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Carvin quality prices

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by MAJOR METAL, Feb 5, 2003.


    MAJOR METAL The Beagle Father Staff Member Supporting Member

    I was on the carvin wed site , how can they charge those prices for an american built bass that is customized they seem very low. How is their quality does any one have expirence with them. I saw on their sight 50% of all upgrade options. Thanks for the input:)
  2. chucko58


    Jan 17, 2002
    Silicon Valley, CA, USA
    I paid for all my gear myself. Well, me and MasterCard.
    I've been very happy with the construction quality, and the quality of materials and parts, of my Carvin basses. (I wish the pickups were better, but they're adequate for most purposes.)

    They can keep the costs that low because it's a family-owned business and there are no middlemen between the factory and the customer.

    You can find used Carvins on eBay for very good prices. Check it out.
  3. Jodaka


    Jun 28, 2001
    Riverview, FL
    they can charge that price because they don't have to pay a "middle man". most manufacturers make a product (a bass, in this instance) and sell to a store (i.e. sam ash, musician's friend, etc). in turn, the store will mark the price up (they have to make money, too, right?) and sell the bass to you. carvin bypasses the store and sells direct.

    as for quality, sound, etc, they seem to get mixed reviews around these parts. since i have limited experience with carvin, i recommend doing a search...

  4. SCH


    May 3, 2002
    San Antonio, Texas
    I think the quality (fit and finish) of Carvin basses is excellent. They make great looking basses; however, I don't care for the sound and playability. They make a ton of basses. If you really want one I'd recommend buying a used one. Used Carvin's can be had very cheaply.
  5. Jon Burnet

    Jon Burnet

    Jan 21, 2001
    Memphis, TN
    quality wise they are as good if not better than anything else oon the market. period. no price restriction. some people dont like the electronics but i find them to be quite good. not as dark as say barts but not as bright as say seymore's. they also have a very sweet quality to them. the preamp i dont really care for. mine is the older 2 band. i either leave it flat and boost the bass slightly on the back pickup or cut them both and use my sadowsky out board. that being said , all i ahev now is a sr5 and a carvin. i will prooly get a beater jazz just to have but these 2 basses cover all of my needs.
  6. alembicfive


    Jan 17, 2003
    I have two Carvin's (a B5 and B5F fretless), and the quality is every bit as good as my Alembic. The wood used on both (one is Walnut and the other is Quilted Maple) is striking, and the control cavity was perfect. The fit and finish is also first rate.

    I bought my first Carvin about a year and a half ago. I had never played one or even seen one in person. But most of the reviews in the magazines and on-line magazines gave thumbs up, so I figured what the heck. If I didn't like, you have ten days to return it for a full refund. So I ordered the B5F fretless. When I got it, wow....I was floored! This was one beautiful bass. The sound and playablity was great, much better then a Ken Smith Burner fretless I owned. I was so floored by this bass, I ordered my second Carvin with in a month, this time a fretted model with quilted maple top.

    I do not know why people complain about the pickups. I have not one complaint. I play through a SWR Workingman stack, and both sound awesome! I see no need to change them. Here on the east coast, Carvins are rare, I guess people shy away from buying basses mail order, heck I used to be one of them. But when I started giging with them, fellow bassist were floored! I even took one to a Guitar Center in NY, and the sales people were very impressed.

    Now I am sure you might get a bad apple in the bunch, hard to avoid in production instruments. But the folks at Carvin are pretty good in making sure that bad one does not get out.....
  7. SRSiegel

    SRSiegel Guest

    Sep 17, 2001
    Ann Arbor, Michigan
    I have an LB75PF, and I love it. I find the construction quality to be far better than mass produced basses such as USA fenders, ibanezes, new newer warwicks, etc. THe price is low because of the lacking of a middleman, not a lacking of quality. The wood put into the basses is excellent, and the build quality is great. some peopel dont like the electronics on board, or the pickups, i like the bass the way it came. I say theyre a bargain.
  8. Eilif

    Eilif Supporting Member

    Oct 1, 2001
    Ok, Im jumping on the bandwagon. I too have a carvin, an LB75f, it is awesome, plays, looks, sounds great, etc. buy one. If you are in the market for a non-classic bass with custom options, at a good price it is hard to beat them.
  9. I ordered a Carvin AC50 late last year and it's a beauty. Quality construction, gorgeous to look at and plays and sounds like a dream.

    Caused instant GAS pains for my bandmates :)
  10. Christopher


    Apr 28, 2000
    New York, NY
    1) CNC. Their parts are cut by machine. Explains how Martin and other traditionally expensive companies also can offer U.S. made stuff for cheap.

