Out of tune amp! help!

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by wtf_is_a_bass, Dec 3, 2005.

  1. wtf_is_a_bass

    wtf_is_a_bass Guest

    Aug 11, 2005
    Sydney, Australia
    Endorsing Artist: PiGLET picks
    I just bought my first split amp system wich was a behringer (yes, im sorry, im sorry) BX4500H amp and BB115 cab. It all seems pretty good for the money. However there is one song my band plays and i sound out of tune JUST for that song. According to my fender tuner, my bass is in tune. Is it the amp or the cab making it out of tune and how can i fix it?
  2. uh

    It doesn't happen to be the "one song" that you play higher up on the neck, does it?
  3. Its your ears making you out of tune. Amps reproduce a sound, they cannot altar the sound the way described unless you are using FX. Something could be wrong with the amp, but if its only for this song, its definately your ears. (or your playing...)
  4. Mcrelly


    Jun 16, 2003
    Minnesota, USA
    sometimes a strange thing can happen when the "key" (or note range) you are playing in compared with the location of other musicians amps or PA in relation to your own amp location from YOU can cause a "beating" effect kinda like when you tune your guitar using the 4th fret, next string method or 5th + 7th harmonics method. you know when the sound seems to waver in pitch?

    another possibility: playing higher up on the neck. if your guitar is not "intonated" properly, your guitar will sound sharper or flat when you play more than a few frets away from other songs.

    another: someone else is out of tune or playing higher/lower on their neck causing the two of you to vary in pitch slightly.

    did that make sense?
  5. luknfur


    Jan 14, 2004

    What is a high probability shot is that's it's something that occurs with that particular song where and how you're playing it with the gear you've got. Obvious maybe but it will probably be one thing that's different (ie. playing up the neck)and not the same (ie. speakers) as in other songs.

    It's possible that it's some freak frequency mix peculiar to the situation. The intonation thing is probably as good a suspect as any since 1) that's a possible cuase and 2) it's only one song and there's a much higher probablility of that being up the board on bass and 3) intonation across the board is usually a compromise and not perfect.

    From acoustic approach, altering EQ or speaker arrangement could resolve it. Just one of those wierd trial and error things it takes resolve - if you want to mess with it. You can probably play the song without one instrument at a time to determine which instrument is the source (or instruments if interactive). It may not be you. Low frequencies however are typically the most grief producing acoustically.
  6. As noted previously, "up the neck" is the hint.

    Your bass is most likely out of intonation. This means the open notes are correct with your tuner, but the notes up the neck are not in tune.

    Intonation is adjusted by the saddle position on your bridge. Do a search in the SETUP forum, and you will no doubt find a tutorial.

    Every bass should be intonated (set up) properly. This includes when you change strings.
  7. KOakley


    Sep 26, 2002
    Hampton Va
    I'm going to 2nd Luknfur's idea that you check for an interaction between instruments. Years ago I worked with a guitar player who switched guitars frequently over the course of a gig. I noticed that on one of his guitars everytime he played a 1st position barre "F" chord the intonation got strange particularly when I played my low "F" at the same time. It turned out that a combination of slinky strings and an improperly slotted nut ( not cut deeply enough on his low "E" string) was causing him to apply too much fretting pressure and causing his low "F" to go sharp. He had a luthier reslot the nut correctly and the problem went away. There are many things that could be causing your problem but something like this is a real possibility.YMMV. Good luck. Kerry
  8. Mattski


    Jan 6, 2003
    Cleveland, OH
    Luknfur had a lot of good thoughts. When I first read your question, the first thing I thought of was the frequency interaction. Sometimes on a song, the frequency planets will align and your band will sound like out of tune mud. Try boosting your mids for that song, or make some other drastic change in your eq and see if it changes.

    The thought that your guitarist's instrument may have an intonation issue is a real possiblity as well.

    Make sure you are all playing the song correctly. If your guitarist is using some high concept jazz chord and your are grooving in a different scale, it will sound off. A review of the charts may be in order.

    Good luck!