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Is an EUB the right choice for me?

Discussion in 'Electric Upright Basses (EUB's) [DB]' started by Taxxorrak, Apr 2, 2009.


  1. Taxxorrak

    Taxxorrak

    Feb 7, 2009
    Norway.
    Is an EUB the right choice for me?

    Hello fellow bassists. With my recent search for the aquisition of a double bass, I settled on an EUB. Whether it is the right instrument for me or not, was a pretty tough choice, and I had to look at what situations it was going to be viable. This is obviously something alot of people think and wonder about. Why not collect and amass all the info we can into this thread?

    I figure this thread could be used for people wanting an answer whether an EUB will sound like an double bass or not, and what instrument will be best suited for their use and situation. Also, feel free to discuss which EUB would make the best entry-level instrument, etc.

    The general feeling, to me, after some research, seems to be that EUBs in general should not really be considered to produce the exact acoustic sound qualities as that of a double bass. However, they are unique in the way that they have their own voice and qualities. Practicing with headphones on electric double basses may be viable for those who don't have the space to practice a big upright. Not to mention that EUBs do not have the same problems when it comes to amplification and humidity, etc. But even a acoustic EUB will not have the same deepness in tone or feel to it that a double bass has.

    Ofcourse, when discussing topics like these, we should always take what everyone say with a grain of salt, and research as much as we can before making a choice about the matter. Anyone can have opinions on the internet.

    I will also include some links to threads that might provide some answers. I humbly suggest that we sticky this thread so it can be the center of questions for this kind. We save space by doing this, so I figured it can't be that bad, eh?

    Feel free to come with links, suggestions and comments here. Here's to hoping we can have some great discussions here! :)


    Links to other related threads:

    College student looking to see the light again

    This vs. that

    To EUB or not to EUB

    Similarities to acoustic upright
     
  2. Great idea, I'm sticking it!

    Best regards,
    François
    EUB forum co-mod.
     
  3. EggyToast

    EggyToast

    Jan 21, 2006
    Baltimore
    Portability was a key factor for me. I wouldn't have been able to drag a double bass to a lesson each week. The EUB I picked up instead fit in the back seat of my Corolla without having to play Bass Tetris each time.

    The EUB I picked up had the same fingerboard shape as a double bass, and the same scale length, so all of the time spent learning and practicing was instantly transferrable to a double bass once I got one. I also had no need to haul an amp around, making it a perfect "practice" or "getting started" instrument.

    Their smaller size also makes them easier to sell/ship to someone, when/if you do move up to a double bass :D
     
  4. dar512

    dar512

    Mar 25, 2005
    Chicago, IL
    I sing and play upright in our church choir. There is just not enough room for a full-size bass with all of us clustered around mics.
     
  5. Taxxorrak

    Taxxorrak

    Feb 7, 2009
    Norway.
    Okay, so, basically both of the guys that have posted now say they use an EUB because it's easier to manage when it comes to space. It's definatily one of the better sides about the instrument, for sure, and to me personally, who doesn't have a car, having a fragile double bass is a pain (I had one for about five months).

    How much, in terms of sound-quality and the "classic presence" do you all think that you sacrifice when playing a EUB?

    If the length and size is the same as a double bass, will the technique you learn on an EUB be transferable to the double bass?

    Is there any ways to get an EUB to sound more like a double bass (just an approximate sound; it's not the same instrument)? Strings, action, etc? Will having an acoustic hole, opposed to a solid body EUB, make a noticable difference?

    I think we've got a great thread here, and I'm sure there's lot of great posters with experience with both kinds of instruments that will shed some light on the topic. :)

    [edit:] Not that I think it matters, but I'm a EUB player myself. I chose one over more practical reasons, plus I'm not really a purely jazz/classical player, I tend to play more rythmically, if you catch my drift, and an EUB seemed the better choice, atleast for me.
     
  6. Barry Clark

    Barry Clark

    May 9, 2007
    Well, if you want the classic presence, I think there is only one choice.

    As far as sound goes (keep in mind that I am long time electric bass guitarist looking into getting an electric upright and have been testing them for a couple of years now before settling on an Ergo), this where it gets funky. With an UB, you have to really only worry about the instrument. The sound it makes... is just the sound it makes. Much like an acoustic. Now, player to player it might sound different, but we are just talking about the bass. With EUB, you have other things that will affect your sound: cables, amplifiers... blah blah. So.... you will need to take whatever bass you choose and find the proper marriage of amplifer and appurtenances to get the sound you want... just like with electric guitar or bass guitar.

    That the info you are looking for?
     
  7. RBrownBass

    RBrownBass Supporting Member

    Aug 22, 2004
    I'll chime in as someone who loves the sound of his EUB as an EUB with no comparisons to an AUB or a BG.

    The answer to that is in an earlier post.

    I understand the need some may have to own an instrument that's easily transported, (probably) more durable and certainly less prone to feedback at a certain volume. But if you're concerned enough about a "sacrifice" of "classic presence" to ask about it here, you're probably better off getting an AUB and dealing with whatever issues that instrument has in your situation.
     
  8. I have a carved upright and an Azola Bugbass. For me the choice is about how loud the gig will be. If I use my acoustic upright (with a Realist pickup) and have to turn up the amp (GK MB150S) to the point that I'm basically just hearing the pickup, then I would have preferred to bring the Bugbass.

