#1
Hi everyone,
I'm thinking about getting a bass guitar but before I'd like to ask a few questions.

I have a POD x3 and a Peavy Vypyr (guitar amp). If I plug the bass to the POD can I use the guitar amp as an output or do I need a BASS amp anyway ?

Is it harder to start playing bass with 5 strings ? I cannot tune to B with my 6 strings guitar and sometimes I want to play song that are in B. Maybe I should directly get a 5 strings bass if the fifth is not annoying when you want to play in E (is it annoying ?).

Someone is selling a beginner pack containing a Warriors bass and an Warriors amp for 150€. Is this bass nice to start with ? If I don't need another amp what model do you advice me to get ? (I mostly want to play metal but since I'll be a beginner, I guess for some time I'll probably be practicing various songs, so does it matter if I get at first a "metal bass" or not?)

Last thing I wanted to ask, I'm left-handed but I have started to play guitar on a right-handed model because a friend of mine lended me a right-handed guitar. Eventually I got used to it and never tried a left-handed guitar. Would I be able to start playing bass on a left-handed model ?
#2
Bass does not sound good through a guitar amp. You can do it but its tough on the speakers too. However, a guitar does sound good through a bass amp. I use my bass amp for guitar more than my guitar amps.

If you're just starting on bass it doesn't make much difference 4 or 5 string. I played 4 string for over 30 years and now only play 5 string basses. I took a little getting used to but I like the 5 string the best.

If you're used to a right hand guitar, stay with that on bass. It's also harder to find lefty instruments and that way you can always sit in on jams and try different guitars, etc.
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#3
1. Get a bass amp. Even if you weren't going to blow out a speaker, the thing is that esp. on a 5 er you are never gone to get any decent low end. What you hear impacts your playing and technique overall. There's a reason why there are guitar amps and bass amps, from a electronic and a sound perspective.
2. The advantage of a five string is that you get a lower string for lower tones below low E and you get efficiency in fretting with the extra string. Its not annoying its efficient and useful to have the 5th string.
3. Ok from their website Warrior looks like custom builds and 150 euro seems really low. I'm not that familiar with the brand to comment. And from my perspective, its better to get a bass that you feel comfortable with and can learn on than one that fits a specific type of music.
4. There are those who will argue that if you are very dominant left hand, that you should seek out left handed instruments. The issue is that there are a limited amount of basses that are built for leftys and they usually cost more than a right handed model. If you can handle a right handed guitar you may be better going the same route with a bass for a choice and economic reason.
#4
1) bass frequencies damage guitar speakers - they are not designed for big slow movements, so get a bass amp

2) it's not technically "harder" to play but it can be confusing reading tabs and having to ignore that low string most of the time. That and the stretches you'll need might be bigger/the bass is heavier. In summary I wouldn't recommend it to start with, but if you play a lot of downtuned metal then it might be worth it if you can pick one up for a similar price (NB it will be even worse for your guitar amp if it's lower tuned!)

3) Don't know warrior so can't comment - but cheap bass amps are not normally the best (worse than cheap guitar amps imo as they struggle with a small speaker) but cheap basses can be ok as there is less precision needed (action on bass is higher, only 1 pickup = less wiring, no ridiculous unusable trem bridge etc.). Depending on your budget I can recommend squier basses - they are much better than their guitar equivalents

4) if you play guitar right handed I would stick with it - nothing will put you off more starting an instrument than having to re-learn a lot of what you already know. You'll have significant muscle memory that will transfer very easily - I would say it's probably not worth relearning (try flipping your guitar upside down and playing - that's where you'd start on a lefty!)
The only 6 words that can make you a better guitarist:

Learn theory
Practice better
Practice more
#5
I just want to comment on your #2. The stretches aren't longer, in fact they can, with the extra string be shorter. That's the beauty of the efficiency of 5 and 6 string basses. And they aren't necessarily heavier either. I can guarantee my friends 5 string Ibanez weighs less than my 4 string AccuBass or my Stingray.
#6
Stingrays are complete planks though, to be fair. Mine weighed loads. I suppose it's all that ash. A 5 string bass is nearly always going to weigh more than a 4 string equivalent, but obviously if weight is an issue you can simply find a lightweight one.

But yeah, 5 string basses reduce the stretches you need to make because you've access to a greater range of notes without stretching your hand as far or moving it. The only time extra stretching is going to happen is if you get a 35" scale one as opposed to the usual 34" scale, but 35" scale isn't unique to extended range basses, nor is it necessarily better than 34".
#7
Best to get a used bass for better money spent, and haggle at pawn shops to get a deal on an amp and bass at once if you find some you like. People ask daily almost about some local cheapie starter pack, and I find they are alright if you just want to start and have never had any experience with an instrument. If you have a guitar and amp, you most likely have cables, tuner, straps, picks, etc. So you just need a bass, amp and maybe new strings. Those starter kits in the end are charging you nearly $60-$100 for some bottom of the barrel cheap beginner accessories.

A metal bass is any bass, a "metal" bass that's all pointy and rawr looking generally sucks hard unless you buy a very expensive or custom model.

You can get some 12's or 13's and tune your guitar like a baritone, I'm about to with my strat, can always use a capo and it's in line with standard tuning so it's not a big change in scales.
#8
Thanks for the answers everyone.

I just didn't understand what some of you wrote about the stretch being shorter or longer.
#9
instead of going up or down the fretboard to reach higher or lower frets, you can for example just go up a string and remain in the same position on the fretboard, instead of having to stretch to 7th fret, you can go up a string and go to the 2nd fret.
DONT RISK IT, BUY A BASS AMP
#10
If you had a 4 string and played this riff...

Estring:7-7-7-7-5-4-7-1-4-7-5

you would have to slide alllll the way down the neck to play that note on the 1st fret,
But if you had a 5 string, you could just play the 6th fret on the B string! It saves you from doing that slide down and back up, and is a godsend on faster songs.

Another is if you where again playing this riff on a four string..

Estring: 0-0-1-4-1-4-1-0

you would need to stretch to switch between the 1st fret note and 4th and 5th fret notes. If you had a 5 string you could just play it as following

Bstring: 5-5-6-9-6-9-6-5

less of a stretch

Hope that helped.
May not have, but im trying
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#11
Oh ok I got it. You just play the same notes but on a different string and less effort is required.
Last edited by MattyPS at Jan 9, 2012,
#12
Quote by MattyPS
Oh ok I got it. You just play the same notes but on a different string and less effort is required.

Spot on!
Quote by thunderbritches
I would still call him a regular musician...just a very irregular person lol

Warwick Pro Series Corvette
Hartke HA 3500
Genz Benz LS410