I own a Warwick Corvette that I bought in early 1997. When I picked it up, I fell absolutely in love and had to have it. It seems only a short time after that, things started to change with Warwicks. I was sure I was gonna buy another one but I haven't picked one up since that feels anything like mine. I know there are differences with the newer Warwicks. They changed the nut, the necks used to be made entirely of Wenge, now I hear that Wenge became too expensive and they had to cut back. Also, when I bought mine there was only one place in NY that sold Warwicks (Rudy's), now they seem to sell them everywhere. This tells me they must be making a hell of a lot more of them.
I guess my questions are: Does anybody know if the older Warwics have a higher market value (not that I'd ever sell mine) than the newer ones. Does anyone have any more info on the changes in production since 1997. And does anyone own an old and a new Warwick - how do they compare when used in a band or recording situation. I'm still considering picking up another - The Streamer with the M.M. & the Jazz pickups.
A bass playing friend of mine, has a Warwick Thumb bass (through-neck) made in about 1990 and I've played it and it is very much a "hand-made" instrument and nothing like the ones I see in the music stores today. I also think the earlier Streamers (The Stage ones - especially neck-through) are very high class instruments and fetch a very high price.
My impression was that when they started making Corvettes in '92 was when they actually "scaled up" production and let quality suffer for numbers. When they were concentrating on the best combinations of woods and had only a few models,cbetween '84 and '92, then they were close to a "boutique" operation, but clearly now are into the high volume market.
I own a 1990 neck-thru Thumb 4 and a 1998 Corvette Standard 5 (bolt-on wenge neck). The Thumb is the older style with the brass nut and my Vette has the newer style nut. Both are good basses but the Thumb is just the better feeling/sounding of the two for obvious reasons (being one of Warwick's premium models). I'm sure that some things have changed due to cost/ease of manufacture but the change from wenge necks to ovankol is due to availability. I read somewhere that the area in Africa where they were getting the wenge from is experiencing alot of civil unrest and they simply cannot obtain the materials in the amounts needed to produce wenge necks. I'll admit that Warwick availability has improved from years ago when I'd have to drive an hour to Boston just to look at one. So I do agree that they have upped their production since making bolt on models is probably less time consuming and they are cheaper to make. I think the poorer quality issue really only came about recently with the introduction of the Streamer Standard models. I think these are the ones made of carolena and they have a one piece bridge instead of the two piece I have on both my Warwicks. These basses feel really cheaply made in comparison to the other models available. IMHO my Vette is still a pretty well made bass for the money even though I really prefer some of the features on my older bass. I have noticed that the brand new Thumb neck-thrus I've seen recently don't look as nice as mine does. The newer ones I've seen don't have any flame or swirl to the grain of the bubinga. They look kinda plain to me.
[Edited by ZoomBoy on 12-05-2000 at 02:41 PM]
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