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aha! - tone & EBMM low action

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by sonicnuance, Feb 17, 2008.

  1. sonicnuance

    sonicnuance Commercial User

    Aug 30, 2003
    California, USA
    Engineer & Owner, Sonic Nuance Electronics
    I was tweaking the action of my EBMM SR5 and noticed something interesting.

    When I had medium action the aggressive tone of the bass started to vanish. When I lowered it the "voice" of the instrument returned. I'm not talking about buzzing, more of a momentary "clank", midrange bite and growl. When I lower the action I just said "aha - that must be part of the tonal magic of these basses"

    Anyone else notice this?
  2. Beav

    Beav Graphics Whore

    Jul 17, 2003
    Middle Tennessee
    Designer: Beav's Graphics
    When I had my SR4 the fret clank was a big part of the tone.
  3. I´d guess it´s not so much the action itself but the varying distance between strings and pickup that makes the difference. Closer - more midrange. Futher apart - less mids and growl, more lows.
  4. sonicnuance

    sonicnuance Commercial User

    Aug 30, 2003
    California, USA
    Engineer & Owner, Sonic Nuance Electronics
    Good point

  5. mongo2


    Feb 17, 2008
    Da Shaw
    I agree, I've found pickup to string distance to be a very important setup parameter.
  6. SERPENT865


    Jan 1, 2007
    Wichita , KS
    I agree also..
  7. I agree that string buzz is part of what the MM is known for. However, when the action is raised whole new world of tone is discovered. You can get sort of a jazz bass tone with the action a little higher.
  8. You can also raise the pickups to be closer to the strings. The closer the magnet, the more pull on them

    Just depress your strings at the highest fret you have (or you play at) and make sure the string height clear the pickup. That's one of the benefits of the MM since it has only one pickup (at least I'm assuming yours does - mine did). It's something you can't do with pickups that are located closer to the neck.

    That neck to first pickup distance is more important in determing the overall sound that I believe a lot of folks realize. Wood combination, and types of strings, electronics and pickups all play a part in tone (as does your rig), but so does the pickup spacing.


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