Five string fretless... good choice?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by jonwb, Jul 12, 2005.

  1. jonwb


    Jul 11, 2005

    I've been playing a 4-string fretted Precision Bass for about 15 years. I'm a decent player... no slapping just groove rock. Anyway, I'm purchasing a new 5-string bass soon but I'd like to have the best of both worlds if possible. I've always wanted a fretless. Would a 5-string fretless be too much to master given the instrument I'm used to?

    Either one (a fretless or 5-string) doesn't bother me... it's the two of them together that makes me wonder if it's a good idea :help:

    Thanks for your input!
  2. newchibass


    May 21, 2004
    I think that is a good idea. I've seen players have fretted 4's and their fretless as a 5. For one, it is less shifting with the 5 which will hopefully facilitate intonation not to shift as much. Another thing is that you are jumping into another realm with fretless so why not make the jump to a 5 at the same time. Just my opinion.
  3. Kael

    Kael Supporting Member

    Dec 26, 2004
    Oklahoma City
    Might want to make sure that you get a 34" 5 string fretless if you do. The combo of extra string, fretless, and a new scale length might be excessive. Then again I kinda like keeping all my instruments the same scale length if possible.
  4. paintandsk8

    paintandsk8 Pushin' my soul through the wire...

    May 12, 2003
    West Lafayette, IN
    I think it's a great choice. Right now I'm working on selling my current set-up. Once I get that done, my new setup will consist of a 4 string fretted jazz style bass, and a 5 string fretless of some type. I find that in 90% of the situations where I actually use the 5th string, I could also play on fretless. So for me, the two go hand in hand.
  5. jonwb


    Jul 11, 2005
    Well, a Fender American Jazz Bass V fretless is the same as my Precision... 34". Supposedly 35" scales provide better "B" control. With the Fender 5's, I've heard that the string spacing is a little tight near the bridge. I use a pick a lot so it shouldn't matter :meh: . Being a Fender connoisseur, I'm favoring these right now!
  6. I went from a fretted 5 string to a fretless 6 strings... both 34' i think as long as u have determination and keep practacing u should be fine
  7. jonwb


    Jul 11, 2005
    Ok then thanks, I'm gonna go for it!

    I have it down to two models: a Fender American Jazz Bass V or a Lakland Skyline 55-02... each about $1200. I know I can't go wrong with the Fender. I've been using one for years. The Lakland is well-regarded and has some nice electronics. No case though in the price... kinda strange.

    Thanks for all your help and support!