carvin any good?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by tbassist4, Jan 21, 2006.

  1. I've been playing bass for around 5, coming on 6 years now and I've actually never heard of Carvin, but then again, I have been looking only at the main brands for a long time. From the magazine I got it seems like they do a 5 star job, but of course, it's their magazine. So how do these basses add up to fenders or other top brands? I have a fender standard jazz right now, and love it, but I'm looking for a sound to compliment that when I do shows or play with the school band. I'd like to get a full custom outfit done. So can anyone give me an unbiast opinion on if this bass is worth it?
  2. LajoieT

    LajoieT I won't let your shadow be my shade...

    Oct 7, 2003
    Western Massachusetts
    There is quite a bit of stuff in the archives on Carvin, mostly positive, as their build quality is generally very consistent and of high quality. Most of the negative opinions come from the pickups and electronic packages. Hunt around and you will find a lot of people with a lot to say about them.
  3. ClassicJazz

    ClassicJazz Bottom Feeders Unite!! Supporting Member

    Sep 19, 2005
    Delray Beach, Florida
    As much as I love Fenders (I have three jazz basses), Fender can't hold a candle to the quality and construction of Carvin. I had two Carvin 5-string bolt-on basses, a B5 Fretted and a B5F Fretless. The woods and the workmanship on both were flawless. The B5 had a quilted maple top, and I mean a real quilted maple top. Not that thin cheap laminate stuff you see on many basses today (including the new Fender Jazz 24), the Carvin had a 1/4" thick quilted maple top! The quality of my two were every bit as good as my Alembic. And I had no beef with the electronics. Many people say the electronics is Carvins weak point, but I have no idea what they are talking about. In the studio or live, the Carvins kicked butt. The only reason I sold the two I had is I went back to playing 4-string basses. I am thinking about picking up one of those new Carvin ICON 4-strings.
  4. I used to own a carvin lb-20 Maple neck thru maple body tung oil finish and stacked humbuckers. It was the nicest bass I have ever played. I am sad that it is gone:( . As for weak electronics I think thats a bunch of crap. Although my bass was passive so I cannot comment on there active electronics. I honestly cant think of any weak point In that bass.
  5. Pickups and electronics are a matter of taste too. I think part of the reason the electronics get the bad rap is because there is little to fault in Carvin's construction quality.

    Carvin has just recently changed their electronics from 9 volt to 18 volt and they've come out with new soapbar pickups. My new Icon 4 string will have the soapbars and I'm very eager to try them.
  6. g00eY


    Sep 17, 2005
    Chicago, IL
    i just said this in another thread: i sometimes have trouble finding that sound i want, but once i found it it's freaking great. mine is a used Carvin LB75F from the mid 90s and it's in almost mint condition. the neck feels great, just the size for people who like tight string spacing. oh and by the way, mine has stacked humbuckers.
  7. adept_inept


    Jan 9, 2006
    yea, that was in my thread.

    i think i may look at carvin, or if i rly have the need to try first, warwick.

    need to get to a samash or gc asap.
  8. I have a 5 string fretless that is great in every way. I'm not experienced with their electronics as this one was modified when I got it. I put Seymour Duncan J/MM pick-ups and pre-amp in it, it's a growl machine or a round tubby tone. Build quality on this one is excellent. A great used value!
  9. g00eY


    Sep 17, 2005
    Chicago, IL
    yes, used value for Carvins is great. i got mine used.
  10. Snarf


    Jan 23, 2005
    New York, NY
    The first neck on my B4 had its truss rod come loose. The second neck moved too much for it to be playable. The pickups sounded hollow and boomy, but not in a good way. I'd stay stick with your Fender, better tone and good construction.

    I'm the resident Carvin-hater, so take it with a grain of salt.
  11. cassanova


    Sep 4, 2000
    I've played only a couple of Carvins in my time. One was an older 80's model. (The bass version of the V220), the other was an LB75. They both had very good action, felt solid and seemed to be of very good quality, and both sounded very good. Then again, tone is very subjective, so you may not like it. But nonetheless I'd recomend one to someone.
  12. Yes, we've noticed. :)
  13. T-Funk


    Jul 2, 2005
    I love Carvin basses. I own a LB75 and LB75F. Both basses are equipped with the H50N stacked humbucker pickups.

  14. britrit


    Jan 22, 2006
    Hi, this is my first post here. I'm John. I have had a Carvin LB70 for a bit more than six months, and I must say it is great. The thing that I love most about mine is the neck, it's very smooth, and easy to play. It stays in tune fabulously. I don't reccomend getting the gold hardware, because it tarnishes a bit, and doesn't look too nice from up close, but it can't really be seen from further away. They have a 10 day return policy, so if you do get it, make sure that you inspect every centimeter of it, my bass has a little problem in the paint right under the neck, where it attaches to the body. Make sure that your inlays are solid, and deep enough. My LB70 has the humbucker in the bridge position, and the single coil in the neck. A great bass overall.
  15. WoodyG3


    May 6, 2003
    Colorado, USA
    I have 2 Carvins, an LB70 and a B5. The LB70 is the nicest bass (to me) I've ever played. I love Carvin necks, playability is always great. The build quality is terrific. I love the J99 pickups if you are looking for a great single coil sound.

    I'll be getting another Carvin soon, this time with the new soapbar pickups. :)
  16. Tony G

    Tony G

    Jan 20, 2006
    I have a carvin LB75 Fretless. The construction and playability of this thing is unparrelled in its price range. However, the fretless sound I consider to not be one of the best. It sounds good, but not great. If I could do it all over again, I'd go with a warwick corvette fretless 5 string. I have friend however that has the same bass but fretted. I think his bass sounds great.