Saturday, 15 March 2008
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Hi! I've been interested in Dingwall basses for awhile and I'm seriously considering making the move. I can see from the forum the enthusiasm you all have for Dingwalls and I'm thinking this would be a good place to get convinced I should make the leap. I'm fairly certain at this point that an ABII 5-string will be the model choice. I do have a concern that the long scale combined with fanned frets will be too difficult on the 5-string considering my hands are probably smaller than average. And, I do like playing chords and chord patterns which is probably more difficult with this design. I have only tried but not owned any 5-string basses; I do have four 4-stringers... I imagine some of you have 'fretted' over similar concerns and I'd appreciate hearing your experiences. I'm not located near any dealers where I could try one...
13 years ago
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#9242
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Welcome Evolver. You've come to the right place.
13 years ago
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#9245
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Thanks for the warm welcome Sheldon! I must say I'm overwhelmed that you'd make the first response to my first post! :shock:
13 years ago
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#9246
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Welcome, Evo. I figure it's close to an even split among forum members that tried a Dingwall before buying one, and those who didn't and just took the plunge on faith. I was in the latter group. I haven't looked back since, and my 4th Dingwall will arrive soon. Remember that the extra scale length on the Afterburner B string is only 1.5 inches longer at the nut and 1.5 inches at the bridge, compared to an ordinary 34in scale bass. I did not have an issue with the scale length, but my fingers are on the long side. As far as chords go, it gets a little difficult above the 12th fret for me, but others on the forum have had no problem. You are going to have a lot of people chiming in here, all with different experiences and impressions, but rest assured that all will recommend Sheldon's products without reservation. You simply cannot go wrong with a Dingwall. Good luck in your quest. Mark
13 years ago
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#9247
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I really don't play chords on bass and I don't really venture above the 12th fret very often, so it's a non-issue for me. The extra stretch in the lower register is not too bad and it really depends on what you are playing. I've only had a problem with it on one song my band recently played. Overall, the balance, feel, weight, clarity and sound is great.
13 years ago
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#9248
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I have small hands, but i can still manage just fine on a 6 string dingwall. People do say that chords are harder above the 12th fret but i have only found that to be true for one chord, and only above the 16th fret. I do however have trouble reaching the higher frets on the lower strings, but that is a combination of fanned frets and a wide neck. Its a small price to pay to for the best bass i have ever played.
13 years ago
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#9251
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Thanks for all the responses! Once you did get accustomed to the longer scale and fanned frets, did you have any problems going back to a typical bass? Though I think I can understand why maybe no one wants to based on what I've heard so far...
13 years ago
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#9252
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[quote="Evolver":28egsmgz]Once you did get accustomed to the longer scale and fanned frets, did you have any problems going back to a typical bass?[/quote:28egsmgz] Yeah, they feel wimpy! :lol: I personally have had no problems switching back and forth.
13 years ago
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#9255
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Hi Evolver. Welcome to the forum. Once you try a Dingwall you get hooked (that's what has happened to me at least) I bought my first Dingwall sight unseen (untouched too :wink: ) and never looked back ever since. Have no trouble going from fanned to conventional, but I have no desire as well :lol: . I play chordal stuff (4-5 notes) and I have no problem going up to 17th fret and executing chords (slim fingers help a lot)
13 years ago
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#9257
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[quote="Evolver":1kxg9eh2]Thanks for all the responses! Once you did get accustomed to the longer scale and fanned frets, did you have any problems going back to a typical bass? Though I think I can understand why maybe no one wants to based on what I've heard so far...[/quote:1kxg9eh2] IME, 99% of other basses will feel like toys after you try a Dingwall. I sold 20+ of my ordinary basses to get more Dingwalls, after getting my Voodoo. Go ahead, do it. Mark
13 years ago
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#9258
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I would venture a guess that I have some of the smallest hands of any males players (what an honor!!), and I have a SJ4, an ABI 5 and an ABII 5. I love the SJ because the super slim neck allows me to fly over the frets with my small hands, but now I almost exclusively play the ABII 5 beauce the feel is amazing and if I play it often enough I can get almost as fast as I can with the SJ. As far as chords go, I can't speak on that as I rarely do chords and if I do they are never above the 12th fret.
13 years ago
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#9260
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you might have a harder time going from 4 to 5 string than you will adjusting to the longer scale and fanned frets. I bought a Dingwall without ever seeing one in person. The adjustment was easy. I have my second one on order now. I have a Prima Artist and have a Z3 on order. I don't rate up there with some but I do consider myself a Dingaholic!!
13 years ago
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#9261
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Welcome aboard, Evolver. My hands aren't large and I had the same concerns you have. I've had no trouble. It took a month or two for my brain to adjust, but that's it and I've no trouble with switching back to a standard scale bass when necessary. I play my ABII-5 whenever possible, however -- the best purchase I've ever made. John
13 years ago
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#9265
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Hey Evolver I've had my passive AB I five string for two years now, gigging steadily at least once a week. It's the only bass I've never felt the need to modify or "improve." You can play chords on it, although for me the high end, above the 12th fret, took the most getting used to. Now it feels very comfortable. Here's a clip I did a while ago, with chords above the 12th fret [url:1qj6oilt]http://chnm.gmu.edu/courses/magic/leafs.mp4[/url:1qj6oilt] When I first got the bass I would have had trouble playing that. But now it's completely natural And here's a clip of the same bass played slap style against a loop: [url:1qj6oilt]http://chnm.gmu.edu/courses/magic/samples/desk3.mp4[/url:1qj6oilt] Most of the time I'm playing straight ahead sort of old school stuff. The bass excels at that too. It took me a while to find the right strings for me--I found the Dingwall strings too zingy for my taste and settled on Ken Smith compressors I just did a week long gig where I had to fly to California and use a rented p-bass--I had zero trouble switching back to a conventional four. I probably have larger than average hands, but even so I find that to play up by the nut, I have to do more pivoting. But then I play upright as well, and the technique seems natural. I agree that switching to a five from a four is a bigger deal than switching to fanned frets.
