How to Make an Electric Guitar Sound Like a Bass


Whether your band needs a bass and nobody can afford one or you just want to experiment with a deeper sound, you'll need to know how to make an electric guitar sound like a bass. Jack White used an octave pedal to make his electric guitar sound like a bass in The White Stripes' "Seven Nation Army." You can do this and use several other techniques to create the bass sound on a guitar.

Things You'll Need

  • Heavy gauge strings
  • Octave effects pedal
  • String your guitar with heavier gauge strings than you usually use. These will give your guitar a deeper tone.

  • Adjust the pickup switch on your guitar to pick up sounds from the neck of the guitar.

  • Tune your guitar lower than standard E tuning, such as to D tuning or C tuning.

  • Cut the mids and highs and crank up the bass on your amplifier's equalizer.

  • Connect an octave effects pedal to your guitar and amplifier and set it to a lower octave. This will change the frequency of your sound and make your electric guitar sound more like a bass.

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  • Photo Credit Guitar player #1 image by Warren Millar from
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