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Carvin XB75

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Vorago, Jul 2, 2004.


  1. Vorago

    Vorago (((o)))

    Jul 17, 2003
    Antwerp, Belgium
  2. Two things:

    1) You will get no Carvin Love here at Talkbass. I've tried. No love at all. I have a BB-76 that I look at in disgust because I hear the echoes of TB Carvin bashers. If I never posted here, it'd be my favorite bass.

    2) I played one just two weeks ago. It's a fine instrument. Carvin woods/finishes/setup are on par with the best machine-built basses, and better than most customs. Where they seem to fall short in most people's eyes (ears) is in the electronics and the red-headed-stepchild reputation of the company.

    The string tension of the 35 1/2" scale is better than my 34" scale BB76. I dislike that they don't have 24 frets. I wish you could eliminate the Jazz pu in the neck position as a custom option. I wish they offered the BB body style for the XB series. I wish they had different headstocks.

    Great bass for the money new, but if you want an excellent deal...wait a few months and pick up a used one on eBay. Carvin's go for less than 1/2 all the time.
     
  3. danshee

    danshee Banned

    May 28, 2004
    Chicago, Illinois
    You may not get any Carvin love here at TB, but it's a nice bass regardless of what certain peeps say. I'll tell you that it is probably one of the better basses you can buy for under $1200. They play great and the one I've had for years has been a great bass. I've often been tempted to change the electronics, but the fit and finish can't be beat for the money. There are plenty of Carvin fans out there by the way. You could start a bashing thread about Ibanez, or whatever. Who cares. If you've got nothing better to do than bash someone's bass, you've got too much time on your hands. Imagine a poor, broke newbie on bass just joining the ranks of our fine website. He saves up $150 from his tedious grocery store job to buy a used 4 string Fender Squire that he thinks is nice to learn on. Some of you less considerate guys will come and say, " You just bought next week's garbage dude!". Not really that cool. I'm not a big fan of Ibanez basses, but you don't see me coming down on all the Ibanez lovers in here. If anything, I think it's interesting to hear why they like them. Obviously I'm sick of people bass bashing here. :spit:
     
  4. Vorago

    Vorago (((o)))

    Jul 17, 2003
    Antwerp, Belgium
    Is there a good reason for this Carvin bashing or is it just an easy victim? What about the costs? How much do you pay for them here in Europe?
     
  5. Schwinn

    Schwinn

    Dec 4, 2002
    Sarasota, FL
    Vorago, what kind of sound are you looking for?
     
  6. Since Carvin is mail-order (or fax/email order) you pay what the instrument costs...plus any import/shipping costs and duties/customs charges. It can become cost prohibitive, but I'm not sure. Their website has a section with information for international buyers.

    Most Carvin bashing is unearned, in my opinion. People sometimes buy Carvin because they want a high end custom, but don't want to pay for it. Most Carvin basses don't have a signature sound (ie; the Warwick growl, the Zon mwah, or 'Fender sound') so when people get them, they think the tone is somewhat boring. The fact is, their pickups and preamp aren't the best, but the wood and construction are great. Many people switch out the pickups and have great results.
     
  7. danshee

    danshee Banned

    May 28, 2004
    Chicago, Illinois

    I know cats that have done that. Swapped out the electronics I mean. Then, they've got this great bass that sounds incredible, and didn't break the bank. But really, I can't remember buying a bass that I didn't change something on it to get my feel or sound.
     
  8. Chapbass

    Chapbass

    Dec 11, 2003
    Chicago, IL
    I had an XB76 that i absolutely loved. Unfortunately, i had to return it because:

    A. I got an incredible deal on a very nice conklin GTBD-7 that i love (and one that i would regret passing up).

    B. The finish on the bass wasnt what i expected it to be, but that was my fault, not carvins.


    I loved the tone on my XB76. The feel was very solid, the action was a little high but looked like it could be lowered a ton without buzzing and intonation problems (shipping from cali to chicago climate changes can do that to ya...)

    As for the comment about replacing the J style pickup in the neck position: if you call carvin, you can have the HB 4/5/6 in that position.

    In case you were wondering, the specs on the bass i ordered:

    6 string 35 1/4 in. scale.
    Claro walnut top
    5 piece maple/walnut neck
    HB6 (music man style) pickups in both the neck and bridge position (picture a Bongo).
    Piezo pickups on the bridge.

    The tone i could get out of the 2 hb6's with a little bit of piezo was very impressive IMO. No doubt it would sound better with top of the line pickups in there, but i definitely dont think that the sound is anything to cry about. I also didnt get a chance to replace the strings so that would probably improve tone as well (i know on the carvin bbs thats something they recommend doing).

