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how to choose a ken smith

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by dooft11, Feb 7, 2005.

  1. dooft11

    dooft11 Supporting Member

    Dec 30, 2003
    Dear all , need help
    i am looking at some Ken smith being put on ebay
    mostly bolt on. i had never owned any Ken smith, may someone help me to bring out what should i look for or what is the common problem of bolt on Smith?
    furthermore, any more pro and con about this classical brand is welcome.. thanks thanks thanks
  2. jivetkr


    May 15, 2002
    I'm not sure about the burners or the KSD jazz basses but the smiths made in PA are awesome.

    Smith makes some of the finest basses available. I have the BSR4MW & I love it more every time I play it. I cant think of any problems or cons to this bass.
  3. Pickebass

    Pickebass Supporting Member

    Jul 12, 2004
    San Antonio, TX
    Problems?!? These basses are trouble free. Unless someone really abused the instrument, it will probably be one of the best instruments you own.

    One thing I have seen, is that some people adjust the preamp settings internally and it's too loud or soft. This is easy to change. No structural problems or neck problems...
  4. The 'real' Ken Smith(as opposed to Burners- I have no experience & can't comment) are very well-made, great-sounding, super-playable & good-looking. I wish the 6 strings were spaced about 1.5-2mm(per string) wider at the bridge- then I'd still have one. Not a gripe, just my preferrence.
  5. I have a 5 string Burner bolt on and it is one of the most even sounding basses I have ever played.

    Playing with a full rock band with no compression, the G one the E string rings out and has as much punch as the G on the A string.

    Question - What does the "Burner" mean?
  6. godoze


    Oct 21, 2002

    1. jazz pups ?
    2. Soapbar pups ?

    3. what tone are you looking for ?
    4. what kind of music do you play ?

    As others have said, and i will gladly attest these are the finest basses you can get. There are no "problems" with them.

    5. Do you want graphite in the neck ?
  7. dooft11

    dooft11 Supporting Member

    Dec 30, 2003
    Dear all, thanks so much for all your sharing
    Ken Smith in my mind was a heavy bass with an sexy soapbar pickup, tones of warm sound, solid and sweet.
    When i start playing bass, there is one KenSmith hanging on the wall of the local music store, people keep talking about it,and that become a legend to me... but as time past by, more new brand came out. People seems forgot the old hero.when i visit the same store and ask about ordering a Smith. they start saying sth else.. such as Ken smith was old and not up to trend... Mr. Ken Smith doesnt entertain any second user...blar blar blar.. i am kinda sad at a certain point. so buying a Ken Smith is more like a fulfillment of a childhood dream.
    well i think burner and the ksd..is not exactly that " ken Smith ' thing to me..sorry to say that
    BigdaddyB do have a very nice Smith on hte FS list. but it is a bit too expensive for me, hope he can cut it down a little bite than the smith will be mind.
  8. jacochops


    Jul 2, 2000
    Suzhou, China
    Ken Smiths are very well made basses. My only gripes about them, and the reason I sold mine, are:
    1) Not a very deep contour on the back in the upper horn area. Not a big deal, unless you wear your bass higher on your body, as I do. The upper horn digs in A LOT on your sternum (my experience). If the factory would contour out a little bit more wood back there, then I would reorder another one in a second!
    2) Also, the bridge-position soapbar pickup is a little too close to the bridge for me. The sound is excellent, but I use the pickup like a "ramp" or tabletop for my fingers, so due to the slightly higher tension on the string (because of it's closer proximity to the bridge than a jazz-position pickup), it's a little more work. I've been a doublebassist for 22 years, and have no problem with working a 41.5" scale string, but I like a little more "looseness" under my fingers when playing electric.
    The string tension thing is minor, but does make a difference to me. Now, his BSRJ basses? The cat's meow, to me!! :hyper: That back pickup appears to be in the standard jazz position.

    In fact, I personally never thought of maple as a body wood, until I had my Smith...VERY nice tone!! I would love to try an avidore BSRJ....I've heard from quite a few people that the tone is much like alder, but visually more attractive, and with a bit more bottom to the sound.
    If you're willing to spend the scratch, they are great sounding and playing basses...very well made.
    On my GAS list...a BSRJ with an avidore core, and quilted walnut top!!