Bang for the buck - best basses under $700...

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by David Studenick, Apr 19, 2002.

  1. I'm a relative newbie to bass playing (9 months) but have 25 years of G****R playing experience. I'm looking for a better axe, but don't have a load of cash to spend.

    Here's what I'm looking for:

    5 string
    35" scale
    Active electronics
    Pickup pan control instead of separate volumes
    MSRP around $1,000 or less

    I'm pretty much leaning towards a Schecter Stiletto Studio 5 which is pretty well loaded up, but I haven't found any reviews on it. Apparently it's a fairly new bass.

    I'm also considering a Lakland Skyline 55-01 but I'm loathe to plunk down for one unless I get a chance to play it. I'm gonna have to make a 100 mile road trip to the nearest Lakland dealer. I've read the neck is a tad chunky and I have fairly small hands so this is a concern.

    Washburn 2502 is also in the running but the only color for the 5-string is butt-heinous ugly IMO.

    So, any feedback on the above models?

    Any recommendations for cool basses in my price range to check out?
  2. I'm looking for something that's versatile and has a lot of different tone combinations. Essentially a "do-it-all" bass.
  3. Reverend Rumblefish 5L. I have some pretty nice instruments and the 'fish is the least expensive among them, but it easily holds its own. The only negative for some people would be its slightly unconventional looks. Other than that, this bass has incredible bang for the buck.
  4. ldiezman


    Jul 11, 2001

    I would suggest you try out an MTD kingston. By far IMO the best bass under $700 anywhere IMO. It doesn't have active electronics like you are looking for. But keep in mind that having a bass with active electronics doesn't make it a fabulous bass. I myself am partial to active Electronics. But there are many basses that are passive that are great. Give the Kingston a look. I think its what you are looking for. You can get them for around 5 or $600.. and if you want, you can put in and active preamp
  5. Jon Burnet

    Jon Burnet

    Jan 21, 2001
    Memphis, TN
    the 55-01 is nice. neck is wide but i play a ray so not a biggie. try the K5 'cause its got that assmetrical neck happenin' throw you and obp1 in it and you are rockin out with you **** out! there's a guy over on the classifieds got a blue one for 400. if you rather have new drop adrian a line. or go to
  6. seamus


    Feb 8, 2001
    Another vote for the Kington 5 here. It's not active, but as someone mentioned, you could drop the Aguilar pre in there. No pickup pan though, it's a single MM style pup.

    Tight B - Wide string spacing - Stable, comfy neck - Light body

    Make no mistake, this bass is a real player, passive or not.


    Just wanted to qualify my statement about the preamp. I have never checked the fit myself for installing the Aguilar into the Kingston, so I do not know if additional routing is required. The control cavity on the Kingston does have a lot of space though.
  7. Brendan


    Jun 18, 2000
    Austin, TX
    I don't think extra routing would be nessicary. That control cavity is huge! An 18v preamp would fit in there easily.

    Bass retails for around 475 (from Bass Central) anda goo preamp can run you around 150 or so, rounded up to $200,that comes to about $700, more likely, $650 or less (depending on the deal you can get onthe K5).

    There's no way you can lose. One of the best B strings in production, period, kills other 1000, and 1500+ basses, and to one of our memebers, beat out a Fodera!
  8. ibanez btb 405qm

  9. uglybassplayer


    Aug 24, 2001
    New Jersey
    If you want 2 pickups, then look at the MTD Heir... Same as the Kingston, but with the addition of a jazz pickup in the neck position. Haven't played a Stiletto Studio, but I have played the Elite and I would definately pick the Heir over it, even with the passive EQ.

    - Frank.
  10. Brad Johnson

    Brad Johnson Inactive

    Mar 8, 2000
    Gaithersburg, Md
    DR Strings
    For a two pickup bass, the Lakland 55-01 which has everything you asked for and plays like a Lakland or an MTD Heir which is passive and plays like an MTD.
  11. adrian garcia

    adrian garcia In Memoriam

    Apr 9, 2001
    las vegas. nevada
    Endorsing Artist: Nordy Basses, Schroeder Cabs, Gallien Krueger Amps
  12. PollyBass

    PollyBass ******

    Jun 25, 2001
    Shreveport, LA
    My vote for the kingston, and the ibanez BTB. i think the BTB would have more varity.
  13. Jiimy


    Mar 3, 2002
    Athens AL, USA
    the B string on the BTB sounds like poopy IMO
  14. I give the Schecter Stilleto 5 a big thumbs up. It's a great bass and plays very well. I wrote a somewhat-lacking review of the bass on my site:

    I've had the bass for around 13 months now and play it, on average, 6 hours a week. This equates to a healthy amount of time devoted to this instrument and I am enjoying it even more recently. Is this bass better than a Spector? MTD? Ibanez? etc? I can't really say... the line becomes blurred with most of the basses that have been mentioned in this thread. Each has its strength and weakness and, in the end, it boils down to trying them out and finding one that works for you.
  15. For the money, you can't go wrong with Dean

    I already own an Edge Q5, and only paid $399

    I just ordered a brand new Razor NT (neck thru - 4 string) from a fellow member of Dean Owners Of America who is a licensed Dean dealer. With hard shell case, and shipped to my door - Price $590.

    They make the Razor in a NT5 version too. Retail is $899, but most decent dealers will go to 60% of list or better.
  16. the conklin GT-5 is only 750 new. It's real nice I'm buying a used 1 with active EMG's and a sadowsky preamp friday.
  17. embellisher

    embellisher Holy Ghost filled Bass Player Supporting Member

    Best bass under $700, no contest, is the MTD Kingston 5.

    For a little more, the Lakland Skyline 55-01 is just as unbeatable.

    Both of these basses compete with basses costing hundreds of dollars more.
  18. adrian garcia

    adrian garcia In Memoriam

    Apr 9, 2001
    las vegas. nevada
    Endorsing Artist: Nordy Basses, Schroeder Cabs, Gallien Krueger Amps
    actually- the Laks arent more than $700- Musicians Fiend has them for $699 - i and some other dealers ;)
    have them for even less- but , yes. the MTDs are great
  19. Jon Burnet

    Jon Burnet

    Jan 21, 2001
    Memphis, TN
    yeah adrain has me gassin for either a 55-01 fretless or a k5 frettless
  20. Primary

    Primary TB Assistant

    Here are some related products that TB members are talking about. Clicking on a product will take you to TB’s partner, Primary, where you can find links to TB discussions about these products.

    Jun 24, 2021

Share This Page