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Volume increase on an acoustic bass

Discussion in 'General Instruction [BG]' started by fleetwood, Dec 23, 2001.

  1. fleetwood


    Aug 29, 2001
    Swansea UK
    Hi Guys,
    Is there anyone out there who plays an acoustic bass? If so, please could you help with a problem I have.
    The volume on my bass increases on its own on certain notes. Last night it was on all the "C"'s.
    Is it something to do with the pick-up at a certian volume? I had less trouble with the volume down - but then I was too quiet!!!
    It also seems to be related to the amount of bass level on at the Amp.
    It's one BIG problem - hope you can help.
  2. One thing you might want to try doing is playing in a different room, or even a different house. Playing outside in this little experiment is optimal

    What <b>might</b> be happening is that certain materials in the room i.e. wood, insulation, anything might be resonating at certain frequency's. In this case it seems that you have a material that shakes when you play any frequency that corresponds with a C. When you hit the note it causes them to shake, producing a tone very similiar to that. It sounds very much like your bass has actually just gotten louder. If you live in an old house it is very likely thats what the problem is. Increasing the level of Bass on your amp, causes the bass frequency's to be played higher, causing these materials to move quicker. Also when you turn down the level on your bass, it is getting quieter, and therefore not activiting the resonant frequency's. Try turning your bass level all the way up, and the volume on your amp all the way down. Hopefully that will be helpful to you.
  3. fleetwood


    Aug 29, 2001
    Swansea UK
    Thanks for you comments PL.
    However, this problem happens everywhere. The other evening was in a very sound dead club. I have tried at home by taking the bass into a different room from the amp (on a long lead) and that seems better. But that's no solution, imagine playing in one venue and having your amp at another :)
    I've got an Aria semi acoustic bass and that gives no trouble. It must be to do with the big wooden body of the acoustic or the pickups. I've spoken to a guitar repairer and he says that it can be a problem with acoustics - giutars and basses. But didn't know of an answer.
  4. Jeff Bonny

    Jeff Bonny Supporting Member

    Nov 20, 2000
    Vancouver, BC
    What pickup and amp are you using?
    Is the problem even slightly audible acousticaly?
    Acoustic instruments to one degree or another all have the kinds of problems you're having and there is no one answer; a pickup that makes an average ply bass sound great can make a great carved bass sound average and to a lesser degree the same is true of amps. Sometimes a bass/PU combo get together to really accentuate a problem that doesn't exist acousticaly. Unfortunatley the only way of knowing how something will work with yer bass is to try it on yer bass and that gets expensive fast.

    The bass I play the most now had a quiet G string with the stock wingslot type PU. I had a magnetic PU made and that solved the volume problem but made that bass sound too "electric" to me. Finally Steve Azola built me a multi-piezo bridge and that solved the volume problem and kept the acoustic sound. I think when you go to a multi-piezo system with one PU set into the bridge under each string it can go a long way towards isolating the anomalies.
    If I had to recommend something without hearing yer bass it would be one of Steve's bridges and you'de do well to try everything you can easily lay yer hands on first.
  5. fleetwood


    Aug 29, 2001
    Swansea UK
    It's not so much a problem with the volume of each string from the pup's but that the volume takes off on certain notes and will increase forever unless I stop it. Also, sometimes an open string will also start building up volume on its own
  6. Jeff Bonny

    Jeff Bonny Supporting Member

    Nov 20, 2000
    Vancouver, BC
    I understand that. A multi-piezo bridge may still help to isolate those "wolf tones" that are causing you grief. Then again it may not. A parametric eq could also isolate the offending frequencies but in my experience it's better to find a PU/amp combo that work with relatively little eq required.
  7. SlapDaddy


    Mar 28, 2000
    jeff is heading in the right direction...It's an eq problem.
  8. TrepDeery


    Apr 17, 2012

    The mortgage boom was based on organized crime to earn fees for agents, notaries, brokers, banks et al. and it seems that the foreclosures are also repeating the same fraud in reverse as the only constant is more fees for the already victimized masses. =-=

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