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Difference Between Lakland Models

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Hollow Man, Aug 16, 2005.

  1. Hollow Man

    Hollow Man Supporting Member

    Apr 28, 2003
    Springfield, VA
    Hey guys and gals, quick question about Lakland products: what exactly is the difference between the 44-01 and 44-02 lines? Then, what is the difference between the -01/-02 models and the -94 basses? I know that the -94's are made in America (as opposed to the Skylines), but what are the other significant changes? I've looked at their site, and I see that the -94's have more options to them, but I wasn't sure if that was the extent of it, or if there is more to it than just customization.
  2. From what Ive heard, the 02's and the 94's preamp and pickups are the same, the difference is being American made and Ive heard that attention to detail is slightly better. The figured tops on the 94s are of higher quality than the 02s also and body and neck woods are also lighter/more figured (ie, Birdseye for the neck instead of just plain maple). But to say the 02 series' quality is shoddy is the furthest from the truth. I played a 55-02D and its was THE sweetest bass Ive played, at any price. It will more than likely be my next bass.

    For the 01's, the pickups and preamp are the Bart MK1 (I think) with soapbars. Ive heard they are a little more aggressive than the MM/single coil style PU's and American preamp. I have not played this one so I can't verify this really.

    IMO, unless youve just got the money to spend, Id get an 02 series that you can see what youre getting first so you can make sure you get a good top on it (if you get the deluxe). 'Course I havent played a 94, so youll have to make the decision whether or not the better wood and more color choices is worth almost twice the price.

    Good luck in your search.

  3. Fretless5verfan


    Jan 17, 2002
    I have a 55-01 with the pre-amp that is in the XX-02s and USA models and i love it. It's defiantely an aggressive bass, but can be tamed into a pretty vintage sound, but with some punch.
  4. Hollow Man

    Hollow Man Supporting Member

    Apr 28, 2003
    Springfield, VA
    So from the posts so far, I conclude that the 44/55-01's have two soapbars with a Bart MK-1 preamp, whereas the -02/-94 basses have an American-made Bart preamp with different pickups. Also, the -94's offer more wood/color choices. Is that the extent of it? I imagine that the -94's would have slightly higher fit and finish, but that's more of an inherent feature of different build processes rather than a design change... any other differences between the models that haven't been brought up yet?
  5. fourstringdrums

    fourstringdrums Decidedly Indecisive Supporting Member

    Oct 20, 2002
    I also believe that the nut materials might be different on the skyline vs. the usa. Also the necks on the skyline are flatsawn, vs. the usa models being quartersawn.
  6. jive1

    jive1 Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jan 16, 2003
    Owner/Retailer: Jive Sound
    Here's a breakdown of the differences between Skyline and US models

    What US models have that Skylines don't
    - Lighter bodies
    - Premium fretboard (indian rosewood w/ birdseye dots or birdseye maple w/ ebony dots)
    - The fretwork is a little better, but not by much
    - The tops are thicker
    - More finish options, and better finishes
    - Graphite reinforcement in the neck (the 55-02 has this too)
    - Quartsawn maple neck with tung oil finish
    - Fretless basses have ebony fingerboards instead of rosewood

    The 55-01s and 44-01s have MK-1 preamps which are cheaper than the Bartolini NTMB found in the 02s. But, the 01s have the option of having a NTMB preamp installed.

    The construction and quality of components are top notch, regardless of Skyline or USA. It's just a matter of whether or not the different options are worth it to you. For me it is, that's why I own two 4-94s.
  7. mikezimmerman

    mikezimmerman Supporting Member

    Apr 29, 2001
    Omaha, Nebraska
    Fo the four strings, only the US version (4-94) has graphite reinforcement in the neck. All the five strings (55-01, -02, and -94) are graphite reinforced, though.

  8. BartmanPDX

    BartmanPDX Supporting Member

    One word about graphite reinforcement bars . . .

    This was the subject of a long discussion on the Lakland page at the Dudepit, and the general conclusion was formed (from insider information), that while the graphite bars are nice, they are not strictly necessary on the 4-stringers. Personally, I have a DJ5 which has had no neck stability issues whatsoever, but I have also not heard of anyone with a Skyline 4-string complaining of neck stability issues, either. The general feeling is that if it WERE a problem, Dan Lakin would put them in the Skyline 4s rather than put out a inferior product and damage his company's reputation (not to mention warranty repairs take a bite out of profits).

