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Five-string bass.. maple or rosewood fingerboard?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Bassman45, Jul 16, 2005.

  1. Bassman45


    Jul 16, 2005
    Good mornin'

    Looking for an entry-level 5-string for home recording only. This won't be my main bass, just something for more low-end on certain songs. My MIA Fender has a maple neck. Any reason get rosewood with these?

    Also, for a non-slapper, are there any basses that offer easier playability for die-hard 4-stringers like me?

    Thanks ;)
  2. Fuzzbass

    Fuzzbass P5 with overdrive Gold Supporting Member

    It's important to prioritize: first, select the 5-string you like best. *Then* decide between maple or rosewood.

    Regarding playability: I was a four-stringer for over 20 years before I switched to five. I've learned that I'm truly comfortable only on fivers with so-called "wide" spacing. Wide fivers have the same string spacing (distance between the strings) as four-stringers... that's what my right hand prefers. Most Fender fivers have wide spacing.

    Music Man and G&L fivers have narrower spacing. Some players are more comfortable on this.

    Bottom line: what's comfy for me might not be comfy for you and vice versa. Try a bunch of fivers to see what you like!
  3. SteveC

    SteveC Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Nov 12, 2004
    North Dakota
    Since you have maple, why not try rosewood? My Yamaha 5 has a rosewood board that suites me just fine. My Fretless has an ebony board that I like. I'm GASing after a Geddy Lee jazz that has maple. Variety is nice.
  4. ugo


    Jan 8, 2005
    Northern VA
    Sound Design Coordinator, Camel Audio | Designer, Ugo Audio
    do you tend to prefer a brighter, more growling tone...or a warmer, smoother tone? if you really dig bright, stay with maple. if you want something warmer, go for rosewood.

  5. Bassman45


    Jul 16, 2005
    Probably a warmer tone... my Fender really bites. I guess that translates to rosewood.

    Concerning models... Visually, I like the Yamaha BB405 and 605. I dont' know about their quality... Taiwanese made I think?

    The Lakland 55-01 would be a stretch costwise but I'm more concerned about its string spacing. It looks very wide at the bridge... something my pick may not get used to?

    The MIM Fender Jazz is another one I'm looking at. Not sure if that's the best choice though?
  6. ugo


    Jan 8, 2005
    Northern VA
    Sound Design Coordinator, Camel Audio | Designer, Ugo Audio
    if you dont have any in your area that you can try, mabey you could see if you can get the measurements of the spacing at the bridge then compare it to the spacing on basses you can try?

    of course it wont be a proper representation of the feel of another bass but it might help you get an idea of whether or not the spacing would be a stretch for you.

  7. christle

    christle Supporting Member

    Jan 26, 2002
    Winnipeg, MB
    I can't comment on the Lakland but the MIM Jazz is pretty decent. You have to play a few to get a decent 5 but they sound good.