Low E buzzing and too quiet... help?

Discussion in 'Strings [DB]' started by ixcokerxi, Nov 8, 2012.


  1. ixcokerxi

    ixcokerxi

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2011
    I've recently started playing upright, and my three top strings are fantastic; they have great, full tone. My low E, however, buzzes whenever any note besides the open is played. I've tried adjusting the bridge to as high as it will go, and the buzzing is kind of fixed... but the sound is still SO quiet compared to the three other strings. All four strings are nylon, and noticeably thicker than the strings I've felt on other players' basses. Is this an issue of the string itself, or is the low E just quiet on DB (the instrument's just that way)? :confused:
  2. Clarkybass

    Clarkybass Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Apr 30, 2010
    Do the strings by any chance each have different coloured silks, which could mean you have Innovation Silver Slap strings as these are fat and nylon. If so, the E doesn't have as much tone and carry as the other strinsg in my opinion. Its one of the reasons I have swapped out from these strings to steels (nice low tension steels include Kolstein Heritage, down-tuned Spirocore Solos and I am sure there are others that may suit, eg, Spirocore Weichs are not as low tension but lower than most steels). There could be other reasons too, eg, the way the string is wound around the pegs, the break angles on bridge and nut etc
  3. ixcokerxi

    ixcokerxi

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2011
    I'm very happy with the other strings... would it be too strange to change just the low E to a steel or different brand nylon, or do you think it would be a good investment to change them all? I've played other basses, and every steel string I try is much more dead, not to mention much quieter.
  4. Clarkybass

    Clarkybass Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Apr 30, 2010
    You could easily mix a diiferent type of E. For example, if they are Silver Slaps, you could try an Innovation Super Silver 'E' as this brand is by the same manufacturer and of similar construction but of higher tension. However, it would help us all suggest something if you could identify the strings - what colour are the silks for starters and are the strings opaque coloured?


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  5. Eric Hochberg

    Eric Hochberg

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2004
    Location:
    Chicago
    Low E should not be quiet but balanced with the other strings. Definitely try another new E string or set, spirocore weich would be fine, or do what Clarky suggests. If it is still quiet, you'll need to take the bass to a bass luthier to check the soundpost. May need an adjustment there. Is the buzzing coming from the strings/fingerboard, or from the body? Unfortunately, some basses just have weak low note response. Hopefully yours isn't one of them.
  6. ixcokerxi

    ixcokerxi

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2011
    I've attached a picture as reference... you'll probably get more from this than any description I could give you!

    Attached Files:

  7. Clarkybass

    Clarkybass Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Apr 30, 2010
    OK, those aren't Silver Slaps, rendering my comments about the Super Silver 'E' largely irrelevant (possibly)! Over to someone who does recognise those silks!!!!
  8. JeffKissell

    JeffKissell Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2004
    Location:
    Soquel, CA
    If you're just starting out then technique is also a factor. Having had this problem with Spirocores when I first started playing DB, my personal opinion is that it's more technique and/or a set-up issue than a string issue.
    The E string is plucked/pulled differently because of it's location on the fingerboard. Most likely you're pulling this string down and into the board as opposed to a more parallel or slightly upward motion for the other strings. This is because when you pluck the other strings you finger comes to rest on the next lower string but when you get to the E string, your finger naturally pulls down and off the board entirely. Try pulling slightly upwards to see if you get a better balance. Good luck, YMMV, IMHO, etc.
    -Jeff
  9. Earl

    Earl

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 2000
    Location:
    Ridgefield Park, New Jersey
    Those look like Eurosonics.
  10. ixcokerxi

    ixcokerxi

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2011
    Good advice, and I've tried that some as well. Still, the issue of weak sound and no sustain continues. Any suggestions for strings that might be better?
  11. JeffKissell

    JeffKissell Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2004
    Location:
    Soquel, CA
    The Eurosonic string set typically has a pretty strong E string. It sounds like it might be a set-up issue more than a string issue. I'd hate for you to buy a bunch strings only to discover you've got an issue with the bass itself. Do you know a more experienced DB player or luthier who could play your bass to confirm?
    -Jeff
  12. ixcokerxi

    ixcokerxi

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2011
    I'll go to the shop that set it up tomorrow and tell the owner about the problem. It's still under their warranty, so I'll see if he can do something to help it sing :) thanks!

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