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Fretboard color affect tone?

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by 1dgbass, Nov 10, 2010.

  1. 1dgbass


    Jul 24, 2009
    Staten Island
    Hey All,

    Just wondering if fretboard color affected my tone. My fretboard is dark (shows how much I know). I know there are two types of fretboards though.

    Anybody know? I thought I read somewhere that it did. Does the fretboard matter for anything except looks?

  2. Absolutely. Black is best for metal.
  3. Marton


    Sep 20, 2005
    That's why they don't make bass with neon-pink fretboard, it sounds pretty bad.
  4. The darker the fingerboard, the darker the tone. Everybody knows that.:rollno:
  5. Jake Morris

    Jake Morris

    Jun 10, 2009
    North Jersey
    Definately. Not so much color but then density of the wood. There's rosewood, ebony, maple, chechen, wenge, and many many more! Some are great for dark metal tones, some for slap, some for finger picking. Its all presonal taste really.
  6. Simo98


    Jun 18, 2009
    QLD, Australia
    Lucky this wasn't posted in the "Basses" section :p

    To answer your question.. Its a can of worms. Everyone has a different opinion on it.

    Any change to the makeup of an instrument will effect the tone somehow. To what degree is a little harder to tell. Some people will say it completely changes the tone, others will say its just looks.

    I personally prefer the look and feel of a maple (light) board on both bass and guitar. However all my basses have rosewood (dark) fretboards. Unfortunately maple boards are hard to come by second hand :(
  7. Bigjohn


    Mar 5, 2010
    Fretboard wood affects tone.
    And different woods have different color.

  8. dave64o

    dave64o Talkbass Top 10 all time lowest talent/gear ratio! Gold Supporting Member

    Jun 15, 2000
    Southern NJ
    Personally, I'd say your choice of fingerboard wood can be safely made based solely on aesthetics. I mean that seriously.

    I know there are an awful lot of people who guarantee they can distinguish between a maple fingerboard and a rosewood fingerboard every time. However, all the blind tests I've seen here and also in other recording-based forums prove that the vast majority of people vastly over estimate their ability to do that, especially in a live or recorded mix. There are simply way too many other variables to reliably distinguish between fingerboard woods on a consistent basis in a variety of situations

    Honestly, just go for the look you like better, at least at your current level. If some day you become one of those rare people who develops an ear so sophisticated that they can reliably identify the type of fingerboard on a bass in the majority of situations, then and only then is the tonal differences of various woods of any value - to you anyway. It's guaranteed that VERY few in your listening audience will ever be able identify those differences. And of those few who can, there will be fewer still who even care.

    I'm quite sure there's going to be a lot of outraged offense taken by what I said, but I stand by it - and my flame retardant suit is on! :D ;) :bag:
  9. BillJarrett


    Jul 25, 2010
    Jensen Beach, Florida
    Manager, Jam Music
  10. Marton


    Sep 20, 2005

  11. :confused:

    Maple, Rosewood, Ebony, Pau Ferro, Bloodwood, Wenge, Ziricote, Goncalo Alves, Canary, Bubinga. There's ten. Anyone want to add another thousand to the list?
  12. Maybe he meant fretted and fretless? Finished and raw wood?

    Then again, in his profile and previously owned gear he mentions nothing but Fenders so he could just be talking maple / rosewood... It also says he sold a bass because the A string was too low, so I might be giving him too much credit.
  13. Jake Morris

    Jake Morris

    Jun 10, 2009
    North Jersey
    Do any of you know if chechen is a lot like rosewood? There's this roscoe bass I want that's on sale at a shop, but I can't try it in person first. I know I like roscoes, but never heard of chechen.
  14. Aw, c'mon......I want a green one. I think showing up for a jazz gig with one of those would be hilarious.

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