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Hipshot FreeRange Xtender

Discussion in 'Accessories [DB]' started by powerbass, Feb 19, 2012.

  1. powerbass

    powerbass

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  2. Greg Clinkingbeard

    Greg Clinkingbeard

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    Disclosures:
    Setup and repair/KRUTZ Strings
    Expect fallen and broken bridges. Fail.
  3. Sam Sherry

    Sam Sherry Inadvertent Microtonalist Supporting Member

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    Euphonic Audio "Player"
    I'm slightly less skeptical than Greg. Tuning a string down might not mandate a tipped or broken bridge. However,

    Expect your other strings to go out of tune as you change the tension on the instrument using the HipShot, and the farther you drop the more that will be so.

    I'm not going to jump to "fail" because, let's face it, my intonation is sketchy already . . .

    If I could get one for free I'd definitely give it a whirl. Even if, as Greg suggests, there's the risk of a whirl and a thump.
  4. powerbass

    powerbass

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  5. bassfox

    bassfox Supporting Member

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    I put the Hipshot Bass Xtender key on my Azola EUB and I don't have a problem with the other strings going out of tune.
  6. Sam Sherry

    Sam Sherry Inadvertent Microtonalist Supporting Member

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    Euphonic Audio "Player"
    BFox -- Cool, then. Useful and fun on EUBs.

    I suspect that the top on your Azola EUB doesn't "float" the way a double-bass top does.

    Or I'm just wrong. Again. It's a risk inherent in uninformed speculation.

    + + +

    Pow -- Thanks for posting the YouTube clip. If I'm not mistaken the D string -- the only one without the HipShot adjuster -- gets a bit sharper after changeover. But maybe that's just me trying to justify my guess.

    I'd be interested to hear what somebody who actually uses one of these on a double-bass says.
  7. bassfox

    bassfox Supporting Member

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    The Azola is actually a floating spruce top. I wouldn't put four on my upright and not expect things to get squirrelly.
  8. robobass

    robobass

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    Private Inventor - Bass Capos
    Cool! It's so simple I'm surprised no one has thought of it before. Before I got my extension I used to detune my E to D all the time. This did make my upper strings slightly sharp, but it didn't totally destabilize the bass or anything. For something like the 3rd movement of Brahm's Requiem it would be very handy. I think I would limit it to just a whole step change on the E string though.
  9. Will Yager

    Will Yager

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    Man...I just played a whole concert in drop D. That makes this very tempting...
  10. BassmanI

    BassmanI

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    Gollihur Music is testing this device out and my local luthier, Mark Monaco is also interested. It could very well be a viable low cost alternative to the more costly C-extensions.
  11. robobass

    robobass

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    I guess I'll be out of business then:) I think it has a good chance of catching on, but it could also provide a gateway to wider C-Extension use. Once you have those low notes on your bass, you might become more motivated to lay out the bucks to do it properly.

    I also think that they might serve themselves by dropping the price a bit. Of course they have development costs and face a much smaller market than they have with their slab bass gear, but at that price point I'm not ready to order, and I bet I'm not alone.
  12. MR PC

    MR PC

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    It's going to be a keeper.
  13. Thor

    Thor Back. And grumpier than ever. Supporting Member

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    I have had some dealings with HS direct. Their website pricing is published at pretty much MSRP so as not to upset their larger clients and retailers. Of, course, those clients like 'Gibder' and 'Fendson' sometimes 'return' goods that are 'scratched' or other wise unsuitable for sale, giving them a small reserve of product available to discerning TBers with slight 'defects' at a moderate discount.

    I have found that a microscope or other good quality magnifying device is usually required, but yup, the defect is
    usually discernable. Pretty much.
  14. dmusic148

    dmusic148

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    Hmmm... seems to me the string would have to 'skid' quite a bit over the bridge, maybe causing intonation problems and/ or stressing the bridge in the process. And the added mass to the afterlength may affect tone, but who knows.
    I'll say this: Hipshot isn't known for introducing products that don't work.
  15. NicholasF

    NicholasF Guest

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    So far what I've seen it used for, is going from a modern tuning, to a cello tuning or barouque(sorry for the spelling) tuning. They seem to get the job done, it can also just hold you over until you can get a C extension made (which kindof works, there are no gates so if you were to use it as a C extension, you would go from an E directly to a C.) Personally, I wouldn't use it, I would wait until I can get my hands on a 50's Juzek and get a Low C extension built, with a few gates.
  16. Matt Ides

    Matt Ides

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    Drop D would be great, but I do worry about where the string hits the bridge and your E string slowly unraveling.

    OK, I was thinking about this on my way home and it sorta is like a giant fine tuner for bass in a way. So maybe the chances of it changing the sound of the bass are minimal. I wish the price point was lower cause I would give it a whirl.
  17. Rodger Bryan

    Rodger Bryan

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    To prevent binding, I would be tempted to inlay a slice of a hard, slippery nut material such as what GraphTech makes into the bridge.
  18. robobass

    robobass

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    I don't think this is a big worry if the bridge slot is properly shaped and lubricated. Especially if you're only dropping a whole step.

    As to tone, I don't know what it is made of, but it doesn't look light! I bet there would be some effect, especially because of where you are adding the mass.
  19. NicholasF

    NicholasF Guest

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    Could it be possible to make a lite graphite bridge? Or how about graphite slippery nut lining by the slots, and maybe using the half peice of graphite and conjoining it with the wood, so it would be top half graphite, bottom half wood? Just a late night thought.
  20. robobass

    robobass

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    I think making the entire upper part of the bridge top in graphite would have a pretty drastic effect on sound. Less so with a small insert at the string groove, but there would be some effect nonethless. I think that if you only want to use it for a drop "D" then this would work fine on a normal bridge.

    Mounting three units and switching between fourths and fifths tuning seems optimistic. Even aside from the string slot issue, finding strings which would work in both tunings seems unrealistic. Looking at the fifths tuning threads on this forum, the adopters most all agree that string choice is critical to getting the bass to respond properly.

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