learning EUB

Discussion in 'Electric Upright Basses (EUB's) [DB]' started by matiya, Feb 8, 2005.

  1. hello,

    this is my first post at talkbass. recently, after a couple of years of playing BG/fretted and fretless, i've become more and more interested in playing upright basses, since i can't relate to BG's sound properly and i never really cared for that "guitar playing feeling". what do you think about difficulty of learning EUBs compared to BG ? is it (in your opinion) harder to learn to play the EUB (my hands are quite small)?

    thank you for your kind replies and best wishes!
  2. If your looking for something inexpensive to dabble with and easy to play, with the same scale as a BG with position markers on the neck to find your way, you might consider the Dean Pace model . .
    If you want full scale there's that Palentino model folks were talking about in another thread for around the same money.
    It all depends on where you want to go with this. ;)
  3. hi and thanks for your reply.
    coming from BG, i really have no idea what to look for in a EUB. i wouldn't like it to sound too much like fretless, though. i'd love to get myself an upright (being a former violin player, i know nothing can beat the real thing), but the size/weight of that thing doesn't seem like a good idea to me. i found this while surfing the net:
    collins upright and it is within my price range. any thoughts on it? how does EUB (and upright, for that matter) technique differ from BG? is the gap between these two worlds big?

    yet again, thanks for your input.
  4. Francois Blais

    Francois Blais Supporting Member

    Dec 11, 1999
    Québec, Canada
    Matiya, why don't you fill your public profile (follow the links "My Talkbass" and "My profile") so we can see your setup, influences, where you're located, etc.?
    It helps us to help you! :)
  5. There are loads of threads on that very subject . . In my experience, EUB and Acoustic are simillar but not the same. I use the EUB for gigs switching between that and BG depending on the tune. But the acoustic is a beautiful instrument in it's own right. Being a violinist I'm sure you can appreciate that. Making the jump from BG I didn't find difficult, but you will discover sore muscles in your in your arms, shoulders and wrists you never knew existed ! ;)
  6. Francois, thanks for the recommendation; I updated my profile and also added MSN contact etc. I hope it will be easier to help me from now on :)

    I actually tried to make my bass (fretless Fender jazz) sound as close to upright as possible... I tried various string dampeners and
    I adapted my right hand technique a bit, but it didn't help at all.. And I really wouldn't mind feeling a bit more comfortable playing BGs...

    Do EUBs provide the same amount of sustain as BGs do? Or are they more similar to DBs?

    Frank: Was it difficult for you to adapt to the "vertical fingerboard" instead of 0-45 ° as with BGs? How about left hand stretch?

    Thanks for replying!
  7. Francois Blais

    Francois Blais Supporting Member

    Dec 11, 1999
    Québec, Canada
    My recommendation would be that you find a private double-bass teacher, or at school, to get in touch with the real DB.
    You'll be able to see the differences in approach and feel.
    Getting an EUB without any practical knowledge of the upright bass is quite adventurous, IMO! :)
    Good luck in your quest!
  8. It took some getting used to but not that much. Yes you will be stretching your left hand more due to the increased spacing between notes.
  9. anonymous0726

    anonymous0726 Guest

    Nov 4, 2001
    EUB should maybe be actually dubbed UBG. They're in essence much closer to a BG, really. Other than the vertical-ness and rounded fingerboard (in some cases), the part about what makes double bass so alluring to bass players is missing -- the sound, the feel, the way it shakes when you play it. Also, EUB is a matter of playing a string and making it react with the pickup to get a sound, and with bass you are playing with the string and the instrument to get the sound.

    As far as the vertical neck v. the lateral neck, the vertical neck is more ergonomically friendly.
  10. Big thanks to all of you!

    I've decided not to go EUB at the moment and I'm preparing to take up some DB lessons, so that I see, if I feel comfortable with the instrument (if I manage to get the DB in my car :) )
  11. read your last post - regarding the UB lesons, good idea! In the meantime, if you are looking for a way to get a UB kind of sound, I hear that the Ashbory Bass comes kind of close (and they are pretty cheap on the internet). Also, back in the 90s, Fender Japan made a model A/E that is a hollowbody electric with both magnetic and piezo pickups. I string mine with Labella tapewounds (it is fretless) and it comes kind of close to an upright sound. You will see these up for sale occasionally, in the neighborhood of $500 USD.

    Good luck and happy hunting! Doug

    Ps - you will never be happy until you get a real upright, though! :)
  12. Thank you for your message, Doug, your PS (the truth in it) is what scares me, though :) And after having heard Dave Holland on Emerald tears just 5 minutes ago, I can safely say I'm in love :)
    Ashbory sounds like a good idea, too - but I guess shorter scale would bring some intonation problems, right? I guess it would be harder to achieve a 100 % (ok, not really 100 %, but very good, let's say) intonation on a regular 34 or less '' fretless BG than on an upright, or am I mistaken?

    Best wishes to you all,

  13. I have never had my hands on an Ashbory Bass, but I have heard that they are a very short scale and can be a bit tricky to play. Of course, moving to UB will bring about scale change with any BG, short scale or long. But don't let that daunt you! IMHO the UB scale is just different but after a little time you will be digging it!

  14. Jukes


    Feb 27, 2010
    An Ashbury is a great idea if you travel a lot and do not mind an EB. Note though that while they do better than a fair job at imatating the sound of an upright, they use special silicon strings without which they will notwork. The strings are expensive and they break constantly. They are kind of like a very high tech rubber band. If the company ever goes out of business and you can no longer get the strings, you have an expensive doorstop.
  15. I can't say I agree with this. To me, the EUB (assuming it is full scale and has a curved fingerboard, which goes for most) is far closer to the double bass than a bass guitar, since you can use DB technique whether you are plucking or bowing. I personally have no problems switching between the two instruments and keeping my technique. Like the acoustic double bass, EUBs will also sound rubbish if poor technique is used (that includes 'bass guitar' technique).

    The rest of what you are describing is simply the difference between an acoustic and an electric instrument.

    I understand where you are coming from, but I don't think it is helpful advice to a newcomer. Many double bass players use EUBs for a variety of reasons.
  16. Scratch that, I was responding to a zombie thread :D