HELP!!! Advice needed on 5 String Purchas

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by loturner, Feb 18, 2001.

  1. loturner


    Feb 18, 2001
    Brooklyn, NY
    I am an advanced beginner considering a 5 String Bass purchase. I am currently considering an Ibanez SR485 bass. However, I would greatly appreciate any information about similar basses that I should consider in the $600 range.

    As an aside, what is the deal w/ the current new Tobias basses on the market. I have heard that they are fabulous but I have also heard that they are horrible. What gives???

    One other question, I am interested in playing on a fretless bass. However, I have been advised to learn on the fretted first. Is this good advice or should I go ahead and give the fretless a shot as I'm learning?
  2. Alvaro Martín Gómez A.

    Alvaro Martín Gómez A. TalkBass' resident Bongo + cowbell player

    I think the best choice for a "budget" 5 string is a Carvin. The BB75 (my bass) costs $819, but my advice for you is: be patient, get the money and pick this instrument. It's a GREAT bass for the price. I think that an instrument with such a quality should cost $1.500 and up. Of course, Carvin offers another cheaper models, but i like the BB75 mainly for its wide string spacing (3'' at the 24th fret), great for slapping. Besides, there are lots of options for customizing. You can check it out here:

    Hope this helps. Good luck. :)
    (I'm in no way related with Carvin. This is not a commercial advertisement. Just a matter of taste.)
  3. I say take a look at the Spectors. The Performance series runs for about $800 and sounds remarkable.

    Also, i say go right to fretless. But that's my opinion only.
  4. Brendan


    Jun 18, 2000
    Austin, TX
    If I were you, I'd take a look at the Fender Jazz fives (MIM) They're good if you find one you like. I always found the Ibanez' to be very hit and miss. Some are great, others are firewood. Always Try an Ibanez. Always. If you can find one, their a good bass. Very flat sounding, but some dig that. I would also look at the Cort Curbow series. They are a very good bass for the price (with Mighty Mite pre-amp and Bartolini pickups) they are a nice bass if you like the color.
  5. You know that MIM Fenders are the same way. They are hit and miss too. They are production line models and some sound good and some sound real bad too. Personally, i don't like Fender, but i'm not gonna get into that.
  6. Tsal


    Jan 28, 2000
    Finland, EU
    Yamaha RBX765A goes for around 500 bucks. Also you probably could find used Warwicks for that price. Check them out.
  7. Try to have a look at the Godin SD 5 string. I've not played the 5 string model, but the 4 string is an outstanding instrument.

    Godin instruments are just about the best value out there IMO. Their workmanship is really excellent.

  8. Cornbread


    Jun 20, 2000
    Lawrence, Ma
    The Cort Curbow 5 fretted and fretless are well under $600. I think they're both great deals. Heck, why not just pick up the 6 string w/Bartolini pickups for $600?! I'm really happy with mine, if you can't tell.... :D
  9. Nino Valenti

    Nino Valenti Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 2, 2001
    Staten Island NYC
    Builder: Valenti Basses
    I'd go for the Spector NS-2000 5Q bass. I just ordered this bass as a back up to my USA 5 string Spector. It has a quilted maple top, EMG_HZ pickups, EMG BTS active EQ, 24 frets & best of all it's a SPECTOR for <b><u>under $600!!!</b></u>

    <img src="">
  10. alx564


    Jul 31, 2000
    Emmaus, PA
    Advanced beginner eh? Thats about what I would say I am. Well I went with the Ibanez SR 405. The only reason I went with the Ibanez is because of my extremely tight budget. Look into the Cort Curbow 5 or the Fender MIM.
  11. MrGump


    Apr 20, 2000
    Im not familiar with most of the basses mentioned here.I will say for the 600 you have,Id rather see you buy a used bass of a better model,than a new one that sells for 600.Not only will you have a better bass,but if you decide to sell it,you wont loose as much.If you can go a little more,and your patient,you can find a G+L L2500,or a Pedulla Rapture,or StingRay.Basses that are easy to turn over,and are quality.
    As far as fretless goes,see what you come up with.You may find a better deal on a fretless,as less guys play them(less demand).
    Since your going five string,you also have to decide on 35" or 34"scale.
    And if your a slapper,be careful with string spacing.
  12. rickbass

    rickbass Supporting Member

    As Mr. Gump said, you will get more for the money if you get used, IF, you can check it out first and return it at no charge.

    But I can understand wanting new. If you can tweak that $600 up to $630, can put you in the driver's seat of a NEW MTD Kingston. Basswood body, nice tobacco-type sunburst. I bought a Carvin LB75 but that's a ways above $600.
  13. Suburban


    Jan 15, 2001
    lower mid Sweden
    I'll tell you this, from my experiance: you learn better on a fretless.

    You'll learn precision and intonation, you'll enhance your ear and everything else if you practice fretless first.
    Then, for some jobs, you may find that we are not all swift as Jaco, and you reach for a fretted for additional support.

    If you are in the process of getting a new bass and you think about getting a fretless - GET IT!
  14. Brad Johnson

    Brad Johnson Commercial User

    Mar 8, 2000
    Gaithersburg, Md
    Boom Bass Cabinets, DR strings
    In addition to the above Kingston (the no pickguard model) the model with the pickguard has a street price of about $450.
  15. rickbass

    rickbass Supporting Member

    Brad- Is that used or new with no frills? (the one with the pickguard I mean; a teacher I know has a student with limited funds who is looking around)

    The one I quoted is new with the $150 flame top option.