Fretless Octave Basses

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Longwaydown, Mar 30, 2014.


  1. Longwaydown

    Longwaydown

    Joined:
    Mar 30, 2014
    Hello all, I'm new here and hoping some of the members can help provide information about fretless octave 8 string basses. Do any of you have one, and if so what is it like to play? How much did you have to alter your technique from a standard fretless? Are there any particular intonation issues between the octave strings when fretting? Are 3 note chords a challenge? How much physical effort is required to play it compared to an 8 string fretted octave bass? Any info would be greatly appreciated, thanks.
  2. ArtechnikA

    ArtechnikA I endorsed a check once... Gold Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2013
    Location:
    SEPA
    Here, unfortunately, is 100% of what I actually know about fretless 8-string octave-course basses:

    Listen to Mark Egan...

    He can make it sing, which gives me hope that it is possible...
    I've been able to 'get close' with a regular fretless and a +1 octaver.
    I kinda hope I never see one for sale, because it would be hard to resist...
    I've been playing 12-string guitar for a long time and never noticed any intonation issues, and that without an adjustable bridge. Much, much skinnier strings, tho, of course...
  3. Longwaydown

    Longwaydown

    Joined:
    Mar 30, 2014
    Thanks for the suggestion, but I can't find any recorded examples of him on the 8 fretless...
  4. ArtechnikA

    ArtechnikA I endorsed a check once... Gold Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2013
    Location:
    SEPA
    Featured on the "Beyond Words" CD. Probably others - I'm still building my Mark Egan CD collection...

    Also has a lovely arrangement of 'What Child Is This' on one of the GRP Christmas collections (the first one).
  5. Register to disable this ad
  6. monkeyhaiku

    monkeyhaiku

    Joined:
    Apr 20, 2007
    Location:
    San Francisco, CA
    I have one that I put together from Warmoth parts. Just like picking up any fretless, after a while you don't even notice the frets being absent.
  7. ArtechnikA

    ArtechnikA I endorsed a check once... Gold Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2013
    Location:
    SEPA
  8. Longwaydown

    Longwaydown

    Joined:
    Mar 30, 2014
    Ok AA, thanks for the tip.
  9. Longwaydown

    Longwaydown

    Joined:
    Mar 30, 2014
    Hi mh, I saw a picture of that bass in the 8 string club thread, looks very nice. What I'm wondering about specifically is the intonation; I'm guessing that with octaves, proper intonation can only come if the player is able to maintain as close to a perfect 90 degree angle to the fingerboard as possible, so that the octave pair are in tune with each other, barring them straight across. Is this correct? And if so, wouldn't that make playing lines on the instrument harder than a non octave bass, and very hard if one were to attempt say a 3 note, non bar chord? Thanks...

Share This Page