Studying the intonation on a fretless

The B2M™ Universal Bass to MIDI Converter.

Studying the intonation on a fretless

Postby CyberZorg » Sun Jan 25, 2015 3:27 am

Hello,
(sorry for my strange english, I hope you will understand what I mean ;) )

I would like to buy a B2M in order to use it to practice and improve the right intonation on my 6 strings fretless.
The idea is to set the MIDI stream to force the sound module to play the right note/pitch closest to which one is performed on the neck.
For instance if I play a note on the fretless neck one or two commas too high (or too low) the module is forced to play the right closest note (temperate) .
So I hear the friction between the slighly out of tune note of the bass and the right MIDI note and I can correct it in real time.

Do you think that's possible with B2M ... or am I completly crazy?
(don't hesitate to tell it to me, I'm really open minded :D )

If you think I'm not completly crazy, how do I have to set my sound module?

Thanks.
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Re: Studying the intonation on a fretless

Postby james » Tue Jan 27, 2015 3:02 pm

You can do this easily. The B2M has a "chromatic" mode which means it won't sent pitch-bend data and instead simply snap to the nearest semitone.

So, if you play slightly sharp or flat, the sound module will be in tune and you can hear that "friction".
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Re: Studying the intonation on a fretless

Postby CyberZorg » Wed Jan 28, 2015 2:02 am

Ok, thanks James.
Last question (probably) : When I will adjust my fretboard finger to reach the right pitch, do the B2M send a new MIDI note or it will stay on the same?
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Re: Studying the intonation on a fretless

Postby james » Wed Jan 28, 2015 9:19 pm

The B2M will trigger a new note when you are within around 50 cents of that note.

So, if you are close to the note (say 40 cents sharp) the B2M will trigger that note. If you then bring it in pitch, as long as you don't repluck the note the B2M won't retrigger a MIDI note because it's still within the +50 / -50cents of the original note.
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Re: Studying the intonation on a fretless

Postby CyberZorg » Thu Jan 29, 2015 12:41 am

Thank you James, it's clear.
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Re: Studying the intonation on a fretless

Postby CyberZorg » Tue Feb 03, 2015 4:33 pm

Thank you for the fast delivery, ordered Thursday delivred Monday.

The B2M do the job like I've expected (like explained above), but I experiment many lower octave notes, especially on the C string and also in high register.
I have to hit the strings strongly with the right hand fingers to decrease this occurring.
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Re: Studying the intonation on a fretless

Postby james » Tue Feb 03, 2015 5:21 pm

You need to make sure you don't hit the lower strings when playing higher strings. Sometimes, a small "graze" of the low string is enough to make the B2M think it's got a fundamental tone below what you intended to play, so it will make a best guess as to what fits what you played: actual note + lower-level low note.

Although this shows guitar, the same principles apply for bass: http://youtu.be/0YGMZs72Gmk
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Re: Studying the intonation on a fretless

Postby CyberZorg » Sat Feb 07, 2015 1:01 am

When I play the bass with fingers technique I experiment many double notes, unexpected octaves, ... It's unusable on my fretless because with fingers the attack is not sharp enough and contains too complex harmonics, I guess.
But when I play with the corner of my credit card, 95% of the notes are ok :idea:
With a little practice I should be able to turn around 100%

Tomorrow I'll go to the music store to buy some plectrums :)
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Re: Studying the intonation on a fretless

Postby james » Sat Feb 07, 2015 12:42 pm

Thanks for the update.

Bass is one of the most difficult instruments for MIDI conversion. Not just because of the low frequencies, but because the strings are so heavy too. A plectrum can definitely help. It's best to pick/pluck near the neck rather than at the bridge because this helps keep the fundamental tone strong, reducing the harmonics.
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