Post Number: 24
|Posted on Sunday, October 07, 2007 - 12:00 pm: |
I can't be sure but my bass seems to be improving as the weeks pass by. Its an MK5 deluxe with coco bolo back and front. three purple heart and maple laminates neck. The sound was awesome the day it came out of the box but I can't distinguish between a perceptible improvement in the tone or my own playing settling in to this great instrument, and it being more in my imagination. I would be very interested to hear the experiences of any other club members who have had basses from new and experienced anything like the same.
Post Number: 1632
|Posted on Sunday, October 07, 2007 - 1:23 pm: |
First the bad news - no matter what level of quality the instrument, as you get to know it better your playing on it will improve.
Now the good news, which starts out as bad news - an Alembic will bring out any sloppiness in your playing. But if you're any good you'll learn from that and improve your technique.
Post Number: 863
|Posted on Sunday, October 07, 2007 - 4:52 pm: |
It's interesting you say this, Jake... I've had the very same thought, and was considering starting a thread on the subject (but obviously, you beat me to it).
My other custom Alembic -my 8-string- has definitely improved it's tone over time... but it really seems like there's been a dramatic improvement in the tone of my new MK6 deluxe with Coco Bolo front and back in the short time I've had it. As with yours, it sounded great the first day I had it... but it seems to have really gotton much better sounding in just a few short weeks. No doubt about it... very noticable.
Mica has stated to me and to others, on many occaissions, something to the effect that it takes time for the wood(s) to "realize they're an instrument"; it takes 'em a little time to get settled in their new role.
The tone of my new MK6 Balance K Signature Deluxe seems to have become more crisp and defined after a few weeks... it has a very complex tone from the combination of 6 different woods (including the Coco Bolo, of course), and I've found it's become more easy to hear the individual components of the sound. The Vermillion is the only one I can't pick out... I don't know the sound... haven't really heard it before... and it's said to sound similar to Mahogany, so it probably just blends in with it. But I can clearly hear the other 5 woods individual aspects/contribution(s) to the sound.
Of course, I've also become more adapted to and familiar with the instrument as well.
Hopefully, it will continue to improve!!! Of course... it's already EXCEEDINGLY awesome!!!
(Message edited by the 8 string king on October 07, 2007)
Post Number: 113
|Posted on Sunday, October 07, 2007 - 9:50 pm: |
I know that my '76 Series 1 sounds better today than it did when I bought it '88 or so. That was a subtle improvement that took a lot of years, though. I really didn't notice it until about 2 years ago.
Post Number: 286
|Posted on Monday, October 08, 2007 - 3:49 am: |
I totally agree with adriaan..play a bum note and it sticks out so much(drum sticks thrown at me proves this)
With an Alembic you suddenly find you cannot get away with anything, the p/ups are so sensitive that I have to turn the vol down if there is a silent section in the song as it picks up hand movement on the neck!
Therefore Alembics will make better players of us all so it is not just a bass or guitar but a teaching aid too
Post Number: 25
|Posted on Monday, October 08, 2007 - 6:46 am: |
Thanks for the responses guys, I agree with the point about Alembics showing the holes in your playing, for me this is great, I record a lot and scrutiny of my playing is a regular duty to produce the best lines. Accuracy is something I always try to achieve, I practice half notes at 40bpm and regularly play 'the metronome as guru' to stay on top of putting it in the right place.
Like you Mark I am learning the sound of the woods, but that notwithstanding I record a lot and did so after two days of owning it and regularly since, in the latter recordings the complexity of the tone is richer and I would like to be able to distinguish between me working the machine better or the machine (to quote Mica via Mark) 'realising its a bass'.
any more views?
Post Number: 26
|Posted on Monday, October 08, 2007 - 6:53 am: |
Reading throught the thread again it occurs to me that one thing (among others) that seems to be in common amongst us, is an interest in going deeper (no pun intended) into a subject, so its no surprise that as bass players we are ultimately drawn to Alembic.
Post Number: 290
|Posted on Monday, October 08, 2007 - 8:22 am: |
Jakebass - recording oh yes I love it when engineers have to pad the input signal when I use my MK signature(especially with Q swirch in the on position)..no mr engineer it ain't a fender.
I think the age of the bass is in conjunction with getting the instrument for the first time, trying all the tone options as fast as we can, it take a long long time to operate those wonderful tone filters, even now after ten years of owning an Alembic I still find tones which were not there before, just the smallest turn of the control produces so much tonal change, it's a wonder that we ever put up with passive vol & tone at all
Post Number: 1638
|Posted on Monday, October 08, 2007 - 11:19 am: |
The "wood realising it's not a tree anymore" is usually given as an explanation why you need to adjust your action when there are changes in the weather, and that usually after a few years you need to do fewer adjustments.
Post Number: 115
|Posted on Wednesday, October 17, 2007 - 6:43 pm: |
Yup, it's some of both. When my SCSS encountered it's first dry Minnesota autumn (unlike this year's rain-drenched fall), the neck developed a drastic stringsward bow. Panicked, I called Santa Rosa, and Mica told me that "the wood wasn't used to being a bass yet." She told me to send it back for a heat reset of the neck - covered under warranty, of course. It has been rock-stable ever since, some eight years, needing about two adjustments per year to counter climate variances.
It then took me a few years to getting around to refining my technique enough to be able to play the bass in public for the reasons Adriaan and terryc described.
All of which reminds me, my bass' birthday was 10/27/97. She will be ten in ten days!
Post Number: 103
|Posted on Thursday, October 18, 2007 - 2:48 pm: |
When I bought my 69 Jazz bass in 1976, it had been sitting in it's case in some guys closet for a couple of years. The neck had a serious bow to it. I had it heat treated in 76, and it's first truss rod adjustment was about three years ago, and that was a minor one. When some necks settle they really settle.
Post Number: 1225
|Posted on Thursday, October 18, 2007 - 3:04 pm: |
I find that my five string '92 Spoiler (deluxe lams with three p/heart stripes) and my five string '06 Elan (maple with cherry pinstripes) only move their action about IF I change string guages/brand.
They stay in their cases upright, leaned against a wall, big end on the ground in the house. They never stay in the car unless they're riding with me, except for the occasional time in the trunk ONLY after dark and cool.
See, keeping them in the case makes them THINK they're in 'time out' and they rarely misbehave . . .
J o e y