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  • Apass Basses question...HERB

    Apass Basses question...HERB....hi.......The sus Apass Basses sound fantastic.....question.........When playing the low notes, I can hear an octave above very clearly...(is this really just overtones?...or did you guys add a built-in octave to the apass basses)....the reason I ask is that the original basses do NOT exhibit this octave overtone.....not that I'm complaining ;-)...I love the Apass1 sus basses...all the best to you...SvK

  • we decided to build a mixed bassgroup like in real orchestras, where you could find five-string and four-string doublebasses sitting next to each other. that means for the lowest notes, that the four string-basses have to play an oktave higher, which is exactly the same we did with apassionata double basses. the first note which the whole group can play the same oktave is "E". but to achieve a smooth transition we didn't change at that point with all the basses, but we downsized the oktave-players step by step.


    all the best, michael hula

  • Michael.........ahhhhhhh......very cool!........ SvK

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    last edited

    @michi said:

    that means for the lowest notes, that the four string-basses have to play an oktave higher
    Hi all, can I raise a point about this? I don't think composers would approve - if they wanted an octave interval, they'd write one. Four-string basses can extend their range with 'C-extensions', right?

    Personally, when I'm working with samples I don't want to hear an octave when I play a single note (although I wouldn't mind having the option of a patch designed for the purpose - say cellos and basses playing in octaves). In the past some sound companies fell into the trap of recording low strings in octaves (probably thinking it sounded more impressive) and I wouldn't want VSL to drift into the habit, especially given their admirable purist tendencies!

  • I think with large this amount of basses (10) the recording concept is realistic, because no orchestra will offer 10 5-string basses.

    and will perform a score this way.

    All or our smaller bass sections (orchesstra & chambers) are recorded with full 5-string bass sections.



  • Thanks Herb. Are C-extensions used much by European orchestral double bassists?

  •  C extensions are not common on the continent.  In London orchestras it is very possible to have a large section with them and on a scoring date you would not make it into the room without one.  On the continent it is, as Herb mentions, usually a mixed section of 4 and 5 strings so you will hear the octaves down low.  In the states you get a few 5 strings and then depending on how major the orchestra is all or most with extensions.  In studio playing it is the same as London, an extension is manditory.  


  • Thanks Obmit, that's useful to know. I wonder why the C-extension is less widespread in Europe? It works very well and from the player's point of view is arguably less of a hassle than dealing with an extra string!

  •  I think it is a 'do what others do thing'.  If your teacher is in a major band and people use a for or 5 with no extensions, that becomes what you do. Also, in london and the States there are plenty of basses around that have had the surgery, but as it involves drilling holes in your prized bass, people in countries where it is not as common see it is about as appealing as a nose ring. I think each has their advantages.  5 strings give you a B and you can slide around.  Some extensions have keys that can get in the way if you want portamenti but they make it easier play.  On basses without the keys it is hard to do fast leaps from the low notes as your hand is back in '-first' position.  I have heard many players say that there are many great sounding 4 string basses out there and a good 5 is hard to find.  


  • Thanks for those insights, very interesting.