View Full Version : starting bass
January 7th, 2005, 07:23 PM
im thinking of purchasing myself a bass guitar and was wondering what type i should start out with. ive never learned or played before, so should i buy a 4, 5, or 6 string fretted guitar?
January 8th, 2005, 11:52 AM
Well a basic bass guitar has 4 strings so for starting I'd go for that and if you so wish then you could opt for a 5 or 6 string bass which as far as 6 stringed basses go would be a bit tricky for a beginner I'd imagine as the strings are either closer or the neck is wider to accomodate the extra strings. I have seen some rather affordable 4, 5 and 6 string basses so going for more strings in the future wouldn't be terribly expensive, just more of a case of will you need those extra strings a lot?
For buying, if you have a friend who plays guitar or knows about bass then take them along with you to try out basses, it helps get over the sales assistants trying to get you to buy something that they are being pushed into selling or making you buy something you don't want. Plus it gives a second opinion on it and they could perhaps play stuff on it for you to give you a better idea than just a beginner hitting strings. Important thing to keep in mind is how comfortable it is for you to play, do you like the sound of it, if you don't like how it sounds and how it plays then you will never enjoy it and it will make learning much more of a struggle when it shouldn't be.
What wouldn't hurt is to find any bass guitar magazines too, they might give tips on buying or even some models that you may fancy trying out.
February 1st, 2005, 01:13 PM
Best thing before buying a bass guitar is to define yourself as a bass player or guitar player. Most rock bass players just mimic the guitar lines and maybe you´ll find more satisfactory to deliver the guitar lines yourself.
And about the strings... Let´s see, bass techniques like slap or tapping are better played with a 4 string one but the most really powerful sounds come from the 5th additional string (B), it really blows your ears away :D. Ask yourself what are you going to play and make your decision... By the way, unless you´re going to play Patittucci´s stuff don´t buy a 6th string to begin with!. It will kill your fingers and ears with all kind of strange noses.
So, well, try these steps:
-Define yourself, but do not close yourself into certain styles, one never knows what he will play!.
-Try playing a borrowed instrument first to see if you´re compfortable with it and want to play it. It´s a lot of money (Bass, amp and accesories).
-Try several instruments, never just one!!!. They can fool you (the selling guys at the store).
-Pay attention to sound (connected to the amp, of course... If you can play it on a similar amp to yours, better), weight, ease of play and possibilities. Aesthetics might also help.
-Ask a friend and magazines. Always.
And well, I own a Cort C5 bass. It´s relatively cheap, looks nice, plays nice and sounds... Sounds correct :P. Before buying ask a friend, the guy at the store or someone to actually play it!. There are cool basses that provide more than a begginer asks for for not much money. Good luck!.
February 7th, 2005, 10:58 AM
i decided and ordered a GSR200 4-stringer for 200$. im happy with it and cannot wait until it gets here. the only bad thing is that the amp will come a month later because its on back order. oh well STILL EXCITED. and i already play drums, which is why im so interested in playing the bass. the bass drum line is defined by the bass line so its like connected.
February 7th, 2005, 12:19 PM
Cool :). Don´t forget to start learning music if you haven´t!!!. You could benefit a lot from it ;). I´m curious, can you post a pic of your drumkit or at least, tell us what does it consists of?. I love drums but sadly never had the money or the place to buy or play them. That´s why I ended playing guitars.
February 8th, 2005, 02:46 AM
this is what my set looks like, although this isnt mine its still the same set up
also, if you can afford a drumset all you have to do is buy pads for the heads of the drums to keep them quiet, thats what i do because i live in an apartment. noise shouldnt be a problem as long as you buy silencers for the heads. also, i just started a music theory class so yeah i am learning music now and perfect timing too.
February 8th, 2005, 02:59 AM
Wow, that is rather small that kit but then until you can handle that I can't see why you'd need much more than that. Some kids just like to go in at the deep end, surrounded by cymbals and a double bass when they can barely kick up a basic rhythm. That and I have told people before when they complain of neighbours commenting on the noise levels, to get those silencer pads. Never listen to me, but hey I'm only a humble guitarist who has been in jamming and gigging situations before and knows a thing or two about all the other instruments. *what*
Talking of new gear, I have another guitar I want to look at when I graduate, I was looking at a Jackson RR model, but then I kind of now want an ESP DV8 so I shall have to try them both out. The DV8 looks nicer I think, has pickups that I quite like and either way, both models have one or more guitarists associated with it so I can't win.
