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It's 1 louder...

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(@jwmartin)
Noble Member
Joined: 17 years ago
Posts: 1435
Topic starter  

I noticed something at practice last night and I'm not sure what's going on. If I play notes on the bottom E string toward the end of the neck, my bass blends in with the rest of the band. Same thing on notes on the A string. From the 8th or 9th fret up on the E string, it sounds much louder than the lower notes. One song I play E C and D and play them at the 12th, 8th and 10th fret and it sounds like I'm playing lead bass.

Anyone know what is going on and how I can have a steadier volume level?

Bass player for Undercover


   
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(@danlasley)
Noble Member
Joined: 16 years ago
Posts: 2118
 

There are a couple of things going on here, but they're all "normal". You just have to change how hard you pluck the strings. It happens to all of us. I'll skip the physics and other factors for now - cuz I don't remember them properly. 8)

Try plucking closer to the bridge as you fret higher up the neck.


   
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(@scrybe)
Famed Member
Joined: 17 years ago
Posts: 2241
 

The physics would be something to do with the shorter length of string (from the bridge to where you're fretting the note) not requiring as much force to generate X number of vibrations per second (or other temporal unit of your choice) as would be required to make a longer length of string vibrate X number of times per second. (Kinda like using a skipping rope - getting it to rotate 20 times a minute is easier with a 1-2metre length of skipping rope than a 1-2mile length of skipping rope.....not that I've tried that or anything).

So, if you pluck with a constant force of Y, as you shorten the string length (by fretting further up the neck), the number of string vibrations per second increases. You want the string vibrations per second to stay constant (X), so you have to pluck softer as you move up the neck (varying Y).

I think.

Ra Er Ga.

Ninjazz have SuperChops.

http://www.blipfoto.com/Scrybe


   
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(@gabba-gabba-hey)
Reputable Member
Joined: 15 years ago
Posts: 355
 

While I'm all for improving one's playing dynamics, I'll suggest putting a good quality compressor in your signal chain. I use a BBE Opto-Stomp for this reason; smooths out the volume but doesn't sound squished. Even then I still need to vary my 'touch' depending on the song, but overall I get more consistent volume.


   
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(@jwmartin)
Noble Member
Joined: 17 years ago
Posts: 1435
Topic starter  

I have adjusted my attack to deal with the issue. I've also moved some songs up a string and play them down at the end of the neck. Thanks for the physics!

Gabba, I have thought about getting a compressor, just haven't yet. There's just too many other "fun" things I want. A compressor isn't very fun.

Bass player for Undercover


   
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(@ph0nage)
Reputable Member
Joined: 16 years ago
Posts: 199
 

a compressor is a great pedal to have for sure. I actually just upgraded to a Keeley compressor from a Dynacomp. This squishy-ness was really annoying my on the cleans. Never thought i would spend that much money on a pedal, but it's amazing at what it does...and very pretty!


   
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