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I think I want a six string

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by thekyle55, Oct 3, 2012.

  1. thekyle55


    Mar 14, 2012
    For the majority of my fifteen years of playing, I've been strictly a four-stringer, and think I would like to expand, mainly just for fun. I have played five stringers, and even owned a (horrible) jazz for about a year.

    Does anyone have any recommendations for relatively inexpensive six stringers? I can't run to a local music store, there aren't any worthwhile within three hours of here, so I have to pretty much rely on MF, Amazon, and classified for my equipment.
  2. lucas vigor

    lucas vigor Banned

    Sep 2, 2004
    Orange County, Ca,
    SX 6 string ursa. That way, you decide you don't like 6 string after all, you can trade it or sell it here. There will be 49,000 people interested, guaranteed!

  3. thekyle55


    Mar 14, 2012
    How often does Rondo get them? I just missed the last batch they had, or I might have bought two.
  4. curbowkid

    curbowkid Guest

    Jun 27, 2011
    Brooklyn, New York
    Ibanez sr506 can be found for a but more. Plus they are a pretty easy sell. Better electronics and construction than an SX too. I see them used for 300
  5. 6 string is fun. There are days that I miss my BTB's high C. That thing was a beast to wear, though.
    I might venture into an SX, at some point. Just for f'n around.
  6. thekyle55


    Mar 14, 2012
    I've always had decent luck with ibanez gear, and would have no problems whatsoever with one. Has anyone tried the ESP sisters on MF? They look nice, but that's one brand I've never had the chance to try.
  7. jim777

    jim777 Tarantula Lobbyist

    Aug 7, 2006
    South Jersey
    Carvin makes a nice 6er, and they can usually bad reasonably on eBay as well. 6ers are fun, no doubt.
  8. OmNomNom


    Jul 10, 2011
    Wilmington, DE
    If you want really cheap go the Rondo route.. the Douglas basses are REALLY nice for basses barely at the $200 mark. I got my Ibanez BTB776 "blemished" for $750 and absolutely love it. Even new, they're about $950 and are featured on a lot of the "Pay as you play" sites like zzsounds and AmericanMusical. Good luck! 6's are fun.. a lot more work on the left hand and the right hand needs some adjustment in technique but a rewarding experience, I think.
  9. thekyle55


    Mar 14, 2012
    I think it really would be a blast. There are a lot of upsides, and i think it would make me a better player. I really want a bongo six, but I'm not spending 1800 on something I'm not completely sold on.
  10. Chico16


    Apr 2, 2012
    Yuma, Az
    I have always played 5's and I went through a phase where I WANTED a 6 string really bad. I was really close to ordering an Ibanez SR506. I happened to be in San Diego on vacation (everyone was excited on sea world but all I could think was GUITAR CENTER) tried the bass out and honestly I didn't really like it. I'm glad I didn't order one. I feel like 6 is too much, and 4 is not enough for me nor comfortable. 5's are just right. I love my 5 strings!!
  11. two fingers

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

    Feb 7, 2005
    Eastern NC USA
    Used Carvin basses can be had for cheap. I used to have an LB76 by them. It was really well built. I just faded out of the six string thing.

    Used Carvin. Can't go wrong.
  12. punkjazzben


    Jun 26, 2008
    It's worth trying, and having a real genuine go at. It can take some time to work out what to do with the high C but, once you learn how to utilise it, it's fantastic.

    I'd try the SX, Douglas or Brice range through RondoMusic. Warwick have just brought out a RockBass Corvette 6er. The Ibanez SR506 is a good value, but maybe a bit too much cash for 'just trying it out'; the GSR206, on the other hand, can be had for around $300. The new Ibby SR256 is about $400. ESP/LTD and Dean also both have an affordable 6er in their range.

    Here's some to look at. Just because.

    Brice HXB-406 in natural bubinga. Active soapbars with active/passive switch. $325 from Rondo Music


    Ibanez GSR206. Street price in the US is around $300, but I've seen them for $250.


    ESP D-6 - $460


    Dean Edge 6 - $470

  13. bassbenj


    Aug 11, 2009
    I agree with all the advice here. Used Carvin is excellent (so long as it isn't too "vintage"...older Carvins sometimes leave a lot to be desired depending on year) My cousin has a Dean and it's OK but I'd judge it lower than the others mentioned here.

    I personally own 3 SX jazz clone 6ers. Cheap and VERY unique. Virtually nothing out there in passive jazz clone 6ers except out of the question things like Steve Bailey or customs. But when Kurt gets a load in, they sell out like hotcakes.

