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Ibanez Ashula : Good or not?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Thomas Kievit, Feb 20, 2013.


  1. Thomas Kievit

    Thomas Kievit Thou shall not F*** up the groove Supporting Member

    Joined:
    May 19, 2012
    In the last 2 weeks I've seen 6 Ashula basses for sale on Ebay.

    Most of them weren't used much (1 was only used at 2 gigs) and although the owners were happy with them, they still ''couldn't see themselves using it all the time.''

    Now I remember that when it came out, Ibanez only made 200 of them and they were sold fast. Since I've been thinking a long time to buy one when there would be one for sale, I'm now not sure if I should buy one.

    Any one here on TB owns / owned a Ashula bass and how is your experience with it?
     
  2. Got2SadowskyNYC

    Got2SadowskyNYC

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2012
    Location:
    Nashville, TN
    Disclosures:
    Artist: Sadowsky, Bag End, Visual Sound, Pedaltrain, George L
    It's a VERY unique instrument and I can't see anyone using it as their main bass. I certainly wouldn't.

    It's not that there's anything wrong, they're just so unique.
     
  3. Thomas Kievit

    Thomas Kievit Thou shall not F*** up the groove Supporting Member

    Joined:
    May 19, 2012
    Great! Yeah perhaps cause most of them still used it as a 4 + 2 string bass as it was designed. So EADGDG tuned. I saw Franck Hermanny (bass player Adagio) using it in standard BEADGC tuning and it sounded very good in metal.

    I wonder if this concept will come back one day.
     
  4. pflash4001

    pflash4001

    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2011
    Wow...I'd never heard of this bass...is it only fretted under 4 strings? How much are they worth? I'm interested, but strapped...
     
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  6. Thomas Kievit

    Thomas Kievit Thou shall not F*** up the groove Supporting Member

    Joined:
    May 19, 2012
    Hi there :)

    Yes the Ibanez Ashula bass was designed as a 4 string fretted bass + 2 fretless strings added.

    The tuning was EADG (fretted) DG (fretless). This was because Ibanez wanted to combine the fretted and fretless possibilities. And that has turned out into the Ashula bass :)

    There were only 200 made, about 90 were sold in the USA, about 80 in Europe and the rest in Asia.

    You can find them on Ebay for $300 - $600 dollar.

    Here you can hear some demo's

    (Frank Hermanny, bass player from Adagio, tuned it like a regular 6 string bass : BEADGC)




    Just search on Youtube, there are more video's there ;)
     
  7. pflash4001

    pflash4001

    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2011
    Thanks. I'll look that up when I have more time.
     
  8. medgeking

    medgeking Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2012
    Location:
    Pacific Grove, CA
    Just bought an Ashula on ebay for about $500. I had been drooling over them ever since they were released. I can see how the Ashula wouldn't be the right bass for most players, but so far for me, I'm in love with it.

    I'm still in the "honeymoon" period though, so I'll try to update later on. I think the craftsmanship is pretty fantastic. I was surprised to see the "Made in Indonesia" stamp though as I had assumed this was MIJ. The only minor quibble I have is that the fret ends on the bass side of the neck could have been finished a little better. Otherwise, the fit, finish, feel and sound are all fantastic.

    I started off playing bass back when I was 14 and always loved the instrument. However, in college I transitioned over to guitar mainly because I was playing at home alone and I found it easier to compose musical idea on guitar. I've come back to bass in recent years and it's like coming home in a way. I feel more comfortable on bass both physically and in terms of my relationship to music.

    I've never been able to get along with 5-string or 6-string designs for some reason, but the Ashula really tempted me because of the 4+2 concept and now that I've got the bass, it's VERY intuitive. It's obviously a little more difficult to get around the wide neck, but I figure that's just a matter of adjusting my technique, which is already happening.

    I think that the separate controls for the fretless section were really well thought out and it really does feel like you have 2 separate instruments melded into one. Sort of like a more manageable double neck bass.

    Anyway, if you've been thinking about it and you find one for a good price, I say go for it. Aside from being an awesome instrument, it's a rare bird and should probably hold it's value pretty well down the line.
     
  9. blkzilla

    blkzilla

    Joined:
    Mar 18, 2013
    I think the bass is very unique, in fact I contacted the local shop to order one and after a few days they called me back telling me that they are no longer available. So I found one on eBay, it was brand new and never played.. the day I get it I was blown away!! it was beautiful, well balanced and the tone was great!! but the wasn't fond of the EADG_DG thing.
    In fact.. it got old real fast! only D-G fret less wasn't my cup of tea, not to mention the whole separate fret less control concept.. that was an issue. So I restrung it to B-E-A-D-G-C but has issues with the nut!! OMG!!!so I call my buddy at the local shop and asked him to refret the whole dang neck and re-cut the nut, this bass was way too gorges to just let go... So when I got it back i was stoked to the second level. so now its a full fretted 6 string bass! As for the crazy fretless controls I soldered the fretless pickup in parallel with the fretted bridge pickup so both works as one and this bass kicks ass. The extended pickups on the rear give this bass an insane tone like a Music man Sting Ray and the rest of the tone is just fat and round like my wifes booty lol. :cool:
     
  10. pflash4001

    pflash4001

    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2011
    Think your wife would appreciate that comparison?
     
  11. Thomas Kievit

    Thomas Kievit Thou shall not F*** up the groove Supporting Member

    Joined:
    May 19, 2012
    Wow, never expected that somebody would do that with a Ashula :eek:

    Can you post pics?

     
  12. blkzilla

    blkzilla

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    Mar 18, 2013
  13. Thomas Kievit

    Thomas Kievit Thou shall not F*** up the groove Supporting Member

    Joined:
    May 19, 2012
  14. spade2you

    spade2you

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2007
    Location:
    somewhere in middle America
    I never got the concept. I have fretted basses and fretless basses.
     
  15. blkzilla

    blkzilla

    Joined:
    Mar 18, 2013
    I thought it was a cool idea but.... its not for everyone, it is a beautiful bass and I love the way it feels and sound.
     
  16. Thomas Kievit

    Thomas Kievit Thou shall not F*** up the groove Supporting Member

    Joined:
    May 19, 2012
    Yeah I saw some of your pictures. Looked great, those basses of yours :p

    And it's something that you must love, of course. I didn't like the output.. Way too dull and it just didn't catch me, soundwise.
     
  17. blkzilla

    blkzilla

    Joined:
    Mar 18, 2013
    thats because the Preamp circuit's tone control is a midrange cut and boost which Aids the fretless sound...
    thats why when I reconfigured the fretless pick to the fretted one it shares the full range tone controls.:cool:
     
  18. blkzilla

    blkzilla

    Joined:
    Mar 18, 2013
    Yes very much so. She's a low end kind of girl.
     
  19. Thomas Kievit

    Thomas Kievit Thou shall not F*** up the groove Supporting Member

    Joined:
    May 19, 2012
    Well if it works, it works, right? :D
     
  20. blkzilla

    blkzilla

    Joined:
    Mar 18, 2013
    I will admit that after the refret the G,C still had a dull fretles kind of tone.. thats why I changed it up to work with the other tone controls.
     
  21. blkzilla

    blkzilla

    Joined:
    Mar 18, 2013

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