i was thinking about an Acoustic

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by yahtzee1280, Jul 16, 2008.

  1. I think im going to get a Acoustic-Electric bass. I found the Fender Victor Bailey Signature Acoustic-Electric Bass, i played it at GC and loved it but was wondering what other good Acoustic basses are out there in my price range... ($1000 and under) and what do you guys think of the Victor Bailey model?
  2. it really depends on what you are looking for.. Do you want to play completely unplugged with acoustic guitars? Alot of people consider ABG to be a flawed instrument in that the body is too small to sustain the note and achieve a volume that you will find acceptable.

    I went around looking at the expensive models but none of the ones I played were that great.. so I ended up just getting a Michael Kelly Club Custom 5 scratch n' dent deal for like $300. The Michael Kelly's are a good value IMO but they quality control is pretty poor. You might want to check out the Dragonfly as it is made with better wood and sounds a little better than the Custom.

    If you want to play completely unplugged, the only option that I really know of that is loud enoguh is the Tacoma Thunderchief.. I think the street price is about $1400. The body is huge though.

    Like I said, IMO none of them are that great. Especially the 5 stringers - they all have super floppy B's, getting tension on the bridge to keep them in tune is a pain, etc.. That's why I just went with a cheapo.. gets the job done without the buyer's remorse :)
  3. Lalabadie

    Lalabadie Guest

    Jan 11, 2007
    If you can, try a Dean Playmate. The price is ridiculously low for a bass with such volume and tone (and my 5-banger plays just as well as my favorite electric).
  4. slyjoe

    slyjoe Supporting Member

    Jun 28, 2008
    Valley of the Sun (AZ)
    I just picked up an Olympia - import knockoff of the Tacoma. Like trancefusion said, the body is BIG though. But well within your price range. It seemed to have the best sound unplugged. I have a Tacoma case for it which adds to the price, but I think you can get a new Olympia for around $400.
  5. Captain_Arrrg


    Jan 23, 2008
    Mountains of Colorado
    Endorsing Artist: Spector Basses
    All of them are great basses, but if you can get a new Club Deluxe with a Variable Set Neck- Buy it!
  6. CraigG


    Mar 14, 2006
    Mechanicsburg, PA
    Tacoma Thunderchief. I saw a new one on Ebay for $800...http://cgi.ebay.com/TACOMA-CB10C-TH...oryZ2385QQssPageNameZWDVWQQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItem

    Have only played a couple Michael Kelly's. Although I know they're fairly popular I wasn't very impressed having owned a Tacoma Thunderchief for a while. Looks like the Thunderchiefs could be challenging to find. When Fender took over Tacoma it seems they snuffed out a bit of the brand's availability and presence.
  7. peabody

    peabody Supporting Member

    Oct 31, 2002
    La Crosse, WI
    I went through the same thought process myself. I decided I wanted an acoustic bass...just to play around with more than anything. I finally decided on the Victor Bailey, mostly because of what I've read about the neck. Most of the ABG's I tried had a wider neck, and since I'm thin neck guy, I heard the VB's had a thinner profile, similar to a Jazz.

    While I've heard great things about the Thunderchiefs...and also great things about some Guild and Martin models out there...I was thinking my main reason for buying one was to have something lying around so I could grab it and practice while watching TV or when I'm just sitting around.

    In addition to the thinner neck, the VB also has a smaller, thinner body, so I thought it would suit my needs better. While it probably won't project like a Thunderchief when it's unplugged, I've heard some pretty good reports on the VB when it's wired. Unfortunately, I can't give you any hands on reviews yet, because the one I bought is in transit as we speak.

    Good luck with your decision.....
  8. I went with the Dean. The Michael Kellys sound better but I only use this about three or four times a year and for the price it is hard to beat.
  9. Philbiker

    Philbiker Pat's the best!

    Dec 28, 2000
    Northern Virginia, USA
    If you're looking for something that will be nominally functional as a purely acoustic instrument, Tacoma Thunderchief - I recommend the version with the Fishman Prefix Plus preamp. May break the bank by a few bucks. The cheaper electronics thunderchiefs are nice also.

