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5 String fretless: Suggestions please.

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Rockin John, Feb 27, 2004.

  1. Good evening TB. I've been away for a week or 2: nice to be back.


    I've come to that point with my bassing that I've decided it's about time I had a really decent bass. You know, the one where you open up the case and you know you've got "the business".

    Well, "the business" means different things to different people and (largely?) depends on the bank balance. Iwill buy that Alembic after winning the lottery but, till then....

    So here's my situation. My "the business" will cost me somewhere over £500: perhaps nearer £700 depending on whether I can get enough ££ / wait that long.

    Not exclusively on the following, but: prefer passive over active; prefer unlined over lined; would accept second hand.

    Am really looking for a fretless bass rather than a fretted that the maker's modified to 'less.

    As a Yamaha fan I'm naturally drawn to the TRB5IIF. MIA Jazz or P.

    After that I'm not well versed enough on what's out there to make an informed comment.

    Suggestions appreciated.


  2. John, first off, congrats on deciding to go fretless; you'll never regret it. :bassist:

    To be honest with you, I've seen very few moderately priced unlined fretless 5 strings in the past few years. The only one I can come up with off hand is this Warwick: http://www.music123.com/Item/?itemno=94647 Although there's a picture of a 4 string there, click on zoom, and a fretless 5 will appear. It costs only a little more than half of what you want to spend, since the pound is pretty strong against the dollar as of late. Then again I don't know if these are available in England.

    I think that Cort also makes a moderately priced unlined fretless 5. Again, I don't know if it's available near you.

    I'd guess that a used Yamaha TRB5 would be a relatively easy fretless for you to find, but most of them are lined I believe.

    Good luck in your search.

    Mike :)
  3. F-Bass, to me, makes "THE BUSINESS" in terms of 5-string fretlesses. What's that funny symbol you use in your cute little country? Is it like $2 or so now? A new F-Bass would cost more than 700 of those symbols. But a used F-bass could be had for only a little more than 700 symbols. They're Canadian, so maybe they will even accept your currency.
  4. Funkize you

    Funkize you Guest

    Nov 4, 2003
    Westminster Ca.
    Lakland 55-02 (or 55-02 Deluxe)

    I am not shure how much money that is in U.S. currency... Sorry.
  5. lyle

    lyle Guest

    Jan 10, 2004
    Vernon, B.C. Canada
    a godin 5 string fretless acoustic body, sounded great. like a big upright, i loved it. not bad prce either. also rob allens i would loveto try there like the godin on steroids. but are pretty pricey.
  6. AJ Love

    AJ Love

    Oct 8, 2002
    Madison WI USA
    the best bass for your $$ would be in buying a Used Elrick, Used Rob Allen, Used Roscoe...that type of thing
  7. AndroWal


    Sep 28, 2003
    Ojai, CA
    How about a MM 5? I have one in addition to my Wal basses and enjoy it very much. Lots of growl and they are solid instruments.
  8. Good afternoon, folks, and thanks for taking the trouble.

    Just for the record, Michael, this isn't my first brush with fretless. In an attempt to learn whether or not I liked fretless / could play it, I bought a Yamaha RBX270F and had it for a couple of years. I really like fretless - but mightn't be that good at it - and thus wanted to get myself a really good fretless bass. Excellent though the Yamaha '270F is for the bucks, it's still a budget bass that's a defretted fretted by Yamaha.....if that makes sense. :confused:

    I was 50 last year and promised myself a really nice bass. Despite the old and ever present financial difficulties, I'm still searching for, "the business".

    It'll probably be a second hand USA Jazz, that Yamaha, or one of the other basses mentioned by guys on this thread. Shame on the second hand bit, but con't do anything about that under the circumstances. Really can't live with budget basses and Fender copies anymore.

    Thanks again, folks.


  9. frederic b. hodshon

    frederic b. hodshon

    May 10, 2000
    Redmond, WA
    Microsoft Product Designer
    find a used Zon Sonus fretless.

    good deals can be had.

    you'll never buy another (my op).

  10. i was in exactly the same boat as you last year. and i wholeheartedly reccomend the MTD kingston fretless.

    it's a passive bass, but with a massive sound. it oozes quality. has a wonderfull ebenol (synthetic) fingerboard (although it's lined. when your playing it straped on you can't really see them, especially in low light). and you can pick them up for £300/400 quid. or if you want a bit more versatility, then the MTD heir is the same, but with an additional J pickup.

    to all the USA people. all your suggestions are great. but your obviously looking at used prices in the US and then coverting that price to UK pounds, but this isn't the reality. because everyting comes in smaller quantities over here used basses tend to retain their value. and a better conversion would be to get the used US price. and just change the symbol to £.

  11. frederic b. hodshon

    frederic b. hodshon

    May 10, 2000
    Redmond, WA
    Microsoft Product Designer
    oh yeah, forgot about the Kingston 5 fretless.

    i had an older model for a while.

    KILLER B string and great neck profile. the new models should be even better!!!

    i have some clips if you'd like to hear some lame playing.

  12. learning_towalk

    learning_towalk Supporting Member

    Mar 15, 2004
    Chattanooga, TN
    i would love to hear those sound clips if you still have em!
  13. I think a Yamaha TRB 5 might please you. I played quite a nice one, and it felt good. Not too much mwah, very organic tone. I also played a truly amazing MIA Fretless Jazz 4 which I'm still GASing for. Never touched a 5er, though.
  14. Who's distributing the MTD Kingston and Heir basses in the UK nowadays? I'm after a couple of basses to take on tour with me in a couple of months so I can leave my beloved Sei at home, away from the ravages of the road!

    Russ :bassist:

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