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6 string bass under 1000$... and should I go neck-through or bolt-on?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Inconnu, Oct 31, 2013.

  1. Well, I'm thinking about my next bass (a medium term project, not before christmas, but still), and one of the choices I have is to get a 6 string bass ; never had one, always wanted one.

    So I've played quite a few, not everything yet, here and there, when I came across one, without comparing them seriously.

    So right now, I'm wondering what models should I look into, considering I'll most likely limit myself to a 1000$ budget (unless I give in and get a Bongo, which I haven't even tried yet though). Tone, playability and reliability are my main concerns.

    While I'm at it, I'd also like to have your opinion on the neck-through vs. bolt-on debate. All the basses I have ever owned are bolt-on, so I like the idea of a neck-through, since I never had one. But, in terms of long term reliability, would I get more setup options with a bolt-on (shims for example)? Soundwise, what would I gain and loose with a neck-through?
  2. bassopotamus102

    bassopotamus102 Supporting Member

    Mar 28, 2009
    I would seriously consider BassMods basses. great build quality, excellent sound. for well under a grand shipped.

    what kind of string spacing are you looking for? the BassMods 6'ers have 18mm.

    I have had mine for two years and it's my main bass. they are bolt-ons with incredible sustain. I can't say enough good things about them.
  3. the Yamaha TRB1006 comes to mind.
  4. Thomas Kievit

    Thomas Kievit Guest

    May 19, 2012
    Take a look at Schecter :) They make affordable 6 stringers under 1000 bucks :)

    When it comes to the construction of the neck : Try neckthrough, it's awesome. It will give you more sustain than a bolt on neck plus it will help you get better through the mix when you play with a band :)

    This is the Schecter Stiletto Studio 6, which cost about $800


    I you still prefer bolt on, take the Schecter Stiletto Custom 6, which cost $600

  5. Hobobob

    Hobobob Don't feed the troll, folks.

    Jan 25, 2011
    Camarillo, CA
    I owned a Stiletto custom 5, the B was mushy and indistinct. I've played a few Schecters that didn't have that problem though.

    If you don't mind tight string spacings, a used Carvin is a fantastic value. As already mentioned, a Yamaha TRB1006 is also a great option (wider string spacing).

    Bongos, while more expensive, are incredible basses. Between the 4-band pre and all the pickup combinations you can get, they're one of the most versatile basses out there. I dream of one day owning one of those limited edition mahogany 6'ers in an H/S configuration.

    ESP-LTD's are usually good bang for the buck (I personally love their neck profile). A used MTD Kingston KZ6 is also a good option, although folks tend to swap out the stock electronics.
  6. BassmanM


    Feb 17, 2011
    Hamburg, Germany
    I own a Cort Artisan A6 which I can recommend.


    The main difference between neck-thru and bolt-on has been mentioned: Sustaaaaaaaiiiiiiiinnnnnn! :D

    P.S. My bass has a fundamental B-string.
  7. I'm a fan of my new ESP LTD B206SM....
  8. StuartV

    StuartV Finally figuring out what I really like Supporting Member

    Jul 27, 2006
    Manassas, VA
    Peavey Cirrus 6 (which is neck thru). I'm not sure you can buy a better 6'er at any price. The fact that you should be able to find one for $1000 or less is just a huge bonus.
  9. dtsamples

    dtsamples Supporting Member

    Apr 15, 2010
    Wilmington, DE
  10. rtav

    rtav Millionaire Stuntman, Half-Jackalope

    Dec 12, 2008
    Chicago, IL

    You should also consider the ESP LTD B-416 as well... great basses, great feel
  11. Bassist4Eris

    Bassist4Eris Frat-Pack Sympathizer

    I have the 8-string version of the bass in your picture, and I must say I'm quite impressed with the build quality, especially at this price point. Just note that the price does not include a case.

    Carvins are my first choice. Even brand new, you would be coming in just over budget (depending on options). Used, you could come in well under budget (my first Carvin sixer was $650 including tax, and included the OHSC).
  12. MrLenny1


    Jan 17, 2009
    Yamaha or Peavey. I would try a neck thru seeing that a 6 is more
    of a solo type bass IMHO.
  13. BassmanM


    Feb 17, 2011
    Hamburg, Germany
    What is the string spacing at the bridge on the Carvins?
  14. 6stringpanda


    Aug 9, 2013
  15. 6stringpanda


    Aug 9, 2013
    Funny my Hohner BBass VI is neck through and is thicker at the heal than my Ibanez SR 6 strings.

    Bass mods are great basses.
  16. You should try maybe a Yamaha TRB 1006 (I think they are around 1K in the us, I know in canada they are a bit more than that), I have a 1005 and for the sound they are awesome, I have heard the schector and to me I don't think they sound as nice. It also depends what kind of sound you are going for and what kind of music you play.

    As for neck through or bolt-on, there might a tiny sonic difference when you are playing unplugged but I don't think there is a difference in the sound especially once you through the pickups, amp, maybe pedals and also playing in a band context where you hear a lot more than just a bass. A lot of people will say that it does make a difference but most of them also compare two different basses with maybe different pickup configuration and other more important factors that would make a lot more difference in the sound than just the neck through/bolt-on configuration.

    On a related note, I also own a 6 string neck through (carvin) that I bought used for really cheap because the truss rod wasn't working properly... I bought it because I am left handed and finding a left handed U.S. made 6 string bass in Canada that is less than 1K is almost impossible and the guy who had it didn't know too much about truss rods so I thought that perhaps it could be a cheap fix instead of replacing the truss rod. Needless to say I had to get the truss rod replaced and it cost me around 600$ Canadian dollars to get it fixed buy a luthier (it could've cost me a lot more if the luthier didn't make me the deal he did) if the bass was bolt-on I would've had the option to just get a new one for maybe cheaper, the same amount of money or maybe more expensive but I didn't check because I didn't have the option of replacing the neck since it was a neck through, if it was a bolt-on I would at least have another option instead of just replacing the truss rod.
  17. 6stringpanda


    Aug 9, 2013
    BTBs are cool but not for everyone. A little on the heavy side-def have to try before you buy.

    Materials, sound, craftsmanship on the BTBs is better than anything in thie price range-including the Deans, Schecters,ESPs.
  18. Deacon 7

    Deacon 7

    Sep 30, 2013
    I was looking at the bongo and although it is double octave neck it doesn't look too easy to get to the last three frets.

    Ibanez's are like dresses they change every year.

    The Carvin Six is a masterpiece but you may want to switch out the pickups for Bartolini's. they make a copy of the same pickup that is in the Bongo but I never heard it. (Actually Carvin copied the Music Man string ray pickup and made it 12 poles and then Bongo which is Music Man copied it back.)

    I personally like the neck thru because you don't don't need massive weight to make it sustain. You'll never want to go back to bolts again.

    It's better to stay away from wide spacing on the neck if you are playing a 6 because you start to feel a charlie horse in you left hand from reaching for the B string on a wide spacing. I'm 6'4" playing a 7 string custom and this applies to everybody.

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