1. Please take 30 seconds to register your free account to remove most ads, post topics, make friends, earn reward points at our store, and more!  
    TalkBass.com has been uniting the low end since 1998.  Join us! :)

making db quieter!!

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [DB]' started by Howard K, Apr 19, 2006.

  1. Howard K

    Howard K

    Feb 14, 2002
    Bit of a strange one this...

    When I practice at home I have to play in my kitchen, to avoid waking up my daughter. It's a small room, with a wooden floor, tiles, etc, and my bass booms, it's loud and is making my ears ring after I practice.
    Thing is I can play with a band in a nice sized rehearsal room or at a gig no problem, it seems to be the small room that is a problem... and my ears of course, they have taken a bit of a bashing over the years and I've doing all I can to protect them for the past 4 or 5 years now :(

    So I need to find a way to quieten my double bass when I practice... I'm thinking about taping a bit of foam over the F holes (kinda silly I know!) but I wondered if anyone else had this problem.. and what they did about it?

  2. Cambass123

    Cambass123 Supporting Member

    Dec 22, 2005
    try one of these practice mutes...they are really great for what you are looking for.

    Here is a link to one:

    if you didn't know already. The mute covers the whole "tip" of your bridge and reduces the sound waves so that the bass will not project as much.

    I hope you found this somewhat helpful
  3. Howard K

    Howard K

    Feb 14, 2002
    Wow! Thank you very much indeed. Very helpful :)
  4. snowdan


    Feb 27, 2006
    these rubber mutes cut some mids but in my case they boost some bass frequencies, too. it gets boomier simply put.

    you want to disconnect the bass from the floor. putting the endpin on a moard that sits in a sand box is one step, putting that box on top of layers of moving blankets the next. the combination does it for me.

    closing the f-holes with towels or foam does something, too.
  5. mcnaire2004


    Jan 17, 2006
    If you are using a bow try playing with the "wrong" side of it. Thats what i do. Or if all else fail. Take the sound post out. LOL
  6. glivanos

    glivanos Supporting Member

    Jun 24, 2005
    Philadelphia Area
    I just bought one of those large rubber mutes that goes over the bridge with some pretty good results.

    It really quieted down my bass. I was practicing around 11 pm last nite in my family room and got no complaints from the wife and kids :hyper:
  7. Howard K

    Howard K

    Feb 14, 2002
    well, it arrived today.. i tried it for about 3 notes this morning and noticed no real difference, but i was facing the corner.. mroe experimentation later on. I might have to block the F holes as well!
  8. Would ear plugs do the trick?
  9. for him yes, but his daughter shouudlnt have to wear ear plugs because he is playing...

    In any case, if your ears are ringing after playing you are perminatly damaging your ears and you need ear plugs.
  10. jallenbass

    jallenbass Supporting Member Commercial User

    May 17, 2005
    Bend, Oregon
    Play quietly...
  11. Aaron Saunders

    Aaron Saunders

    Apr 27, 2002
    ...what, like rubbing the stick against the strings? :eyebrow:
  12. Phil Smith

    Phil Smith Mr Sumisu 2 U

    May 30, 2000
    Peoples Republic of Brooklyn
    Creator of: iGigBook for Android/iOS
    I quess I would ask; "Why are you playing so loud?" Playing is about controlling the dynamics of your sound and with an acoustic instrument the volume control is you, though playing at ppp with a bow requires lots of practice.
  13. anthem274


    Jul 19, 2003
    Arlington, TX
    Do be aware that buying a huge rubber mute will make your bass sound much thicker and warmer. The 'atmospheric' aspect of your sound will get larger while the actual volume will drop down to a whisper.
  14. Howard K

    Howard K

    Feb 14, 2002
    re: ear plugs,. yes i can do that, and am doing, but practicing with ear plugs not exactly ideal

    re: daughter, noise, etc. the noise isnt an issue for anyone else in te house, my daughter can sleep through an earth quake!

    re: play quieter.. i could also do that, but again, it's not ideal. i'm starting out on db, i'm working on solid consistant playing, you can only play db so quietly. EDIT, I can only play db so quietly! EDIT_2, I'll try this some more any way.
    besides, it's the size of the room that's a problem, it's like playing a loud acoustic instrument in a, err, small room!

    the rubber mute didnt really work, it just made the bass boom more, i'm gonna just have to wear ear plugs for now, until i figure something out :)

    cheers chaps
  15. Howard K

    Howard K

    Feb 14, 2002
    I tried stuffing the f holes full of baby clothes and it worked a treat! Much quieter in a small room, I think I must have very loud bass - altho I've no comparison
  16. You mays have encoutered a really particular room for having your bass loud enough to make your ears ring afterward...

    First, like others play a lot quieter !! it can be hard when you bow but it is the best to do.
    2nd, I use a rubber mute and it makes the bass boomier because it mainly dampen the mids & highs. A friend of mine has good results with a long belt and some thick foam. He places the foam on the top of the bass (under finger board & strings) and belt it with a little pressure. This highly dampen top vibration and he can play in the room his girlfirend is sleeping (he only have a plywood bass).
    3rd, you can buy custom earplugs molded to your ear that
    evenly attenuate the whole acoustic spectra. This is used a lot by some orchestral musician & directors ( imagine your are seated just in front of a brass section....). With these ones you will have no problem to practice hearing yourself only quiter.
    Sylvain Clement aka wphantom

Share This Page