Basses that have forgiving low E

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by IbanezSDGR2, Jan 24, 2018.

  1. I'm still working on my finger technique but sometimes I hit the low E string so hard that it rattles against the pickup making a nasty pop sound. Also sometimes I accidentally press my thumb against that E string to the point that it hits the pickup. I'm wondering if this is purely my poor technique or is it something to do with my bass. I have an Ibanez SoundGear SR370E. Do I need a $1,000 Fender instead?
    Last edited: Jan 24, 2018
    BurnOut likes this.
  2. BurnOut

    BurnOut It's The Billy Baloney Show

    Feb 1, 2015
    The Natti
    I've been mostly a pick player, but have been working fingers in more and more. A couple few weeks ago I noticed I was doing the same thing on my main player BTB200. Was wondering if the pickups had adjusted up over time, but then found I just needed to be hittin the string a little more careful.
    Just got a Fender P and I plan on playing it often, so I will report back my findings.
  3. Stumbo

    Stumbo Guest

    Feb 11, 2008
    You gotta relax your hands! Play with more attention to accuracy. Slow down. A soft touch means longevity.

    The only thing to be gained pounding away like you do is carpal tunnel syndrome. Then, you won't even be able to play with a light touch and not cry in pain.

    Turn up the amp if you need more volume. Buy a pedal if you want more dirt or growl.

    Oh yeah, it's not the bass.:thumbsup: See how much money I saved you!:angel:
    chris_b likes this.
  4. Part-time punk

    Part-time punk

    Sep 4, 2017
    try lowering the pickup a bit? just on the E side, not both.
    what's the distance between the bottom of the string and the pickup?
  5. The distance from the little round chrome things that stick out of the pickup to the very bottom of the string is 4 mm.
    Last edited: Jan 24, 2018
  6. The pickup is clearly too high (providing the string is set up well). You shouldn't be able to make a string touch the pickup without serious effort.

    Also in general, remember that a soft touch is better. Your accuracy will improve with time until you don't have to think about it but it's easier to make controlled movements when you're not over-exerting yourself. Play gentle and turn the amp up if you need more grunt!
  7. Part-time punk

    Part-time punk

    Sep 4, 2017
    4cm or 4mm?? ;)
  8. Sorry. I corrected that. It's 4 mm or 5/32". 4 cm would be waaaaaay too much!
  9. el murdoque

    el murdoque

    Mar 10, 2013
    When you practice, make sure you always play with an amp. And turn that amp a bit louder. And another bit louder for good measure.
    Now you should hear the subtle differences between a lighter touch and a harder one.
    And you should hear a noise that makes your teeth rattle when you pluck that poor string so hard it hits the pickup.
  10. Bodeeni

    Bodeeni Supporting Member

    Jan 13, 2010
    Work on your technique and lower the pickup(s). When you slap the strings hard like it appears you are doing you want the string to at least hit the front frets not the pickup. You can also raise the e string a bit, and vary the strength and angle of your attack. There are many options with fingers which can all work for different things
  11. chris_b


    Jun 2, 2007
    There are lots of good players with a "heavy" playing style so I'm not sure it would be called a "poor" technique. . . . but it could be better. The short term fix is to lower the pickup. The long term fix is to improve your technique so you hit less hard. If you can press the string so it hits the pickup then IMO the pickup is too high anyway.

    You can always get a better bass. The trick is to know when to stop looking.
  12. Joe Nerve

    Joe Nerve Supporting Member

    Oct 7, 2000
    New York City
    Endorsing artist: Musicman basses
    To answer the title in your thread, a 35" scale bass will be more forgiving. To answer your actual post, everyone else already did :). Lower the pickup and work on technique.

    FWIW, I just starting playing a short scale bass (Mustang P/J) and was having the same problem, even after decades of playing. I did both of the above. I started laying back on my technique which was a challenge after all these years, AND I dropped the pickup height. Problem solved.
    Stumbo likes this.
  13. Primary

    Primary TB Assistant

    Here are some related products that TB members are talking about. Clicking on a product will take you to TB’s partner, Primary, where you can find links to TB discussions about these products.

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