electric bass sound incorrect intervals on the low e-string

• Dec 1, 2022 - 20:07

Hi, I noticed that the notes played on the low e-string on a plucked bass instrument (like electric bass, bass guitar) sound wrong. When I play for example 1 - 4 -5 (f - g# - a), I hear 1 - 5 - 6 (f - a - a#).


In reply to by bobjp

Hi bobjp, well I'm pretty sure something is wrong (as a professional bass player I know when notes sounds wrong :) ). I added an acoustic guitar instead of a bass and then playing on the low e is fine. But, when I lower this guitar with one octave via Staff/Part Properties > Transposition, then the intervals are wrong in the way i already mentioned. So the problem is in the lowering 1 octave. I see that in the bass instruments this lowering of the octave is predefined. So I think there is a bug in the midi mapping when you lower the octave via Staff/Part Properties > Transposition!

You wrote:
When I play for example 1 - 4 -5 (f - g# - a), I hear 1 - 5 - 6 (f - a - a#).

What soundfont are you using?
Have a listen to this:
The second line plays on the piano what you claim to hear, namely A and A#. The bass guitar G# note is dissonant with the piano A note. Likewise, the bass A is dissonant with the piano A#.

I think your speakers - or ears - are playing tricks on you. When I listen through the speakers on my tablet, the G# sounds sharp enough I could imagine it's almost an A On better speakers, it's clearly G#. Probably an illusion having to do with the specific frequencies and overtones involved that some speakers just don't reproduce that well.

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