    If you are interested in a more modern active tone, the Ibanez is the one. I've got a SR206 and a SR506. The difference (other than price) is that the 206 doesn't have 24 frets and it isn't too even in tone from string to string, but a bit of EQ compensates for that. But the tone of either is totally killer! They both have wonderful thin necks and play very easy. Got my 206 for about $200 used. Love it. It's a totally different animal from the SX Fender clone thing. So obvious solution is to own both. (I do).

    But as Ben Wilkie says that new SR256 looks like the deal of the century for a 6 string modern bass. It's only a little bit more than my SR206 and yet has 24 frets like a SR506, and according to the sales hype has pickups specially compensated to deal with the string to string unbalance. And looks like a million too. Hey, *I* am thinking of getting one and I need another Ibanez 6er like a hole in the head!

    I don't own a Douglas/Brice, but clearly they are quality basses for the money. The only complaints I've heard is that some people say the electronics are less than stellar. But that is an easy fix later with a new preamp if you really like the rest of the bass (which usually seem quite well made).

    The guys are telling it straight. And the thing about "trying" a 6er is to get an understanding of the cross-neck scales etc. It's a different animal from a 4 banger. But once you get the 6 string thing down a 5er is a piece of cake when you don't need the extended upper range or when you want to play a bass that doesn't come in 6 strings (eg. G&L L2500 etc.)
  14. Lackey


    May 10, 2002
    Los Angeles
    Used Carvin is a great bet, unless you have an issue with quite narrow string spacing. I'm a big fan of the original Yamaha TRB-6, getting increasingly hard to find however. If you do get one though, they hold their resale since they're old yet desirable, and they have 19mm string spacing.

    I dunno about the cheap offerings, could be fine for all I know to get started.
  15. Wallace320

    Wallace320 Commercial User

    Mar 19, 2012
    Milan, Italy
    this thing up here scares me a bit

    how can a Jazz bass be "horrible"?

    The best 6er I possibly never will afford is a (former) Fender Steve Bailey fretted Jazz bass...

    And it's a jewel of a bass

    second one (and much more affordable) is MIG Clover Apeiròn Classic

  16. MoeTown1986

    MoeTown1986 Supporting Member

    Sep 14, 2010
    SoMD (Mechanicsville)
    I feel the same!
  17. Pickebass

    Pickebass Supporting Member

    Jul 12, 2004
    San Antonio, TX
    Try an ibanez 506. Good bass at a reasonable price. Seen and experienced mixed views on the rondo quality on some of the agile and brice stuff.
    Playability is the key. If you get a 6er you don't like you won't play it. Make sure string spacing is to your liking. Most likely it will be tighter than your 4. I would make spacing one of the key factors in your purchase
  18. Andy_D


    Nov 28, 2009
    Corpus Christi, TX
    Have a BTB 456 I bought of eBay in mint condition for $350 with a nice Tolex HSC. The previous owner upgraded the PU's to EMG's. I wasn't sure if I'd like it as I had a Spector Rebop 5 with EMG-HZ's and we didn't bond, their tone just rubbed me the wrong way. But my BTB 6 string just sounds Amazing. I Like it as well or perhaps better than the tone from my BTB 5 string with Barts. The fretboard is HUGE and contrary to what I thought, I adapted to it rather quickly.
  19. thekyle55


    Mar 14, 2012
    It was about a 2001 MIM. I got it for my 20th birthday, and it just didn't play well for very long. The main problem was that the neck developed a bow that would not come out, no matter what I did or who I had work on it, and the action got so high that it was almost unplayable. My feelings weren't hurt too bad when it was stolen, and the loaner bass I used until I got my Sterling was an Ibanez, I believe an SR405, which was a decent bass I could have happily kept playing.

    Narrow string spacing doesn't bother me at all. I actually prefer it. I'm not a slapper, and probably never will be much of one.

    Any of the Ibanez SR's are on my radar. I like the looks and weight of the Brice sixers, but I'm a little dubious about the build quality.
  20. Wallace320

    Wallace320 Commercial User

    Mar 19, 2012
    Milan, Italy
    I had a MIK Ibanez Soundgear SR405, a natural one with DX5 soapbars, and yes (but you hadn't explain it yet) early 2000s MIM Fenders were not what they're now

    So you didn't thought about SR506 because you're already accustomed to that kinda approach

    Well I'd suggest a Yamaha TRB1006 but has no narrow string spacin'

    Believe me, if you're on a budget, a brand new SR256 is the way to go. You're gonna resell it in a blink, if you don't cope with it, and everybody looking for a 6er to start it all up, or for an honest backup, would be interested in buyin' it

    Less than $. 300.00 and you'll have it for new (it's out these days)