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Weak C string

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Funky Doctor, Dec 19, 2004.


  1. Funky Doctor

    Funky Doctor

    Aug 28, 2003
    Australia
    I love my six string bass to bits but there is one little thing that is bugging the crap out of me. In a gig situation when ever I play anything on the high C string, the sound seems to just drop out from under me. I'm thinking (desperately hoping) that this is just due to the fact that I can generally feel the rumlbe of the lower strings from my amp (to some extent on the higher of those strings). Does anyone else seem to notice this or have this problem, particularly those of you who play six string basses? And am I the only one who doesn't like the sound of the C string when it is slapped/plucked?
     
  2. Charr

    Charr

    May 14, 2004
    Copenhagen, Denmark
    i had the same problem, i just used a G-string ( :rolleyes: ) and tuned it to C - it plays well, og has a LOT more bottom than the standart C string
     
  3. Funky Doctor

    Funky Doctor

    Aug 28, 2003
    Australia
    So a fatter C string you say... Well, I have to say that as long as they last, the elixirs I am using aren't impressing me much in terms of tension (the scale length of my bass is a little under 34' after all) and even though I prefer really light guage strings on my 4 string, I am going to make a move to some thicker strings.
     
  4. I was experiencing the same thing a couple nights ago during my first gig w/ my new Warwick Thumb 6-string. But at the end of the gig, my drummer (who happens to be extremely critical when it comes to tone and actually was skeptical of my new bass because he liked the tone of my old one :meh: ) said he really liked the sound of the high string when I was doing some melodic fills. Go figure.

    That aside, I am planning to experiment with the eq on my amp to try to beef the C string up some more.

    The heavier C string is an interesting suggestion. If you try that and it works, let us all know!
     
  5. Tritone

    Tritone Supporting Member

    Jan 24, 2002
    Santee, America
    Try an unwound C string.
     
  6. Funky Doctor

    Funky Doctor

    Aug 28, 2003
    Australia
    So was that a suggestion bases on experience? Does it work for you? I have no idea where to get unwound strings from...
     
  7. A heavier C would probably help. You might want to raise your pickup height a bit towards the C string and see if that changes anything. It's almost inevitable that the notes will get a little lost. Already, D and G string notes may get lost during heavy sections. Doesn't mean you can't play with the EQ or find an other solution.
     
  8. Funky Doctor

    Funky Doctor

    Aug 28, 2003
    Australia
    Yes well I have pretty much exhausted every solution except for using a thicker or unwound C string so far... raising the pickups towards the treble end basically did nothing.
     
  9. Tritone

    Tritone Supporting Member

    Jan 24, 2002
    Santee, America
    I had the reverse problem with an unwound f string on my 7. MUCH too loud compared to the other strings, which were all wound. I switched to a wound f, and it cured it. You can order c and f strings from Juststrings. The heaviest unwound f I've been able to find is .20, but it might work as a c string too. You might have to tweak the truss rod a bit to compensate.

    FWIW, you might try calling the manufacturer of your bass and see what they suggest.

    Hope this helps.
     
  10. Arthur U. Poon

    Arthur U. Poon

    Jan 30, 2004
    SLC, Utah -USA-
    Endorsing Artist: Mike Lull Custom Basses
    I've only been a 6-stringer for a couple of months, but I've noticed the same thing. But I personally don't think it's a problem. I really like it's sound, especially up on the higher frets for soloing.

    Slap-wise, I suck on all 6 strings! :p I'm trying to learn this technique, though.

    I figured this was due to it being such a light gauge string. Mine isn't lacking in volume compared to my other strings, it just doesn't sound as full. Is this the same thing you're experiencing?

    If so, I agree with Andrew W., that a heavier gauged nickelwound C-string will most likely sound a bit fuller. You may lose some flexibility, but there's always a trade-off.
     
  11. Funky Doctor

    Funky Doctor

    Aug 28, 2003
    Australia
    Nickel you all say... I am using elixirs at the moment which I thought were nickel wound. I thin kit's time to move to some different strings because these ones are as flabby as my dad's gut. Sorry about the imagery.
     
  12. Tritone

    Tritone Supporting Member

    Jan 24, 2002
    Santee, America
    Try a .20 gauge steel string.

    Yes, it's lighter gauge...

    No, it shouldn't work, but it does, and it just be what you are looking for.

    Try going over to extendedrangebass.com, and look for the post regarding "f string not balanced" in the "set-up" section.