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Low B Noise

Discussion in 'Technique [BG]' started by oniman7, Jul 9, 2012.

  1. I've gotten in the habit of practicing without an amp because my amp is sitting in the garage (no room inside) and it's Florida in the middle of the summer.

    I went out there to go plug up yesterday. My bass (an Ernie Ball Stingray 5 I got about a month ago) was sounding awesome, but I realized it was making a lot of buzzing.

    The action is a little high and I will have it lowered when I buy new strings.

    For the other strings, specifically the low E (which I often downtune), I grow out my fingernails and hit it hard for a click sound sometimes. It's not a problem rolling off the energy and getting a smoother sound.

    However, with the low B, it's hard to get it at the same volume without making it click.

    I've looked at my fretting hand pressure some, and that helped. What else would you suggest? Play near the bridge? Try a thumb technique?

    I'm looking for a cleaner, fatter sound on that string.
  2. Marley's Ghost

    Marley's Ghost Gold Supporting Member

    Feb 9, 2002
    Tampa, FL
    No more than 3 wraps around the tuning peg. Try to get it to have the string come out of the bottom of the peg.
  3. DiabolusInMusic

    DiabolusInMusic Functionless Art is Merely Tolerated Vandalism Supporting Member

    1-2 wraps is more than enough for a B, 3 wraps is a bad idea. 3 wraps is more appropriate for an A string.

    The low B is am extremely thick string so you cannot hit it with the same force as an E, especially on an EB, their low B is kind of sloppy in my experience. Playing at the bridge will allow you to hit harder and faster but it will not give you the ticker sound you are after. Don't use your thumb either.

    I also wouldn't suggest major adjustments to anything until you change strings, otherwise fresh strings will pull everything out of whack. Are your pickups unusually low on the B side?

    Just remember, you don't have to assault your bass to make it sound big, play light and EQ in a thunderous sound. You have to EQ down a hard hit, to remove the clank, a light touch can be EQ'd massive on record.
  4. I didn't know winding had anything to do with it. Past owner had the B throuugh A strings wound four times, and the others wound 3.

    I turned the gain on my solid state amp and very high and practiced playing all strings evenly without clipping the pre. I found that letting my amp do the work gives me a smoother, bigger sound that's more consistent. It also makes your mistakes (such as string sliding) physically painful. I came a long way in just over an hour. Great advice.
  5. EmptyTheEarth


    Jul 11, 2012
    Tampa, FL
    I have an Ibanez Soundgear Gio and i had that problem, too. What works for me might not work for you, but give it a shot. Play the B right in front of the bridge, it gives it a cleaner sound.

    Now for it to be matched up with the other strings, you need to teach yourself how to jump from your normal position on the other strings to the back of the B. Another thing is that you need to hit it harder than usual to get it to match the volume of your other strings.

    I know why someone wouldn't want to change their technique, but, it works.
  6. Can you please elaborate this? I´m interested. Thanks!

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