How to avoid the annoying "clack" sound?
This days I've been facing an awkward situation with my bandmates. While playing normal speed section the sound of my bass is pretty good, but when we go into a fast part, my bass starting doing a "clack" sound that makes the other notes confusing for everyone. When I'm playing 16ths it sounds like 3 and a clack, other 3 notes and a clack. I know they know it, because in that cases they all start snicking and looking to each other, and this last rehearsal one guy told me: Your bass got a cold, huh? It hurted.
I don't know what's going on. I played fast bass lines before with a sweet sound, you could actually hear every single note. But now it's embarrassing for me.
I came up with different conclusiones:
- Something's wrong with my technique, when I hit the strings.
- The strings were improperly installed, maybe their quite near to the pickups, or something.
- My amplifier it's not doing good.
I'm now desperate, because I need my fast clean bass sound as soon as possible. Jams are near.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bf6LKsSbJpc This is the example of how I used to sound, it's not me, but the sound is similar.
I'd really appreciate any kind of help. Thanks to all of you guys! Happy New Year :)
PD: Sorry if something it's not right, english it's my mother tongue.
Could be a few things here or a combination of some or all of them.
Try turning down some of your highs so the clank comes through less.
Try a lighter touch on your plucking.
Use heavier gauge, they flex less.
What has changed other than time since your vid and now?
Are you playing over the pickups or back by the bridge? maybe playing closer to the bridge will keep your strings from "clanking"
Taking your bass to someone that can show you how to do a SETUP is the key here. You could also pull up a video on youtube about bass setup, grab some Allen Wrenches, and go to town. It's not too hard at all to do a setup on your bass - at this point though, it's probably best to have someone sit down with you and show you how it is properly done. Get the bass working now, then go back to this person to learn more.
Your plucking too hard
a light touch opens every door! (unless it's locked)
I had a mystery clack when I had my action set too low.
I couldn't see what the A string (for example) was hitting when I plucked it.
Then I pulled the E string up and out of the way while plucking the A... and the clack went away.
The clack was actually my finger hitting the E down onto the frets after plucking the A.
Also had a bass that clacked due to worn out frets.
Look for big flat spots on top of the frets where the strings contact them.
Small flat spots are no big deal but there's a point the fret is worn out.
Don't throw the bass away, they can be refretted.
What's the right hand technique you're using when playing those lines. Sounds like you're overemphasizing that fourth note due to over compensating for a weak finger or something along those lines. Try practicing those lines slowly and pay close attention to playing all the notes with the same force. Then build the speed up.
I don't think it's the bass setup as there is no clank while playing anything else. I think it's all a technique issue.
Without hearing or seeing more, I'd have to blame it on technique.
OP - if you play these runs at 50% speed, do you still hear the clacking?
If you Really want an accurate, effective, quick answer, video yourself playing these runs, and somebody will identify the source.
JMHO...which is worth nothing on ebay. :smug:
Why would your band mates make fun of you? At least 50% of bassists out there have some clack in their playing. It's unavoidable if you're playing rock or metal fingerstyle, it's needed to cut through and not sound like a fairy.
1. Embrace the clack and lower the action so every note has it Like this
2. Heighten action
3. Play lighter (best option)
4. Cut highs
5. Play at the bridge
By the way, is that you in the video? I saw that a few weeks ago and was marveling at it.
[quote=Tupac;13660492] It's unavoidable if you're playing rock or metal fingerstyle, it's needed to cut through and not sound like a fairy.
1. Embrace the clack and lower the action so every note has it [url=https://www.youtube.com[/QUOTE]
Completely untrue. Lots of metal players don't 'clack' and it's not needed to cut through.
If the OP doesn't like the clack sound, they should work to remove it from their playing, you don't have to give up/embrace it if you don't like it. I often (not always) find it's a signal for sloppy technique.
What kind of bass do you have? This is probably the sound of your strings hitting the pickup.
I play a Jazz bass and I mostly play over the neck pickup. I have the bridge pickup turned all the way up, but I have to dial back the neck pickup to keep the clack away at the top of my attack range. I think I have fine technique and a nice tone.
If you hear a lot of fret buzzing when you play unplugged, maybe your action's too low.
Unplug the Sansamp
Older post I know but I am going through this now. I have a freshly-built parts bass with "clacking". I play with a light touch but when I need to dig-in, I was getting some clack. I have a fairly low action and not much relief in the neck. I added just a touch (not quite a quarter turn on the truss rod) and it is already better.
I have not adjusted string height yet.
I noticed this on another parts bass (with a '72 neck) when I was gigging it but it was not evident in any of the recordings. This newer bass (with a '74 neck) was more severe. Perfectly fine when played sedately but clanky (but with a cool dirty growl) when played with aggression.
I have noticed this on my basses with 70's necks (which I am becoming quite fond of!). All of my basses until recently had the very small vintage-style frets on them with low action and very little neck relief and I get a very even volume and sound from them no matter how much or little I attack.
Time will tell if I can adjust this out without the need to radically alter my finger style.
What bothers me more than the clank is that it seems to also come with an uneven volume across the strings. Random loud notes. Nothing consistent, like when you hear someone learning to "pop" and they occasionally get a "good one" in.
stop playing with your duck and it won't clack so much.
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