Best Basses

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Bass Boy J, Jun 7, 2020.

  1. Bass Boy J

    Bass Boy J

    Mar 3, 2020
    Hello. I am going to be buying my first bass soon, and I was wondering what basses I should consider. I am an intermediate player, and I am going to be playing in a Show Choir Combo Band, High School Jazz Band( I am going into high school next year), and maybe join a local rock band.
    This my guitar center's inventory-
    Which out of the 26 basses on this list are the most versatile? I study just about any genre, but Jazz, Rock/Metal, and Pop are the genres I study the most.
    Hounddog409 likes this.
  2. Well arguably the most versatile will be the Fender Special Edition Deluxe PJ Bass they have in stock but ... if it were me I'd go with the Mezzo, Cool basses, 32' scale so it has great comfort for someone who I assume is not 6'4 .... Now you do know they'll ship out some stuff to you from other stores right ? Want something cool ? You can get yourself a cool Carvin or Gibson EB4 or Stingray 5 from the Rockford store ? They have some nice stuff there although not quite 'right' for studying but the Fenders won't steer you wrong and neither will the Musicman.
  3. Jim Carr

    Jim Carr Dr. Jim

    Jan 21, 2006
    Denton, TX or Kailua, HI
    fEARful Kool-Aid dispensing liberal academic card-carrying union member Musicians Local 72-147
    Cool you landed the choir gig, and are into so many styles. What is your budget for a bass?

    Are you planning on 4-string or 5-string?

    Are you taking lessons? Are you also playing double bass?
    Beej, red_rhino and ejaggers like this.
  4. jd56hawk


    Sep 12, 2011
    The Garden State
    If no one's mentioned it, try out as many basses as possible...but to narrow it down, I'd start with these two.
    The Fender's very nice for the money and the Squier has been a big favorite around here for as long as I've been a years, I think.
    Plenty of "Which is better, P bass or J bass?" threads here, too, so you'll be able to come up with your own opinion.
    Sure, it might change next year, but...
  5. TrevorG

    TrevorG Gold Supporting Member

    Nov 30, 2012
    I own an Ultra which is not too different from the Fender Deluxe(considering it's very different in price). The P/J setup is VERY versatile and if the Deluxe plays anything like the Ultra it's super comfortable. You should be trying before buying though.
    EatS1stBassist likes this.
  6. chris_b


    Jun 2, 2007
    If you're playing shows, Jazz and Metal I'd be seriously considering 5 string basses. IMO a 5 string Jazz would be the most flexible and versatile instrument.
  7. Bass Boy J

    Bass Boy J

    Mar 3, 2020
    I have already eliminated the Fender bass, mostly because of it’s really sharp frets.
  8. deff


    Oct 15, 2018
    Gloucester, MA
    I know practically everyone here will say Fender and having played those basses i understand your point on the playability and fret ends and non rolled fretboard. IMO the ESP or the Schecter will be the best playing basses on your list and should be versatile enough. I don't include the ibanez basses, because those are lower end models im unfamiliar with.
  9. Dark Horse

    Dark Horse Supporting Member

    Jul 31, 2008
    Austin, TX

    That isn’t a “fender bass” thing. Pretty much any bass can get sharp fret ends.... it’s more of an environmental factor, humidity/temperature changes. Any tech can fix it, and a retail store can (and should !) fix it before you buy.

    Think about it... Fender wouldn’t be the most popular musical instrument company (for Guitars and basses) if they all had “sharp fret ends”... right ?
    Beej, 2saddleslab, 123Nil and 7 others like this.
  10. ejaggers


    Aug 18, 2009
    Fort Worth, TX
    Probably not a wise decision, as Horse said, that could happen to any brand.
    Squire gives you a awful lot of bass for the money, especially if it's your first.

    You said, "mostly", so what's your other reasons?
    It's easier for us to advise you if we had more facts.
    As Carr said, knowing your budget is very helpful as well.

  11. JoeDoe

    JoeDoe Drummist turning bassist. Supporting Member

    Jul 21, 2018
    The Shoals
    From a versatility standpoint, that's pretty true. A jazz 5 will get you lots of mileage.

