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Scratch effect when movin´through fretboard

Discussion in 'Technique [BG]' started by Mauro De Lio, Nov 21, 2012.

  1. Mauro De Lio

    Mauro De Lio

    Nov 10, 2012
    Hi, people.
    I have just started playing bass, not 2 weeks have passed since I began and what worries me most is the scratch noise I produce when I move through the fretboard. No matter if it's the same string. I don't know if I make myself clear. It's like my fingertips get stuck into the string and when I want to shift to another note, I produce this noise. It's like I slide instead of release the string. Your advice or comment will be very much appreciated. Cheers.
  2. String slide noise is normal.

    The more you play, and the better you get, you will notice less and less noise. Your fretting hand will become faster, stronger, and more efficient.

    Just keep playing.
  3. megafiddle


    May 25, 2011
    If the notes only cover 4 frets (4 frets next to each other),
    you should be normally using each of your 4 fingers, one
    finger for each fret or note.

    Are you using just one finger and sliding from note to note?
    That would be part of it.

    Also, turn the amp gain (or volume) down and play harder.
  4. Lazarus.Bird

    Lazarus.Bird Mr. Personality

    Aug 16, 2010
    You can also turn down the treble a bit to eliminate some of that noise.

    What kind of amp are you playing? I'm assuming some tiny combo practice amp like most of us started on. At low volumes those noises are incredibly noticeable, but when playing through a gig volume amp you hardly hear them.
  5. hoketus


    Nov 5, 2012
    Toronto, ON, CA
    You can turn the treble down safely. Most people don't know that your instrument doesn't even extend into that frequency range (though the upper harmonics do - but that comes later).
  6. You can also try flats. A lot of beginner players will get turned off by the sound of flats, but they really do sound great in the mix - and the string noise you get when shifting is greatly reduced.

    Otherwise, keep practicing and have patience with yourself. Good technique will prevail so make sure you are getting instruction from a good bass teacher and keep on practicing.
  7. parmezans


    Nov 25, 2011
    Don't worry, it's the same thing that bugged me when I started, and I know for a fact that you WON'T stop worrying about it, but try. ;)
    Everyone gets that noise. Nobody pays attention to it, it only adds character, and most of the time not even noticeable in the mix.
  8. Mauro De Lio

    Mauro De Lio

    Nov 10, 2012
    Thanks electracoyote. Really appreciate your time and advice.
  9. Mauro De Lio

    Mauro De Lio

    Nov 10, 2012
    Thanks megafiddle. Really appreciate your time and advice.
  10. Mauro De Lio

    Mauro De Lio

    Nov 10, 2012
    Thanks hoketus. Really appreciate your time and advice. Don't understand what you mean but thanks anyway.
  11. Mauro De Lio

    Mauro De Lio

    Nov 10, 2012
    Thanks tzer. Really appreciate your time and advice.
  12. Mauro De Lio

    Mauro De Lio

    Nov 10, 2012
    Thanks parmezans. Really appreciate your time and advice.
  13. hoketus


    Nov 5, 2012
    Toronto, ON, CA
    Cutting the treble won't affect the frequency range where the notes actually sit. By doing this you can remove a lot of string noise & hiss without drastically affecting the character of your sound.
  14. Mike Vee

    Mike Vee

    Oct 8, 2012
  15. Try buying and applying Fast Fret ( string lube, Guitar Center has it). Should help a lot
  16. JimmyM


    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    Bass is a somewhat noisy instrument, and sometimes your fingers make some noises. Try to minimize the ones you can and don't worry about the ones you can't.
  17. As soon as you get playing with others most of the fret/string/finger noises that annoy you so much solo will be inaudible.

    In fact if you get playing with over enthusiastic guitarists and drummers the bass (and vocals) can easily get lost completely, but volume wars is probably a future problem for you.

    What sounds good as a solo tone is not usually good in a band mix. There is lots of info on TalkBass about EQing, it is well worth reading up on it.