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Is engelhardt em-1 a good starter bass?

Discussion in 'Basses [DB]' started by Will B., Mar 16, 2005.


  1. Will B.

    Will B.

    Mar 11, 2005
    Ontario
    I have played electric bass for a few years but have always wanted to try an upright.I have rented a Stentor and am taking lessons.The neck feels thick and have heard the em-1 has a thinner neck. Is this true and are there any other good or bad points to consider with the engelhardt line?
    And who ever come up with the term "ebonized"?
    This is my first time so be gentle!
     
  2. cabin dweller

    cabin dweller Supporting Member

    Dec 17, 2004
    Ridgeland, WI
    I own one, yes they have fast necks,it takes abit to get used to if your used to a normal thick neck. I don't think there a bad bass. Ive put mine threw hell already,(cabin weather gigin). It took a bit to open up. Putting spiro mediums on it made a huge difference. the color kinda sucks- nothin' like the pictures. 1 threw 10, I would give it 7.
     
  3. Will B.

    Will B.

    Mar 11, 2005
    Ontario
    Thanks for the info,
    I heard the engelhardt basses very in feel, not really consistent in construction. Is this true?
    There doesn't seem to be a dealer up here that has stock so I don"t get the pick of the litter.
     
  4. cabin dweller

    cabin dweller Supporting Member

    Dec 17, 2004
    Ridgeland, WI
    I think your right about the contruction verys. I think I bought a monday model. Ive heard that only 1 in 10 will be a natural "true" thumper. I dont think i won that lottery. But for a $1000 USA plywood, I think its worth it. Check out Bob Gollihurs site for best price. Cheapest ive found.
     
  5. Ed Fuqua

    Ed Fuqua

    Dec 13, 1999
    NYC
    Chuck Sher publishes my book, WALKING BASSICS:The Fundamentals of Jazz Bass Playing.
    Not to pick nits, but THROUGH and VARY.

    Anyway, in that price range there are a bunch of choices - Christopher, Shen, Wan Bernadel, etc. - you should check the STICKY at the top of basses for threads that discuss just this very (not VARY) thing.

    The other thing, coming over from electric a thin neck seems like a good choice. But the thing to bear (not BARE) in mind is that a thicker neck helps force your hand into a more "correct" approach. A thinner neck you really have to work to get away from the attempt to "squeeze" the notes. In the long run, it's gonna be better for you to develop a good physical approach to the instrument.

    Ebonized was thought up by some marketing consultant cause it sounds better than "painted black". You what else sounds better than "painted black"? An actual ebony board.
     
  6. jazzbo

    jazzbo

    Aug 25, 2000
    San Francisco, CA
    Not to tick pits, but "[y]ou KNOW what else sounds better than "painted black"?
     
  7. I started on an Engelhardt about 8 years ago. Bought it new for around 1K. After a couple of years, I had a good bass luthier do some work to it. New endpin, adjustable bridge, stripped finish from the back of the neck, even a little nut and fingerboard work. It made it more enjoyable to play, and perhaps made it sound better.

    The bass is pretty solid, terribly ugly in color (you know that ridiculous orange), easy to play, and booms pretty well. If 1 in 10 are "good ones", I think I may have got one. I played quite a few before I bought it.

    So, I think I would recommend them. I'd look for a used one that has had "upgrades" and has been "played-in". Heck, I've got one for sale right now, but it's down in Arizona.

    Z
     
  8. Ed Fuqua

    Ed Fuqua

    Dec 13, 1999
    NYC
    Chuck Sher publishes my book, WALKING BASSICS:The Fundamentals of Jazz Bass Playing.
    Would you believe "Yo, what else..."?

    Eye wood like two seigh how happy eye am yu brang that to my attenshun.
     
  9. Prior to buying an E'hardt, I played a friend's chinacrap bass. The neck was like the business end of a Louisville Slugger and it was very difficult to handle. When I got an ES-9, I thought the skinny neck was super. However, I soon began having problems with with squeezing, pain, etc. Eventually, I was taught proper technique and overcame the worst of the problem. When I moved from the E'hardt to my Cleveland with its thicker neck, things became even better. A moderately thick neck will help you maintain good left hand position.
     
  10. Jeez, who learned youse guys to talk English?
     
  11. cabin dweller

    cabin dweller Supporting Member

    Dec 17, 2004
    Ridgeland, WI
    holy crap.. I better step up my spellin a bit so that the 4.0s' will be happier readers.
     
