roger throws in a free Will Lee Signature bass!!!!!   Smiley

Seriously though, they are not for sale alone.
6  Sadowsky Basses / Sadowsky Basses / Re: Ideal distance from pickups to strings on: January 07, 2011, 02:22:19 PM
There is no ideal.  The tone and output will change as you alter the pickup height. You just have to dial it in to your preferences.
7  Sadowsky Basses / Sadowsky Basses / Re: slap bass tone on: January 04, 2011, 11:55:02 AM
Thanks for all the info.

My experience with compressors is more or less the same. I've used several over the years (Boss, Trace Elliot. RNC, DBX,...) but for some reason or another I was never as happy with the compressed tone as I was with the clean signal. The TLC seems to give me exactly what I wanted: No tone degradation and control over the peaks when I go too happy on the gig. I should record some samplers to see if what I'm hearing translates to tape (or hard disk, in my case).


If the TLC has the same "transparency" as the Markbass, I would probably be interested. The TLC is much smaller and could be run on a standard power supply of a pedal board. I am not a big effects guy, but I am considering putting together a little pedal board for some applications.
8  Sadowsky Basses / Sadowsky Basses / Re: Scale length question on: January 04, 2011, 10:37:33 AM
A quote from RS that I recalled from talkbass.com concerning this very issue:

"I have two main issues with 35" scale. First, it is not a magic fix to create a tight B string. I have seen many 35" basses with B strings floppier than ours at 34".

The other issue is tone. When I did prototype 35's many years ago, I felt the bass became more "generic" sounding and lost a lot of the tonal character I am used to hear in my basses. Finally, I especially disliked the sound of the G string in the upper register. At 35", it starts to get nasal sounding to me . . . "

--  Roger Sadowsky


I have owned four Sadowskys. I currently have two of them. It look me a while to acclimate to the B strings on them. I was coming off a Modulus Quantum, which has a HUGE B string. The Sadowsky B is more "balanced" with the other strings. It doesn't really have that giant sound like the Q.

I don't think there is anything that "special" about how a Sadowsky is made other than the extreme attention to detail and use of the very high quality materials. His methods for fitting the neck to the body are ridiculously tedious. That likely helps.

I will say of the four I have owned, my NYC Modern has the best B of all. There is a noticeable difference in sustain and and general "energy" in the notes compared to the others. This is apparent even when unplugged. Of course, there could be all sorts of explanations, but it is true that my Modern is the only one of the four to have the graphite in the neck. Two of the others were older NYCs and my other current bass is a Metro RV-5 PJ. None of those three has the graphite.
9  Sadowsky Basses / Sadowsky Basses / Re: slap bass tone on: January 04, 2011, 10:17:22 AM
You need to raise the threshold.

I use a Markbass Compressore (KILLER compressor, BTW). To get a good slap tone, I want a bit higher threshold. I also slow the attack so the percussive nature of the slap tone is not choked out.

Can you please give us a review? I decided to go with the Aguilar TLC and I'm happy with it, but I've heard a lot of good things about the Compressore.


I don't have any experience with the TLC, so I can not offer a direct comparative, but I will say that the Markbass is the by far the best experience that I have ever had with a compressor. I looked into the TLC as well as a couple of other well-received pedals before choosing the Compressore.

First of all, it's yellow. That gives it the advantage over almost everything else out there. It matches school buses and rubber duckies. You really can't go wrong there. The only down side is that it is yellow and black, and I am not a Steelers fan.

I have been on again, off again with compression for the 25 years that I have been playing. I have enough slop in my playing and enough demand for various techniques that compression is certainly something that is helpful. But, for the most part, I have always been so disappointed with the way the compressors I used affected the tone that I have up on them.

My idea of of a great compressor is one that is transparent in tone except for the compression effect. I hate it when they choke out the highs or add that "pumping" effect in the low end. I just want to flatten the output dynamically, and that is all. The Markbass seems to do that better than anything I have ever used. You can actually apply a LOT of compression before the unit starts robbing the tone. Of course, you can over-compress with it, but it takes some doing.

The unit actually has a tube in it. It doesn't, IMO, add anything "tubey" to the tone, but it may be what makes the compression effect smoother and more seamless. Further, the Compressore is fully featured compared to some of the others I looked at. It has the release setting right on the top of the unit. I don't mess with that a great deal, but I don't really care for the thought of having any settings preset and "optimized for bass." It just limits the use of the unit. We used my Compressore in the studio not too long ago on both electric guitar and acoustic guitar with equally good results.

It also has an output trim. This is what helped it win out over many of the other pedals as some don't have it. This output trim/gain control allows you to dial up just about any compression effect you want and then trim the output the be the same as the bypassed signal. If you leave the compressor running all night, this is no big deal, but I don't. Often with ballads and some other types of tunes, I want to kick it out so as to have complete dynamic control in my fingers. I don't want bypassing the compressor to affect the output of the signal to the amp and/or FOH.