13 years ago
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#9268
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I bought an ABII-5 w/out ever seeing or playing one in person. I have 2 now. The 2nd one is a fretless.
13 years ago
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#9274
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HI Evo Welcome to the dingwall forum. I too have smaller than average hands but have no problem playing my AB1-5, nut end, chords slapand all, because of the wonderfully slim and perfectly contoured neck. All of the previous comments are dead on, the only thing I can add is the incredible harmonics these basses produce. In fact one adjustment you may need to do is get a little more accurate with your fingerboard hand damping, and thats not a negative its just the way these great basses make us all better players, and when you come to tackle "Portrait of Tracey" you will be wearing the widest grin that will fit your face. Like many others I am also awaiting an additional Dingwall with no intention of relinquishing my current one I look forward to seeing your DW posted on 'show us your Dingwall' Regards Nic
13 years ago
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#9279
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[quote="Evolver":1xv95yim]Thanks for the warm welcome Sheldon! I must say I'm overwhelmed that you'd make the first response to my first post! :shock:[/quote:1xv95yim] Sheldon will always be there for you unless he's at NAMM or something. I own 2 used Dingwalls and he still treats me like I bought them from him personally. Of course, most only sell a Dingwall to buy another. :D I won't lie, I have large (not huge, but large) hands, I'm 6'5". You will have to shift more down near the 1st thru 5th frets on the B and E. But, the 5 strings have nearly the same nut width as a 4 string P bass, so it won't be hard to adjust to neck width. I find myself needing to look at the neck more when I play to avoid mis-fretting. In short, it's a small adjustment for a MASSIVE GAIN.....piano-like clarity, perfect string tension, versatility, I could go on and on... And, the B string is TRULY unmatched. It sounds as clear and harmonically full as an A string on a 34" scale bass. You will be spoiled if you've never had a 5 before!!
13 years ago
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#9280
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[quote="Smallmouth_Bass":3722yy0f][quote="Evolver":3722yy0f]Once you did get accustomed to the longer scale and fanned frets, did you have any problems going back to a typical bass?[/quote:3722yy0f] Yeah, they feel wimpy! :lol: I personally have had no problems switching back and forth.[/quote:3722yy0f] I switch back and forth from Dingwall AB-I 5 or 6 string to my Lakland 5 string, all the time. I practice with my band twice a week, and usually alternate just because I love my Lakland too! And I must say the Lakland is THE ONLY non-Dingwall that I've played that is good enough to make me leave a DW in it's case. They are totally different animals, though!!
13 years ago
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#9283
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Let me jump in here as well. I, like several others here, also have relatively small hands. My ABII -5 was also my first 5-string, so when I got it I had to get used to the fanned frets as well as the fifth string. Neither was a problem. As many have pointed out, it doesn't take long to get used to the fanned frets and the longer scale length. Playing up high requires the most compensation, but this has not been a problem either. There are some things that I just cannot do on the Dingwall. For example, I like to play a G on the E-string (3rd fret) with my index finger, and lay my pinkie finger lightly across the 5th fret of the G and D strings and get those harmonics (while holding the low G). No problem on a 34 inch scale parallel fretted bass, but the DW, the combination of the added scale length and the angle that I need to make with the pinkie to hit both harmonics cleanly makes it a real stretch. OK, maybe it is just that one thing that I can't do, and maybe I was doing it too much anyway. Not a big deal, but thought I'd mention it since the original post asked. Good luck.
13 years ago
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#9284
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[quote="amodeo@mitre.org":jhvdsm9t]There are some things that I just cannot do on the Dingwall. For example, I like to play a G on the E-string (3rd fret) with my index finger, and lay my pinkie finger lightly across the 5th fret of the G and D strings and get those harmonics (while holding the low G). No problem on a 34 inch scale parallel fretted bass, but the DW, the combination of the added scale length and the angle that I need to make with the pinkie to hit both harmonics cleanly makes it a real stretch.[/quote:jhvdsm9t] This might not work in a lot of situations, but try reaching over the neck, pinky on the G, index on the harmonics.
13 years ago
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#9285
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Thanks again for all the responses!! Ok, I'm convinced that I should be able to adapt to the fanned frets and 5-string! Now to find the [i:2yt71x4u]one[/i:2yt71x4u]... I've been searching dealers and the internet and there aren't many ABII's in stock... Looks like it might be awhile before I could post a picture if I custom order... Thanks for the demo links Maxvintage! They were great! Your tone is awesome on both tracks and your ability outstanding! I ran them through my home studio set-up and was very impressed. 8)
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