Best 5-String around $1200

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by El-Gato, Dec 11, 2002.

  1. El-Gato


    Dec 3, 2002
    I'm lookin for a new 5-string in the 1200 price range. I'm not really lookin for anything too exotic. Some of the ones I've seen so far are the Lakland 55-02 and the Ibanez BTB Prestige. Any other recommendations?

    Sorry forgot to mention I play a lot of jamband stuff, Dead, Moe., Phish, Widespread Panic. I play with my fingers and like to slap a lot. I like a somewhat punchy tone with a good bottom end though.
  2. embellisher

    embellisher Holy Ghost filled Bass Player Staff Member Supporting Member

    You should definitely check out the Peavey Cirrus before you buy. Killer B string, tons of booty, and the best slap tone I have ever heard.
  3. You might also try finding an MTD Grendel. Great bass, though no longer made.

    I tried a Cirrus at a Sam Ash a while ago and it was great. I'd have bought a 6 string but the neck was too wide for me.
  4. JayAmel

    JayAmel Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Mar 3, 2002
    Aurillac, France
    El-Gato, I guess you can't go wrong with a Stingray 5. For less than $ 1200 (and probably less than $ 1000) you can get a used one in mint condition.
  5. You can get a new one of these, probably without the piezo, for about that. I love these basses, too.

    Add that to the list.
  6. Chriss62


    Jul 24, 2000
    Austin, Texas
    Cirrus all the way. The walnut and Bubinga model has a real warm fuzzy tone to it. well mine does. CIRRUS!:p
  7. Yogi Bear

    Yogi Bear Supporting Member

    Aug 14, 2000
    I've played through an Ibanez Prestige, Music Man, Cirrus, and a G&L 2500. You can easily find a G&L used in your price range and they are great sounding basses. But given the choices I would have to give another nod to the Cirrus. That's where my pennies are going when I save enough $$$. Don't get hung up on the Peavey name, this is a very high caliber bass.
  8. Slater

    Slater Bye Millen! Hello?

    Apr 17, 2000
    The Great Lakes State
    This is what I first thought after reading the above:
    • Dead - Phil Lesh - Modulus
    • Phish - Mike Gordon - Modulus
    • Widespread Panic - David Schools - Modulus
    I think there is a Modulus Q5 in the TB For Sale section for $1300 right now.
  9. Halftooth

    Halftooth Supporting Member

    Nov 24, 2002
    Tri-Valley, NorCal
    I just purchased a MTD Grendel for 850 and that bass is as good as any one of my high end basses. The thing is awsome and it's a shame that Mike had problems with the Czech's because these Grendel's kick ass! I suppose the Saratoga's are essentially the same thing but with a Basswood body instead of a Poplar body. I still can't believe I could pick this bass up for that cheap.
  10. Planet Boulder

    Planet Boulder Hey, this is a private Supporting Member

    Nov 10, 2001
    6,482 feet above sea level
    I once had impure thoughts. Oh, and I pluck my ear hair.
    Bingo! That's what I would get, anyway. I play/prefer the same style of music.
  11. A Stingray 5 is the obvious choice, but I played an MTD Grendel about a year ago (the Saratoga is basically the same) with wenge fingerboard and was BLOWN AWAY!!!!!!! The Bart J pickups sound great, and the feel is excellent. You should be able to get a brand-new one for around $1100 if you look.

    The Cirrus is also amazing, but I thought it was about this price range, around 16-1700? :confused:

    Same thing with Modulus. Great basses obviously, but you will NOT get a Q5 new for $1100. Used, a possibility.
  12. Since I've been playing 5 string bass, I've owned 2 Ibanez (405 and SR805 (sold both)) 2 EB SR5's (fretted and fretless keepers) Tobias 5 (sold), Ken Smith BRM5(sold), Fender Roscoe Beck(sold), and a Lakland Skyline 5502 (keeper). So, I'd look at either the EB SR5, or the 5502. both can be had for around 1200 new.
  13. Bass Kahuna

    Bass Kahuna

    Dec 3, 2002
    West Lafayette, Indiana
    Luthier, Custom Builder
    I would also strongly recommend that you look into a Carvin. You can score a really nice one for well under you $1200 budget. Checkout their "in stock" page ( Quite a few nice ones already built and ready for shipping.

    I would recommend you look for a Carvin with the Swamp Ash body option.

    There are a few nice Carvin's on ebay as well, you just wouldn't have the 10 day return it option on a used one.
  14. jdombrow

    jdombrow Supporting Member

    Jan 16, 2002
    Colorado Springs, CO
    Before you start thinking about brand names, you should probably think about what's important to you in a bass:

    34" or 35" scale?
    Wide or narrow string spacing? (Important!)
    Wide or narrow neck?
    Profile of neck (front to back) (thin or fat)?
    Passive or active?
    2-band or 3-band eq?
    Fingerboard preference (rosewood, maple, ebony)?
    Overall weight of bass?
    Are looks (exotic woods) important?

    Once you've answered these questions, then start looking for brands that fit those parameters. If possible, buy used - you'll get much more for your money.

    Good luck
  15. JWBass


    Jul 20, 2001
    Levittown, PA
    You might want to try a Q5 Sweetspot. I own the predecessor to that model, an M92 5 string, I play that vein of music and everyone just loves the tones I get at my gigs.....New or used, you can't go wrong with Modulus...IMO.
  16. El-Gato


    Dec 3, 2002
    thanks a lot for the help guys im definately gonna check out some music man's and modulus.
  17. I sold a Cirrus to help finance a Lakland.

    I've never regretted the decision, but I will own another Cirrus at some point.
  18. Fuzzbass

    Fuzzbass P5 with overdrive Supporting Member

    You should be able to get a brand new Fender Roscoe Beck 5 for around $1200. It's not exotic at all: passive bass, full of killer Fender tones.
  19. Mike


    Sep 7, 2000
    I agree with some of the others. A Peavey Cirrus 5 would be a great choice new. Otherwise, check the used mkt, the only way to go!
  20. Bass Kahuna

    Bass Kahuna

    Dec 3, 2002
    West Lafayette, Indiana
    Luthier, Custom Builder
    jdombrow is right on, with first deciding what features and functions are important to you.

    Not to sound like a broken record, but of all the things he lists...

    34" or 35" scale?
    Wide or narrow string spacing? (Important!)
    Wide or narrow neck?
    Profile of neck (front to back) (thin or fat)?
    Passive or active?
    2-band or 3-band eq?
    Fingerboard preference (rosewood, maple, ebony)?
    Overall weight of bass?
    Are looks (exotic woods) important?

    ... Carvin offers all of the above options, with the exception of neck thickness from front to back. They offer two different neck widths and sizes (regular or asymmetrical) for their 5's, different electronic options and pickups, maple or ebony fingerboards (no rosewood, darn it!) and many different wood choices and exotic tops.

    You could, for under $1200 have a bass built to your specs, and their quality, materials and workmanship are absolutely top notch. Some folks don't like their pickups, though.

    And yes, if you can find something in a used bass that fits your needs, go for it!