acoustic basses pros/cons

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by bassistjedi, May 10, 2001.

  1. I have recently gained an affinity for acoustic basses and was wondering if anyone has any feedback on how they feel about playability and sound.
  2. Gabu


    Jan 2, 2001
    Woodland Hills, CA
    there are a few discussions on ABGs... you can do a search for them. I like my acoustic a lot and find it to be very tone rich... if a bit trebley... But that may just be mine. I have the Rogue 305 which is their 5 string acoustic model. The string spacing is a bit close and the neck is understandably fat compared to my standard electric basses... But I totally dig it's look, feel and sound. All in all I give it a a+. For $180 I don't think you can beat it. Of course, the 300-400 and + basses might sound good too. :D
  3. funkastorious


    May 26, 2000
    Mpls, MN.

    Consider any AB a bad attempt at reverse engineering....

    What's your application? If you're trying to be heard over an acoustic guitar, it ain't gonna happen. So, an amp is necssary.

    There are some pretty cool AB around, but they're pretty spendy.

    I have a Wasburn 32AB which is "ok" when unplugged and sounds pretty killer when electric thanks to the onboard Fishman.

    But, once again, it's practicality (for me) is non-existent.
  4. I have played an Epiphone El Capitan both plugged and unplugged at the local music store and i loved the way it sounded both ways. Volume was a problem unplugged but when I had it running through a SWR California Blonde I wanted to buy both. Then I realized I'm broke.

    I like the look, feel, and sound of acoustics and if I have to play through an amp to be heard over a 6-stringer then so be it.
  5. O.K. On the con side for acoustic basses, there's the obvious volume/feedback problem. This is the bad we must all accept with the good.

    On the pro side, you have that almost indescribable
    amalgam of electric and upright bass tones that some people say is the acoustic's own sound. If you're mainly into metal I can understand why you might not like the tone or the concept. They've got less sustain, slower necks and then there's that huge body in the way. But, if you like your music a little slower and lower, there are those rich fundamentals that decay so well. They go so well with the human voice. Personally, I would love to start on an upright, but, taking into consideration the expense, portability nightmare and that huge scale, acoustics are about as close as I'm going to come to an upright. Ah, my Casady is calling.

    Think of acoustics like a long legged girlfriend; a bit high maintenance, but worth the bother.

    Mike J.
  6. Richard Lindsey

    Richard Lindsey

    Mar 25, 2000
    Metro NYC
    Personally, I don't really like a single one of the commercially available ABGs I've tried--not Martin, Washburn, Epiphone, Fender, Ovation, Ernie Ball, Taylor, or Tacoma. I'm not even a tone superfreak, I just haven't found any of them remotely satisfying.

    This is frustrating because in principle, it's a great idea, and I'd love to have one if I could find one I liked. I'm not sure the flattop model will really work for ABGs. I've always wanted a big archtop ABG with F holes, sort of like a big L5 or something, because I think this might be a more productive path tonally. I have seen a few makers who do something like this, but they cost a lot. For example, you can get something like what I described from Harvey Leach, but it starts near $7000, as I recall. And Curbow used to--and may still--make one that goes for about $10,000.
  7. reel big bassist

    reel big bassist

    Mar 27, 2000
    Hello Everyone,
    I recently played the washburn acoustic bass, and
    I really liked it. I mean, I usually don't like washburn
    basses, but this bass was great. At times
    it sounded like an upright, which I really liked.
    When I played the low notes, I could really feel them, they
    sounded rich and full of character.

    I expecially like playing close to the bridge,
    when you play their the sound is ohh so sweet. When you play at the bridge,
    the sound is so articulate and tight, just like an electric bass, but their's
    something more. I can't even really describe it, I just felt so "in control" of
    the sound. When you play close to the bridge the bass is very responsive.

    This bass sounds great anywhere you play it. I expecially
    like playing in the middle, and close to the bridge, playing up by the neck is cool
    too, you get some really cool tones.

    When you plug it in, the bass sounds pretty good, although I prefer it unplugged.
    All in all I really like this bass. When I get some gas in my car I'm probably gonna
    drive up to music-go-round and play it again. :)

    -Greg P
  8. jimclark68


    Dec 16, 2000
    Morganton, NC
    I love my TAcoma CB-10. It has a very nice tone and plays great. I swapped the stock Elixirs for some flats, and the tone is excellent. But, as I've said in previous posts, I bought it to play acoustic music - mountain folk, jazz. I did not buy it to play music that should be played on an electric bass. That being said, I've found that I am practicing on it much more than my electric these days, both for practical reasons and because I love the sound. Plus, man does my P-Bass feel fast fast after I've been on the Tacoma for a few hours!