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Dilema Plywood vs. Carved at the $1500-$2500 price point

Discussion in 'Basses [DB]' started by armybass, Nov 11, 2010.

  1. Phil Rowan

    Phil Rowan Supporting Member

    Mar 2, 2005
    Brooklyn, NY
    What about http://www.uptonbass.com/UB-Standard-Basso-Rasa-Laminated-Upton-Double-Bass/ ? You never know, might find something like this in the classifieds being sold by someone not too far from you. Also, I agree a lot with the thought of upgrading to a really nice bow (w/ lots of good hair from a nice rehair job) so that even if you get a well-built, well-set up, , well-strung, well.. everything ply bass, you'll have a real solid key component that adds to the whole playing experience.
  2. I've bought 2 Shen sb200's (carved) for 2500 from dealers that had them too long. The set up wasn't bad but I did put another hundred in for weeks.
    If I was near Fla though I would definitely check out the ns cleveland.
  3. I wouldn't waste 2-3 G's on ANY ply bass, perhaps 2-3 hundred bucks. If I was you I'd get a really nice hybrid bass with a carved belly! Or buy a ply, have it set up pro if its new, but better off buying a second hand, shouldn't spend more that max 500$ if you must, and save your money for a real bass. you'd end up being upset for ever otherwise. About 15 years ago I paid 4 thousand for a beautiful looking ply from the 50's sold it three months later, my mate bought one of those firewood Kay paid 4500$ in New York on his honeymoon now selling it. ply is ply they look beautiful but not much difference between a 50$ or a 4000$ ply if set up by a luthier. Hybrid basses on the other hand can be good as any carved in my opinion, the belly to be wood is the most important for the sound some luthier told me once. I have a carved bass and very old Czeck hybrid I only paid 700$ +plus some small repair. My mate took it to the Tokyo Jazz fest in 08'. Obviously at some point you want a carved bass. just don't jump into it!
  4. Steve Swan

    Steve Swan

    Oct 12, 2004
    Burlingame, California
    Retailer: Shen, Sun, older European
    There are many different quality levels to be found in used plywood basses. The lowest level cheapies that have been discussed with warnings many times here. Palatino, Cremona, Milli Vanilli, etc., are what you usually find on craigslist in the $3-600.00 range. Engelhardt and Kay basses and their superior vintage domestic sisters Epiphone, King Moretone, and American Standard instruments are going to cost a lot more. The plywood Upton, Shen, New Standard, etc. are worlds away in quality from the bottom of the barrel cheapies. There are a great many price points and quality levels to choose from in used laminated doublebasses. Limiting yourself to $5-800 is going to be a fairly temporary get-by situation at best.

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