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Weird sounds on G string. Why?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by basscatman, Feb 3, 2006.

  1. basscatman


    Oct 19, 2005
    I have gone through several low-end basses recently because they have all done the same strange thing ... when you put on big flatwounds or tapewounds, the B and C tones on the G string go weak and dead-sounding, and the D reverberates forever in an unpleasant fashion.

    One bass was an OLP, another was a Brownsville Jazz, one a Brownsville P-bass, and another is a Hamer MusicMan clone. All acted just like this.

    Filing the nuts helps some, but the distortion is still there. MY older Peavey basses from the 80's handle the same Fender tapewound strings fine, but a lot of newer basses do not.

    Anyone else seen this happen?

    I am beginning to think that the nuts are cheap and a better nut would stop this problem, but I'd like to hear from someone who saw it too and solved it somehow.

  2. fenderx55


    Jan 15, 2005
    Prettttttyyyy sure that's a dead spot.
  3. Sounds like a dead spot to me. I'm not sure if a new nut/bridge would help or not. I'm sure someone here does.
  4. basscatman


    Oct 19, 2005
    The fact that it happened the same way in the same place on 4 different basses from 3 different manufacturers makes me suspect that something different is going on.
  5. Yes, something IS going on.

    You don't know how to play that note. :smug:

  6. tiredman9


    Aug 15, 2005
    New York
    Where you putting the exact same set of strings on all the basses? If so, then it was probably the strings.
  7. Groundloop


    Jun 21, 2005
    It might be a dead spot. That seems to be a fairly common place for such complaints. I am sure that a new nut won't help, though. When you're talking about fretted notes, the nut plays no part in the sound.
  8. basscatman


    Oct 19, 2005
    Thanks for the replies, but I don't think we've got to the problem yet ...

    It is not happening on one neck, it has occurred on four.

    I've used at least 4 different types of strings.

    It can still occur even after a professional setup.

    It has happened with MusicMan, J-pass and P-bass pickups.

    The same kinds of strings and action on several other basses don't cause this phenomenon.

    When it *does* happen , it affects the same spots on each neck the same distorted way.
  9. klocwerk


    May 19, 2005
    Somerville, MA
    dead spot.
    That's the most common place for them. I had it explained to me that it's an effect from the physics of the truss rod. My fretless mim jazz has a minor dead spot at the D on the G string. Apparently most single-truss basses have at least a slight one somewhere between the 3rd and 8th fret on the G string side of the neck. This is all new knowledge to me in the past month, so I may have gotten something wrong, but it's held true for me so far.
  10. mikezimmerman

    mikezimmerman Supporting Member

    Apr 29, 2001
    Omaha, Nebraska
    Yep, it's a dead spot, in the typical location. The reason it's more obvious when you go to flat/tapewound strings is because the dead spot affects the fundamental frequency, not the overtones/harmonics. So, with brighter sounding strings, the overtones may still ring out fairly well even when the fundamental is dying out fairly quickly. Flatwounds/tapewounds are darker sounding and emphasize the fundamental much more, so it's more obvious when the fundamental is getting sucked up by a dead spot.