Short scale bass E string question please

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by cbnutt, Jan 25, 2018.

  1. cbnutt


    Jan 9, 2018
    Is it common for the E to be kind of boomy or extra thumpy compared to the other strings ? I have a Mustang PJ , using La Bella 760FL on it , .43-104 , thought about using the Extra light gauge they offer , would that make it worse or maybe help ? curious if this was maybe inherent of SS bass,s , bugs me a little, considered going to a long scale if it cant be avoided ? Thanks .
  2. I don't have much experience with short scales, but first thing I would check is pickup height.
    cbnutt likes this.
  3. Oren Hudson

    Oren Hudson

    Dec 25, 2007
    Gastonia, NC
    ... then you may have to consider using a smaller gauge E string.
    cbnutt likes this.
  4. cbnutt


    Jan 9, 2018
    That's what I was thinking , trying that extra light set they have .
  5. Oren Hudson

    Oren Hudson

    Dec 25, 2007
    Gastonia, NC
    You may only need replace the offending E string so as to just tone it back some.
    cbnutt likes this.
  6. I think for a lot of long scale players there is a tendency to simply EQ a short scale bass the same way they EQ their long scale brethren, and this will often make the E-string boomy.

    Going to a lighter gauge E-string won't help much; IME it will only make the string floppier and more prone to unwanted buzz and clank. Going to a heavier gauge string will usually improve the playability. I use 50-115's.

    Try just dialing down the bass and dialing up the mids on your amp just a tetch in order to even things out. It's a quick, easy, no-cost test. I started out using the same LaBella flats as the O.P. and found them to be very boomy on a short scale. Not so much on long scale basses. For my short scale basses I find Chromes to be a better solution when flats are required but I stay with rounds for the most part. YMMV.
    cbnutt likes this.
  7. Figjam


    Aug 5, 2003
    Boston, MA
    Mine are even across the strings, with regard to tone.
    cbnutt likes this.
  8. This.

    As well as this. Thicker is usually better on short scale, at least IME.

    I've been playing short scale basses - mostly Gibsons and Hagstroms - for 35 years now. A set of thick rounds has always worked well for me. Unfortunately, I can't offer any advice on the flatwound strings since I don't use them.

    My $0.02 only...
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  9. GIBrat51

    GIBrat51 Innocent as the day is long Supporting Member

    IME, the boomy/thumpy (or, sometimes, dead sounding) E string is more of a flatwound thing than it is a short scale thing. A lot of flatwound Es seem to take quite a while to even out as the whole set breaks in. But, they will, if you haven't screwed the string up when installing it (like twisting it); just takes some patience - and playing the snot out of them...:thumbsup:
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  10. tlc1976


    Aug 2, 2016
    On my short scale I've played heavy and light gauge Boomers and the light gauge gives more clarity IME. Others on TB have said too with a lighter gauge string you typically get more overtones and less fundamental. Of course this is rounds. I don't know about flats.
    cbnutt likes this.
  11. rockscott


    Aug 28, 2010
    You are going to get the boom thump e string sound on any shortscale if you use flats. You could try cobalts, they will probably brighten the tone to some degree. I play shorts almost exclusively and i use dr rounds, high beams on my sg & pure blues on my birdsong and my mustang. The only bass i like flats on are hollowbodys, i use cobalts on my artcore. I tried a set of half rounds a few years ago and hated them?
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  12. Mushroo

    Mushroo Guest

    Apr 2, 2007
    A thicker, higher tension E string will likely give you more articulation and punch.

    You might also try turning the neck pickup down and the bridge pickup up, as well as plucking closer to the bridge when you play notes on the E string.
    cbnutt likes this.
  13. It is common for the E-string to be more "bassier'. Because it is the 'bassiest' of all four strings 'Hz'-wise.

    There are players both pro and amateur who have done such things as try to play only the E and A strings ..or try to leave out playing on the G.

    I've owned/own longscales as well as shorties and found what you describe can happen on either.

    Sometimes the type and brand of string can encourage it.

    Also the acoustics of the area you play in. Also height off floor of cab or combo. The list goes on.

    You can:-

    (a) adjust the height of pickups.......easy on a P/J to lower the E/A pickup and/or raise the D/G.
    (b) Move the combo or cab around to find better acoustics
    (c) Try different height of combo or cab
    (d) Adjust settings on amp/combo
    (e) Adjust settings on bass
    (f) Try different strings
    (g) Use such things as a para EQ or good EQ
    (h) Use a compressor

    Last edited: Jan 28, 2018
    mattbass6945 and cbnutt like this.
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