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GODIN BASS OLDvs.NEW also FENDER A/E

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by MrGump, Sep 5, 2000.


  1. MrGump

    MrGump

    Apr 20, 2000
    Im getting into a new band situation.And think one of these would be perfect.Ive heard the Godins went through changes.(Im talking about the hollow bass-I believe its called the A4,or acoustibass).Has anyone played both versions?What is the difference in tone?
    Also years ago I almost bought a Fender precisionA/E,which is a Japanese or Korean,hollow body,with a piezo and a Pbass pick up.Anyone have any thoughts on these?And why are they more now then when new?
    Also should I go fretless or fretted?
     
  2. Sorry, Mr Gump, I meant to e-mail you back about the Godins, but a bunch of new e-mail came into my box, so yours got bumped down the pile before I remebered to reply!

    There were some pretty major changes in the Godins apart from cosmetic ones including the body shape. The main difference is that the top is much more active on the new ones than the old ones (that's why the thumb rest was taken off - since it's more hollow now). The resonating harp is gone now too. The neck is a lot less heavy so the instrument's weight is much more balanced now.

    I've never played an old one though, so I can't say for sure what is better. I do have 4 instruments from that maker and they are all top notch so I assume the changes that were made to the A4 were all in the interest of improving the instrument. My A4 is a superb instrument and I highly recommend it to anyone looking for a very warm, woody tone. It is certainly the most unique instrument in my collection.

    My personal bias, I would stick with the instruments of the Godin shop (handcrafted in Quebec and New Hampshire) over just about any instrument out of the Korean shops. Besides, it's not like the Godins are super expensive. In fact, I really don't know how they make such great instruments for so little money. I guess they don't advertise, do they? That must cut down a lot on expenses.
     
  3. MrGump

    MrGump

    Apr 20, 2000
    Thanks for the reply.Do you know why the neck is lighter.Lightweight tuners,different profile?
    I have interest in the "Fender" because it has a conventional pick up I can blend in for a more conventional electric tone.Are yours fretted or fretless?What strings do you like?Im also considering a Status-Graphite Electro II 5 string.I didnt put that in this thread cause I KNOW I will never get any replies on that one!No one even knows what it is,much less own one!
    What type of music do you use your Godin for?With what amp?Thats alot of questions!Thanks again.
     
  4. My A4 is fretless with the stock D'Addario Chromes (flatwound) strings. This yeilds a very warm and smooth tone. I use the bass for music featuring a lot of other acoustic instruments. I'm not sure the style of music is all that crucial, but it does tend to sound better with other acoustic instruments.

    I play mine through an Eden Traveler Plus head with an 410XLT cabinet.

    The newer A4's do have lighter tuners which helps with the balance.
     
  5. Blackbird

    Blackbird Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Mar 18, 2000
    California
    I used to own a Fender A/E bass and I can tell you right now that you should go with the Godin. The Fender had a really bad tone compared to the A4. For the Price difference, there's no contest.

    Will C.:cool:
     
  6. MrGump

    MrGump

    Apr 20, 2000
    Bad in what way?I ask what kind of music,because to me thats like reading someones profile.It helps to know where these opinions are "coming from".For example someone into Punk who plays with a pick might hate these basses,and someone into folk rock might love one.Thanks again,and keep those replies coming!Its great being able to tap into such a varied source of opinions.
     
  7. Blackbird

    Blackbird Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Mar 18, 2000
    California
    Basically, it lacked definition, while the A4 I tried had a very focused, upright-y sound. Also, the piezo pickup would also pick up the sound of my hand moving across the strings. I traded it in for a Steinberger, which has since then been graced by Michael Manring's autograph. I don't miss the Fender at all.

    Will C.:cool:
     
  8. MrGump

    MrGump

    Apr 20, 2000
    Just got email back from Godin.They make an A5 which I was unaware of.Anyone have any experience with it?
     
  9. Blackbird

    Blackbird Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Mar 18, 2000
    California
    I never new they made a 5. Must be new. Good to hear, though.

    Will C.:cool:
     
  10. Chris S.

    Chris S.

    Nov 4, 2000
    I played a Godin fretless A5 at a music store just a couple of nights ago, and I'm sorry to say I was disappointed. Part of it was the set up: the neck had way too much relief making the action too high, they had roundwound strings on it which were already chewing up the fingerboard, and it just didn't have enough fretless "mwah." The volume and 3-band EQ sliders had a very short throw, so even tiny adjustments had a BIG effect; this could be problematic if you were trying to adjust tone or volume in the middle of a song.

    As I say, I'm sure a lot of these problems could have been corrected easily with restringing and a proper set-up, but collectively they didn't demo the instrument very well at all.

    The basic sound quality was quite nice, though, very woody and acoustic, with a good "thump" to the attack. Not a versatile instrument, but it wasn't designed to be; I think it probably does what it was designed to do quite well, and the price is quite reasonable compared to a lot of other brands. Hope this helps, CS
     
  11. Blackbird

    Blackbird Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Mar 18, 2000
    California
    Hm, I hope that Godin isn't CBS-ing...

    Will C.:cool:
     
  12. MrGump

    MrGump

    Apr 20, 2000
    Chris,did you find the B string to be floppy?Were the notes on the b string muddy or well defined>Did you find the bass to be neck-heavy?Thanks for replying!To all you guys!I cant find one to play anywhere within an hour or so from where I live.So keep the input coming!
     
  13. I don't think so. I've seen some really high quality Godins lately, so I don't see any general trends toward sloppiness.

    My last Godin purchase was a Seagull 12 string acoustic guitar and it sounds fantastic and the workmanship is really clean.

    It sounds like maybe that particular A5 had been tinkered with since they usually come stocked with D'Addario Chromes (flats). My A4 arrived with super low action and was setup really well. I also find it odd that the sliders don't have a lot of play in them but if you handle them carefully there shouldn't be any problem getting the exact settings you want.
     
  14. Blackbird

    Blackbird Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Mar 18, 2000
    California
    Thank heaven for that. I have an A4 in my ever shorter wish list.

    Will C.:cool:
     
  15. Chris S.

    Chris S.

    Nov 4, 2000
    Sorry it took me a few daze to get back to you. (Life, y'know?) The B string was okay, certainly not floppy, and the B-string notes were identifiable, but not really crisp, if that makes any sense. I also can't give a reliable report on the neck-heaviness; it didn't seem bad, but I didn't have a strap, so I was supporting it uncomfortably with my left hand while seated the whole time. This was at a Guitar Center, btw; if you've ever been to one, you know you can't expect much. :-| Anyway, in thinking back over it, I'd have to say most of the problems were definitely correctable with a proper set-up.

    Meanwhile... I bought a used 4-string fretless Godin Acoustibass! Found a good deal and jumped on it; this was the older, more P-shaped model with the metal tines inside. After playing it a bunch over the past four days, I love it - it really sings. It doesn't growl quite as much on the lower strings as I might like, but I haven't taken the time to tweak the set-up yet. And it really does do a terrific imitation of an upright sound. I've got a jazz quartet gig coming up later this week, so I'll try to report back and let you know how it does. (Btw, I have already bumped the faders a coupla times while practicing... hehe. I think I'll just have to learn to be careful.) - CS