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Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Talwin, Apr 16, 2006.

  1. Talwin


    Oct 23, 2005
    hey, ive been think of getting a SURVEYOR, and ive been looking at diffenet ones. could you guys give me some advice on them, or any other basses by esp that would be better.
    thanks for any help you give
  2. mark beem

    mark beem I'm alive and well. Where am I? Gold Supporting Member

    Jul 20, 2001
    Alabama, USA
    NDE.. Sorry.. But it looks like a good bass...
  3. bass-shy


    Jan 11, 2005
    My advice to you is to go ahead and buy one. I really like the Surveyors, especially the natural ash ones with the maple fretboards. I've played a few and felt that the quality and sound was consistent and well executed. I own a couple ESP LTD basses and really like them both. Overall, I would recommend them. I feel that ESP makes great instruments and are reasonably priced. Good luck.
  4. The Thinker

    The Thinker

    Sep 17, 2003
    Chicago, IL

    I own a black Surveyor II (technically, it's an ESP Standard--this was made before they started calling them Surveyor II, but it's the exact same bass).

    (To provide a reality check on my positive review, I am probably not going to keep this bass. It's a great bass, but just not for me--I've decided I prefer passive electronics and have already started selling off all my active basses).

    As far as ESP's production line stuff, this is their flagship bass. I've played a number of LTDs and while they are impressive, they don't have the same quality of build and hardware that the Surveyor II has.

    The neck is a lot like the new MIA Jazz basses, only perhaps a bit meatier. Playability is excellent. The bass is a on the heavy side, but I've definitely played heavier.

    This is a very versatile bass. The neck pickup is actually an EMG P in a soapbar casing. It has enormous lows and surprisingly good highs for a P--might actually be too bright for P-bass purists. The midrange is smoother and not as agressive or growly as a Fender P.

    The bridge pup is switchable between a dual-coil and single coil. In single coil mode it's bright and clear--great for adding definition to the neck pickup. I use this setting for classic rock and old-school funk. I don't like this pickup soloed, sounds a tad thin and bright to me. But with some of the neck pickup blended in it thickens nicely.

    In dual coil mode the back pickup turns the bass into a whole different animal. Doesn't sound as "scooped" as a Stingray, but just as aggressive--more focused on low mids and mids. Warm and growly. In dual coil mode with both pups equally blended this bass sounds ENORMOUS. Huge, thick sound with great clarity on top. I use this setting for playing heavier stuff--Rush, etc. Very "active" sounding, and a bit too aggressive for my taste. I usually cut the mids on the preamp and almost never solo this pickup.

    The preamp is very effective. Although I'm swearing off active basses, with the EMG pickups I'll say having the preamp is a positive. (I don't care for preamps I've tried with passive pickups).

    Overall, I LOVE the feel, look, quality, and versatility of this bass. But the active electronics are not for me. That's a matter of taste, though--this is the only bass I've owned that made my wife come down to my dank, spidery practice space and say, "Is that a new bass? It sounds better than your other ones." :meh: I admit that it sounds really good in a mix, but honestly the active-ness bugs me and I can't get over it.

    If you like actives, and in particular EMG electronics, this thing is a KILLER. Otherwise, don't bother--you really can't get away from that sound on this bass.

    I hope this helps!

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