    Also, very true.

    One other thing to consider is how much the physical comfort of a bass matters to you. That's something I didn't value when I started down this road, but I've learned more about what I prefer and it's made me enjoy and look forward to playing more, and after adding a few pedals, I've more than made up for the sonic shortcomings of my preferred bass.
    alanloomis1980 and chris_b like this.
  12. Hounddog409


    Oct 27, 2015
    Any bass can play any genre music. The only thing that matters is what you like and what you can afford.

    Go there and play all 26. Buy the one that sounds and feels best to you.

    Easy peasy.
    123Nil, mikewalker and alanloomis1980 like this.
  13. chris_b


    Jun 2, 2007
    I've never had a Fender with sharp fret ends. I think you've just seen a bad example.

    This is the issue with Fender. Don't be put off by the bad ones, because there are plenty of good ones out there. You've just got to find them.
  14. jmattbassplaya

    jmattbassplaya Supporting Member

    Jan 13, 2008
    When you’re new to something it’s very common to ask “what’s the best” to ensure you’re getting as much bang for your buck as possible and to ensure you aren’t buying junk.

    With instruments, however, the onus is really on you to go out and try as many as you can to figure out what you like. Everyone is different, and you might find yourself preferring basses or brands that might not be getting recommended as much because they aren’t chic or considered classics.

    It might be hard depending on where you live, but I highly recommend you go to a store and try as many models as you can within your price range. Once you narrow it down to a few then you can reach back out and ask for opinions. But ultimately, you’ll be the player of whatever you buy, and I’d hate for you to buy something you end up disliking because it comes highly recommended from people who aren’t you.
    Gearhead17 and alanloomis1980 like this.
  15. FugaziBomb


    Jun 5, 2017
    Even at six-four, I think that would be a hell of a reach.
    fat_nermil, Cutter8 and RogerTheAlien like this.
  16. TheReceder


    Jul 12, 2010
    I was going to say thet you should look used but the CL adds for bass in Cedar Rapids ... well they kind of suck. If you traveled a little there's a Squire Vintage Modified Jazz Bass V, in Oskaloosa. $400. Not sure if that's a good or bad price. BTW.. I lean towards the Sterlings.. but I'd have a hard time saying they were vers atile. The Fender Jazz is probably the one to go to for versatliitythat route. If it was me though... I go with a G&L l2000
    l2000 | Sweetwater

    Squire Vintage Modified Jazz Bass V, 5 string electric bass, natural...
  17. Kukulkan61

    Kukulkan61 Inactive

    Feb 8, 2011
    Northern Arizona
    Try as many of those as you can, only you will know what feels and sounds best to you. We can advice you on ones that we've played or owned but everybody is different, what works for me might not work for you and vice versa..have fun and good luck!
  18. CallMeAl


    Dec 2, 2016
    Ithaca Ny
    +1 to get out there and try them. Im a big proponent of choosing a bass on feel. Especially the neck, and how it balances on a strap. You can tweak the sound various ways, but if a bass doesn’t feel right there’s not much you can do. Bass A might look great on paper, but bass B might have the “it” factor.

    +1 to look at 5 strings. You might want it for metal, you might need it for show band.

    IMHO, versatility is an illusion. Look at the Precision bass. One pickup, two knobs; and one of the most played and recorded basses in history, in just about any genre. You can get heaps of versatility from hand placement, technique and EQ. Now, if YOU like variety, knock yourself out- but don’t feel like you need 3 pickups and 10 knobs n switches to play in all those settings.

    good luck!
    red_rhino and jmattbassplaya like this.
  19. JeezyMcNuggles

    JeezyMcNuggles Supporting Member

    Feb 23, 2018
    Santa Maria, CA
    I suck, but nobody really notices
    ? You must've meant that you are a beginner bassist. If you want the "best" "most versatile" bass, get a Fender PJ.
  20. Robscott


    Mar 20, 2017
    Tonbridge UK
    Not much love on here for that Dean then....