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Help me pick my next Bongo

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Joe Nerve, Mar 31, 2005.


  1. Joe Nerve

    Joe Nerve Supporting Member

    Oct 7, 2000
    New York City
    Endorsing artist: Musicman basses, Hipshot products
    I've got a buyer for my warwick (I'm waiting on his tax return) and that means I'll soon have the cash for my next Bongo. It's gonna be a 5 string and I'm goin for broke on this one. I'm still undecided on several things however.

    Should I get the MM/MM pu or MM/Jazz? What's the difference in sound from anyone who has experience with the 2? I'm concerned that the neck humbucker might be a little overkill for a B string and I'm wondering if the J pickup will be slightly warmer or rounder than the MM.

    Is it worth it to throw in a piezo??? Has anyone ever bought one with a piezo?

    I'd like to see all the color combos that anyone could post. I'm not sure what I want. I saw a white one with mint pickguard that was wild looking but I'm not sure I want something that's going to stand out all that much against the R&R black uniform - although ya'll know I don't adhere much to that. Red is another option. Stealth an option. Ohhhhh.... I'm sooo confused. Help... and I'll beat everyone to the almost now obligatory...

    "I DON'T KNOW WHAT ANYONE SEES IN THESE BASSES, THE'RE UGLY."
    "THEY LOOK LIKE TOILET SEATS."
    "THEY'RE GROWING ON ME."
    "I USED TO HATE THEM, BUT SINCE PLAYING ONE I'VE JOINED THE CLUB."

    no need to post the above. :)
     
  2. ptuckerbass

    ptuckerbass

    Sep 12, 2000
    Orlando, Fl.
    Check out Bass Central's site. They have the biggest selection anywhere and are great to work with.

    I've been studying with Dave LaRue for the last last six months, and we were talking about the Bongos after my last lesson. He said that the piezo bridge Bongos he has feel more substantial and the the piezo offers some nice flexibility options. Is it worth the $500 upcharge? I think I would go for it if you can swing it. As far as the pickups, I think I would go for the dual humbucker version.

    Good Luck.
     
  3. Joe Nerve

    Joe Nerve Supporting Member

    Oct 7, 2000
    New York City
    Endorsing artist: Musicman basses, Hipshot products
    IS THAT WHAT THE X-TRA PIEZO COSTS?!?!? NAAAHHHH. I thought it was like $200 extra?
     
  4. Figjam

    Figjam

    Aug 5, 2003
    Boston, MA
    Alright heres my input.

    From what i see, i would go with dual humbuckers OR a single humbucker. Why? because i think the single coil looks silly, and from what ive heard from owners it isnt that amazing; ive seen several up for sale. Why single humbucker? I think it must sound great and you alreayd have a dual humbucker in your stable. I think the placement of the single pup would give it a warmer, rounder tone than an SR5 but enough edge to make the B string clean and not muddy. I also think the pickup location would be prime for playing and the B string would not be floppy.

    As for color i would go with lava pearl. Yum.
     
  5. bassmonkeee

    bassmonkeee Supporting Member

    Sep 13, 2000
    Decatur, GA
    You would forego a pickup option simply because you think it looks silly? That's as bad as people who write off the Bongo entirely because of it's appearance.

    As someone who actually owns both the HHP and SCHP config, I can actually give you an informed opinion. I love them both. Don't worry about the HH being too much with a B string. My favorite tone on my HHP is the neck pickup soloed about 60%mag/40% piezo.

    And, I love the sound of my SCHP, too. The SC doesn't quite have the oomph of the H, but it has plenty of bass, and I think it's actually the more agressive of the two neck pickup options.

    If I were only going to have one Bongo, I would get the HHP. But, I have nothing but good feelings about the SCHP, and I'm glad I opted for something different on the fretless.

    I can't think of either of my basses NOT having the piezos, either. It's a $400 LIST option, and I think it added about $250 to the price. Essential? Nope. Lots of added tone options? You betcha. I even like the sounds of the piezos soloed--great with flats. :D

    I'll be picking up a 5 string single humbucker at some point--I'm just waiting for a Ltd Ed color that I want to go with my black sapphire and white Bongos. The few single Hs that I've played had a definite mid bump growl with the pickup placement being 1/4" closer to the neck.
     
  6. Worshiper

    Worshiper

    Aug 13, 2004
    New York
    I have HH combo. Never regreted it. Out of any bass I have ever played it definately allows for the most versitility in sound i have ever heard on a bass. In fact, I picked up another bass of mine yesterday to play at my church ans I felt lost. I started to get frustrated because I couldn't get the sound that my bongo produced.

