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NS Design NXT Megathread

Discussion in 'Electric Upright Basses (EUB's) [DB]' started by dbassnut, Sep 25, 2009.

  1. steve_rolfeca

    steve_rolfeca Supporting Member

    Just sealed the deal on an NXT4.

    I've got an 11 hour drive on Saturday to go pick it up, but they're hard to find around here, and the asking price was simply too good to pass up.

    Can't wait to join the family!
    Randy Ward likes this.
  2. Blu bro

    Blu bro

    Mar 1, 2012
    It was a metric thread. ( I am from Australia so that is standard). It was a Metric 6 or M6. Not sure what size exactly but that was name on the wing nut packaging that fit perfectly onto the original broken bolt (on the NXT) so I found the equivalent for the new bolt. with a hexagon end not round :)
  3. peterfrey2000

    peterfrey2000 Peter

    Jun 22, 2012
    Spring, Texas
    I have had my Gollihur edition NXT 5 about a week now, having never played an acoustic or electric upright bass before. I have both the end pin stand and the NXT stand, but had not found a position for playing that I am 100% happy with, though still trying. Is there any wisdom on positioning the bass? Currently I am finding I am better able to find a comfortable position using the NXT stand, but I am still experimenting with both stands. Interesting I had watched on the Tony Levin videos where he is playing with a band and he seems to be using a stand, that he rocks to the lifting on of the legs off the ground when playing to move the bass in his ideal position.
  4. Mark Gollihur

    Mark Gollihur Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jul 19, 2000
    Mullica Hill, NJ
    Owner/President, Gollihur Music LLC
    As I understand it, most teachers of the upright have you start with the bass nut at around your eyebrow level, then make adjustments from there, to taste. You might want a slight angle of the neck towards your body, to approximate the effect of leaning the bass body against your own body. It can take some time (and trial and error) to get the ergonomics of addressing the instrument correct - especially if you're new to the upright.

    EDIT: Oh, and I wouldn't model after Tony Levin; he's an amazing talent, but he (from what I've seen) uses somewhat unconventional technique, and has the benefit of being a fairly tall man. :)
    peterfrey2000 likes this.
  5. steve_rolfeca

    steve_rolfeca Supporting Member

    I have a string question:

    I have an almost unused 5-string set of Spirocores. They've been sitting idle for about 15 years, on an unfinished prototype EUB I built. I just pulled it out, and they still sound great.

    There's lots of length left on the strings, because my prototype was way oversized compared to the NS Bass.

    I'm a complete newb, and I know nothing about DB strings and tensions. My bass has Gotoh sealed tuners on it, and I had to replace the B string tuner in the first week, because it failed under the high tension.

    However, they've held up fine ever since.

    Is the Spirocore a suitable string for the NXT? Could I use the top four, and if so, how would they sound for mixed pizz/arco?
  6. kosmas58


    Jul 7, 2012
    I'using a CR tripod stand and a seat - a K&M Multi Purpose Stool Set without footrest. I don't like to play it standing, because it feels strange for me compared to a double bass. You only have contact to the neck with the left hand and to the side of the fretboard with the right thump.
    peterfrey2000 likes this.
  7. Thomas Swenson

    Thomas Swenson

    Feb 9, 2008
  8. Thomas Swenson

    Thomas Swenson

    Feb 9, 2008
    I'd work with the end pin stand rather than the stock tripod. It does indeed help to have had some experience with an upright acoustic bass in order to get the feel of an upright instrument. The value of the end pin stand is to be able to move the instrument from the pivot point on the floor in all directions and to lean forward, backward, etc. to micro adjust. Uprights are not necessarily known for being comfortable. They are behemoths! It takes some time to get used to. I was able to adjust my NXT by examining my upright playing position and then to approximate that on the NXT. The thigh brace helps a lot to mimic the bass body factor of the trad upright. The stock stand being in a fixed position is not a natural experience. Maybe find an upright acoustic and find a position that works and take notes/measurements to use in adjusting the NXT end pin stand. Or, at least, look at pictures of upright and/or NXT players and mimic the pictures in making your adjustments. Good luck to you! Be patient, it is worth it.
    peterfrey2000 and Mark Gollihur like this.
  9. alec


    Feb 13, 2000
    Perth, Australia
    I got a set of Licensed Hipshot Ultralites and some strings but hit a hurdle.
    The new tuners fit straight in, but the screw holes don't line up (see pic). I could fill and redrill, or angle the new ones. Any suggestions?
    Also, I assume that the bigger strings don't slide down inside the shaft of the tuners, they just poke sideways through the slot in the same direction as they wind around?

    I got sent the wrong set of strings - Helicore Solos which are tuned up a step (F# B E A). The correct strings are on the way, but would downtuning them to concert pitch work (for arco)? If so, any idea what I would use to for a low B string? Solos only come in four string sets.

    Attached Files:

  10. jthisdell

    jthisdell Supporting Member

    Jun 12, 2014
    Roanoke, VA
    Hmmm... it looks like it would be tricky to drill another hole so close to the original. If I was going to try to drill a second hole I would consider filling the first one (maybe with a toothpick, etc) first. But there is a real risk that you are going to end up with one too big hole so maybe angling into the original hole would be better.

    My hipshots lined up pretty easily and I was able to get the ends of my Obligatos into the center hole of the tuners, but it was a bit of a fight.
    alec likes this.
  11. Mark Gollihur

    Mark Gollihur Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jul 19, 2000
    Mullica Hill, NJ
    Owner/President, Gollihur Music LLC
    I have always used the USA version of the tuners, but I imagine that the specs are the same. I've put Hipshots on at least a half a dozen NXT basses, and they always looked just a tiny bit off like yours does. I put them in on that angle and they work just fine and don't look angled once they're sunk in. I'd just go for it.

