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Any exp. with these specific 'boutiques'?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by swartzfeger, Apr 3, 2009.

  1. Hi all,

    Recently had to move and sold *all* my gear. I'm now piecing things back together and started off with a Geddy Lee Jazz, an overall versatile bass that has a tone I really like (mainly that upper mid growl). Perfect for casual gigging. I'm still jonesing for a high-end 5 stringer for studio/session work I'll be doing in late '09. Most 5s sound like wet farts to me, and after quite a bit of reading I've narrowed it down to these luthiers --

    Dingwall -- fanned frets/multi-scale sounds like they handle the B really well, gorgeous basses, Dingwall's very active/personal with players. I'm not a huge fan of active pups, particularly Barts (they sound great, don't get me wrong, but they're 'dark' to my ears), but Ding's FD1/3 (or whatever they're called) sound good on paper. Long waiting list.

    Pedulla -- Can't stand the look of the MVP, but the Thunderbass/bolt are beautiful. Barts again, but otoh the few snips I've heard recorded sound really, really nice. Sounds like Pedulla has a reasonable turnaround time.

    Roscoe -- Beautiful basses. MP3 snips I've heard sound promising.

    MTD -- same as Roscoe. Probably backordered until first man lands on Mars.

    F-basses are beautiful but many of the clips I've heard sound great but just don't do it for me, seems like there's a lack of mids/overall edge (emasculated may be too strong, but...) Probably great for popping which isn't my thing. Lakland/Sadowsky too Jazz-ish for me. I've played Zons and liked them, just not $5000 like them. So many seem close, but there's usually one deal-breaker that isn't quite right.

    The thing that's tough (obviously) is judging these basses on compressed MP3s. Players grab these things for demo clips and go for the Jaco thing ("listen to this Jazzy burp!") or Wooten groove ("listen to this crazy slap!"). The sound clips aren't always in a band setting, plus you never know if it's a flat EQ, what gear they're using etc. Not a lot to judge a bass on, not to mention the feel of the neck and playability. How the heck am I gonna gather $25,000 worth of basses and give them a side-by-side spin? :)

    The good news is that it's gonna take so long to save up the $ that I'll hopefully get to bump into a few of these basses (and maybe others I hadn't considered) and a chance to hear and play one in person.

    Anyone have experience with multiples of the basses above? I know each of them have their fans and are all great basses, but it would be cool to hear if anyone played some of these extensively with a chance to do some A/B comparisons. Thanks!
  2. RBrownBass

    RBrownBass Thoroughly Nice Guy Supporting Member

    Aug 22, 2004
    I've played a few Pedullas, but all them have been Buzz models (fretless). They are fine instruments and the finished board gives them as much mwah as you're likely to need. But you've already said you don't like the original Ped shape.
  3. Bocete

    Bocete My E string is 36 1/4" long

    Sep 30, 2006
    As far as I know, all Dingwalls have passive pickups, it's the preamp that is active. The ABI models don't even have a preamp, and all the rest have an active/passive switch so you could bypass the preamp if you want to. In that mode, the treble knob of the preamp works just like a passive tone knob.

    Other than that, there are the FD1, FD3 and SuperFatty pickups, all with different personalities. In a few months there will be a new Dingwall model with new FD-3 alnico pickups that will cost $1200-ish. Those new pickups are also passive, but a bypass switch for the preamp has to be retrofitted manually.
  4. JimiSparx


    Sep 10, 2007
    Have you considered the top Yamaha models? I play the TRB6PII and couldn't be happier. I think they are good values in the high end bass market. It may also be easier to find a deal on one of these leaving you more money for more guitars.
  5. Baird6869

    Baird6869 RIP Gord Downey. A True Canadian Icon.

    Aren't pickups generally passive unless a preamp is installed?
  6. Bocete

    Bocete My E string is 36 1/4" long

    Sep 30, 2006
    I don't think so, but I might be wrong. Some pickups (active EMGs AFAIK) have a built-in preamp inside them, so you wouldn't exactely call them passive. My EMG jazz is active, but I've got neither high/mid/treble knobs: the battery is connected directly to the pickups and those pups wouldn't work any other way. I can't eq the internal preamp as it's preconfigured for a specific sound.

    That preamp is built-in, as opposed to Dingwalls (and many others) where the preamp is separate, you can bypass it or change it for a new one. The pickups themselves are passive, and so is the bass if the active/passive switch is set to passive.

    So, technically, a bass that has active EMG pickups and a separate preamp has two preamps. I'm sorry if I caused any confusion.
  7. Thanks, the TRB flew right under my radar. I'm stopping in GC today (bleck) and will see if they have one in stock.
  8. Lonnybass


    Jul 19, 2000
    San Diego
    Endorsing Artist: Pedulla Basses
    PM for anything you want to know on the Pedulla Thunderbasses and Thunderbolts!

  9. coreyfyfe

    coreyfyfe Supporting Member

    Nov 19, 2007
    boston, ma
    I had a pedulla thunderbolt for a while. I picked it up used pretty cheap, and it was a great bass, very light and balanced, very easy to play, but I didn't like the barts. I switched out the stock pickups for nordy big singles and that made a world of difference (my main bass is a 70's jazz so that's really my preferred tone). I've played a few buzz/MVP basses and they're great players as well. The one thing I wish my pedulla had was an active passive switch. Mine was an older model with a tone control (instead of bass/treble) and the thunderguts switch. I ended up selling the pedulla because it was just sitting around. It was a great playing bass, but I never really found a use for it, so when it came time to thin the heard, that was the first one down.

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