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a good acoustic

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Justin V, Aug 6, 2001.


  1. Justin V

    Justin V

    Dec 27, 2000
    Alameda, CA
    I went to guitar center today (my first trip, it was "fun" to say the least) and was going through the acoustic section with a friend of mine (guitarist). I saw this Martin acoustic bass sitting in a crowd of guitars and instinctively grabbed it and started messing around. I tried out a couple of slower songs on it (MGB-Apparitions, DMB-Crush, and Crash into me). The sound was really cool, and the neck felt great. The only problem was the price (around $1200 or something). When you're broke, that seems like a lot of money.

    Anyway, does anyone have any suggestions for good acoustics. I'm just curious.
     
  2. mchildree

    mchildree Supporting Member

    Sep 4, 2000
    AL/GA
    I've been doing lots of research on this lately, because I've been considering a trade...one of my Laklands for a Taylor ABG (I did the trade, haven't received the bass yet).

    I've played Taylors, Martins, Tacomas, and an Epiphone or two. It boils down to a price difference. None of the Martins impressed me that much, especially since they cost so much. The Taylor that I tried is also expensive, but the workmanship and design by Steve Klein is much better IMO, than the Martins, which seem to be just oversize versions of their guitars. Sound-wise, they're about the same. The Tacoma is a bit less (about $900 at ZZounds.com right now), plays nice and has the best volume I heard... I have a Tacoma acoustic guitar and I've been impressed with their stuff.

    On the lower-end side, I can only pass on the observations of another bassist I know who plays every ABG he can find. According to him, the pick of the litter there is the Jasmine, made by Takamine ( I think).

    Don't expect to get a giggable volume out of any of these. They'll be great for acoustic rehearsal (if the other players aren't too loud), "around the house" playing, etc. If you want good acoustic tone, but amplified, make sure to check out the electronics. This, along with workmanship, is what set the more expensive ABGs apart from the cheaper ones.
     
  3. Christopher

    Christopher

    Apr 28, 2000
    New York, NY
    IMO, the Tacoma Thunderchief is the best I've heard in terms of tone and volume. The disadvantages are that it's huge and satin-finished (so wear will show over time).

    The new deep-bodied Washburns sound good when played through an amp, but they don't have much unplugged volume.
     
  4. Joe Nerve

    Joe Nerve Supporting Member

    Oct 7, 2000
    New York City
    Endorsing artist: Musicman basses, Hipshot products
    IMO you cannot beat the value of a Carlo Robelli acoustic bass. I picked up a floor model at Sam Ash for $150 (actually won it but, the prize value was $150) They normally sell for $200.

    It's louder acoustically than other basses costing 100s more, it has 4 band EQ, the intonation on mine is perfect, the action great, I've taken it camping, to the beach, all over the place for 3 years now and it still plays like the day I got it. Not sure if I just lucked out with landing a really great one, but I couldn't ever see myself dropping over $500 bucks on an acoustic bass.

    Oh yeah - if ya don't already know, you can only get them at Sam Ash.

    Hey - that was my 300th post :)!
     
  5. Once at GC, I saw a used acoustic bass that went for $999. It was an incredible acoustic instrument with a rich, full tone that was really loud for an acoustic bass. Unfortunately, I didn't pay attention to the brand at the time.

    Since then, I have looked at different acoustics. I've checked out Ibanez, Tacoma, Washburn, Martin, Ovation, and other brands, but none of them compared to the one I tried. (BTW, I'm only talking about the models I have tried by these brands. Perhaps these companies have different lines of acoustic basses that I haven't tried.)

    Sorry I'm not being too helpful here, but the point I'm making is that the difference between a quality acoustic bass guitar and a mediocre one is enormous. The quality of an acoustic instrument is not only instantly audible with the pluck of a string, but you can feel the difference just from the way the bass vibrates and the sound resonates, not to mention the feel of the instrument.

    If I were looking for an acoustic bass, I know that the aforementioned basses I tried out just wouldn't cut it simply because I got to try out a real quality acoustic instrument and I know the difference. Like I said, the difference is clearly huge.

    On a side note, I think the acoustic bass guitars that Jonas Hellborg uses sound great. Don't know what he uses, but I suspect they cost an arm and a leg.
     
  6. I saw a guy play live with an acoustic bass, and it sounded great. (He had a damper ring in it.)

    Also, I played around on a Fender DG-8. It was a cool bass, but it wasn't one of those 'oh God' moments.