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5-String Bass / BEAD(G) *Tuning* in Rocksmith 2014 -- Impossible?


MilkmanDan
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Hey everybody -

 

I just bought a 5-string bass (Epiphone Thunderbird Pro 5), and thought it would be fun to use for the few custom songs that use a tuning involving a B or lower for bass.  However, I ran into a few issues.

 

Things I know:

I know Rocksmith only "supports" a 4 string bass; at least in the sense that if you are in the bass path it will only show 4 strings (red, yellow, blue, orange).  Can't get it to display a 5th string, although I suppose it MIGHT be possible to use the lead or rhythm path and just tell it that you are using a "guitar" in a custom, really low tuning.  But that would show 6 strings instead of 5.  Anyway, that isn't too important.

 

Standard 5-string bass tuning is BEADG.  I know that customs can be created with a bass arrangement set to tunings like BEAD or even lower.  So, if a song intended for a 5-string bass uses that low B but doesn't have any notes on the G string (or if they can be transcribed to higher frets on the D), it seems like it SHOULD work.  For a BEAD(G) tuning song, you'd just mentally shift the "red" string to the B, yellow for E, etc.  Then for a song in standard tuning, you'd just skip the low B and shift back to red being E, etc.

 

It IS possible to play bass customs set to BEAD (or lower) tuning with a guitar set for bass emulation.  I tried that, and while it sounds really bad to my ear, it will at least let you tune.

 

 

HOWEVER -- it seems like this doesn't actually work with a real bass.

 

 

When I plug in my bass and try to play a custom in BEAD, I notice that there seems to be a threshold/limit built into Rocksmith's detection system set exactly at the frequency of that low B string.  If I am slightly sharp from B, it shows up on the tuner and will display down to roughly 4 cents sharp.  If I tune down any lower than that, the meter starts to flake out and bounce around all over the place -- like it knows that it is hearing *something*, but it just can't quite figure out the frequency.

 

I have been unable to get the game to pass the tuning stage at the start of a song in BEAD without switching to a guitar and using bass emulation.  If I try to tune down from slightly sharp, it isn't stable or close enough for the game to think that it is in tune.  If I tune the string to perfect B (or any lower) using a chromatic or other software tuner, the game just gets fully confused and has no idea what it is hearing.

 

Anybody else with a 5-string bass (or a standard bass tuned down to BEAD) notice these issues?

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Milkman Dan

My YouTube channel  (bass playthrough videos)

My Customs Download Folder  (my customs)

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Ahh, thanks for that info.  Good to know that there is a workaround; I figured there might be some way to trick the game into going for it.  I will look at some of the links in that thread and try them out.  Thanks much!

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Milkman Dan

My YouTube channel  (bass playthrough videos)

My Customs Download Folder  (my customs)

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I know this is an old thread, but I have the same issue. I can't seem to play any five string bass songs and I don't know how other people do so.

 

Since authoring the original post, a lot has happened.  Here's the gist of the solution / trick:

 

Standard tuning for a bass is EADG at A=440Hz.  Some songs show up in your list as "slightly sharp or flat", which means that they are at A=438 or 445Hz or some small skew like that.

 

Rocksmith coded in a hard cap for the lowest note that could be tuned as a B1 in A=440Hz, the exact lowest note of a 5 string bass.  So, you can approach that note, but when you actually reach it that hard cap in software tells it that "that can't be right", and it just sorta gives up.  However, there is no hard cap to the skew value for songs that are "slightly" sharp or flat of A=440Hz.

 

So, the workaround is to write the custom song in an alternate tuning that is "slightly" flat of standard A=440Hz...  A whole octave lower than A=440Hz.  So, you tell Rocksmith that A=220Hz.  That makes a "standard" 220Hz A3 into a 440Hz A4, as far as Rocksmith is concerned.  And more importantly for us, it turns a B1 (the lowest note of a 5-string bass in standard tuning) into a B2, which is "above" the hard cap in software of a B1.

 

Actually a genius solution to that annoying software cap... Slips my mind who came up with that, but they deserve big credit for an unorthodox solution to the silly and pointless software cap.  In my experience, custom songs written using that workaround tune and detect that B1 completely fine.  Even some stuff that drops that low B to an A still detects it fine using the workaround.  Hence my description of it as pointless -- why have the cap there if the note detection is still working fine?  But in any case, any custom songs made with that workaround will tune and detect things fine.  Should be plenty to choose from in Ignition. 

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Milkman Dan

My YouTube channel  (bass playthrough videos)

My Customs Download Folder  (my customs)

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