I love this bass.
Why/How I acquired: I was planning to spend some cash upgrading my old SR885. I was going to change the nut and get some new EMG or SD pickups, other little things; I had about $400 set aside for this project... saw this beauty with her active EMG's on sale for $500, had pretty much everything I was looking for. Plus, it was a 35" fret scale (I had been wanting that for the new metal project I am playing in)... It was meant to be.
The tone from this thing is big and aggressive, it growls like you would expect from a Warwick. The preamp lets you really dial the sound in for some great tones, but if you don't bother to take the time you will be left sounding like garbage (we can't all be as easy to get sounding "right" as a P-bass )
I hated the frets. Despised them. They are tall and thin and square... awful (to my tastes). But, I have a great fret guy local and knew he could make these into something that I wanted to play... he did not disappoint. There was a lot of material for him to work with, taking my fret height down from .050 to around .040. He put a great crown on them, and though they are a touch thinner than I would normally choose, they play beautifully.
Also, did not like the strings. Schecter says it ships with EB slinky, but this being a GC floor model that may not have been the case. Regardless, I had a set of D'Addario xl's put on (.045 .060 .080 .107 .145... approx 43lbs tension each) and set up along with the fret crown. Huge improvement there too, but that is largely about my taste.
Last little gotcha is that my playing style tends to use the neck pickup as a thumb rest. After half a session of serious playing with my band, the neck pickup had worked itself up to touching my B string. I took all 4 pickup screws out and applied blue lock-tight. that solved the problem as far as I could tell. Just to be safe, and cause i can, I had an ebony thumb rest made for it. Now I can lean in to it when my right hand shifts styles and not worry as much.
The neck is thick, but not cumbersome. Bright tone from the maple (ebony inlay). Closer to P neck shape than J neck shape ; not at all like my Ibanez.
I have this set up pretty specifically to my playing style with low action and high pickups, very dynamically sensitive. Lots of sustain, at times too much if the EQ is set up for really bass-heavy tones (I use scrunchie-mutes in those setups, this mitigates the boominess for me). Harmonics and chording sound super good to me on this, love the chug/grind form the low B. yes, I spend some time moving knobs to change the sound profile, and thats not my favorite, but I made the decision years ago to be an active EQ bass player... I knew what i was signing up for
Schecter Riot 5 (session series)
Clean and simple design, with an understated elegance. Fully equipped bass with active electronics, quality hardware, and big growly sound from the