February 13th, 2005, 05:33 PM
Nice drumkit there DoomMod, glad you know the right way to play it... They say that if you can play quiet and accurate you will have no problems in gig situations. I think that a big part of the expression you can show when playing is done through controlling dinamics, knowing how to play.
Maybe I can help you with the guitar thing She-Wolf. What guitar do you own?.
February 14th, 2005, 04:42 AM
Well I have a BC Rich Platinum series Mockingbird, hence why I'm not waiting for Dave's Axxion guitar to be released as they have some similarities in their looks. Same goes with the Kelly. I love those when Marty used them but it's just like a slightly more sharp and angular shape to the Mockingbird shape. That and I've always fancied a roughly V shaped guitar. I know the DV8-R has a mahogany body which gives a nice tone as I've been told several times, and I suspect the RR3 I saw would be of a similar kind of wood for the body. Jacksons I've seen have Seymour Duncans in them, but with the pickups in the DV8 the Jazz and JB I was looking at getting those in my guitar but thought against it as it's a lot of money to go and change pickups on a guitar I like already. I just fancy having another guitar to go with my first one. I will have to play them both and see which I prefer, either way I know they are both really good guitars and it will be a hard choice to make.
February 14th, 2005, 06:06 AM
Hmmm... If you´re willing to play metal I´d try the RR series better than he DV. No that I´m telling you what to choose but what my choice could be :P. Anyhow, it´s a good idea (in my honest opinion) to go out and try some Yamaha guitars in that price range, I´m sure you will be pretty surprised with the tone of those guitars!!!!. I mean, one always want to buy a certain guitar based on its shape, colour and tone but sometimes doesn´t consider other options that may sound cool and look nice too :). An example of a great guitar (also, in my opinion) is the Parker Fly :D.
Another thing... I wouldn´t recommend changing pickups since the guitar´s tone is determined not only by the pickups but also by the body´s shape, weight, volume and stuff. You could also come across physical compatibility problems and, the most important, noises everywhere. I know a guy who bought a Mexican Fender Stratocaster to scallope its frets and set his old Strato pickups on them. Mysteriously, when the pickups were changed there was noise, noise and noise!!!.
My advice, if I may, is to go out, head to the music store and sit there for a while asking for guitars inside a price range. Try them all, decide later... Anyway, if you really want a RR or DV, just go for it :).
February 14th, 2005, 06:48 AM
Yeah that's what made me not want to change pickups, the whole problem of not knowing how they will sound when put into the guitar. Plus after buying the pickups and getting them fitted, I could essentially buy a whole new guitar or put the money towards a more expensive one instead.
I do plan on trying out more than just two, I'll just have to make a day or two of it at some of the better guitar shops in the main cities as while the guitar shops near me have done fine for some of the stuff I have bought, I find they are limited to mainly Fenders, Gibsons, Epiphones and a few other examples of guitars by other brands. It's a fair selection but you can see that they are dominated by a small number of brands as soon as you walk in to the electrics section and you have to go to the bigger stores in the bigger cities.
At least after playing guitar for 3 years I know far more about them and buying them than I did when I bought my very first guitar, a cheap Strat copy which was really rather bad!
February 14th, 2005, 07:15 AM
Hehe, I really love my first guitar, it´s still around my room somewhere. Sounds and feels awful but I feel really inspired whenever I play it... Funny!!!.
Have you tried Ibanez guitars?. They are fine metal axes. Rather expensive in high-end models, but good looking and so.
August 22nd, 2006, 08:36 AM
I have a question for you guys.......
I Really want to play bass...but ive never played Bass or Guitar before.....How Should I start (as in what kind of Bass)
August 23rd, 2006, 01:08 AM
I always buy pieces of junk. It works for me. Look around some flee markets, buy whatever is cheapest to practice on. then, when you are seasoned and all, take a step up. Remember, no instrument is junk, heh.
I find I love cheap japanese/chinese knockofs.
August 23rd, 2006, 02:50 AM
Heh, well, if you have never played any instrument with strings before you could try a "used" stuff store. Chances are that you can get a cheap instrument but you also have this risk of the piece having wrong calibrations and stuff (something that can easily bother when starting to play).
Where do you live?. There are several musical stores on the internet that can serve you a fine bass guitar on the states without much fees... Try to look on these stores around and then read reviews on the instruments on sites like harmonycentral and the like.
August 23rd, 2006, 01:08 PM
Make sure you have your guitar properly set up by an experienced expert. Other than that, I have nothing to add that hasn't been said by other posters, as I know nothing about playing the bass, besides the mechanical details I picked up while working on gear while I was interning at a guitar shop.
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