Rookie bass player question

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by After Forever, Dec 1, 2003.

  1. After Forever

    After Forever Banned

    Feb 27, 2003
    Detroit area
    I've been playing bass for about 10 months now. I have a 4 string but i think i want to try a 6 string for my next bass for fun. Is this a good idea or should i wait till i get more expirenced?

    Besides the obvious 2 string difference, what is different about a 6 string?? Are they harder to play or what?? Do they sound cooler?

    Any helpful info would be greatly appreciated. Thanks
  2. Depends on how well you know your neck on the 4 string, the 6 is just an extension of what the 4 is.

    I wouldn't move up unless you have your neck positions memorized and you are feeling limited by the 4 string.

  3. After Forever

    After Forever Banned

    Feb 27, 2003
    Detroit area
    I actually do feel kind of limited on a 4 string. I played around with a 5 string once and didn't like it, mabey it was just the brand. I figure a 6 string might be well suited for me. They do look rather large though.
  4. Christopher


    Apr 28, 2000
    New York, NY
    The simple answer is that a 6 gives you more notes to play with. "Cooler" sounding is highly dependent upon the player. If you want to play melodies and chords in addition to basslines, it's worth looking into.

    They can be harder to play, as the necks are wider and if your left hand isn't properly positioned/conditioned, you may find fretting the lower strings difficult. The bodies also tend to be larger and heavier.
  5. Eric Moesle

    Eric Moesle Supporting Member

    Sep 21, 2001
    Columbus OH
    If you didn't like a 5, odds are you will HATE a 6. Necks are wider and harder on the hands and proper finger positions. Proper string muting is MUCH more difficult, nothing worse than playing on the A string while having to mute the low B and high C from vibrating.

    Go spend some time in a store playing a 6 BEFORE you buy. Lots of people buy 6's because they look cool, but end up down-converting to a 5 or a 4 not too long thereafter.
  6. if you want to get really good at bass, learn how to do more with less, meaning get really good at the 4 string. Bieng restricted to only 4 strings is better because then you have to make yourself learn different ways of playing those same notes. If you get a 6 string, youll be playing the same thing, just with a wider range. So learn as much as you can on the 4 before you move on to the 5 or 6 string.
  7. mark beem

    mark beem Gold Supporting Member

    Jul 20, 2001
    New Hope, Alabama
    Sorry, but I have to disagree with this statement.. I went directly to 6 from 4 and it changed my entire concept in approach and technique.. If nothing else a six string can make you a much more "diverse" player because of the greater range..

    Kids learn on full 88 key pianos, do they not??
  8. embellisher

    embellisher Holy Ghost filled Bass Player Staff Member Supporting Member

    I agree with ProgZ 100%. The 6 can take some getting used to, but in the end will make you a much more disciplined player. My muting skills sucked when I went from 4 to 6. But after a few months of playing mostly the 6, I learned how to mute properly. Now I mute well on all of my basses, no matter how many strings.
  9. RicPlaya


    Apr 22, 2003
    Whitmoretucky MI
    I went from a 4 to 5 with no problems, it took me a little time to get use to it, I'm sure the same thing will be true with a 6. The hardest thing for me was finding a comfortable 5 since the neck is larger.
  10. INTP


    Nov 28, 2003
    Dallas, TX
    The spacing on my five is pretty close to my four, so switching between them isn't a big deal. Going from 5 to 6 seems like a bigger step than 4 to 5 because all the 6s I've played were either very wide or were spaced narrower, which confused my hands. I'm sure I could get used to it if I were to buy a 6, but I have yet to feel the need.

    If you do get a 5 or 6, I suggest a 35" scale over a 34" scale. It really makes a difference on the tone of the B string.