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Helping an ignorant new bassist choose his first bass - Advice? Please?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by nickirado, Jan 11, 2012.

  1. nickirado


    Dec 26, 2011
    Hello there! this is probably my second post on this forum. I want to play bass and Im eager to start. Problem is: I dont have a bass! and thats why I opened a new thread (sorry). I know there are several threads on these topics and they have helped me, but didnt make my mind yet due to my own necessities... Sorry if you find it toolong, but i did not know anyway better to express

    well, im a lefty and I play acoustic guitar for some time now, but lets just say I know the basics and something more (i consider myself an intermediate).
    After some time searching for left handed basses, the only thing I really found out was that life is really difficult for left handed people :meh: Most of what I found was extremelly expensive. Not what i need right now. Especially for me as I live in Brazil, a country where nothing imported is cheap.. What saves me is that my dad is going in february to the united states, but that is not the case, I just need to make up my mind soon. :D

    I was really looking forward to an SX bass, the SX URSA 2 MN PRO ,but back at rondo they ran out of it. it was the only cheap bass I found for left handed

    So eventually I started to think that I´d better start anew as a Normal right handed bassist. (better now than never right?errr or no?) Please, Have any of you had any experience with someone that made such change? do you think ill have too much of a disadvantage by doing this? anyways, what do you think of it? thanks, really need support on that.

    What I Need is: Advice on a new FIRST time bass for a begginer BUT that will serve me at least until Im pretty good enough to have more basses gig often and/or have a band someday...

    I was thinking at something about 300$ at most. however, if you are able to convince me that spending a little more is the best i can do, I guess I could do so...

    What do you recommend? I really love the red hot chili peppers, thus I think I would spend much time playing FUNK/PUNK this sort of things like slapping etc... But I would also like to have a bass that would play all sort of genres nicely :smug:

    What do you think, again, about the SX basses?
    what about this one ?SX Ursa 2 MN PRO NA at RondoMusic.com

    some people say I would need to set up it really well because they do not ship in great "shape" is that true? would this bass be good to me? or is it not cost-effective? thanks

    I Reaaaally do like the nice LIGHT brown color of the neck/fretboard and if possible I would like one like that... One that is goodlooking, but definitely most important is that its good quality and has good sound.

    Thank you so much in advance for any advice you may give to me, I realy need suggestions and support on this, I want it to be perfect when I get my hands on my "baby" if you understand me... And sorry for maybe taking your time hehe :(

    (btw, I will also buy an Ampeg ba108, a monster cable and two sets of strings: ghs pressurewounds & DR Fat Beams/Lo riders [dont know yet what to choose] and also this bag: )
    Attitude BG-20 GAB Black Bass Bag at RondoMusic.com

    again thanks, and sorry for the extent of this post, I just need to much help that I cant chose myself.. :smug:
  2. Legattabass


    Oct 21, 2010
  3. johnson79


    Jan 8, 2010
    Lancaster, PA
    After playing for about 13 years and having had and sold some nice basses I am now playing an SX Jazz I got from my brother. It is a decent bass, could use some upgrades, but all around a good instrument.

    A Jazz or Precision would suit you. I'm partial to a Jazz, but that's just me
  4. cchorney


    Oct 21, 2010
    Meriden, CT
    Welcome to the world of bass playing! As a natural lefty who learned bass "righty style" because it was easier for the teacher, I can tell you that you can do it this way, the disadvantage is you will have a bit of a learning curve as you reteach your hands what to do, the advantage is it is way easier to try out basses, borrow other peoples basses, buy used basses, etc, if you are playing right handed.

    I would suggest going right handed, talking to other bass players in your area and seeing what they play and if possible, seeing how those basses feel in your hands. Different basses will have different length necks, different width and thickness necks, and different sound based on whether they are "P" type, "J" type, active or passive. Try to talk to as many local bassists as possible and to try out as many basses as possible. Buying used is probably a good idea, and don't be shy about buying something cheap and ugly as long as it sounds good and feels right and holds it tuning reasonably well.

    As far as specific basses go, I have no advice other than if you decide to stay with bass, keep your first bass no matter what a piece of junk it may be, because it will eventually hold great sentimental value!

    Lastly, whatever you buy it may need setup work, but you can probably do this yourself. The setup falls into a couple of categories, all of which probably have websites or youtube videos explaining how its done, step by step.

