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Can you use an variable graphic equalizer to remove dead spots on the neck?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by ::::BASSIST::::, Jan 20, 2005.


  1. ::::BASSIST::::

    ::::BASSIST:::: Progress Not Perfection.

    Sep 2, 2004
    Vancouver, BC Canada
    Can you use an variable graphic equalizer to remove dead spots on the neck?

    I seems my geddy lee fender has alot of them below the 5th fret. I tried the "Fat Finger" and though it has added sustain (and really not that much to my ears) i still hear the same dead spots. The most obvious is on the 9th fret on the "A" string.

    Would the boss ge bass eq pedal work to remove the dead spots?

    Is there a method that I could employ that would be most efficient or should i just muck around with the sliders for awhile?

    thanks
     
  2. IvanMike

    IvanMike Player Characters fear me... Staff Member Supporting Member

    Nov 10, 2002
    Middletown CT, USA
    sort of -
    you can't really remove dead spots but you might be able to "beef up" those area's slightly. However, i would avoid extreme eq boosts. it will make the rest of the notes sound odd. the bandwidth of that eq is just too wide. if you havent changed strings in a while i would do that. maybe try nickel instead of steel, or try medium guage strings if you have been using light.
     
  3. brianrost

    brianrost Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 26, 2000
    Boston, Taxachusetts
    Not really. You can boost the level of the weak note but you can't do anything about the lack of sustain and the boost will also affect the harmonics of all OTHER notes that fall in that frequency band.

    If you have "a lot" of dead spots something is wrong. While most basses have dead spots, most have only one or two of them!
     
  4. Sundogue

    Sundogue

    Apr 26, 2001
    Wausau, WI
    It might just need a truss rod adjustment.

    Dead spots on the neck indicate that certain parts of the neck are resonating at a frequency similar to the string/note being played.

    Fenders are most prone to this, especially MIM's as they do not use neck reenforcement such as graphite.

    Try tweaking the neck bit and test. See if that makes a difference.
     
  5. ::::BASSIST::::

    ::::BASSIST:::: Progress Not Perfection.

    Sep 2, 2004
    Vancouver, BC Canada
    Well maybe its b/c i am a rookie bass player (been playing since august but guitar since 91) and i dont know how to set up the amp properly but it seems the low notes sound nice but the higher ones seem a little too thin. And then it seems there are more than two spots are dead or close to it.

    I tried to adjust the truss rod before but i really dont know what i am doing so i cant easily tell if the adjustments i make are working to provide better sound.

    I brought my bass into a competent tech guy (probably one of the best as he works for the largest music store in vancouver) and asked him to set the action really low. Well, it came back not that low and these dead spots were still there.

    If i got a new neck would that solve the problem? seems like there must be a less costly solution. Plus, i like the geddy neck.
     
  6. IvanMike

    IvanMike Player Characters fear me... Staff Member Supporting Member

    Nov 10, 2002
    Middletown CT, USA
    lol
    working for the largest music store in vancover does not equal being the most competent tech. not by a long shot.
     
  7. Sundogue

    Sundogue

    Apr 26, 2001
    Wausau, WI
    It may not be the neck. Dead spots usually are from the neck, but not always.

    Some strings being quieter than others may be because of pickup height. Have you checked how high you have the pickups? You can try raising the pickups on the side of the D and G strings. Try getting them a bit closer on that side.

    Some basses are better suited for lower action than others.

    Have you tried different strings? I've had some great sounding strings that after a period of time developed dead spots, and just a string change cured it.
     
  8. Steve

    Steve

    Aug 10, 2001
    It's been my experience that "Dead spots" are pretty specific.

    The description you give sounds more like an EQ issue to me in that you may be cutting mids at fundamental frequencys of the notes you hear as dead spots.

    If that makes any sense at all...
     
  9. ::::BASSIST::::

    ::::BASSIST:::: Progress Not Perfection.

    Sep 2, 2004
    Vancouver, BC Canada
    I have checked the neck again. I dont know if its correct to say they are dead spots, but they dont ring as "true" as the rest of the notes on the neck. The sustain isnt as significant. Also, they are ALL on the "A" string. They are on the 6, 7, 8, 9th, 10th, 11th 12th frets. Beyond the 12 i am not too concerned. I conclude that its probably needing a truss rod adjustment. My gut tells me its not the string, but i certainly could be wrong.

    I just hope this is fixable and not something i have to live with. I love the geddy neck and i dont want to junk it.

    I am using d'addario (sp?) "Chromes" strings. If i went with heavier strings would that effect the ease of finger movement?

    What are the best flatwounds out there that are typically found in stores?

    I really like the smooth feel of the Chromes but if i could get something similar that is a better string I'd check it out.

    Please give suggestions
     
  10. BillyB_from_LZ

    BillyB_from_LZ Supporting Member

    Sep 7, 2000
    Chicago
    If they're all on one string, it seems like it's a bad string.

    Flats are comfy, but they have a lot less high end than round or half-round strings.

    I've been using DR Hi-Beams for years so I can help you with flats. They are a lot less abusive to my fingers than the Rotosounds that I used to use. I do have Elixirs on my fretless and they're pretty smooth (but expensive).
     
  11. Sundogue

    Sundogue

    Apr 26, 2001
    Wausau, WI
    I agree, if they are all on one string, it is probably the string itself. Even if it does not seem dead lower down, you might not notice the harmonic sound of the notes the lower they go.

    It's not uncommon to get a dead string in a set.
     
  12. Bob Lee (QSC)

    Bob Lee (QSC) In case you missed it, I work for QSC Audio! Gold Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jul 3, 2001
    Costa Mesa, Calif.
    Technical Communications Developer, QSC Audio
    There's a saying among acoustical consultants and installers (at least among the enlightened ones):

    Solve electronic problems electronically and acoustical problems acoustically.

    I see a parallel in your situation. If the dead spots are caused by poor response in your amp system and/or the electronics in your bass, then yes, the dead spots could be corrected with EQ. But you would probably find that the dead spots correspond to certain notes where they appear on several strings instead of specific positions on certain strings.

    Dead spots that are mechanical/acoustical (that is, the vibrations of the string and the bass) in nature are best solved by those same means. It could be a bad string, as others mentioned. If it's not the string, it would probably be some odd resonance in the instrument itself that absorbs the vibrating energy of the string at that point. Maybe a setup would help. If your bass has a bolt-on neck, maybe all the screws aren't tight.
     
  13. Steve

    Steve

    Aug 10, 2001
    Given the updated info...I'd try new strings first.

    Every gripe I've ever heard about Dead Spots involved the 3-5-7 fret area of the G string.
     
  14. IvanMike

    IvanMike Player Characters fear me... Staff Member Supporting Member

    Nov 10, 2002
    Middletown CT, USA
    +1