    If you want great acoustic tone and don't mind being plugged in, the Godin A4 is a winner.
  10. sailorbill


    Jul 25, 2008
    I have a Michael Kelly Dragonfly and also an Aria Pro acoustic bass(can't remember the modal), but the Kelly blows it out of the water. Its great for practice, has a really warm,rich sound and i have even played a few session unplugged in small bars and it did the job.
  11. pendaren


    Jul 29, 2008
    I mainly play a Washburn AB-35 and like the thunderchief, ebay or used. I suspect you could find a nice one in decent condition without a lot of hassle, perhaps even the 34 if you don't want Five strings. Haven't tried that Victor Bailey one yet. I suspect I'd end up disappointed like I always do with fender.
  12. Baird6869

    Baird6869 RIP Gord Downey. A True Canadian Icon.

    I tried the Victor Bailey (expensive for a non-MIA bass IMO), a Michael Kelly, an Ibanez, a Martin and ended up buying a Morgan Monroe. The Martin was by far my favorite but it was over $2000 which is out of my price range for an acoustic bass.

    The Morgan Monroe is amazing for the price. Nothing else touches it for $429 IMO. It is well made, loud, easy to play and nice looking. It sounds great acoustic or plugged in. It does have a large body though.

    Here is an example of one currently on eBay.....
  13. BassBob185


    Oct 25, 2007
    Rocking Chair
    I've owned several acoustic basses so beware of the following problems:

    Head dive especially with a Washburn.

    If your not used to playing an acoustic the sharp edge of the body will dig into the forearm of the arm you pick/finger with.
  14. ggunn


    Aug 30, 2006
    Austin, TX
    My Tacoma has considerable neck dive. I got a 1 lb SCUBA weight and attached it to the tail end of my strap. Problem solved.
  15. Medic579


    Dec 18, 2009
    I've been wanting an acoustic bass for some time but just wasn't willing to pay what people were wanting. I found one a friend was selling for 275 a Morgan Monroe creekside and it really seems to be a great little bass. And for 275 I'm stoked.
  16. Kukulkan61

    Kukulkan61 Inactive

    Feb 8, 2011
    Northern Arizona
    I wanted an ABG at one time but after everything I read on here and much research I decided it was pointless because there isn't one that can be heard without being amplified,so I'll just stick to my P basses...after all the whole idea to me about having an ABG is to play unplugged like Acoustic guitars, ABGs are a waste of money and pointless IMO.....
  17. BazzTard

    BazzTard Inactive

    save your money, buy a lil practice amp to leave in your TV room. Play your normal bass thru it.
    ABGs are really awkward to play sitting on a couch, you'll have to sit on the edge of the couch, slumped over the basses huge backside,the first 5 frets are a long way away due to where the bass sits on your leg.

    Oh,and they sound like crap.Can't be heard over 2 acoustics unless you play heavily with a pick,in which case it just sounds like another acoustic guitar.

    I wasted $450 on one. Won't touch it ever again,ever. I play with two acoustic guitars,and use my P. Sounds like a bass,as my bandmates noticed when I chucked the ABG away lol.
  18. GKon

    GKon Supporting Member, Boom-Chicka-Boom

    Feb 17, 2013
    Albuquerque, NM
    I've been playing an Oscar Schmidt for the last 13 years. It's a great A/E bass as far as feel, tone, playability and sound.
    I've never heard anyone else talk about them. It's a great bass, and inexpensive.

    Thin neck, very sweet sound unplugged and very good tone plugged in. I have an earlier model with only volume and tone knobs.
    The newer ones have Volume, Tone and a 3 band EQ. The main reason I bought it is it's surprisingly loud for an A/E bass with a small
    body. I play with fingers and with a pick. I've played it with 1 acoustic guitar without issue in volume difference. With 2 guitars and/or drums, you may need to plug in.

    It's my go-to bass at home when I'm practicing new songs for my band and don't feel like going through the rigamarole of plugging in.
    I just grab it and play. It's traveled with me from California, to New York and now to Greece and no problems.
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