    As always, YMMV.

    Personally, for the price of a Lakland 4-94, I'd rather have a Skyline 44-02 AND a Hollowbody (maybe with a Dark Star p'up!) :D

    But then again, I'm just plain greedy. :bag:

    The above posts detail pretty accurately the differences between the two. A 4-94 is an exceptional bass. Is it worth twice as much as a 44-02??? That's a question only YOU can answer. A lot of people have said the 44-02 is 80% of the bass that a 4-94 is. Is that extra 20% worth it? To some people, yes, and to others, no.
  9. jive1

    jive1 Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jan 16, 2003
    Owner/Retailer: Jive Sound

    You nailed it, it's a matter of preference. For me it was worth it.
    - I prefer the tung-oil finish on the neck over the satin lacquer finish. It feels smoother and faster.
    - It was worth it to me to get a finish that I really dug, instead of the standard 2-3 choices with Skylines.
    - I find that the lighter weight bodies are worth it to me, especially for long gigs.
    - I love the birdseye fingerboard, as well as the birdseye maple dots on a rosewood board. It looks classy to me.
    - And if I were to get a fretless, I would prefer an ebony board.

    Even though I love my US Laklands, I still wouldn't say they are twice as better than the Skylines I own, especially in terms of playablity and tone. I'll pick up my Skyline JO or JS, just as quickly as my 4-94. The cosmetics of a US are "better" hands down when you deck em out, but if that doesn't matter then the differences between the US and Skyline diminish even more.
  10. Dr. Cheese

    Dr. Cheese Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 3, 2004
    Metro St. Louis
    According to the updated website, the 55-01 has a graphite reinforced neck also. That probably makes it the cheapest such bass commonly available.
  11. Hollow Man

    Hollow Man Supporting Member

    Apr 28, 2003
    Springfield, VA
    Great information guys, thanks so much for taking the time. One last question: what is the difference between flatsawn and quartersawn necks? How does each one affect feel/playability? Thanks again!
  12. embellisher

    embellisher Holy Ghost filled Bass Player Supporting Member

    Flatsawn necks have a reputation for being less stable than quartersawn. However, this has been disproven by the fact that Sadowsky used to use one piece flatsawn necks, and Pedulla still does on the Rapture series.

    Roger Sadowsky commented on flatsawn vs. quartersawn in a thread a couple of years back. To paraphrase him, the stability of a piece of wood has a lot more to do with the quality of the wood and the care in selecting and curing it than the grain orientation.
  13. Thank god for this web site! I learn more and more each and every day. This is a perfect example of a perfect thread. I hope that everyone that visits this site reads this thread. Good job guys!

    +5 :hyper:
  14. JayAmel

    JayAmel Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Mar 3, 2002
    Carcassonne, France
    So you asked "difference between Lakland models" ? Well, let's talk about how they are different for the eye...

    Here are two specimens.
    Which one is 55-02 and which one is 55-94 ?
    I know the answer, but I'll let you guess...

  15. Is the left one the 55-94?
  16. JayAmel

    JayAmel Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Mar 3, 2002
    Carcassonne, France
    You have one chance over two... :D
    What makes you think the left one is the 55-94 ?
  17. JayAmel

    JayAmel Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Mar 3, 2002
    Carcassonne, France
    Nobody else, really ? Well...

    DMB, you're right : the left one is the 55-94.

    It's never that easy to distinguish two very similar instruments, especially when many elements, such as pic quality, light exposure, etc., may change the way one sees them.

    Though, the left pic shows a birdseye maple board which is not available on Skylines, IIRC. Also, the quilt looks "deeper" on the left pic, which may be understood as a thicker top.

    Despite of all this, and without considering tonal and playability differences, and based only on what can be seen on these pics (which may differ much in real situation), I tend to prefer the cherry sunburst "version", and most the general look, of the Skyline. But that's just me.

  18. Are the bridges the same?
  19. JayAmel

    JayAmel Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Mar 3, 2002
    Carcassonne, France
    I think so, but maybe some Lakland specialist here could confirm or correct.
  20. lowmid


    Feb 2, 2005
    you know they are different in headstock logos!!