Another beginner thread, but different

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by montrealbass, Jul 4, 2005.

  1. Hey it's my first post here. That's because I know next to nothing about the bass.

    Well I want to do something with my friends before we're off to college, and starting a band, as skilless as we are right now, might be quite fun or at the least hilarious. Well, I'm asking for some help on choosing my first bass. I read many of your thoughtful threads and everyone seems to point towards, the SX basses they have on sale that sound great and are low-price.

    However, I do have some musical background. Well I took classical guitar (100% bare fingers) classes for 7 years, and contrabass (well the standing bass, not so sure if that's right in English) for 1 year with the school orchestra. I have no clue if this gives me an advantage for the bass guitar, as it has the amps, the electronics and... aaah!

    My price range is anything from 0$ to 800$, EVERYTHING included. I'm aiming for the Interpol/U2/Arcade Fire/Death from Above sound. You know, the full sounding bass that usually stays in the back, but sometimes has to jump in to take the melody in the song. Does all bass simulate that sound?

    Well I'm lost... your input will be very much appreciated, believe me! Should I buy something better because my musical background gives me a certain boost? Or should I start from scratch? My money is in your hands. No one else in the "band" has any clue what to buy :p
  2. Dirty Dave

    Dirty Dave

    Oct 17, 2004
    Boston, MA
    Depends if you plan to stay with it.

    If you're not sure, then the SX is probably the right choice for now. If you already know that the bass is your thing and plan to play for many years to come, then buy the best bass you can afford.
  3. tplyons


    Apr 6, 2003
    Madison, NJ
    SX sounds great, though you will have an advantage playing both classical guitar and upright bass. Playing bass guitar made it an easy transition for me to begin upright bass and pass up four chairs after playing only a couple weeks. The background certainly helps.

    Since you're unsure of the seriousness of the group, the SX will do just fine for you. Put money into the amp, basses are easier to upgrade.
  4. Bruce B

    Bruce B

    Sep 2, 2004
    Get an SX and put the rest of the money into the best amp you can get. That's my .02 anyway.
  5. TheNerdBass


    Jun 30, 2005
    Detroit, MI
    Yup, get an SX. Then put the rest for a good amp. You'll need a big one to be heard over a drummer and guitarist.
  6. I was in Seattle and stopped in to the Guitar Center last week and played a Brice 6 string bass that they were trying to sell for more than a new one would have cost from Rondo. I thought that for the money the bass was of outstanding quality. I'd have to second the post above and say get the SX bass and a the best amp you can. When you decide you want to keep playing bass, THEN you can get the Carvin bass of your dreams... ;) :D
  7. It seems like you guys are all going towards the same conclusion, and it makes great sense. Thanks for your helpful input!

    I'll probably head to the music store and buy myself a 600$ amp... hopefully one that will last me sometime. I'll keep the remaining 150-200 for a reliable SX and maybe a setup?

    Also, I know absolutely nothing about amps. Can you use them with electric guitars (if ever I change my mind)? Well I'll go read about it now.

    Thanks guys!
  8. no! you can't use guitars on bass amps

    btw good choice on the SX
  9. Lol I just called my friend to ask if we could switch amps between guitars and basses... He laughed so hard.

    Can you guys suggest the best amp for about 600$? How many watts do I need and which brand is the best?
  10. tplyons


    Apr 6, 2003
    Madison, NJ
    Yes you can. The other way around is a bad idea.

    Fender Bassman is one of the alltime best amps for blues guitar.
  11. Knives


    Mar 18, 2005
    Athens, Ga
    You can run a guitar through a bass amp but when I do it on my bass amp it sounds like it has a little bit of chorus on it. So it will make sound but not the best(or particularly pleasing) sound.
  12. tplyons


    Apr 6, 2003
    Madison, NJ
    There's no easy answer for this. They all sound different, so we can't tell you which is best. However, as a simple rule of thumb, you want as many amps as you can get with a good tone. I'd check out Gallien-Krueger combos in this price range if I were you.
  13. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Total Hyper-Elite Member Gold Supporting Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
    It gives you a HUGE advantage. The biggest part of playing bass guitar is hearing what you want to play. It's not too easy to get an upright bass sound from an electric, but you can get a reasonable facsimile. It's best done on a fretless. I get a good sound on my Lakland 55-94 fretless by going all the way to the neck pickup, bass and treble all the way up, mids all the way down. The bass gives you the thump and the treble gives you the string pluck. It works better with flatwound strings. Roundwounds may be a little hot for this sound.

    With respect to amps and stuff, hang out here and read the FAQs, and most of all, heed every word I say. If I say something is true, it's true and, for the most part, irrefutable. If I say someone is wrong, they're wrong, and you can take that to the bank. Just remember these simple facts, and you'll come out way ahead of the game.

    Oh yeah, if I use the word "hoser," I'm talking about all those other Canadians, not you.
  14. Bruce B

    Bruce B

    Sep 2, 2004
    As many watts as you can get ;) For $600 you have plenty of choices. I would probably go with a Peavey 115 combo if I was in your place. There are a lot of choices in that range though.
  15. syciprider

    syciprider Banned

    May 27, 2005
    Inland Empire
    Don't forget to budget for accessories. Cable, case, a chromatic tuner, metronome (for those DIY lessons), a stand and a spare set of strings. I'm sure I missed a few more.
  16. Hey guys thank you so much. I'll surely take into consideration the products you mentioned. Your word is much more reassuring than the salesman's... who constantly push me towards the expensive products by default.

    Of course, I'll have to take the accessories into account, thanks for reminding! They won't cost more than 50-75$ right?
  17. HeavyDuty

    HeavyDuty Supporting Curmudgeon Staff Member Gold Supporting Member

    Jun 26, 2000
    Suburban Chicago, IL
    No matter what you get, I suggest it be a five string! I really think new players should at least consider starting on a five...
  18. Bruce B

    Bruce B

    Sep 2, 2004
    It depends. I could easily blow your whole budget on just accessories ;). You really only "need" a cable and a strap to be ready to play with your bass and amp. Cheap cables can be noisy and problematic so don't skimp too much there. You could get the other stuff later as needed. A stand is nice to have and they don't cost too much. Since you say you are all skilless, you should probably get a good tuner. You and the guitarists could all share one for now, though it would be easier to have your own. I'm guessing you won't be gigging anytime soon so you could probably get away without a case for now. It's always nice to have extra strings around. It might be a little tight but you can probably get most of that for around $75.
  19. You think? I don't know...I can't say I really enjoy playing a 5. I think all new players should get what they think they'll enjoy playing. Some people don't have any interest in a 5 and probably shouldn't get one.
  20. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Total Hyper-Elite Member Gold Supporting Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
    The five-string is the definitive bass. Don't mess with a four.