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The new Yamaha SLB300 Silent Bass sounds like a game changer

Discussion in 'Electric Upright Basses (EUB's) [DB]' started by DuluthDank, Apr 5, 2020.

  1. Sounds better than any acoustic upright piezo combo i've ever heard. Looks like a great way to get a mic'd upright sound without worrying about feedback.
  2. It's a very nice EUB tone indeed.
    Particularly when using the MIC setting rather than PU.
    DuluthDank likes this.
  3. moles


    Jan 24, 2007
    Winnipeg, MB
    I found this while looking for samples of an SLB200, as I was thinking of picking one shortly.
    My gawd that MIC algorithm sounds great!
  4. I don't understand the text, does it explain what the mic on a stand is for in the first clips, ? There can't be much acoustic sound to capture.

    The rest sounds really good. Perhaps some kind of modelling similar to what is used in a Tonedexter built in to the EUB? For those travelling by airplane this will be very nice!
  5. I had been looking at different EUB basses for the most accurate jazz tone, and up to this point, the best tone I'd heard was from Alter Ego. At around 7 grand, it would be a hefty price to pay, but they do sound sweet, mostly due to the accurate reproduction of high frequency string noise. There are some pretty impressive design ideas with EU basses, but in the end, you are only going to hear something that sounds as good as the piezo element you put on it. But with this new digital technology, it seems that Yamaha has used their massive R&D budget to do an end-around on what the various companies have been doing in trying to closer emulate the URB tone. Now i'm curious if the other companies will keep doing what they are doing with regards to tone chambers, sound boards, different piezo elements, etc, or jump into the digital arena. I wouldn't be surprised if this Yamaha would actually would come across better than a real mic'd upright in a fair amount of live environments due to how direct the signal would be.
    dfp and longfinger like this.
  6. Here is another video on youtube uploaded in March 2020 that has english text to go along with the setting changes.

  7. Les Fret

    Les Fret

    Sep 9, 2009
    There is another thread on this already. Maybe better the merge this? Yamaha SLB300 New model

    Ok sounds really good.
    Did they only change the preamp or also something in the design?

    Does the SLB need an extra 10 MegOhm preamp like with a normal piezo to match the impedance? Or is that already build in in the internal Yamaha preamp? Just plug in any amp without external preamp?
    Last edited: Jun 17, 2020
  8. moles


    Jan 24, 2007
    Winnipeg, MB
    From what I remember seeing, they've made a slight change to the side-slits (I'm not sure if we should call those ports, but I guess they serve the same purposes as f-holes). Also, the changes to the electronics mean there is more room in the chamber. How much effect these two things have I can't say.

    You should be able to go straight into an amp from the bass' output without any extra piezo-loading.
    Last edited: Jun 18, 2020
  9. Les Fret

    Les Fret

    Sep 9, 2009
    Ok that’s good news. That saves you from having to carry around another preamp.

    What I don’t like about the design is the headstock. Looks a bit odd. Why did they reverse the tuners?

    Hoping to try one in the near future. Seriously considering selling one of my real uprights for this. But I want to try before I buy. It won’t be easy though since not many store have them.
  10. Neon Scribe

    Neon Scribe Supporting Member

    I ordered one that arrived today. I've played for an hour or so. I'm very impressed, with the sound and overall build quality. I tried the three microphone presets and settled on the second. The first one seemed a little bit boomy, but 2 and 3 are fine. I have an NXT and the sound on the SLB300 is way better. In fact, it's better in every way, which it should be considering it costs two and a half times as much! I only have one small complaint and one bigger complaint. Small complaint: the endpin isn't short enough to play seated. They should offer a short endpin as an option. The bigger issue is the endpin itself. The NXT uses a tripod, which means it just stays put when you walk away. This is a much better scheme for an EUB than an endpin. What are you supposed to do with it when you aren't playing? Is there a stand that people use? It doesn't lay down naturally in a safe way. It can be propped in a corner, I guess, but there isn't always a corner available.
    kittyboy and Zbysek like this.
  11. Les Fret

    Les Fret

    Sep 9, 2009
    So the SB300 can't be played seated? That's a bummer!

    Isn't there a tripod that can be used with it?
  12. Neon Scribe

    Neon Scribe Supporting Member

    I'm 6'1" with a long torso. With the endpin at its shortest setting, I was able to play while seated on an adjustable stool 27 inches high.

    I don't know of a tripod that will work with it, but if there is one I will buy it. It has to be pretty heavy and/or have wide legs, and it has to be adjustable both in height and in the angle of the neck. The NXT tripod is pretty hefty and it works well. The SLB300 doesn't have a place where it's clearly possible to attach such a device. I think I'm going to have to find a stand for it.
    Les Fret likes this.
  13. Neon Scribe

    Neon Scribe Supporting Member

    I just ordered the K&M EUB stand, model 14160. It looks pretty sturdy and the reviews were good.
    hensonbass likes this.
  14. With my slb200 I always stand it in a corner, or lay it on the case if no corner is available. Good you found a case though. Does it sound as good in person as the Yamaha videos? Are you playing it through a bass amp?
  15. Neon Scribe

    Neon Scribe Supporting Member

    Just through headphones so far. It sounds good, but very dry. I usually practice on headphones and I never use effects, but I might try a little bit of reverb. I haven't tried through an amp yet. I'll have an outdoor distanced jam with the band on Thursday, probably through an Acoustic Image Coda. I'll let you know!
  16. Les Fret

    Les Fret

    Sep 9, 2009
    Yes I think a tripod is a must when playing an EUB seated. It is a bit of deal breaker for me if it can’t be played seated. I was interested in buying one but now I am not sure anymore. Let’s hope they make a tripod for it.
  17. Low Class

    Low Class

    Jul 4, 2005
    At the 1:24 spot of this video they show the SLB300 on a tripod.

  18. Papageno


    Nov 16, 2015
    I have never played an EUB so far, but this makes me wanting to try it.

    There is one thing that bugs me though: when I play DB standing, I am able to hold my bass stable without using my hands because the bass has 3 points of contact: (1) the endpin on the floor, (2) the edge of the upper bout against the side of my belly, and (3) the back side or edge of the lower bout against my left knee.

    On EUBs, there is nothing that can be in contact with my left knee, so I am afraid of having less stability, which could mean poor intonation or reduced mobility on the fingerboard.

    How do you go around this issue? Is there any way of holding the EUB stable without using the hands, either standing or sitting?
    Les Fret likes this.
  19. Zbysek


    Mar 23, 2017
    Czech Republic
    I use tripod with my NS Design EUB...
  20. Les Fret

    Les Fret

    Sep 9, 2009
    That’s a good question and that’s something that worries me too. I don’t use my left knee to support my acoustic upright when standing though. Only the belly against the upper bout.

    Most EU basses don’t have a bout but the SB has. So that can be used as a support. I never played one but I guess that makes it more stable than other EU basses? But on EU basses without any bouts I don’t have a clue how you balance it with only the end Pin? That’s why a tripod would be great.
    Papageno likes this.
  21. Primary

    Primary TB Assistant

    Here are some related products that TB members are talking about. Clicking on a product will take you to TB’s partner, Primary, where you can find links to TB discussions about these products.

    May 8, 2021

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