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Considering buying a fender 5 string

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by TheNewGuy, Jun 16, 2001.

  1. TheNewGuy


    Jun 16, 2001
    I really like Fenders, and I wanted a true 5-string guitar (mine is a 4-string with 5-string guage strings :). I cant afford the MA ones so I would probably get the standard or deluxe version. But I'm looking for a tight B-string, which is tighter? Deluxe or standard? Or are they both they exact same with different pickups?
  2. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Total Hyper-Elite Member Gold Supporting Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
    OK. Here we go again. If you buy a bunch of basses with a 34-inch scale (Fender, Sadowsky, Ibanez, Lull, whatever), and you put identical B strings on each one (Ernie, D'Addario, Roto, TI, whatever) and of the same gauge (.125, .128, .130, .136, whatever), and you tune them all to B, they all will have the same tension in the B string. Same scenario, but with a 35-inch scale, the B strings will all be the same tension as one another, and they all will be tighter than the ones on the 34-inch-scale basses.

    This "floppy B-string" thing is an urban myth. Oh, there may be some B strings that are floppier than others just due to their construction and materials. The key is to buy your danged 5-string, then test a few different string brands and types, and pick the strings that give you what you want.

    I have 5-strings by Fender (2), Music Man, Pedulla, and Lakland (2), and none of them have a floppy B string. The TI Jazz Flats are a bit slinkier than the roundwounds I have on the others and the Lakland flats I have on my fretless Lak, but they require a different playing technique. They also produce a significantly different sound. It's worth it.

    So buy the bass that looks, plays, and sounds best. Then get the strings that work best for you. I suspect the "floppy B string" crowd are new 4-string converts that can't get used to the fact that the B string moves around a bit more than an E string. Yea, yea, so it is spoken, so shall it be done, Amen.
  3. I compared about four or five 5 strings at a store yesterday. Some of them had tighter B's than the other ones. It's true that a B string feels "looser" than the rest, but that's the nature of thicker strings.
  4. Just play the B closer to the bridge to get a little tighter sound.

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