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Ibanez Gary Willis GWB1 and GWB105 Fretless 5 strings

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by rick-lionheart, Nov 4, 2005.

  1. rick-lionheart


    Aug 19, 2005

    Does anyone know the difference between these two bass's?

    They look identical both in photos (except for screws holding the ramp of the GWB105) and specifications.

    They are both shown on the Nevada (UK) website with a considerable price difference.

    I own a GWB1 and was shocked at how low the GWB105's were selling for new yet I can't see much apparent difference.

    Is it country of manufacture eg Japan versus Korea maybe?

  2. rick-lionheart


    Aug 19, 2005
    Here I am answering my own post, Ha!
    I contacted Ibanez Distribution in the UK, Headstock Music.

    I am told that the Original Gary Willis Signature Model was the GWB1 and it was made in Japan.

    There are no more of these being made.

    The newer GWB105 which is displayed on the current Ibanez UK website is in fact made in Korea.

    I'm not commenting on the relative quality at all but the origin of an instrument impacts hugely on it's value. (eg Think of all the different Fenders out there differentiated mainly by their country of origin).

    Has anyone else noticed how obscure this information can be on manufacturers' websites?

    Again...I would suspect the GWB105 is probably superb.

    I have a GWB1 and it is definately superb.
  3. Baryonyx

    Baryonyx Banned

    Jul 11, 2005
    Marathon Man
    I'm a big fan of the GW basses myself-if they came unlined I'd most likely have to pick one up myself, the tone is superb!
  4. Wolf


    Jan 30, 2004
    Well, not sure about the 105, but they also made the GWB35
    which was a price cut version of the GWB1. Only difference
    I can recall was that the body was made out of basswood.
    I don't think manufacturing costs vary all that much between
    different countries within' the orient. It's all cheap
    as far as I know. :)
    Then again I'm not really an expert on the
  5. rick-lionheart


    Aug 19, 2005
    Hi, mmmm, but haven't you noticed Far Eastern production for mass produced items is moving away from Japan and down the manufacturing food chain?
    Japanese domestic manufacture is now among the world's presige build locations.
  6. Ian Perge

    Ian Perge Supporting Member

    May 11, 2001
    Evansville, Indiana
    One fairly major difference between the GWB1 and 105 is the change to a Ebonol fingerboard as opposed to the Ebony on the earlier model.
  7. NJL


    Apr 12, 2002
    San Antonio
    you can find the older one on guitarjapan.com...i think...
  8. truckin88


    Oct 18, 2001
    Newburgh, NY
    GWB1 is a beautiful bass!

    But, I don't know about the instrument origin effecting the resale value of an Ibanez, Fender yes, Ibanez, I don't think buyers are that much hung up on it. The ATK series USA-Korean doesn't even have huge price differences on ebay, while US is preferred and gets a few more dollars sometimes, not like the MIM vrs MIA fender difference. I really think origin is a fender thing. (If every thing US built held value, what about peavey :bag: )
  9. I saw Gary Willis at a masterclass recently, and someone asked him about the bass he was playing - he said he prefers the ebanol fingerboard, the new headstock colour and the preamp format.
  10. Niskamies


    Jan 13, 2004
    I asked about the differences at a local music store. I was told that the new GWB105 is a more budget version of the GWB1. It's manufactured in Korea, and it doesn't have the ebony fingerboard. And there is about a 1000 euros difference in the retail price, here in Finland.

    Don't believe anything people say. Willis has a contract with Ibanez, and he can't be out there telling people that new design isn't as good as the old one. He has to market the new design, that what he's payed for.