Author Topic: ebow  (Read 11359 times)

jim brenholts

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 551
    • View Profile
    • rigel orionis
ebow
« on: September 28, 2008, 08:31:48 AM »
this might be the coolest instrument/device i have yet. but - as usual - i have a little bit of a problem. the ebow works on two strings of my dulcimer and two strings on each of my violins. it doesn't work on my bass, my guitar or my lap harp (that would be a very cool sound). is there a trick or are these just tempermental devices? or are they supposed to work on electric instruments only?
all the best and God bless
jim
www.rigelorionis.com

Wayne Higgins

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 616
    • View Profile
    • Oenyaw
Re: ebow
« Reply #1 on: September 28, 2008, 09:38:21 AM »
Wow, I never thought of using on on my sitar.  :o  I'll have to check that out.
So, I'm a "Sr Member", huh?  In June it's SENIOR DISCOUNT TIME!!!
http://oenyaw.net/
http://oenyaw.blogspot.com/

hdibrell

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 636
    • View Profile
Re: ebow
« Reply #2 on: September 28, 2008, 11:59:33 AM »
I've been able to get mine to work on my bass and mandolin, but it takes a lot of experimenting to find the right spot. I keep meaning to try it on my piano, but it's in another room and I keep forgetting to try it. Hmmm, maybe today. I bet it would sound great on a sitar. I find that some strings are easier to get to vibrate than others. Oh and it doesn't have to be an electric instrument to get it to work.      Harry
Never regret money spent on old books, old dogs or old friends.

SunDummy

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 492
  • "Calm seas do not create good mariners."
    • View Profile
    • SunDummy.com
Re: ebow
« Reply #3 on: September 29, 2008, 12:07:52 PM »
I use one on my acoustic guitars, both 6 and 12 string; it does take some manipulation to get the 12 string to work.

I'm surprised it won't work on your guitar.  Maybe you're too close to the bridge?
I wish I was a Glowworm; a Glowworm's never glum. 'Cause how can you be grumpy, when the sun shines out your bum?

www.sundummy.com

Exuviae

  • Jr. Member
  • **
  • Posts: 65
    • View Profile
Re: ebow
« Reply #4 on: September 29, 2008, 04:21:08 PM »
Should work on all 6 strings of both electric and acoustic guitar, but boy they ARE touchy little boxes!

Do they work on a lap steel? Anyone?
.b

Scott M2

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 623
    • View Profile
    • dreamSTATE
Re: ebow
« Reply #5 on: September 29, 2008, 07:20:34 PM »
Robert Rich uses Ebow on his steel guitar.

hdibrell

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 636
    • View Profile
Re: ebow
« Reply #6 on: September 29, 2008, 08:57:50 PM »
Should work on all 6 strings of both electric and acoustic guitar, but boy they ARE touchy little boxes!

Do they work on a lap steel? Anyone?
.b
Sometimes. There again it takes some work.     Harry
Never regret money spent on old books, old dogs or old friends.

Ekstasis

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 878
    • View Profile
Re: ebow
« Reply #7 on: September 30, 2008, 12:44:26 PM »
The Ebow should work on any vibrating strings, however the thicker the string is the harder it is to get it vibrate, I have not tried it on bass or heard anyone playing a bass with an ebow... it works however on my 080 string on my guitar ..which is quite thick..

And yes the Ebow does not work on acoustic instruments such as piano or acoustic guitar, in order to create an magnetic field you need and ebow + pickup.

The Ebow work best with passive pickups, it works less good with active pickups such as EMG, still works, but the response is not as fast, so you cannot play as fast.

Just make sure to use a lot of reverb (not delay effect).
Also if you want a warmer sound put the tone knob to zero this will cut out the treble in the sound.
« Last Edit: September 30, 2008, 12:50:26 PM by Immersion »

petekelly

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 592
    • View Profile
    • LuminaSounds
Re: ebow
« Reply #8 on: September 30, 2008, 01:53:43 PM »
Hi Jim,

The Ebow is great, I waxed lyrically about it on the old forum, I seem to remember.
I don't know how it works on an acoustic instrument, as I have only used it on an electric guitar.
I think it's actually a very subtle device capable of a great range of tones.
Here's some things that I do with it:

* Always use it on the neck pick-up with the tone rolled right off fully and the volume pot backed off a
fair way
* Try it on a clean sound, there are a lot more dynamics available
* Don't just play over the 'hot-spot', you can get an overly 'hot' sound there, experiment with its
position relative to the pick-up
* In my experience, it works equally well on single-coil and humbucking pickups
* Use it cleanly - like a slide you can get a lot extraneous noises when skipping strings
* Don't overdo the reverb - it creates harmonics which can get very loud, I almost always use a compressor with it 
 

Here's a short mp3 of a cello-like sound that I get from the Ebow:
http://www.petekelly.eclipse.co.uk/celloebow.mp3


cheers
Pete

SunDummy

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 492
  • "Calm seas do not create good mariners."
    • View Profile
    • SunDummy.com
Re: ebow
« Reply #9 on: September 30, 2008, 01:55:11 PM »
Quote
And yes the Ebow does not work on acoustic instruments such as piano or acoustic guitar, in order to create an magnetic field you need and ebow + pickup.

Not quite; I can get my acoustic guitar strings vibrating without much effort; I play it with the ebow and a slide all the time.  My Telecaster is much more sensitive to the magnetic field causing the vibrations, but the acoustic responds almost as easily.
I wish I was a Glowworm; a Glowworm's never glum. 'Cause how can you be grumpy, when the sun shines out your bum?

www.sundummy.com

Scott M2

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 623
    • View Profile
    • dreamSTATE
Re: ebow
« Reply #10 on: September 30, 2008, 02:08:53 PM »
Agree - I can use mine on my accoustic guitar and it worked on a friend's banjo too.  :o

Ekstasis

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 878
    • View Profile
Re: ebow
« Reply #11 on: September 30, 2008, 02:39:28 PM »
Forgive me for my ignorance, I really did not though it would work, but obviously I was wrong, I did just try it on my own acoustic guitar, sure I get an ebow sound, but very low volume, it definitely need some kind of amplification if you want it the sound to be useful...

