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Little help here; action setup. (specific question)

Discussion in 'Hardware, Setup & Repair [BG]' started by Kilian., Dec 10, 2005.

  1. Right.

    When I play at home, I have a light touch and would therefore prefer a low action. But when I play with my band, I find myself digging in more and playing more aggressive, which leads into fretbuzz. So I raised the action ridiculously high and it works in the band situation. It does require a lot of energy/stamina and it doesn't feel good for me when I play a bass with high action.

    Because setting up the bass is a bit of work, I would like to hear your suggestions first.. Maybe I should turn my amp up a bit and then play softer?

    Oh and I can adjust the action/intonation/truss rod by myself, so no 'get it to the shop' please :smug:
  2. I like a low action and as long as my neck is well adjusted and I've got the relief correct, I don't worry about fret noise unless it comes through the amp - and in most cases, it doesn't. Like you, I dig in when excited so no matter how much care I've taken to get things right during the setup, I'll experience fretnoise when I get wild. But the noise doesn't come through the amp and that's where the rubber meets the road isn't it?

    So my advice would be to test your favorite action for this and see if it really makes any difference - can you hear it when you play in the ensemble situation? If not, then I would go with the action that provides the most comfort.
  3. ^^It doesn't come through the amp?

    Hmmm.. Right now I've got my bass setup as low as possible. But I still have the feeling it can be lower, but then I get the fretnoise.

    I really have to listen if it comes to the amp then. :eyebrow:
  4. Maybe look for the middle ground, somewhere between ultra low and the higher action you've been testing.
    I have noticed (with my playing), that if I have an extremely low action, I tend to baby the strings. I'm not a heavy picker anyway, playing with both finger and pick. When the action is really low, I find myself getting distracted anytime I don't hear a smooth note and hear fret buzz. Plus, when playing at the higher frets, the notes are even more likely to buzz or sound harsh.
    Perhaps set that low action, then practice playing some of your tougher pieces with both finger and pick.. Sometimes you can raise the action just a touch and be amazed at how much smoother you sound without loosing speed...

  5. Try to make your playing more consistent...

    I generally play more a bit musically live than when I'm practicing, so my experiences are opposite, if anything. Nevertheless, I try to play the same live as I do in practice