There are a few cons. It's BIG. Like three or four times the size of a typical stomp box. It uses a 12V+ power supply with a 500mA draw. There are very few pedal power units out there that will accommodate it, and it has no battery. You almost have to use the wall wart. It's also expensive compared to many others. Although, I think it is at about the same price point as the Aguilar unit.

All that said, I really like it. I use it more than any compressor that I have ever had. This might not be much of a review, but maybe that is a good thing when talking compressors. I actually like the thought that the answer to the question of "how does it sound?" is "it doesn't!"  Smiley
10  Sadowsky Basses / Sadowsky Basses / Re: slap bass tone on: January 03, 2011, 04:18:42 PM
You need to raise the threshold.

I use a Markbass Compressore (KILLER compressor, BTW). To get a good slap tone, I want a bit higher threshold. I also slow the attack so the percussive nature of the slap tone is not choked out.
11  Sadowsky Basses / Sadowsky Basses / Re: slap bass tone on: January 03, 2011, 02:58:09 PM
yep i use a compressor all the time. you may well have a point here. will try giging without the compressor this weekend and get back to you.thanks

What are your settings? Most of us send a hotter signal when we are slapping.

I agree. I think you need to look at how your compressor is set up. I would not suggest simply removing it from the chain. IME, a bit of compression is actually helpful in getting a good slap sound.

What compressor do you use?
12  General Category / Sadowsky Forum / Re: Gig pics of your Sadowsky on: December 18, 2010, 11:29:02 AM
From a recent benfit concert:

13  Sadowsky Basses / Sadowsky Basses / Re: Strings to use? on: December 07, 2010, 05:17:52 PM
How about the DR Marcus Miller. How are they compared to the Hi-beams?

I've never tried a new set. I bought a used bass once strung with them. I would describe them as a bit darker, thicker sounding version of the hi-beam. But, I am hesitant to go too far, as I had no idea of the age, gauge, etc. I didn't notice that they felt "smoother" than a Hi-Beam, as they are described, and it's hard to say which is more brilliant, as I don't know how much life these had in them.

All that said, I'll probably give them a try one day. I've thought highly of pretty much every string I have used from DR. They make great strings. Lo-Riders sound KILLER on a JJ5.
14  Sadowsky Basses / Sadowsky Basses / Re: Strings to use? on: December 07, 2010, 12:25:20 PM
I just put a set of Sadowsky Black label Nickel 40s on my PJ5. I really like them a lot. I had the Blue SS 45s on it before. These are smoother, less aggressive. Perfect for that bass.

If you are really into slap and like a crisp, clear tone, I would suggest DR Hi-Beams. They slap really well. They have bright sound, and the round core makes them very flexible. Great strings overall. Another sleeper set that is similar is the Dean Markley SR2000s. They have tapered cores. You may or may not like that.

If you want something a little stiffer, maybe DR lo-riders or Sadowsky strings? The lo-riders are a little "grittier", more aggressive sounding, than Hi-Beams. The Sadowskys are grittier still. Both are stiffer feeling. The Sadowskys are even stiffer feeling than than the lo-riders. Neither slaps as well as hi-beams, IMO.

I have a set of Sadowsky Black label SS 40s that I am saving to try on my modern. I have high expectations for them.
15  Sadowsky Basses / Sadowsky Basses / Re: Pickups on: December 06, 2010, 03:59:42 PM
I have two NYC 24F5. The first is swamp ash body, birdseye maple fretboard, maple neck and Sadowsky soapbars. I run a preamp with a little overdrive to grit it up a bit. I like heaps of bottom end plus good mids to give definition, and growl. I add a little bass on my eq, but not much. I find the natural sound is very complete. Good natural midrange and awesome sustain. It's the perfect bass/pickup combo for what I want. Can also use the VTC to give an old-school funk/blues kinda sound.
My other Sad also has the soapbars, but has a roasted maple neck, madagascan rosewood fretboard, swamp ash body and flame spalted maple top. It's brighter than my other one, and find I have to roll off the VTC a bit more. It also doesn't have quite the sustain, but has a ton of mids. For a 'modern' sound the soapbars are ideal, but they're versatile enough to cover a good range of sounds.
My regular bands are both single guitar, so having a good natural presence through a large frequency range is essential to bulk out the sound. What can I say but, I love my Sads. They do it so well...
Hope this helps

- Rhys

I LOVE the soaps. I have 5011.  It has Braz RW FB and a mahogany body. This combination is kind of bark and buttery yet fully and absolutely modern. I run the VTC wide open almost all of the time, and the bass has enough low end that I don't really need to boost the bass that much. I usually push it up a little bit.

I don't know how much of the character of the modern comes from the PUs and how much comes from their placement, but it certainly makes for a unique animal, and I love it. I will say that the B string on my Modern is stronger, more articulate and has better sustain than any of the other three Sadowsky basses have or do own.
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