    1) adjusting truss rod - you only need this if the neck is bowed in or out.
    2) adjusting action height - you only need this if the action is too high or too low
    3) adjusting intonation - you only need this if the open and 12th fret notes of a string aren't the same.
    4) changing strings - you probably won't need this with a new bass, and might not need this with a used one either.
  5. spigmu


    Mar 25, 2009
    Brooklyn, NY
    As a lefty who owns several instruments from Rondo, I can say that they're just about the best bang for the buck in the under $300 range. Ordering to be shipped is always a bit of a crapshoot, and you can't really compare a $300 SX with a $300 something that arrived in a music store, got set up and broken in. But apples to apples I've never been disappointed with money spent with Rondo, except, well, maybe one thing: twice I ended up swapping out the pickups (once on a cheeep lefty lap steel and once on a cheeeeep lefty Les Paul) because the stock ones were ridiculously noisy and low output, but I knew they were the cheapest versions in those models, and getting a decent playing lefty in your hands in 7/8ths the battle. When their models have the better pickups they'll note it in the info.

    Yeah, I don't know what the deal is with so many of their lefty bass being short scale. Weird. The good thing is the online catalog updates and changes weekly, so you might be in luck for a full scale bass up there next week or the following.

    Best of luck!!!
  6. khutch

    khutch Praise Harp

    Aug 20, 2011
    suburban Chicago
    You can get a left handed Squier VM "1970s" Jazz for about $330. Is that cheap enough? I've played the right-handed 5 string version of that bass quite a bit in stores as I try to decide on a 5er and it is quite a nice bass.

  7. Crater


    Oct 12, 2011
    Dallas, TX area
    Squier, Ibanez and Yamaha all make good quality budget basses. If I was a lefty I think I'd buy and learn 'left handed' but it's certainly possible for a left-hander to learn playing right handed. Guitarist Steve Morse (Dixie Dregs) is a lefty but plays guitar in the standard right-handed fashion. My dad and both my brothers are lefties, but I'm glad I'm not.

    Can I toss out some other advice too? Don't spend the extra $$ for a 'monster' cable, a regular cable is fine (Live wires, ect) and costs a lot less. I'd get a bigger practice amp if you can afford it, in my experience a 10" or 12" speaker will sound a lot better. The Acoustic B20 has a 12" and I'm very happy with mine.
  8. MakoMan


    Oct 17, 2011
    Get yourself a nice Squier. They come in left handed, they are right around your budget and if something goes wrong you can probably get the warranty honored even in Brazil. Fender is the biggest guitar company in the world and if anyone has an authorized service centre in Brazil they do.
  9. Barkless Dog

    Barkless Dog Barkless to a point

    Jan 19, 2007
    Being that you just started I would buy a used bass for two reasons-

    You will get more for your money

    If it turns out you dont like it or want to upgrade down the road, you wont loose money on it.
  10. A nice Jazz will do you /thread
  11. Andy_D


    Nov 28, 2009
    Corpus Christi, TX
    Also check out Amazon. I've seen some extremely good deals on very nice lefty basses that no ever bites on. Don't know if there's not enough demand or what but it's worth perusing because you might find a real gem for small cash.
  12. nickirado


    Dec 26, 2011
    Hey, sorry for taking too long to post in this thread, its just i didnt have enough time, but ive kept reading all of the posts daily

    First of, thanks for the advice it has helped me
    I have some conclusions as of now and also some questions:

    I havent yet decided which bass to buy, but im pretty inclined to buy a used one, as you suggested

    I will stick with both the ampeg ba108 and the monster cable because of the budget i am in. My dad has stricted a bit what i can buy :( ; but also, the cable is roughly 20 $ which isnt too bad for a quality cable... And because i will mostly play the bass in my room, bigger more powerful amps still arent as desirable... Well, mainly because the other ones are also more expensive, this is 100$ at least..

    And i have questions relating to the bass and pickups:

    And i have questions relating to the bass and pickups:

    Is this roughly a normal Jazz pickup?
    | |
    | O O O O O O O O |

    And this a precision pickup?
    | |
    | O O O O |
    | |
    | O O O O |

    Why? Whats the difference between both? Why do they sound different? And is there any other major type of pickup other than jazz and precision? Which one sounds best?

    One more: thinner width necks is generally better?

    And, any more bass model suggestions? is the Squier Special p bass (with jazz pickup) Good?

    Thanks very much xD
  13. nickirado


    Dec 26, 2011

    well, i meant

    the straight pickup is always jazz?

    and the split one precision?

    can anyone answer the other questions as well, please?

    thanks :bassist:
  14. Luckie


    Jan 1, 2010
    Northfield MN
    Save up to $500 and find a left-handed MIJ jazz.
    That'll cover you for a whiiiiiiiile.
  15. VM 70s Jazz lefty in maple.
  16. brorbjoern


    Jan 4, 2012
    about the practice amp thing, getting a higher wattage is (I find) almost always desirable (until a certain point of course) because of added headroom. I find that using 150/250 watts in my bedroom is quite nice :) and... I'm not actually playing louder than if I was using a 30 watt, it just sounds better, more dynamic. and about a bass... go used :) certain basses have ridiculously low resale prices (saw a warwick made in germany, flamed maple body solid wenge neck and fretboard going for 600 dollars once... This is what they take for a new squier classic vibe bass in Denmark, and that's made in China..)

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