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Recommend 4-string bass with D tuner.

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Tumeni Notes, May 11, 2011.


  1. Tumeni Notes

    Tumeni Notes

    Jan 2, 2009
    Hello all,

    I want to get your opinion of 4-string basses with the drop D tuner added. I play 4 & 5 string basses, but I am considering getting another 4-string bass with the tuner. The main reason for this consideration is that I recently listened to a recording I did on my 5-string and I noticed that my hand continually hits the high G string which makes a lot of noise. I had not noticed it before because I do not do a lot of recording; primarily play live.

    Perhaps the neck is too wide for my hands, or I have developed a "lazy" playing style; but I do not have this problem on my 4-string basses (I recorded myself on a 4-string to compare).

    So, since I mainly use the low string on my 5-string bass for the low D, I thought that perhaps a 4-string with a tuner would be perfect for me.

    I have not been able to locate any 4-string basses with a D-tuner yet, but am curious to hear if they actually stay in tune when you flip the tuner back.

    Any suggestions for a 4-string bass with a tuner that plays like butter? I was interested in the Sheehan bass, but the reviews state that the neck is like a Louisville slugger baseball bat.
     
  2. N.F.A.

    N.F.A.

    Jun 25, 2009
    In a blue funk
    Find an old Peavey RJIV (Randy Jackson Signature Model) They play like butter. Drop D stays in tune whether flipped on or off. All around great bass and the neck is not too big.
     
  3. Most basses don't have them as standard so find a 4 string you like and then put a D-tuner on it yourself.
     
  4. My Jazz has a VMJ neck, so I would suggest one of those. My D tuner stays in great tune. I agree, I thought a 5 would be nice, but the D tuner really covers everything nicely.

    BnB
     
  5. ThudThudThud

    ThudThudThud

    Jun 4, 2010
    Kubicki Ex-Factor. Nice thing about those is that you don't have to think about fret 'geography.' Extra frets below the standard nut. Great pre-amp on board too.
     
  6. SanDiegoHarry

    SanDiegoHarry Banned Supporting Member

    Aug 11, 2008
    San Diego, CA
    Any bass can have one installed; I put them on all of my 4 string basses (I currently have on on my Lakland 4-94)

    That said, I suspect that if you woodshed your 5 a bit, you can overcome your "g-string noise" issue.
     
  7. JTE

    JTE Supporting Member

    Mar 12, 2008
    Central Illinois, USA
    Find a great four-string that you like. Get the appropriate Hip-Shot Bass Xtender key for it. Read the instructions carefully before you start. Then read them again as you carefully follow the instructions. Put a tiny bit of powdered graphite in the E string's nut slot. Spend a few minutes adjusting the key. Be patient every time you tune the bass.;

    I've been using HipShots since they came out (what, around 1980?) and while I have a 5-string, I also have four of my six four strings fitted with Hipshots. The only reason the other two don't have 'em is because I've not gigged in a few years and so I haven't spent the money on those two basses which don't get played much.

    The real differences between a four-string with the E dropped and a five string for me are:
    1. The mental displacement of the fourth string when I've dropped the tuning. I've been doing it for so long that it's easier for me to think on the drop D than it is to think on the 5-string however.
    2. The different feel. A detuned E string does feel different obviously. But the fifth string also feels a lot different.
    3. The timbre. My five is a 35" scale and so all four strings just sound a bit different (but I like the 35" scale because it's the only thing I've found that makes all five strings sound like the belong together). But there is a difference in sound between playing the D fifth string or playing it on a de-tuned E string.
    4. Transposing- the last band did a lot of Aretha Franklin, Gladys Knight, etc. We changed keys on a lot of stuff to fit the singers' ranges. That meant on the four-string some key lines just felt awkward. A good example is Aretha's "Chain Of Fools" in Eb. I never did come up with a part I really liked that flowed well detuned.

    John
     
  8. JxBass

    JxBass Supporting Member

    Aug 5, 2008
    I have the Hipshot drop-D on all my 4 string basses.
     
  9. winterburn69

    winterburn69

    Jan 27, 2008
    Saskatchewan
    I use a Hipshot D-tuner on my Thunderbird. It won't work on an Epiphone EB-0. Been there, tried that, didn't work.
     
  10. pacojas

    pacojas "FYYA BUN"

    Oct 11, 2009
    MEXICANADAMERICA
    in the mean time, d-tune manually. (it's only one step down) :bag:
     

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