I fell down a bit of a rabbit hole on YouTube watching bass setup videos. It prompted me to look at my bass's setup. I had tweaked the truss rod when I replaced the strings a little while ago. It needed about another quarter turn. Further inspection showed that my string height was considerably higher than they way this guy preferred to set them up. I had done it originally so there would be no fret buzz acoustically at all. That meant very high action. That doesn't bother me on a bass. It did, however, cause problems with getting the intonation right.

So I busted out my tools and got to it. I lowered the string height significantly. Possibly not as low as he has it (I don't have an action gauge--should really buy one) but much lower than it was. That means resetting the intonation and lowering the pickups slightly as well.

The net result? Well, it feels more playable now. There is a slight bit of fret buzz around the 12th fret. It is inaudible through my amp. My E saddle is no longer as far back as the spring will compress. My intonation is spot on.

I would highly recommend that everyone would learn how to do their own setups. It will save a lot of money. You probably don't need more tools than you already have around the house. I bought some feeler gauges but strictly speaking I didn't need them. No one knows how you want your guitar set up better than you do! Living in the U.S. Midwest with hot, humid summers and cold, dry winters, tweaking of truss rods is at least a semi-annual event. Might as well learn how to do it!

The only setup I've ever found to be hard is setting intonation on my Jackson's Floyd copy. Unfortunately the tools designed to help you do that with genuine Floyds don't work on this one. That's a PITA. Thankfully my Jackson's neck is super stable and rarely requires adjustments. My bass and Squier are a little less so.

Setting my intonation made me thankful for my Turbo Tuner. It's not cheap, but I love it. Worth every penny. Especially since I could never get a chromatic tuner to tune my bass half way decently.