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Advice choosing next bass ...

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by BK bassist, Jun 13, 2018.

  1. BK bassist

    BK bassist "Apollo's Ghost" Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 20, 2017
    Brooklyn, NY
    I'm looking to purchase 1 of 4 used basses and I can't decide which one to get so I figured I would turn to the TB community for some feedback ...

    I realize these 4 basses are completely different beasts and I also get that tone and feel are 100% completely subjective BUT ... that being said and since advice and feedback are free, why not ask the bass playing community for their insights?

    Here are the 4:

    1. Music Man Sabre Classic reissue
    2. 2012 Gibson Explorer
    3. 2008 Ric 4004Cii
    4. 2015 G&L L2000

    As far as my tonal preferences go ... If you were to take a drumstick and whack a lower register piano string with it, that's my sound .. I'm a fresh set of round wounds guy all day long. Well broken in flats on a P bass with the tone pot rolled off? ... not my sound (but obviously no disrespect to players who dig that sound)

    Any advice on why I should ABSOLUTELY buy one of those 4 or ABSOLUTELY NOT buy one of those 4 would be appreciated ... and thanks.
    Last edited: Jun 13, 2018
    jd56hawk likes this.
  2. jd56hawk


    Sep 12, 2011
    The Garden State
    G&L L2000.
    Versatility and quality.
    Nothing wrong with the others, but G&L basses never fail to surprise me, even now.
    This one is still my number one, and these GHS black tapewounds are very expressive, more so than I thought they'd be. Too bad they stopped making them or I'd buy three or four sets.
    Raw N Low, Mili, biguglyman and 7 others like this.
  3. mdogs

    mdogs Supporting Member

    Apr 13, 2010
    Constant state of flux
    My Sabre is my number 1. When I think drumstick on a piano string, I think MM. While the Sabre doesn’t sound exactly like a Stingray, it’s very close. The sounds on it are all very useable and it is slightly smaller than a Stingray if that matters to you.

    As far as the others go, the Explorer is an odd option, at least out of these 4. A Rick with humbuckers, what’s the point? Not a fan of G&L.
  4. I'd cast a vote for the G&L too. I think you'd find that it's the most versatile of those you list and the build quality is excellent. I have an L2500 that I enjoy a lot and at some point in time I'll probably pick up an L2000.
  5. BK bassist

    BK bassist "Apollo's Ghost" Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 20, 2017
    Brooklyn, NY
    I've owned an L2000 before and I'm sorry I sold it actually, they are killer basses.

    I'm leaning towards the Sabre actually ... My Stingray is one of the favorites of my collection and that added pup on the Sabre really opens up multiple tonalities.
    malthumb and jd56hawk like this.
  6. SLO Surfer

    SLO Surfer Supporting Member

    Jun 3, 2009
    Morro Bay, CA
    While the g&L is more versatile, I’d go for anything music man with your specific tone goals. Drum stick whacking a low end piano string? =EBMM.
    BassAndReeds and BK bassist like this.
  7. Double Agent

    Double Agent Supporting Member

    Mar 10, 2006
    Lakeland, FL
    Agreed. EBMM is what I thought of here. The G&L can probably do this as well but this type of tone is what EBMMs do best.
  8. Runlikegregg


    Dec 31, 2011
    I would go for the L2000 or the RIC personally.
    RIC because it's just a cool unusual bass but still practical.
    L2000 because I like G&L's and it's a super versatile bass.

    I would not go for the Explorer because to me it's just too much a novelty and the shape is a pain in that ass. Will it even fit in a monocase, etc?
    I would not go for the musicman because I just don't really like them and they always sound exactly the same to me.
  9. jd56hawk


    Sep 12, 2011
    The Garden State
    I know what you mean. We've all regretted selling basses. I've been sorry half a dozen times.
    darkinners and BK bassist like this.
  10. BK bassist

    BK bassist "Apollo's Ghost" Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 20, 2017
    Brooklyn, NY
    Yup, probably one of the most commonly occurring quotes on all of TB ... "I'm sorry I ever got rid of that bass"
    jd56hawk likes this.
  11. OrganicRobot

    OrganicRobot Supporting Member

    Mar 21, 2014
    Appleton, Wi.
    Reedt2000 likes this.
  12. FugaziBomb


    Jun 5, 2017
    Man... Is there an option where you can get all of them? Talk about tough choices! I would either go G&L or Music Man for that nice high mid voice you are looking for.
    BK bassist likes this.
  13. bass40hz

    bass40hz Cigar smoker, scotch drinker, American Patriot Supporting Member

    Aug 13, 2014
    Sussex County, NJ
    no endorsements yet...Are you listening Spector, DR, GK, Line6?
    Gibson, RIC, G&L, MM, in that order
    I own a RIC 4003S, a G&L L2k and a pair of GIbby T'birds (same pups used in the explorer and same wood, Mahogany). T'birds are often described as "angry piano" sounding, and its an accurate description. RICs just make a mystical sound that no other bass can and it can also sound like a piano, just not as pissed as the T'bird. The G&L is just aggressive and a mid-range beast, not really "whacking a piano with a hammer" sound. I dont own any MM's but I've played them, they just weren't my thing. Good luck with your purchase!
    Last edited: Jun 13, 2018
    BK bassist likes this.
  14. BK bassist

    BK bassist "Apollo's Ghost" Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 20, 2017
    Brooklyn, NY
    I appreciate all the advice / feedback so far .... thank you.
  15. Dbassmon


    Oct 2, 2004
    Rutherford, NJ
    The Rickenbacker or the MusicMan do the "roundwound piano string thang", with zing and clang for days.
    The MusicMan is punchier as neck-thru design of the Rick adds some natural compression. If attack is critical, MusicMan... but both are excellent choices. Rick has more zing. I own a StingRay and a Rick, I use both on stage for a big classic rock production. The Stingray is a workhorse, the Rick I use for that very specific the piano stringy thang. The Rick is not a great choice of anything soulful, or bluesy while the Musicman can definitely cover that ground. The Rick is unique, and nothing sounds like it.
    BK bassist likes this.
  16. $.o2.....

    Sounds like you don't have an opportunity to check them out in person? In that case, I'd avoid anything with humbucker pickups, unless they can be run in s/c mode. The L-2000 would work with the s/c option/mod.

    Not sure about the Sabre, but my Sterling H can't get that extreme tone in any mode even with the treble dimed, if that's any sort of comparison (although it's a fantastic sounding bass, one of the best I've heard for my tastes).

    All that said, if you're looking for extreme aggression, few basses can compare to the legendary aggressive sound of the G&L L-1500. It's too much for most players (including me), but might be something to consider.

    Good luck.
    BK bassist likes this.
  17. Doug Parent

    Doug Parent Supporting Member

    May 31, 2004
    San Diego, Ca.
    Dealer Nordstrand Pickups.
    G & L.
    Reedt2000 likes this.
  18. mpdd

    mpdd neoconceptualist

    Mar 24, 2010
    if you get a single coil modded L2000 you can get approximations of active/passive jazz and stingray tones too fyi
    BK bassist likes this.
  19. DrewinHouston

    DrewinHouston Not currently practicing Supporting Member

    Apr 20, 2009
    Houston Heights, Texas
    Disclosure: I am not a great bass player
    You're going to get a huge number of L2k votes, myself included.

    How about a poll? Not too late to add...
  20. Jscriv


    Feb 3, 2017
    My sterling rips if I crank the treble. I have keep it around a 6 (1-10) or it's too much. I play super twangy. I did have a sterling thag I couldn't get that sound for the life of me. Ended up selling it and getting the one I have now

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