5 String....dare I???

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Usul, Feb 17, 2001.

  1. Ok,

    Never have I played a 5 string bass but am wondering if I should make my next bass a Fiver?More and more songs I want to learn are requiring a 5 string ax.

    I think I will try and see if I can rent one from a local music shop before I actually make up my mind.

    Just wondering if the string spacing/neck width/string muting/etc. is that much differant from a 4 stringer?I am sure there is some differance but would like to hear some pros and cons of the 5 string.

    Most 5 string basses have the 5th(1st??)string as a B string,right?

    What are some good solid 5 string basses in the $800.00-$1000.00 range? Since I won the Ibanez bass it gives me a bit more leeway in purchasing a new bass(tax refund! woohoo).

    Thanks for responding and ,as always,I value your manifold opinons.


    p.s. manifold means multifaceted...not intake or exhaust,k?
  2. Do it! You wont be disappointed. It takes a little perseverance to get past the four-string mentality, but once you master it, there's no going back.
  3. red_rhino

    red_rhino Gold Supporting Member

    If you're a slapper, you'll notice that you have to work a bit harder at getting the muting right. Also, the B string can be a bit tricky to slap, sometimes requiring a lighter touch than the E or A in order to get the same dynamics.

    The other challenge will be trying to think of ways to work notes from the B-string into the tunes you already know. Not everything you try will work, but occasionally you'll stumble across something that will open up your entire approach to the song, and your playing in general.

    I believe the Peavey Cirrus is in the price range you're looking at. I've not been a big Peavey fan in the past, but I think they did a pretty good job on this one. You should definitely check them out.

    Hope this helps.

  4. Brooks


    Apr 4, 2000
    Middle East
    I added a 5 recently, having played 4 strings for 20 years. It is both easy and difficult. I found that muting is much tougher (for me at least), mostly because on a 4 I never even think about it - I just do it. My right hand technique had to be adjusted too, and the way I 'hear' what I am about to play also needed (and still needs) work.

    Re. good 5s in $1K range, check out G&L 2500. Mine is awesome :)
  5. air_leech


    Sep 1, 2000
    Hi Usul,

    I made the transfer to 5 string some 3 months ago.
    my 4 string was my first bass and to say the truth it wasn't too comfortable to me, the spacing was way wide for my hands.
    anyway the 5 string feels much better to me with the narrow spacing (I have large hands but my fingers are not exceptionally long).

    muting-wise you do need to start bothering for muting which I too never worried about on the 4, but it's not a big deal.

    to sum it up I think you should go 5 if you need it. just try one.
    the basses the other guys recommended are supposed to be great, also check out Warwick, I got my Streamer LX5 for 1025$ new and its awesome tough their neck are kind of esoteric so you might not dig as much as I do.

    good luck with your search.
  6. Oysterman


    Mar 30, 2000
    I bought my Yamaha TRB-5 in the end of October last year. It has the same string spacing as a regular four string, and I dig that. Early on I had a hard time muting the B string properly when slapping, but it has not been a problem to me when playing fingerstyle.

    I think five strings are my melody. Well, I'd really like as many strings as possible, but my hands are too small fore more than five strings with the spacing I want (wide).

    And, if you find a used Yamaha TRB in your range (I've seen some mint condition neck-through TRBP's on E-bay, sold for no money at all), consider looking closer at it. They are generally very well built basses with solid feel, versatile range, and a clean, modern (hi-fi?) tone. They sound great when slap/popped too. Maybe not a rocker's choice, though...
  7. Yvon

    Yvon Supporting Member

    Nov 2, 2000
    Montreal, Canada
    I'm not with you there Oysterman, I used to have a Yahmaha TRB5-P and it's the worst bass I ever owned, sounded thin, noisy, the fret where unglueing from the fretboard, ect...
    I had trouble to sell it (why do you think they are going for so chep?). It had a great Jaco sound and the piezo was cool mixed with the magnetic PU.
    The neck was so comfortable also and it was one of the most beautiful bass I ever own. Too bad it was not well made and that it didn't sound really good.
  8. Oysterman


    Mar 30, 2000
    That was the worst bass you ever owned? You're one lucky person, I guess, never had to drag around any Samicks or the likes.

    I can just say that my bolt-on TRB is abused and worn but still solid as a rock. The electronics ARE noisy though, that has to be mentioned (I forgot that point in my previous post).
    About the thin sound... well, what do they say? "It's in the hands..." ;) Some call it thin, I call it clean and balanced.
  9. luckily JT seems not to be trying to convince you to buy some 37 string 5necked Titanic paddle!! hahahahaha oh my, anyways i have a fender Five string mex jazz and its relatively nice, i like five more then four personally, and i realllly want the g&l L-2500!!!!!!