#1
I have been playing guitar for five years and am interested in perhaps learning how to play bass. So would it be a bad idea to start on a fret-less electric bass?
#2
It probably would be bad to start on an unlined fretless, but a lined one would be fine.
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#3
I would say start with a fretted bass, if only because it will make the transition from guitar easier. On a fretless you need to be concerned with correct pitch and finger placement (which frets take care of for you) in addition to learning a new instrument. I'm all for a challenge, but no need to cause yourself more headache than needed.
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#4
Well, some people may disagree here, but to me it seems like lined frets are perfectly fine for beginners and experienced and non-lined ones good for those with good musical ears and/or experience. Which would it be for you (lined or not)?
#5
Quote by alternitivebass
It probably would be bad to start on an unlined fretless, but a lined one would be fine.


There really isn't as much of a difference between the two as non-fretless players seem to think.

I find the lines can be more confusing because the line isn't necesarrily at the correct pitch, so your eyes can end up tricking your ears in some cases. The dots on an unlined should be enough markings for most people, I think.

As long as you have a somewhat decent ear and good posture, fretless shouldn't be too difficult. Chords and odd-hand shapes take a while to intonate properly though.
#6
it would be a lot harder to learn on, but in the end it would pay off big time, because you would have great intonation and an even better ear afterwards.
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#7
I think starting on a fretless would be fine, as long as it has lines if you don't have music experience.
#8
Quote by CurbstompBass
There really isn't as much of a difference between the two as non-fretless players seem to think.

I find the lines can be more confusing because the line isn't necesarrily at the correct pitch, so your eyes can end up tricking your ears in some cases. The dots on an unlined should be enough markings for most people, I think.

A lined fretless will help him learn the distances to stretch and such. Learning pitch shouldn't be too hard if he already has a musical background.
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The 2 best colours EVER pitted against each other? No wai!

I voted lime.

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btw lime kicked ass

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#9
Quote by alternitivebass
A lined fretless will help him learn the distances to stretch and such. Learning pitch shouldn't be too hard if he already has a musical background.


I agree there, but I wouldn't discourage him from playing an unlined either. The dots on an unlined give a fine idea of distance anyway. His ear should tell him that, not his eyes.
#10
Quote by CurbstompBass
I agree there, but I wouldn't discourage him from playing an unlined either. The dots on an unlined give a fine idea of distance anyway. His ear should tell him that, not his eyes.

I can barely see my lines after dying the fretboard and the dots are much easier for me. I will admit that getting use to the fret spacing on bass might be made harder by a fretless. Any musician with that experience should be able to adjust when a note is wrong though.
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#11
Pretty much what was said here, just starting out on a lined fretless like an Ibanez SR300 or Squier VM Jazz would be what I would recommend. Not impossible without lines, though.