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Old 27th August 2012, 08:22 AM   #1
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Default Frequency of low string on bass guitar

Hello,

On an electric bass guitar the low E string is which frequency?

Is it lower in frequency than the low E string on a 6 string electric guitar
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Old 27th August 2012, 08:25 AM   #2
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41 Hz and yes
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Old 27th August 2012, 08:35 AM   #3
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Thanks, do you have the amplitude vs time graph of a low E string being plucked on a 6 string guitar.?......its just so i can see how close to a 82.5Hz sine wave it is......i.e. how much harmonic distortion there is in there.
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Old 27th August 2012, 08:45 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by eem2am View Post
Hello,

On an electric bass guitar the low E string is which frequency?

Is it lower in frequency than the low E string on a 6 string electric guitar
41.2Hz. Note that's the low E string on a 4 four electric bass guitar. On a 5/6 string bass guitar the lowest string is a low B string tuned at 30.9Hz.

Yes. Electric guitars is tuned one octave above bass guitars. So the low E on an electric guitar is 82.4Hz.

For completeness you should note that many types of music requires the guitar to be non-standard tuned. Usually down one or two bands to D# or D for 77.8Hz or 73.4Hz. But a Cis Major tuning is also popular so the lowest string is down 3 steps to C# which is 69.3Hz, it's usually not played open though.

In that case the bass guitar is usually down tuned as well. A D# tuned guitar is usually matched with a 4 string bass guitar tuned to D# as well, 38.9Hz. And a D tuned guitar is usually matched with a 5/6 string bass guitar tuned to A, 27.5Hz, where the upper string is used only for slap effect.

Last edited by Saturnus; 27th August 2012 at 08:52 AM.
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Old 27th August 2012, 08:56 AM   #5
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OK thanks

The Physics of Everyday Stuff - The Guitar

...this shows the A string on a guitar being plucked and its actually a triangle wave.......is this the case for the low E string on a 6 string guitar aswell.....it would look like a triangle wave?

Iw oudl have thought a triangle wave sounds horrible?
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Old 27th August 2012, 09:18 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by eem2am View Post
Iw oudl have thought a triangle wave sounds horrible?
Sine waves do not appear naturally (to the best of my knowledge no one has ever made a pure sine wave non-synthetically), so instruments plays a fundamental frequency plus overtones, or harmonic distortion.

So in the simplest understandable form, you cannot create music without distortion.

A "perfect" instrument that plays the fundamental frequency and all harmonic distortions with perfect decay, the outcome signal will be a perfect triangle wave form.

So in short. A triangle waveform is the "perfect" optimum. So if you think triangle waves sounds horrible, maybe you should see a doctor.
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Old 27th August 2012, 09:26 AM   #7
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OK but i am thinking that if guitar string pluck had the first , third and fifth harmonics then it would be like a square wave, and that would make the class d pull a lot of power, and the input rails may sag as the power supply may not be able to provide that.

so what signal exactly do you put into a class d amplifier in order to test the power supply that supplies it?

...Or do you simply get a stepper motor attached to a rod and a plectrum, and let it strum away on the low E string for ages....then take a look at how the power supply is managing to keep the class d supply rails constant?

I am also wondering why anyone would test a class d amp/power supply with a sine wave input to the class d?....as guitars never produce pure sine waves.

Last edited by eem2am; 27th August 2012 at 09:28 AM.
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Old 27th August 2012, 09:40 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by eem2am View Post
OK but i am thinking that if guitar string pluck had the first , third and fifth harmonics then it would be like a square wave, and that would make the class d pull a lot of power, and the input rails may sag as the power supply may not be able to provide that.
No. It would approach a triangle wave. And a reverse sawtooth with only even numbered harmonics.

Square waves are the result of clipping.

No instrument can produce pure sine or square waves naturally. Although adding overdrive which is a preamplifier driven to constant clipping will approach a square wave signal. However, as distortion effects is added to that after, the resulting waveform will be much more tolerable for the listener (and amplifier).

An intervaled sine burst is pretty good at representing maximum load the amplifier could and should see. But a pink noise signal is more representative of actual music where the average value is maximum -9dB under peak (and usually much less, -12dB under peak being the usual standard that studio engineers will try to achieve when mastering modern music).

Last edited by Saturnus; 27th August 2012 at 09:48 AM.
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Old 27th August 2012, 10:54 AM   #9
sreten is offline sreten  United Kingdom
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Hi,

FWIW the loudest part of any plucked guitar note is not the fundamental.

To do that you'd need the pluck the string in the middle, and most
of the time you don't, your usually near the bridge accentuating
the harmonics of the fundamental. A plectrum accentuates the
higher harmonics even more compared to using fingers.

Creating a looped test signal from samples is fairly easy to do.

Click the image to open in full size.

"Fig.3 Fender Precision bass guitar, spectrum of E-string transient during
initial decay period (10Hz-22kHz) (finger plucked I think - sreten.)

Despite what might be thought, the frequency spectra of electric (as opposed
to electronic) instruments is complex. Fig.3 shows the spectrum of the low E
string of the Fender bass, taken directly from the instrument's output.
The fundamental frequency is 41.2Hz—the left-most peak—but the
second harmonic at 82.4Hz is actually 11.8dB higher in level!"

rgds, sreten.
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Old 27th August 2012, 11:08 AM   #10
tsiros is offline tsiros  Greece
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sreten, the lowert freq noise on the bass is heard as a thump in the first milliseconds, afterwards it's the higher frequencies. Summed up it's the harmonics that have more energy, because they have longer duration. Depends on pickup position, pickup type, string gauge/construction...
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