SunDummy

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 492
  • "Calm seas do not create good mariners."
    • View Profile
    • SunDummy.com
Re: ebow
« Reply #12 on: September 30, 2008, 03:23:05 PM »
Are you playing a classical guitar or a steel guitar?  I suspect they don't work with wound strings, but my steel acoustic sounds plenty loud. 

Interesting video here (not me   ;)):

I wish I was a Glowworm; a Glowworm's never glum. 'Cause how can you be grumpy, when the sun shines out your bum?

www.sundummy.com

Ekstasis

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 878
    • View Profile
Re: ebow
« Reply #13 on: September 30, 2008, 03:41:53 PM »
Are you playing a classical guitar or a steel guitar?  I suspect they don't work with wound strings, but my steel acoustic sounds plenty loud. 

Interesting video here (not me   ;)):

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RGV3oMyjz04


I play an Washburn J56SW Jumbo western guitar, did work on all the strings besides the 056 string, I guess it was too thick to make it vibrate. For me I get a quite weak sound volume.
I use the Ebow Plus by the way.

Nice video :)

jim brenholts

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 551
    • View Profile
    • rigel orionis
Re: ebow
« Reply #14 on: October 03, 2008, 03:52:20 PM »
it worked on my teacher's electric bass. it just seems to be a tempermental device.
all the best and God bless
jim
www.rigelorionis.com

Nakjaarna

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Posts: 5
    • View Profile
Re: ebow
« Reply #15 on: October 20, 2008, 12:49:31 PM »
I gotta question. Is there any way an e-bow would work on a levers harp? I used to think you could only use an e-bow on a fretted string instrument, but now I am seeing people use them on violins and pianos! Is there something I'm missing here?

SunDummy

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 492
  • "Calm seas do not create good mariners."
    • View Profile
    • SunDummy.com
Re: ebow
« Reply #16 on: October 20, 2008, 01:03:53 PM »
The ebow creates a pulsating magnetic field; this causes the string to vibrate.  So it should work on any metal string.  The issue some folks have pointed out is that on acoustic instruments, the volume is pretty low; with pickups, you get the full (often TOO loud) volume of the effect.  So, on a harp, you'd get the strings moving, but it might not be very loud.

Incidentally, the ebow plus has a "harmonics" setting that really gets some higher-order harmonics going, even on acoustic guitars.  Fun to switch back and forth between settings, esp. with a delay and reverb; you can get a really lush chord going.  :)


edit:  I seem to remember some guy about 10 years ago who put some high-tension steel cables in a 55-gallon metal barrel, and used ebows to trigger the strings.  The strings were bridged to the barrel in such a way that it resonated like a huge bell.  Anyone else remember this?
« Last Edit: October 20, 2008, 01:06:30 PM by SunDummy »
I wish I was a Glowworm; a Glowworm's never glum. 'Cause how can you be grumpy, when the sun shines out your bum?

www.sundummy.com

solyaris

  • Guest
Re: ebow
« Reply #17 on: October 23, 2008, 06:13:15 AM »
I gotta question. Is there any way an e-bow would work on a levers harp? I used to think you could only use an e-bow on a fretted string instrument, but now I am seeing people use them on violins and pianos! Is there something I'm missing here?


Have your lever harp Metallic or Nylon strings ?
- If your strings are metallic, e-bow run (As Sundummy said).
- If you have nylon strings, e-bow can't work.

Some technical notes/corrige about previous posts:

- Robert Rich use ALSO e-bow on his lap-steel guitar but sweet warm sound come from Sustaniac old device model B (If i'm not wrong), see: http://www.sustainiac.com/ , that make all strings vibrate at same time  (all guitar body will be in vibration) ...

- someone stated to do not use delay with e-bow; I do not see the reason why. I use a lot of delays with e-bowed treated sounds. Indeed something no one never say is that e-bow create a lot of chaotic amplitude peaks, so a Compressor is pretty mandatory.

- as someone posted in this forum some time ago, recently Moog presented the Moog-guitar; apart the absurd expensive price; I admit that the technology here is a step forward the susainiac (and fernandez) previous "architectures" ...

Last but not least, about my music: if you like "harped-sounds" and e-bow treatments; probably you will enjoy my last work "Wanderer"; listen clips at http://solyaris.altervista.org/wanderer.htm

giorgio
« Last Edit: October 23, 2008, 06:27:10 AM by solyaris »

jim brenholts

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 551
    • View Profile
    • rigel orionis
Re: ebow
« Reply #18 on: November 05, 2008, 03:55:27 PM »
got some new inst's that work with the ebow. a new lap harp - excellent sounds.
a new acoustic guitar - smooth and dreamy drones.
the harmonics setting does capture the high ends very well and sounds cool.
all the best and God bless
jim
www.rigelorionis.com

jim brenholts

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 551
    • View Profile
    • rigel orionis
Re: ebow
« Reply #19 on: November 09, 2008, 07:05:33 PM »
has anyone here ever tried using 2 ebows at once? it would seem to me that it could be a pretty cool sound - especially on the multi-string inst's like the lap harp.
i got it to work on my acoustic bass by plucking the string for the ebow. it just continued the drone. it is extremely on the harmonic setting.
all the best and God bless
jim
www.rigelorionis.com