    As for the strings, the Solos are commonly downtuned by players who wish to have an "extra light" string, but you're right - there is no low C# (B position) for that set. They are essentially Helicore Orchestras designed for one pitch up. So they should bow just fine. But why not wait until the replacement strings come?
    alec likes this.
  12. steve_rolfeca

    steve_rolfeca Supporting Member

    I have the Lic Ultralites as well. I don't know if the size of the OEM tuners varied over the years, but I didn't have to ream out the pegholes, as others have reported. In fact, there was a fair amount of slack, just like the original tuners.

    I tightened up the new screws before snugging the ferrules the rest of the way down, and had no problem using the original holes.

    I suggest you loosen the ferrule on one tuner a little, and try that screw first. If it doesn't want to go in, or goes in at a nasty angle, you still have the option of plugging and re-drilling.
    Randy Ward and Mark Gollihur like this.
  13. steve_rolfeca

    steve_rolfeca Supporting Member

    First gig with the NXT last night. An arts night with an open mic segment in a local church basement.

    Female vocalist leading on acoustic guitar, electric piano and me. Mostly covers, a few originals. Ranged mostly between ambient pop and folk, mostly slow to medium tempos.

    I was thinking about stringing it up with a set of used Spirocores that I have on hand, but now I'm not so sure. The longer sustain was actually an advantage for the type of material we were playing- it's not like I'm playing bluegrass or acoustic jazz with the NXT.

    This instrument has been a huge surprise for me. I thought it would be an interesting complement to my treasured Dingwall electric bass, but it seems to be rapidly replacing it.

    I set up so I could quickly switch between EB and the NXT, but ended up switching back to the upright half-way through the first tune I tried on electric. It just sounded so much more commanding and present, particularly in such a stripped-down trio setting. Easier on my back and shoulders, too...
  14. RGK


    Apr 25, 2017
    I am offered a second hand NS Design CR5M. I already have a (second hand) NXT 5 and have upgraded the tuners to Hipshot USA UL and already replaced the tripod with the CRM version. I made these modifications as I was not happy with the originals. I raised the action for better sound and prefer the NS contemporary strings for the sound and tension. Overall I am very happy with this NXT5 and always receive a lot of complements on the sound. I don't think to be interested in the EMG's. Is it worth to buy this CR5M? Does the "more exclusive" wood make any difference. Is the neck the same?
    Did any of you an upgrade or spent some time to compare these two models?
    At this point my main interest could be based on condition. If it is like new and price ok, than I maybe interested and sell my own.
    I am not doing much with EQ, accept for the tone were the brightness is rolled off completely. I am using an Avalon V5 Pre-amp DI with pre-shape (1) and for me it is good enough for monitor purposes. So passive is not really an issue.
  15. agfrag

    agfrag Supporting Member

    Feb 24, 2006
    Novi, Mi
    I have owned/own CRM and NXT and the EU CRM versions and in my opinion, the ability to blend in the magnetic pickups makes for a much more interesting sound palette. I feel that the CR sounds 'better' than the NXT, and the EU sounds better than the CR. To me each step up adds more character or richer harmonics or however you might term it...

    I have also experienced comments from my bandmates to the same effect. When I replaced the NXT with the CRM they thought it sounded better, and again when I replaced the CRM with the EUCRM they thought it sounded better. I play almost exclusively jazz, so I'm not sure how the tones would be perceived in other styles of music.

    FWIW, I use Markbass amplification, the CMD121P, sometimes with the New York 604 (if necessary).
    Randy Ward and RGK like this.
  16. steve_rolfeca

    steve_rolfeca Supporting Member

    I don't have the skill on upright or the paying gigs to justify moving up to one of the higher models yet.

    Still failing in my setup. The huge, wide tones that sounded so good in the drumless trio setting were too much on a more crowded stage.

    Just got my FDeck HPF 3, and it tightens things up nicely. Leaving town for the next few weeks, but when I get back, it will be interesting to try the NXT with the larger group again. May also try a string damper, in case a shorter decay envelope turns out to be a good thing to have in my toolbox.
    Randy Ward likes this.
  17. RGK


    Apr 25, 2017
    OK, we made a deal with CR5M which is in mint condition and 4 years old and not frequently used. The last year it has been in storage.... what a waste.. Well it will be gigged now, that's for sure :thumbsup:
    tfer and Randy Ward like this.
  18. Nohrellas


    May 11, 2016
    Has anyone else tried an acoustic simulator with the NXT? I just received a mooer acoustikar, which is intended for guitar and that's where I'm using it, but I also tried plugging in the NXT and it seems to give it the "body" that it's lacking naturally.

    I know people have tried using a bit of reverb but this sounds interesting so far. Now granted, it doesn't sound "real", just like on guitar it's a fake-y kind of acoustic sound, but definitely interesting.
    Randy Ward likes this.
  19. Has anyone else tried an acoustic simulator with the NXT?

    I remember reading that someone was doing this on the NS Design Mega Thread.

    Recently I heard a demo of the TC Electronic BodyRez pedal on a double bass with a piezo pickup. I think this pedal is similar to the Mooer that you have Nohrellas.
    I thought it sounded pretty darn good and I'm thinking it would work well with an NS Bass or any EUB.

    Found it! The sound clips go from Zero effect to 100% (it is a single knob pedal) so you can hear the difference:

    TC Electronic BodyRez – Sound Clips 1 | bass-pedals.com
  20. madbanjoman


    Feb 23, 2011
    I use a Zoom MS-100bt for a preamp. The effects I use are:

    Acoustic Sim -> Avalon DI5 preamp -> Ambience

    While the acoustic sim is for guitar, it does convey a sense of acoustic to my EUB. Ambience gives the sense of being miced.

    Here is a video with the above effects chain: