I've had this bass for pushing 20 years and we have a fair amount of history. Yes, it is ugly as home made sin and is certainly not what a lot of bassists consider "Pleasing to the eye", but it works for me and I like how it sounds, so there!
Additionally, my current skill level does not justify plunking down the cash for a new bass, so there is that....
It started life as a Samick PJ 100 B long before Greg Bennett got involved, I got this bass in about 91 or 2. It was just an entry-level thing, and truthfully a bass that you'd spend a couple hundred dollars on now would probably blow this away.
It is now officially referred to as "The Rubbermaid Bass". The tuners got changed out for some unknown tuners that actually held tune when I play. Having bent them doesn't seem to have hampered them much, it still stays in tune better than I play....
I love these pickups, a set of old school Seymour Duncan PJ actives. They probably sound pretty dated to most folks now, 20 years on, but they work for me. Like all the review sites say "Would you replace them?" And I'd have to reply, "I'd try like heck, but probably wouldn't be able to." And then I'd have a nice long cry.
Those who live in Oregon or Washington will probably recognize this guy from 20 years or so ago. I had another bass with Tom Peterson's mug on the fret markers, but I went all Paul Simonen on that bass at the last show for the band I was in and the bass literally exploded. The body delaminated (Yes it truly was honest to goodness plywood) and the neck snapped in half. Parts everywhere.
So yeah, anyone that is bummed about the bass they have should re-think that and be glad for what they have. This works well for me, but I wouldn't wish it on anyone.