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holding fears 2002-03-17 14:19

Freted and Fretless Basses?
I don't know much about bass eventhough I do play like 30 mins./week at school or so on an Ibanez R Bass (I think,) but anyways, what's the difference between a freted and non-freted (eventhough non-freted basses still have the fret positions or whatever) bass? I know it's a stupid question, but we all gotta learn at one point right?

RomikQ 2002-03-17 14:42

freted basses basically have the metal bars that mark the frets, so it is easier to play clean notes. Fretless have painted on bars instead of metal bars, so there is softer sound and the transitions sound smoother, but it's harder to play and is more expensive.

Def 2002-03-17 15:17

uhm, not all fretless basses have lines on the frets, some are unlined, that looks cool. Fretless basses have an all diffrent playing style, you'll need to "push" harder to get the same sound, its pretty difficult to play actually. just go out and try a fretless, also those fretless basses sound really diffrent.
I think somebody invented them for jazz or something, I don't like the sound.

RomikQ 2002-03-17 15:22

unlined? hmm never actually seen those.. seems kinda pointless - what's the point of not marking them? only makes it a bitch to play

Katham 2002-03-18 13:02

Yeah, those statements are right...

And fretless bass is only sounds good in acoustic, the electric fretless is a waste of money.

Def 2002-03-18 13:03

I know.. but it does look cool :)

holding fears 2002-03-18 19:07

Oh, I knew about no point and stuff, but I thought there was something else involved, with like the whole guitar. But if they don't line it, that would be a bitch to play. I had no intention to try one out, thanks for all the help.

Def 2002-03-19 14:31

the secret is, they line the top of the neck, not the fretboard, so if your playing it you can still see what frets you are playing. though you can not see it on the fretboard!
anyways, unlined fretless basses look pretty cool, but indeed, they are a bitch to play even with lines..

HeadlessKitty 2002-03-21 04:33

You can get a wicked sound out of fretless basses, if you try. Sure they're a bitch to play at first, but once you've played fretted long enough, and trained yourself not to have to watch your hands while you play it's simple. It's like learning to type on a keyboard.

Some Pros to fretless : smooth pitch changes and slides, none of that annoying fret-rattle, and (to other players) you look a bit more professional. Also, it depends on how the action is set on how hard you're gonna have to press to get notes out, it's NOT how all fretless basses are.

Some cons : It takes quite a bit of practice memorize the fretboard, around where I live you pretty much have to special-order fretless basses or pay to have them removed. And (obviously) fretless basses aren't beginner basses.

Father Death 2002-03-21 21:10

Originally posted by RomikQ
unlined? hmm never actually seen those.. seems kinda pointless - what's the point of not marking them? only makes it a bitch to play

there's probably markes on the side of the neck, just a little dot or something

Def 2002-03-22 13:24

some people aren't listening to a damn thing I say ;)

pervytheclown 2002-03-27 15:30

The fretless bass was made for Jazz and Fusion and someother shit too, Ive seen like Latino Pop stars use them too. And in response to the comment about how to know where the different frets are, they are almost all marked with the fret markers on the side of the bass. I think they're ok, but they'er pretty damn hard to play, It takes a little bit of practice.

Henry Wolfe 2002-03-27 23:56

The point is to get all the sounds that come between each normal fret. They actually aren't hard to play once you become a confident bass player. I personally really like them. You realize when your playing that you actually don't use the frets alot to find your fingering (hu...huhu fingering). It sounds really great when you slide like from an open E to where the 12th fret would be. I want one, but the only one I played and liked is a warwick which is $700 (but that's cheap for a warwick). I think it would sound good to have a fretless bass in some metal bands.

MetalPoldi 2002-03-30 10:25

I know basses without any markers and the dots are in the middle of the fret. Thanks to those designers!!!!!!
And i like the sound. You can do so funny things with that. A real cool bass would be one with a fretless fetboard up to the bridge.:D
But what about violin-players and so they donīt even have any markers and the fretboard is so short, so they change whole notes just turning their fingers around. Thatīs hard!!!
Has anyone tried to put the frets out of a fretted bass. Perhaps i wnna do so. But first i wanna know how it sounds. Sure after putting out i will fill the gaps with anything. I hope someone can help me with this.

RomikQ 2002-03-30 19:48

taking out the metal bars will probably be helluva expensive and not too good on the fretboard. Most bars go inside the fretboard and are glued into place(or just put real tight in there). So you'll have to remove all the bars, the clean em up, then fill the little gaps where the sit... ain't worth it. And a fretless warwick for $700?! Gimme gimme gimme!

holding fears 2002-03-31 14:35

Getting your guitar unfretted might cost you $500-$1000 depending on your guitar and the store. So if it's between $500-$700 I recommend you save up and get a Warwick, if it's over, just get the damned Warwick. Warwick's are helluva cool, I seen some guy play one the other day, sounded so smooth, especially when he switched to a fretless one.

Tattered 2002-11-21 13:45

Getting a fretless this wise?
Ok i went into 'street' its a little town near to where i live, and i was walking up the high street as i passed the local 'guitar shop' , and a really nice woodstain fretless bass caught my eye..i was looking at it for quite a while, (people must of been walking past me i thought what the heck i was doing) but i really wanted to play on it, and im thinking of getting it, but ive been playing a fretted 4 string for..about 9 months now, and this one doesent have lines..would it be weird for me?..should i get it, does anyone here own a fretless? (electric fretless) tell me why you bought it and was it hard to cope with, if you were playing a fretted bass for 'yay' long..

cheers! :beer:

Def 2002-11-21 17:11

I played contra and fretless, I don't think it would be a wise desiscion to buy a fretless bass, one, it's gonna be hard to play without lines, especially i've you only been playing bass for 9 months, two, the fretless bass bas has a completely diffrent sound, I don't think I would ever want to use a fretless for metal...

I think it would be easier to play on a 5 string then a fretless 4 string..

Tattered 2002-11-22 13:50

ok cheers def-fx, i guess i wont get i prefer freted basses.

Def 2002-11-22 15:14

so do I.

fretless basses are nice but I can't use them a lot for the music I'm in, it's cool to own one on the side though.

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