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Fretless budget bass!

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by CfoScoop, Mar 24, 2014.

  1. CfoScoop


    Jan 2, 2014
    So, I'm planning on getting a new bass in the near future, and I would like to have it be a fretless (5 string maybe?) as I'm trying to expand my horizons. Problem is, I'm not swimming in cash. So, I would like your opinions on brands, models, woods, etc. My budget is around $1000, so I would probably buy used if possible. Thanks!
  2. randyripoff


    Jul 12, 2008
    It's always interesting to find out what some people consider "budget".

    There should be lots of choices for you in your price range, both new and used. Maybe hit your local Guitar Center and play a few to see what feels good?
  3. Gorn

    Gorn Supporting Member

    Dec 15, 2011
    Queens, NY
    A budget bass for you is $1000? You must be doing very well for yourself. Congrats.

    A used American standard fender fretless, or 2 used carvin lb70f's. Maybe a used fretless stingray.
  4. I tried a Squier fretless at my local shop that played real nice. Damn near pulled out my credit card. You could get three of those for $1000 and have money left over for strings.
  5. Sav'nBass

    Sav'nBass What the .............. Supporting Member

    Jan 18, 2009
    Northern Va.
    When you said budget bass I was thinking in the $180-$380 range. $1000 bass is not a budget bass.. even if it is no sweat for you. You should be Abe to get a very nice bass for that amount give or the a hundred or two.
  6. Baird6869

    Baird6869 RIP Gord Downey. A True Canadian Icon. Supporting Member

    I would have said a $299 Squier VM Fretless, but if you have a grand go with a used Fender American Standard or EBMM.

    Lots of great fretless basses available for $1k.
  7. I was just.thinking about a budget lined fretless 5 myself. But uhhh by budget I mean like $300 ish. I have been playing in a Latin Jazz group lately and that would go over nicely.
  8. Erik Turkman

    Erik Turkman Supporting Member

    Jan 18, 2004
    Washington, DC area
    The biggest challenge I have found with fretless basses is that many of them are rather lifeless in tone the way the are set up in shops. They generally require quality materials and attention to detail in their manufacture and setup to get one that really sings. I would suggest trying as many as you can get your hands on until you find a sound and feel that you want to claim as your own. You might also consider putting one together yourself, using, for example, Warmoth parts, so that you can create the right combination to suit your preferences. A satisfying, quality made, fretless five string bass can be a challenge to find. Good luck in your search.
  9. http://www.rondomusic.com/Bassguitarfretless.html

    I recently purchased the Douglas WOB 826 Fretless Natural with a hard case (less than $300 with shipping). All I did was put new flatwound strings on it as the factory-strings were garbage, and a basic set up. I think it sounds great although I'm not a tone connoisseur.
  10. Lee Moses

    Lee Moses

    Apr 2, 2013
    Carvin would be a pretty good way to go.
  11. CfoScoop


    Jan 2, 2014

    Okay maybe that's a bit much. Let's say $700
  12. Hues


    Nov 27, 2012
    see Burn Notice
  13. MEKer

    MEKer Supporting member

    May 30, 2006
  14. Hues


    Nov 27, 2012
    see Burn Notice
  15. CfoScoop


    Jan 2, 2014
    That looks nice, but I'm looking more for a lined fretboard.
  16. MrLenny1


    Jan 17, 2009
    Carvin or any other fretless for $500 or less. $1000 is too much.
    Fretless bass is a challenge. If this is your first don't spend too much.
    If you don't stay with it fretless basses are hard to sell and hard
    to recoup what you spent.
    Buy used IMHO.
  17. CfoScoop


    Jan 2, 2014

    Is there a certain Carvin that you would recommend? It looks like a good brand.
  18. Lee Moses

    Lee Moses

    Apr 2, 2013
    The LBs are good. I have an LB76PF ("6" = 6-string, "P" = Piezo, "F" = Fretless), and I have no complaints. Low action, great sustain, and plenty of "mwah."

    I can't say the LB is better than the others as I don't have direct experience with them, but I'm not sure how many of the others are available in fretless.
  19. patrickj


    Aug 13, 2001
    Baltimore, MD
    I recently played an MTD Kingston Fretless 5 (MM only) that will without-a-doubt be the next bass I buy should I come up with a reason to justify it. ~ $725ish?

    *edit* MTD Kingston Artist
  20. jon36992002


    Jun 7, 2012