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Fretless and Zon

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by improvpwnd, May 10, 2006.

  1. So what makes Zon's fretless basses so popular. Manring plays them so they must be half decent, but I seem to see a lot of them and I love their look. Is there anything special that makes them superior? (even though it may be IYHO, I'd still like to hear from you)
  2. ehque


    Jan 8, 2006
    uh, "half decent" is not the word i would use to describe zons, fretless or no. they are fantastic, to say the least.

    maybe its the rock solid composite neck. maybe its how that neck works to allow a really nice low action. maybe its the impossibly hard fingerboard. maybe its the handiwork, or maybe its the bartolini pickups.

    anyway zons play like butter and sound like honey.

    i dont know why i replied this post.
  3. I don't either, but i'd x out the bartolini part because i've played a fretless zon (which are always fantastic by the way) with just lightwave pickups and liked it more so than with the barts. I've been in love ever since... it's the one that got away :crying:
  4. Andy Brown

    Andy Brown Commercial User

    Jul 23, 2004
    Rhode Island
    Founder/Owner: Wing Instruments
    I think the straight, stable neck is a large factor as to why they make an incredible fretless. You can get the action VERY low without a worry. The barts and preamp are very versatile also.
  5. Zon builds a bass that has a great fretless setup and is incredibly stable so it stays that way. I have been playing my Sonus 5 daily for about a year and it plays the same every day. Great. The stability is not only in the composite neck, but the phenowood fingerboard that looks like new after all of that playing with roundwounds, the nut, hardware, electronics.. all have been completely issue free.
  6. bassjigga


    Aug 6, 2003
    I really believe the secret to Zon's tone is in the neck. The woods they use can be found in any other bass, and the bartolinis, while custom wound, are also very popular with other builders. To me, the Zon neck is the unique part of the equation and gives the Zon a very distinct tone, which consequently people tend to either love or hate. I happen to love it. Both the fretted and fretless sound great. They are warm, even, loads of sustain, growl, all the mwah you want from a fretless, and the fretless has a bit of an edge you don't hear from other fretless basses - almost an aggressive sound, but still very pretty.
    JOME77 likes this.
  7. I can banter on for ages about the tone, feel, aesthetic, and construction of my Zon Legacy Elite. But I won't, the instrument is too good for that.
  8. PMC89


    May 1, 2006
    New Jersey
    i want one.

    so i can play it through my swr and try to be a manring clone :smug:

    and fail...
  9. Basso Gruvitas

    Basso Gruvitas Supporting Member

    Jun 7, 2000
    Dallas/Ft. Worth TX
    Zon fretlesses do sound great. Consider also a Roscoe fretless. Killer tone!!

    Same fingerboard used but with a truss rod.
  10. I agree...Roscoe and Zon are the two best fretless basses made.

    To me, what makes the Zon great is the neck and Phenowood fingerboard. Between the two, it provides for a very stable neck and even tone across the fingerboard.

    (On a side note John, I've heard that Joe will now offer a t-rod as an option FWIW.)

    The Roscoe is much of the same but with a very stable Maple/Purpleheart neck and Phenowood type board. The tone is more natural and bigger sounding, but the neck has a similar stability level and the tone is even across the board.

    Both basses would be great fretless choices. I happen to prefer the 34' scale and the 17mm spacing of the Zon for fretless for whatever reason.
  11. Basso Gruvitas

    Basso Gruvitas Supporting Member

    Jun 7, 2000
    Dallas/Ft. Worth TX
    Hi Gene,
    Good to hear from you. Great news that Zon now offers a truss rod. I forgot that the scale length and string spacing are also factors. I'm a 35" scale, 18mm kind of guy myself, so the Roscoe is the perfect fit.:D
  12. Bassmanbob

    Bassmanbob Supporting Member

    When it comes to fretless basses, Zons and Roscoes are the best! I prefer the Roscoe fretless, but the Zon is wonderful too. The one advantage the Zon has over the Roscoe is a slightly stiffer neck. Once you set it, you never have to move it. I like the Roscoe tone just a little more than the Zon. They both are just great!
  13. Hollow Man

    Hollow Man Supporting Member

    Apr 28, 2003
    Springfield, VA
    My Zon fretless sounds fantastic. That's why I like it.
  14. AndroWal


    Sep 28, 2003
    Ojai, CA
    I absolutely love my Wal fretlesses and play them every day (incredible sound, quality and playability) ...but I do have a Zon being built right now and hope to take delivery later this month.
  15. Thanks a lot for increasing my Rosce GAS!!!! jeeze..I try to start a Zon thread and Roscoe gets written alllll over it! I think this is a sign...:p
  16. steve21

    steve21 Banned

    Hey, they're good enough for Steve Buscemi.
  17. The two are the best fretless basses out on the market, so it's not suprising that the Roscoe comments were going to come flying fast.

    Personally, the tone of the Roscoe fretless is better. On fretless play, I happen to prefer the specs that Zon features on the Sonus line better, so to me, the feel of the Zon is the way to go, but hands down, I'd take the tone of the Roscoe any day over the Zon, and the Zon is no slouch!

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