    The only thing i wish with the xb series is that you could get the BB series body style with the longer upper horn. The bass doesnt neck dive, but i like playing with the neck slanted pretty high (definitely higher than most), so that was a small annoyance. It actually did that a bit with my conklin as well, but i bought a nice strap for it and now it sticks to my shoulder like glue :) .

    Anyway, I think that the carvin basses in that price range are a very good deal. If i had around that amount of money to spend on a bass right now (around 1000 give or take a lil), id either get one of those or a cirrus (probably a cirrus cause ive been GASing for one for practically two years...yay for college students...)

    so yeap...
     
  9. keb

    keb

    Mar 30, 2004
    Yeah, I changed the pups on my Carvin out for Barts, and I like it better that way. But hey, some people don't like Barts... it's all subjective. I'm always changing things on my instruments too, the most extreme case being my mutt of an electric guitar in which the only original piece left is the body.
     
  10. Schwinn

    Schwinn

    Dec 4, 2002
    Sarasota, FL
    The only thing that really bugs me about my XB75 is that the string tension could be tighter and I can't seem to get the action very low without fret clack and loose feeling strings. Other than that it's a great bass.
     
  11. danshee

    danshee Banned

    May 28, 2004
    Chicago, Illinois
    I love hearing everyone's opinions on this. Everyone prefers something entirely different and it fascinates me. You prefer the really tight string feel while I deliberately set mine up with that sort of loose feeling. I do a lot of string bending and dynamic tremolo's and if the string is too tight my hand gets fatigued quickly. I get the action really low on mine and still plays great. You have to allow for some buzzing though when going really low, which you never hear unless you're not plugged in.
     
  12. danshee

    danshee Banned

    May 28, 2004
    Chicago, Illinois
    That's cool. I've often thought about doing that, but never have. I love the Barts sound. Did you swap out the electronics too or just the pups.
     
  13. Schwinn

    Schwinn

    Dec 4, 2002
    Sarasota, FL
    Yeah, I always see people in the string forum asking for low tension strings. I recently threw out a brand new set of strings because they were too low tension. I like very high tension because my right hand technique is cleaner and faster. But at the same time I don't really like high action so it becomes a trade off.

    My Cirrus sets up better with higher tension and lower action, FWIW.
     
  14. danshee

    danshee Banned

    May 28, 2004
    Chicago, Illinois
    I can imagine running into difficulty with that.
     
  15. bluemonk

    bluemonk

    Dec 17, 2002
    Michigan
    I have a Carvin hollowbody bass, much different than what you are looking at. The workmanship is stunning. It is a neck-through in Koa wood. You couldn't ask for a better made body. I had choice of everything, and most come with my favorite fretboard wood-- ebony. I've played a friend's Carvin that is the model you are looking at and it played and felt very good, although I didn't plug it in. I've heard band play live with a Carvin bass and it sounded fantastic. Most complaints are about the sound of the electronics (not the dependability), and mine sound great and you can switch them out. It's easier to switch out pickups on a great body than to rescue a bass that is uncomfortable to play or that neck dives, etc.
     
  16. Lackey

    Lackey

    May 10, 2002
    Los Angeles
    HEY! HEY! I thoroughly enjoy my Carvin, build quality is superb! This thing stays in tune for days regardless of heat or humidity changes. Quite low action, pretty good B string....great mwah!

    Buy used, I got a heck of a deal on this thing (resale plummets worse than the Titanic).
     
  17. quallabone

    quallabone

    Aug 2, 2003
    Eliminate the jazz pickup kind of like this???
     
  18. keb

    keb

    Mar 30, 2004
    Just the pups right now, actually the original pre died some years ago. Right now it's just passive: volume/volume/tone. I've been thinking of adding a new pre (either Bart or Aguilar, haven't decided yet) for some extra versatility and more output.
     
  19. danshee

    danshee Banned

    May 28, 2004
    Chicago, Illinois
    Tough call, both of those sound fantastic.
    As a side note, I just listed my 6er on EBAY :( if anyone is interested in seeing pictures of my soon to be lost freind. It's a blueburst 6 string. Very pretty and brought me many years of good playin. But, gotta pay for my daughter's school coming up in September. Good bye old pal. :bawl:
     
  20. Schwinn

    Schwinn

    Dec 4, 2002
    Sarasota, FL
    If you are looking for more output, maybe the Bart pre would be better - doesn't it have a gain control? The aguilar in my Carvin sounds great but the output isn't as hot as my other basses.