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Help me choose my backup 5 stringer.

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Bob Clayton, Jul 13, 2017.

  1. Bob Clayton

    Bob Clayton Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Aug 14, 2001
    Philly Suburbs
    Been looking at some used basses for my backup bass and I've narrowed it down to a few I've found on reverb, gc, tb, etc. My main bass is a Stingray 5 H. So I'm used to narrower spacing, 1 pickup, and 34" inch scale, but I'm
    not opposed to branching out. Ideally I won't play this bass much anyway.

    G&L Tribute L-2500
    Squier VM Precision
    Squier VM Jaguar
    MTD Kingston Heir

    Let me jump the gun and say no Sire or Ibanez. Someone's bound to suggest it so I'm going to say no off the bat.
  2. Nunovsky


    Sep 4, 2004
    From your list, I'd choose the G&L.
  3. James Collins

    James Collins

    Mar 25, 2017
    Augusta, GA
    From the list I would also choose the G&L.

    My personal preference would be to have a pretty different bass as a backup, so I could get a chance to enjoy something different. I mean no one noticed when Robert Trujillo is playing a Warwick Streamer with jazz pickups when the original was on a Rickenbacker. So why would it matter so much what your backup is, as long as you can play it.
    Ant Illington and Bob Clayton like this.
  4. mesaplayer83


    Jun 27, 2017
    I would take a hard look at a Peavey Foundation 5 from GC's used gear pages - then add a MIM Fender bridge for around $35, and you'll have a great playing and sounding 5er that feels just like your SR5... I say this because that's what I have, in addition to a Sterling 5 HS - which replaced an SR5 HH... I end up playing the Peavey more than the EBMM, because it plays and sounds great, and I don't have to worry about dinging it up at smaller gigs or rehearsals
  5. Thornton Davis

    Thornton Davis

    Dec 11, 1999
    Have you considered a Schecter 5 string?

  6. mesaplayer83


    Jun 27, 2017
    The neck width and profile on those Foundation 5s is nearly identical to EBMM 5ers, and the fretwork and build quality on those is typically excellent... Tone-wise, you can get quite a bit of variance with the pickup volumes - but the basic character is a bit mid baked in like a Spector - and works really well in a band setting... Those pups look like soaps, but they're actually fairly hot single coil passives - in fact, it's the only passive 5er I've ever liked...
    G RICH 5 and Bob Clayton like this.
  7. mesaplayer83


    Jun 27, 2017
    That would be another similar feeling option - I also have a Schecter Hellraiser-5, but prefer the Foundation 5 over it, although the Hellraiser is prettier, lol...
    Bob Clayton likes this.
  8. garp


    Feb 7, 2009
    Connecticut USA
    Yet another vote for the G&L.

    The MTD Kingston Heir 5 is 35" scale. Some folks find it to be an easy transition from 34" but unfortunately, it wasn't for me. Otherwise, I found the Heir to be an outstanding instrument.
    wmmj, NigelD and Bob Clayton like this.
  9. Ampslut


    May 15, 2017
    I play a 5 string H like you and my backup is a Ibanez ATK305. Very similar neck dimensions and string spacing and single pup in the SR5 position. I know you said "no Ibanez" but, you may have overlooked this bass.
    wmmj, InhumanResource and Bob Clayton like this.
  10. mesaplayer83


    Jun 27, 2017
    I just remembered the Schecter 5er is 35" scale, though - doesn't bother me, but may make a difference to some
  11. TheLowDown33

    TheLowDown33 Supporting Member

    Jul 4, 2009
    I have a VM Jazz as my "backup" bass and it's a beast. I dropped in some dimarzio ultra jazz pickups and it sounds stellar. It definitely has that grindy jazz sound. My only issue with it is weight...holy hell that thing is heavy.
    RyanJD likes this.
  12. Bob Clayton

    Bob Clayton Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Aug 14, 2001
    Philly Suburbs
    I'm fine with a 35" scale bass, I've owned them and played them with no issues. Was just saying what I usually play. I was close to pulling the trigger on a Hellraiser 5 actually, but someone beat me to it. I tried another 5er, I forget the model bit it was a P/MM config, I was largely unimpressed.
  13. Bob Clayton

    Bob Clayton Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Aug 14, 2001
    Philly Suburbs
    Plenty of 5 string Jazzes around, unfortunately I can't get on with the body.
  14. Bob Clayton

    Bob Clayton Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Aug 14, 2001
    Philly Suburbs
    I mainly meant "new Ibanez" as there's nothing coming out from them currently that can be found for <$500 that particularly impresses me.
  15. two fingers

    two fingers Opinionated blowhard. But not mad about it. Gold Supporting Member

    Feb 7, 2005
    Eastern NC USA
    Most who suggest Ibanez basses go for the SR or SRX series. Do yourself a favor and check out an Ibanez ATK. If you like the MM you will like the ATK. It's a different beast altogether from the rest of the Ibanez stable. This one sold, but it's what I'm talking about.
    Ibanez ATK 305 5-string bass w/ hardshell case

    That being said, to get back to your requirements of no Ibanez, try looking for a used Music Man SUB 5. Tons of bass for the money.
    pudgychef likes this.
  16. My main is a stingray 5 H (1990) got a MIM jazz 5 in 1995 as back up and have a affinity J5 also. No problem with spacing differences.
  17. mesaplayer83


    Jun 27, 2017
    I have one - the main reason why I prefer The Foundation 5 over it is that with it's Bart electronics, the Schecter is a little more "polite" in a band mix than I care for, although I could see how that could appeal to some... The main reason why I've kept it is that my GF loves the way it looks, and other females at gigs have taken to it as well - it does look really sharp under stage lighting

    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 13, 2017
    Nunovsky likes this.
  18. mesaplayer83


    Jun 27, 2017
    I've probably owned over a dozen different Ibby 5ers, and the one that impressed me the most was the sr905 - although it is a neck thru with a concave shaped back... It was more comfortable than I would've thought - but that may be off putting to some

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