    2) Economies of scale/limited customizability. Carvin "customizes" the way Dell customizes. The same neck blanks work with a wide variety of bodies, and can be produced in bulk. The pickups are wide enough to accomodate 4-6 strings. The exotic tops aren't heavily carved, and can be slapped on without too much work. So while the options are numerous, they don't result in much additional manual labor.

    MAJOR METAL The Beagle Father Staff Member Supporting Member

    can you guys post some pics of your basses. On the 5 string is the B tight or a bit loose. How long did it take to have your carvins built. Thanks :)
  12. SRSiegel

    SRSiegel Guest

    Sep 17, 2001
    Ann Arbor, Michigan

    if you wanna look at everyones carvins, theres a "carvin gallery" thread on the boards now.

    also, i dont mean to question ones credibility or opinions, just that a previous post made it sound like the bodies were "slapped" together quickly and sloppily. This defenitly isnt the case. While I don't doubt that CNC machining takes a huge role in the manufacturing of necks and bodies, my bass still took 10 weeks to complete. And the body was only tung oiled, so not a lot of time was spent putting a heavy finish on it. True they arent true customs in that you cant change the neck or body geometry, and the electronics options are limited to their in house stuff, but I think the attention to detail apparent in all the carvins Iv'e ever seen and/or played (quite a few) speaks volumes about their construction and finishing techniques. It really is a first class instrument.
  13. rickbass

    rickbass Supporting Member

    Some good reasons here already.

    Just adding;

    - Volume-Marketing-Volume-Marketing: Their huge advertising/catalog expenditures helps them sell enormous quantities of gear globally and buy such components as their woods and Hipshot bridges iin mass quantities.
    You will never see a small Carvin ad, nor, will you see one that doesn't have exquisite photography. Sizzle sells the steak.

    - No service network to support: If you want your Carvin serviced, you send it back to the factory. They have no parts network to supply or network of factory trained technicians. In fact, when they did service for a Carvin bass I had, there was one guy who did the actual work.

    - They deliver pretty much what they promise: You get a good, (not "fine" IMO), piece of gear at a good price. Their quality is very consistent, at least as far as their basses go, and their reputation is maintained. The gorgeous woods/finish you see in their catalogs is exactly what arrives on your doorstep.
    They began their business within months of Leo Fender, so the name has a lot of brand equity and trust.

    - They make a resonably "custom experience" a no-brainer. The buyer doesn't have to know a lot about woods/pickup magnets/wiring options/etc to get an instrument that seems quite "custom." That's no dis. There are $3k+++ instrument makers who offer fewer options than Carvin.

    If only they'd let the buyer have the option of putting in different electronics! :rolleyes:
  14. Lackey


    May 10, 2002
    Los Angeles
    Well,, I'm going to go out on a limb and say that the fit and finish is as good or better than any bass I've played. Carvin's finishes remind me of Pedulla's; thick, colorful, and over the whole bass.(this is actually one of my only complaints)

    Anyways; IMO Carvins have near perfect playability (when setup right), and I personally don't mind the sound of the pickups that much. You can always toss in some replacements, only be about $120

    And someday soon,, an XB76F is going to be sitting in my lap!
  15. FunkySpoo

    FunkySpoo Supporting Member

    Feb 6, 2002
    Bass central is now a Carvin dealer. I don't know what their prices are though.
  16. I currently own a Carvin LB75 with the wider asymmetrical neck option and Koa wings. All in all, it's a decent sounding bass with good build quality and nice looking wood. The action is respectable for sure. I'm not much of a 5-stringer, though, so I much prefer my Reverend Rumblefish. If there were two things I could change about the bass, it would be the electronics and the bridge (mine is an older model with the Wilkingson bridge and 2-band EQ).
  17. rickreyn


    Jun 16, 2000
    Lutz, Florida
    Carvins in stock are now $100 off plus a free case. Great deal. Check it out.
  18. SCH


    May 3, 2002
    San Antonio, Texas
    I took the plunge and bought a Carvin LB-70 a couple years ago when I was looking to move up from a very cheap starter bass I was using. When I opened the case I was very impressed with the fit and finish of the bass. The build quality was excellent in every respect. When I plugged it in and played it I was disappointed in the tone. To my ears it was thin sounding. It wasn't a bad sounding bass, but I've never liked the tone. I gigged with it for a while and then bought a Lakland Bob Glaub. I haven't touched the Carvin since.

    Carvin's are well made, and compare well with most basses when it comes to fit and finish, but IMO that's where the comparison ends. Comparing my Carvin to my Lakland is like comparing a Chevy Pinto to a Lexus.

    MAJOR METAL The Beagle Father Staff Member Supporting Member

    I am having some trouble finding the carvin gallery can some one help.:)

    MAJOR METAL The Beagle Father Staff Member Supporting Member

    I know some company's only use a color finish on the front of the bass and due the back black , do carvins finish both sides in color