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Why do YOU "only" play a 4 ?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by NS2A, Sep 26, 2008.

  1. NS2A


    Apr 3, 2008
  2. FenderP

    FenderP Supporting Member

    May 7, 2005
    I've played and owned two different 5s. I just don't need that low B. The necks also don't feel comfortable to me, though. For the rare occasion I need a low D or Eb, I just detune.

    I enjoy bassists who use 5 or 6ers, it's just not my cup of tea.
  3. Bassenstien


    Jun 13, 2006
    +1 I have just never used the extra range when playing a five. I find 4's alot more comfy.
  4. Mike N

    Mike N Missing the old TB Staff Member Supporting Member

    Jan 28, 2001
    Spencerport, New York
    Although I played a five for many years, my small hands prefer a 4. And since I can't recall playing any cover tunes that required a note below low D, a 4 with a hipshot detuner fits my needs rather well.
    cweath likes this.
  5. My only current bass is a 5 and I'm thinking my next is gonna be a four. The B string is a problem with muting, it doesn't sound like the other strings, and I feel it makes things to complicated.

    Sometimes being limited makes you more creative. Being able to fret a low D is nice when the song calls for it, but thats probably about 5-10 songs that I play.
    Dale Griffith likes this.
  6. Lucas G

    Lucas G

    Jan 14, 2007
    masury, OH
    it's all i need for the music i play. i like the way they feel, although i am aware i could get used to different string spacing or neck widths if i played one more often.

    whenever i get a 5 string, i end up selling it, because notes on the B sound out of place with the band i play in.

    i guess i could make the analogy that i drive hatchbacks with manual transmissions because i like them and they suit me- whether it is my 2006 ford focus (smooth, fuel efficient, reliable, quiet, comfortable) or my 1983 VW gti (noisy, not that great on gas, akin to be dragged down the road in a tin washtub but fun as hell!) i could just as easily drive a corvette or a hummer or a cadillac, but that's not what i go for, just not my style.
  7. standupright


    Jul 7, 2006
    Phoenix, AZ
    Brownchicken Browncow
    it's all i need to get the job done. i don't dislike folks that play 5 or more.....personal discretion imo....i just prefer 4. i have however considered toying around with tuning in fifths instead of fourths
    Skybone likes this.
  8. Dogbertday

    Dogbertday Commercial User

    Jul 10, 2007
    SE Wisconsin
    Blaine Music LLC
    it's closer to my upright. I tend to have intervals ofplaying only one or another for a while and the consistency helps
  9. magickbass

    magickbass Guest

    May 24, 2008
    My fingers are short so a 4 is all I can play. I do like having the low B sometimes so I keep one bass strung D-A-E-B.
  10. Tusknia


    Jul 8, 2008
    Sussex, UK
    I don't need a low B.
    Dale Griffith and bolophonic like this.
  11. mjolnir

    mjolnir Thor's Hammer 2.1.3beta

    Jun 15, 2006
    Houston, TX
    My main used to be a six, and the backup was a five, but I found the string spacing to be a bit small. I also just didn't feel the need to have that extended range... IMHO the neck is plenty long enough to get the right note somewhere.

    Nothing against ERB players, y'all do yo thang, I'm just not one of ya.
  12. Hopper


    Sep 24, 2008
    I'd actually like a 3 string bass and often find 4 too much.

    I don't like the the B string on a 5 string - it's too low (almost inaudible) and you really don't need it at all - just add extra bass to your sound and you'll get the lower octaves anyway.

    5 or 6 strings means muting lots of ringing nuisance strings.

    Holding a 6 string neck is simply horrible; wide, unappealing and cumbersome.
    Dale Griffith likes this.
  13. bassforce

    bassforce Guest

    Feb 7, 2007
    I don't need more. And vintage precisions were only 4 strings :)
    Matt Dean likes this.
  14. MatticusMania

    MatticusMania LANA! HE REMEMBERS ME!

    Sep 10, 2008
    Pomona, SoCal
    I've never needed that low of a B. Plus, I'm really accustom to my extra slim jazz bass neck.
  15. Because I have a hard enough time playing 4.
    Inky13, SoCal80s, steamthief and 3 others like this.
  16. DeanT

    DeanT Send lawyers, guns and money...

    I don't need the low B. I have no use for a thumbrest either, so the extra string is just in the way.
  17. Kenny Allyn

    Kenny Allyn

    Mar 25, 2006
    I've had any number of 5ivers ...

    Really tried to convince myself that I needed the extra B

    :meh: ... But I don't, so I sold them all
    GlennRH likes this.
  18. GregC

    GregC Johnny and Joe Gold Supporting Member

    Jan 19, 2007
    Four is all I've needed, thus far, and frankly feels like all I can handle, anyway.:oops:
  19. acubass


    Oct 10, 2007
    Albuquerque, NM
    B/C I haven't played a song int he key of C or D in the last 2 years. If the singer were in that range I would have a 5er again.
    Anders Barfod likes this.
  20. René_Julien


    Jun 26, 2008
    I only play four because as most of the above posters said: I don't find that low B necessary.

    Drop D tuning is what I like. (a detuner is very handy)

    And I limit myself to G as the highest string, because knowing me I'll keep ending up in the high registers.
    And I don't need bigger chords.
    I do like 24 frets though... the 24th on the G string is often used.

    My opinions always is: a good musician can play any melody or musical piece on the instrument they master, regardless of how many notes or register their instrument has.

    But if a multiple-string makes an ERBassist happy, who am I to judge them. :)

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