    Gale
     
  9. I have closed the other threads listed in the first post so people will reply here instead, hopefully...

    Nice day,
    François
     
  10. pbass2

    pbass2

    Jan 25, 2007
    Los Angeles
    I think I'm one of the odd men out, in that I'm looking to buy a EUB (I'm solely a BG player now) because I simply think they are cool in their own right--sonically and aesthetically. I'm coming at it from that angle. I love the sound of an acoustic DB of course--who doesn't, but the EUB idea speaks to me more than getting an acoustic DB. I also have no fretless instrument currently, so it will satisfy that sonic turf too. Practical considerations for me are also that the portability/small footprint is a feature, and I want to be able to record DI in my home studio at all hours, with headphones if necessary. So, I can add an "upright vibe" to my quiver and have a fretless bass instrument, expanding my palette quite a bit with one instrument, one that I can use live without major hassle, record/practice at home very easily at all hours, etc. How spot-on close it sounds to an acoustic DB isn't actually the highest thing on my list.
     
  11. dar512

    dar512

    Mar 25, 2005
    Chicago, IL
    There's a lot of variety in EUB's and a lot of reasons to get one (or not).

    I wanted the classic upright sound, but in a smaller (and less expensive) package. I got a used Eminence and it's worked out well for me. The sound is quite close to an amplified ply bass.

    But that's not the right choice for everyone. That's why you can't just ask "What's the best EUB?" The answer depends entirely on what you want out of it.

    Maybe we could start a list:

    Best EUBs for classic upright sound.

    Best EUBs for portability.

    Best EUBs for making the switch from EB.

    etc.
     
  12. Great thread - myself like many people who ventured into the realms of EUB land bought one on the misguided assumption that an EUB is the same as an UB but with the added E. Obviously not true in the slightest! I've had a Palatino and a Dean Pace and I thought both were really good in their own right. I know lots of people slag off the Pace, bought I really regret selling it now. Fitted with La Bella blacks it had a deep focused tone with plenty of bite. The poor radius curve on the neck was a let down, but I got around it comfortably. The Pace was also highly portable in its bespoke hard case, and the drum stand mountings meant easy replacement of parts if necessary.
     
  13. oconnb

    oconnb

    Apr 4, 2009
    I too am now searching for my first EUB. I think i understand the difference in sound between an EUB and an acoustic and am really looking for something less acoustic sounding but as far as an electric fretless. I have heard Carruther's Sub1 and I am in love. I loved the mwroowww growl. But I emailed Carruthers and they said the price is about $5. I remember a few years ago they weren't quite that high. I also love the look too.

    I am looking am looking to spend about $1K but am willing to stretch it abit. I have looked at the Stagg 3/4 EUB. It seems decent for the price. I played a Palantino VE-500 and wasn't impressed. Especially since the neck was pieced together with odd shaped pieces of wood and my hands were black from the neck after. But it was too acoustic sounding. I want something with good sustain that would sound nice through my Sans Amp DI with it a little overdriven. Plus, I want a peg stand instead of a bulky tripod. I'd prefer to sit and play.

    I have considered the Azola Gypsy which would be the top of my price list, Stagg 3/4, NS WAV 1 but it is ugly, I am fine with buying something new, even better if I could by something used.

    Any suggestions for my description and links or places to visit in the Portland - Seattle area?

    Thank You!
     
  14. pbass2

    pbass2

    Jan 25, 2007
    Los Angeles
    Jill at Azola sent me some clips of the Gypsy(also high on my list)---I think you might be surprised how "acoustic" that little bass sounds!
     
  15. drasticDUB

    drasticDUB Guest

    Mar 13, 2008
    would you mind posting those clips?
     
  16. pbass2

    pbass2

    Jan 25, 2007
    Los Angeles
    No prob--lemme figure a way to post it. She sent me various clips with different strings/wood combos. They ALL sound good . ..
     
  17. If the clips are already available on the Azola website, just put a link to them.
     
  18. pbass2

    pbass2

    Jan 25, 2007
    Los Angeles
    These aren't on the Azola site. I'm attempting to attach them to a post in the Azola megathread (no success yet . . .).
     
  19. hensonbass

    hensonbass Supporting Member

    Feb 25, 2004
    Atlanta, GA
    I used to tour with an AUB. The group I play with is a hybrid rock/folk/country trio. As the venues got larger it was more difficult to get the upright to cut through the mix in general or control feedback (we do not tour with our own FOH engineer). The band leader insists that I play upright because he likes the look and sound and it makes us different. I decided to buy an Azola EUB because I felt it would be the best for my situation.

    I've worked with this bass for a year now and I'm really zoning in on how to make the EUB's sound to work in a live mix. I'm learning that when I'm playing a groove section of the song I try to pull the strings lighter giving it more or a bass guitar feel/sound, and then when I need to cut through I pull the strings harder giving it that traditional upright punchy/percussive tone.

    I'm also experimenting with compression to give me longer note sustain at higher volumes without compromising up the initial string attack. The other issue is how much growl you want present in the sound and at what times. Too much sliding around and upright growl can be obnoxious in a song.

    Most guys would have different instruments to handle these issues, whereas I'm trying to do everything on one instrument. It's a unique challenge for me.

    I'd be interested to hear other EUB players opinions on what I'm trying to do. The following link (http://www.vimeo.com/2825470 password = cs121808) is a video of an entire show I played at the 9:30 Club in Washington, DC. with this trio.
     
  20. zeytoun

    zeytoun

    Dec 19, 2008
    Portland, Oregon
    Can you talk a bit more about this? (conceptually, what do you do to accomplish your ideal sound here)
     

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