    Oh, and as a side note...i think white is my favorite finish, even though I have desert gold. :D go with the white :D
     
  7. Dr. Cheese

    Dr. Cheese Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 3, 2004
    Metro St. Louis
    Man hoe, get the single humbucker Bongo. I think that is one cool looking bass and I have heard really great things about its sound. I have heard, it's a bit more Precision like compared to the Stingray.
     
  8. Folmeister

    Folmeister Knowledge is Good - Emile Faber Supporting Member

    May 7, 2003
    Tomball, Texas
    Here is mine.

    Pearl white (no longer offered) - I would seriously consider butterscotch
    Dual humbuckers
    Piezo
     

    Attached Files:

  9. Dr. Cheese

    Dr. Cheese Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 3, 2004
    Metro St. Louis
    Sorry, I meant to say Joe, not hoe! I still think the single humbucker is best, but the double does sound good. My problem is that it just doesn't sound Musicman enough for me. I would just as soon have a G&L L-2500. I think the SC/H looks good but I have never heard one.
     
  10. Mobay45

    Mobay45 The artist formerly known as "Big Daddy"

    Apr 28, 2004
    Irving, TX
    Single H, Buttercream. That would be my choice if I had a second one.
     
  11. KeithPas

    KeithPas

    May 16, 2000
    Poulsbo,Wa
    If you are currently playing a Bongo 4 H/H I would go with the Bongo 5 SC/H just for the sake of having variety of tone. If you can swing the piezo I would get that too. I have heard that the SC/H combo is a bit warmer but that it still has alot of punch.
     
  12. hippiesandwich

    hippiesandwich

    Aug 29, 2003
    San Jose
    Affiliated with Looperlative Audio Products
    I was very surprised to see this one (5 string w/piezo) not sell at the asking price:

    Bongo 5 auction

    I was very tempted... :ninja:


    Note: *** I have no affiliation with the seller whatsoever ***
     
  13. bovinehost

    bovinehost

    Dec 5, 2002
    Endorsing Artist: Ernie Ball Music Man/Sterling By Music Man
    [​IMG]

    I really and truly thought that nothing could de-throne the sapphire Black dual-H Bongo, and I'm still not quite sure anything can, but I played the above bass for the first time in a band situation, and...

    ...and I'm taking it out in public this weekend. I do like the sound of the single hummer. It's direct, simple and different than the dual pickup Bongos, although - so far - words fail me. I don't know how to describe the difference just yet.
     
  14. KeithPas

    KeithPas

    May 16, 2000
    Poulsbo,Wa
    Wow, that is a great price! I'm suprised as well that no one snatched it up. The color is a bit lackluster IMO but it still is a great looking bass with all the bells and whistles.
     
  15. KeithPas

    KeithPas

    May 16, 2000
    Poulsbo,Wa

    Jack
    That bass looks great, I like the colors.
    How is the Single pickup Bongo compared to an SR5?
     
  16. Mobay45

    Mobay45 The artist formerly known as "Big Daddy"

    Apr 28, 2004
    Irving, TX
    The cracked headstock made a lot of people afraid of that one.
     
  17. Bongos say orange all over them!
     
  18. BartmanPDX

    BartmanPDX Supporting Member

    Personally, I'd go ahead and get the piezo if you can swing it. $250 or so is a lot of cash, but it will give you a HUGE range of tonal options, and it's better to go ahead and get it up front than get GAS for one later and try to figure out how you can trade up.
     
  19. bovinehost

    bovinehost

    Dec 5, 2002
    Endorsing Artist: Ernie Ball Music Man/Sterling By Music Man
    Keith, keep in mind that I string everything with flats......

    And that I just started playing this single hummer. First impression is that it's more aggressive than the SR5. The SR5 I have is woodier and more organic, I think. The 1H Bongo is angry about something.

    Or everything, maybe.

    I'm going to play it live this weekend and I might be smarter after that, although there are never any guarantees.

    Sterling told us (the faithful) that he wished he had released the single hummers first because everyone got all caught up in the Cool Factor of the dual hummers and he thought, basically, that a real jewel of a bass, the single hummer, was being way overlooked.

    You know, he may have a point.
     
  20. KeithPas

    KeithPas

    May 16, 2000
    Poulsbo,Wa
    Oh no, now I want one, gas pains have ensued.