  12. PB+J

    PB+J

    Mar 9, 2000
    arlington va
    I have one--it's paid for itself many times over and it's developed a really good sound. Mine really likes the Eurosonic light strings. I like the tone of it a lot, but I don't like the thinner neck. i agree that the thinner neck makes you work harder and works against good technique

    But the engle's are good value, in my experience
     
  13. nicklloyd

    nicklloyd Supporting Member/Luthier

    Jan 27, 2002
    Cincinnati, Ohio
    Whatever you decide to purchase, spend the additional $ and get a real ebony fingerboard, or at least a rosewood. Do not get an ebonized board, they are junk. These boards give you: crappy tone, shorter fingerboard life, and weaker necks which are more prone to warping.

    There is a bunch of great information in the "Newbie" links at the top of each Talkbass Forum section. Read them! You will get a good idea of how much basses and setup work cost, and also find out about pickups, amps, teachers, etc.
     
  14. 5stringDNA

    5stringDNA

    Oct 10, 2002
    Englewood, CO
    well, I am rather new to DB and I am currently playing on an em-1 and I really like it. It came with a rosewood board, not ebonized. I think I definately got Wednesday bass however- the volume and tone are really very good for the $900 I paid. I don't think I could have done much better for the price.
     
  15. PB+J

    PB+J

    Mar 9, 2000
    arlington va
    My englhardt has an "ebonized" board--it's rosewood, and i "ebonized" it myself with dye. It's ridiculous to catagorically state that anything but ebony gives you "crappy" tone, whatever that means. And rosewood has a long history in instrument making.

    As i said before, the engle's are a good value for the money, or can be. I've managed to get through many gigs with my crappy ebonised tone, and the soundmen who told me the bass sounded great must have had ebonized ears. Would an ebony board sound better? I don't know, I'd like to find out. Maybe. Maybe not. There's a huge degree of randomness variability in how instruments sound
     
  16. PB+J

    PB+J

    Mar 9, 2000
    arlington va
    Oops--I read my post above and it sounds a little intemperate. The engle is an inexpensive, "workingman's" bass. I'm not arguing it sounds as good as a handmade, fully carved bass. With random variation being what it is, you can get an engle that has a very good, effective, functional sound. That's all I wanted to say
     
  17. Tim Ludlam

    Tim Ludlam

    Dec 19, 1999
    Carmel, IN
    PB+J. The answer to your question is "yes" it would sound better with an ebony fingerboard. Maybe its just a testament to your technique that you bring out such good sound. It would be even better with ebony, but probably not worth the money to replace it.

    Furthermore, the ebony fingerboard lasts longer and will bring higher potential for re-sale, should you be so inclined.

    BTW - I own an Englehardt with a rosewood board as a second bass, and I am very happy with it. It just that facts are facts. Nothing personal.
     
  18. PB+J

    PB+J

    Mar 9, 2000
    arlington va
    Tim wrote: "PB+J. The answer to your question is "yes" it would sound better with an ebony fingerboard"

    Tim: Why? Why are you so sure it would sound better with an ebony board? I mean, you might be right, but what is the magic tonal quality of ebony that will make any bass sound better? what's the basis of this fact? Nothing personal, i just doubt that it's a fact that ebony always sounds better.

    First, "sounds better" is highly subjective. What's it mean?

    Second, what sounds good on one bass might not sound good on another--how many times have you seen that with strings?

    Third, wood is a highly variable material. The word "Ebony" describes a lot of different boards with different densities, different resonant frequencies, different degrees of stiffness, etc. How can they all predictably make a bass "sound better?"
     
  19. Brent Norton

    Brent Norton

    Sep 26, 2003
    Detroit, MI
    PB&J -- No one ever said "ANYTHING" other than ebony will give you crappy tone.

    Tim -- your comment that ebony will sound better (period), bothers me. Is the ebony on your main instrument that sounds better, or is the in instrument it's on? Yes, it's a subjective thing, but there are plenty of guys out there who prefer the sound, feel and look of a quality rosewood board. If ebony's where it's at for you, great. If you want to talk facts, the fact is that making such a statement is making a hell of a sweeping generalization.
     
  20. tsolo

    tsolo

    Aug 24, 2002
    Ft. Worth
    Nothing personal, but I also own an englehardt with an ebony board and an englehardt with a rosewood board. For the music I play, I like the sound of the rosewood better. I doubt, when talking about an englehardt, that the resale value of one over the other is significant.

    I see them as tools. One works better for me than the other. Wanna buy an ES9 - with ebony board? I re-acquired one that was 'sold'.