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Bass Advice - EUB or DB

Discussion in 'Basses [DB]' started by Mikey3, Oct 29, 2013.


  1. Mikey3

    Mikey3

    Aug 8, 2007
    Michigan
    Looking for a bit of advice here. I sold my DB a little while ago as I did not have a ton of time to play/practice and now I am missing it like crazy. I will eventually get another DB, but the advice I seek is whether an EUB will be "good enough" for right now. I am looking for something that I can bow, and get close to the feel and form I would need when using a DB, but in an EUB form. My kids are young and only time I can practice is when they are sleeping, so I really need something quiet. I tried a bunch of stuff while I had my DB, but it was still too loud for quiet practice, hence why I am leaning to an EUB. Since the EUB is not going to be something that I will keep forever, and when my kids are a bit older I will get back into a DB, I am just looking for something that I can use in the meantime to build the foundations of my playing. Would something like a Stagg or Palatino suit my needs? or does it have to be something more expensive like a Clevinger, AlterEgo or Eminence? Any advice would be appreciated.

    To sum it up, just wanting to know if a EUB will suit my needs for quiet practice, while allowing me to practice with a bow and develop the same mechanics/form needed for DB, and whether the inexpensive offerings will help at all or if they are a total waste of time.
    Thanks again
    Mikey
     
  2. Matthijs

    Matthijs

    Jul 3, 2006
    Amsterdam
    I think you need something that feels like an actual DB. You won´t get that with a Stagg, don´t know about the Palatino but I have my doubts.

    The NS basses come closer, but it took me quite some tweaking to get in the neighbourhood with my WAV. I think if it is within your possibilities a more expensive option would be best.
     
  3. bobsax

    bobsax

    Jan 16, 2011
    Southern Oregon
    You'll pay more for a decent EUB then for a decent DB
    BSX is a good EUB
    I have a solid body and it works great for practice but it sounds like a frettless bass guitar
    It may be best to pony up and get a good hollow body
     
  4. Tom Lane

    Tom Lane Gold Supporting Member

    The Eminence or the NS might be good choices. The Eminence feels nearly identical, IMO, to a URB. It has an acoustic chamber so it's not silent but pretty quiet. I've played mine many times in a hotel without an amp and can hear what I'm doing without disturbing the folks next door. The NS's are more like bass guitars for their body - solid but with a large cavity for the electronics. They're quite bowable, IMO, and they're VERY quiet. I have to use a small headphone amp if I don't want to use an amp with the NS. The NS doesn't quite feel like a URB. In the ballpark, but there's no heel where the body connects to the neck as on a URB. How about the Yamaha Silent Bass? I don't know much about them other than they don't seem to be very popular but I'll bet it's quiet and bowable.
     
  5. The NS NXT is very quiet, but no substitute for the URB. I think it is more difficult to play than an upright, mainly due to fewer reference points, including the lack of a reference where the neck meets the body, and the lack of a body.. I would look for something that tries to at least simulate the body of an URB, and has that reference point. So many problems with the NXT, including a stand that fell apart, and minimal customer service from the mfgr. I am selling mine as soon as I can afford an Eminence as a second bass for portability, and have my URB..
     
  6. Tom Lane

    Tom Lane Gold Supporting Member

    So, I have both. The Eminence is my first backup for local gigs. I recently bought an NS Omni for airline travel to replace my bass guitars. In my case, I realized that I'd invested so much effort in a good URB technique that I no longer wanted to play the BG which I had kept around for those gigs when someone asked me to sit-in for a tune or two. My plan is to use the Omni for those gigs.
    I can't comment on NS's support because I haven't needed them yet. I can say that their instruments are well and thoughtfully well designed. On first blush with the Omni, I didn't like the position nor lack of markers for the pots. I did appreciate the thoughtfulness that went into the strap and peg stand that I bought, along with the quality evident in the instrument.
    As for the Eminence, I switch back and forth with little change in my playing. I find the end-pin a problem and the amplified tone is only okay. Still, it's a great, portable substitute for the URB. I've traveled with it many times without issue, but I'm always worried when I check it that it won't make the trip either 1) there or 2) in tact, so I bought the NS Omni for something that I can never have to relinquish to a baggage *gorilla*.
    Since the OP didn't mention travel as a requirement, I still maintain that a used Eminence is the unaltered choice but may be louder than is acceptable, the NS is a quiet, but flawed alternative, and the Yamaha Silent Bass an unknown possibility.
    Hope that helps.
     
  7. Matthijs

    Matthijs

    Jul 3, 2006
    Amsterdam
    Sure the NS is only a surrogate, but it might be enough. I myself changed the stand so it would act more like a bass with endpin and it has a fake heel. Makes a big difference in playability to me
     
  8. turf3

    turf3

    Sep 26, 2011
    I had a bandmate a few years ago who transitioned from electric to upright and his stop in between was the Yamaha Silent Bass. I always thought it sounded pretty good, and it should have the same contact reference points as a real double bass. I don't know why these get no attention on the net. None of the big names in bass on-line retailers seem to promote them. Are they even still in production? It seems to me, as someone who has only played the standard double bass, not EUB, that the lack of the standard contact points would be a big hassle with the "stick shaped" EUBs.
     
  9. Mikey3

    Mikey3

    Aug 8, 2007
    Michigan
    I appreciate the input, but if I decide to spend a year or two with a Stagg or Palatino, will I be having to relearn everything from a technical standpoint when moving on to a traditional 3/4 URB? Things like left hand technique, bowing etc? Will playing a "stick" bass cause problems while plucking strings and bowing etc?
     
  10. SeaMist_au

    SeaMist_au

    Aug 28, 2012
    Australia
    Correct method for pizzicato and bowing can be learned on an EUB. Left hand fingerings can be learned too. You don't get to feel the presence of the bass itself which can take quite a bit of adaption. Playing up the neck is simple on an EUB. Not so for the DB. Setup of EUB's tends to be lower than the DB making adaption an issue although it is easier on the hand, not a bad thing while you are learning.
    Most of my adaption was just with the physicality. You don't learn on an EUB to use the shoulders to pull back on the strings with the left hand, instead tending to use the thumb like in a BG. That is fatal on a DB. And then of corse there is the sound......but that's another story lol.
     
  11. Mikey3

    Mikey3

    Aug 8, 2007
    Michigan
    I appreciate that...The sound without a doubt would be a big factor, but my main concern is just to improve and learn the instrument. I think with regards to using the shoulders, I think this is something that might just take a conscious effort to make sure that I am doing it. I do know there will be an adaption period to switching back, but I just would like it to be something like a switch from a long scale to a short scale bass (fundamentals are still in place, but will take a bit to get used to the feel) rather than going from violin to cello or something like that
     
  12. SeaMist_au

    SeaMist_au

    Aug 28, 2012
    Australia
    Regretfully it's terribly hard to get used to using the shoulder muscles on an EUB because the force used would simply pull it over onto the floor lol. It just doesn't offer enough resistance. This is in reference to the NS NXT BTW. Others might have different mounting. The scale length of the NS is correct and there won't be much adaption required The fingerboard is curved too so that is ok.
    The challenges really revolve around the physical side of the instrument, but you can learn the correct techniques for pizz and arco on the right hand and the correct fingerings for the left hand, although when you pick up the real thing you will be in for a bit of a surprise on both hands, especially the left. And the rest of your body too lol.
     
  13. bobsax

    bobsax

    Jan 16, 2011
    Southern Oregon
    Let us know what you get and how you like it?
    I tried a stagg. The tuners kept breaking . It was cheaply made but the mega thread has fixes and workarounds .
     

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