How to Make an Electric Guitar Sound Like a Bass

Guitar player #1 image by Warren Millar from

Things You'll Need

  • Heavy gauge strings
  • Octave effects pedal

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.

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.



About the Author

James Gilmore has written professionally since 2005. Since then, he has written and proofread obituaries for "The Press & Sun-Bulletin" in Binghamton, N.Y., press releases for "Goals, Seminars and Consultants" and articles for Made Man and various other websites. He writes a good deal of music-related content and holds a Bachelor of Arts in journalism from Ithaca College.

Photo Credits

  • Guitar player #1 image by Warren Millar from