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Pro's and Con's of high and low action

Discussion in 'Hardware, Setup & Repair [BG]' started by iplaybass, Apr 1, 2001.

  1. iplaybass


    Feb 13, 2000
    Houston, TX
    so, what is the advantage of a high or low action? I've tried both but i cant figure what would be the advantage for either. A little help would be greatly appreciated!
  2. Joe Nerve

    Joe Nerve Supporting Member

    Oct 7, 2000
    New York City
    Endorsing artist: Musicman basses

    High action is hard to play.

    Low action is easy to play.

    Low action buzzes when you play hard.

    High action gives you harder callouses.

    Low action you can slap silly very easily.

    High action sounds more like a thump when you slap it.

    High action is macho.

    Low action is wimpy.

    High action will keep people from wanting to borrow your bass.

    Low action makes people think your bass feels nice.

    High action comes easy (setup).

    Low action takes lots of fiddling and adjusting.

    Just a few of MY opinions.
  3. TheFrizzleFry

    TheFrizzleFry Guest

    Nov 21, 2000
    Stinktown, Pa, USA
    ... that pretty much covers it!
  4. DaveB


    Mar 29, 2000
    Toronto Ontario
    It's the balance between desired tone and desired playability.
  5. SuperDuck


    Sep 26, 2000
    In addition to the above, you can "dig in" to your playing more with a higher action. Low action feels real nice at first, but IMVHO, I've found that mid-to high action works best. For me. Do whatever you're comfortable with.
  6. High action really messes with your intonation, since the string has to be stretched further to hit the fret. You can hit it harder, though, but I'm a let-the-amp-do-the-work kind of guy, so I use very low action...

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