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It's that "I need help choosing a new bass!" time again...

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by vometia, Feb 22, 2004.


Suggestions for next bass

Poll closed Mar 7, 2004.
  1. Fender US Deluxe Precision

    15 vote(s)
    22.7%
  2. Fender US Jazz FMT

    9 vote(s)
    13.6%
  3. MM Stingray (fretted)

    18 vote(s)
    27.3%
  4. MM Stingray (fretless)

    6 vote(s)
    9.1%
  5. Rickenbacker 4003

    13 vote(s)
    19.7%
  6. Gibson Thunderbird

    10 vote(s)
    15.2%
  7. Alembic Thingy

    5 vote(s)
    7.6%
  8. Something else (please specify)

    5 vote(s)
    7.6%
  9. Stick with the Columbus P and TRB4II and spend the money on the missus

    4 vote(s)
    6.1%
Multiple votes are allowed.
  1. vometia

    vometia Formerly cbh

    Nov 1, 2003
    Oxford
    [Oops, second attempt, sorry about that]

    I'm not sure if it's quite the done thing to create yet another topic with yet
    another poll just for some equipment advice, but having done loads of reading and research on the subject I'm now just going round and round in circles and need some help!

    To cut to the chase I'm thinking of getting my 3rd bass, although in real terms it'll be my first "normal" bass; of the two at present, the Columbus P has a nice sound but the poor old thing lacks a certain something in terms of playability, and my TRB4II is destined for BEAD tuning.

    In terms of what I'll be playing, potentially lots of stuff but probably gravitating toward late '70s and early '80s punk, rock and new wave type music. My "amp for life" is an Ashdown ABM 500 combo with 2x10" speakers.

    Of the options, I guess that a decent P should be top of the list: my bass heroes, Phil Spalding, JJ Burnel and Steve Harris are all Precision guys. It was Spalding's sound that corrupted me into the world of the bass-player in the first place.

    Then there's the Jazz. I've always hated the way it looks but I can't fault the new FMTs and those "in the know" always say they're so much more versatile than the Ps. Who am I to argue with the likes of Jaco?

    Next is the Stingray. A bit like the Jazz, those "in the know" sometimes suggest it's a step up from the humble P, and it certainly has a reputation for more reliable build-quality. And I think Spalding sometimes used one as well. Trouble is do I choose a fretted one to go for the traditional sound and make it my main bass, or do I get a fretless so I can pretend to be Pino Palladino or Nick Beggs and keep it as an "occasional" (but something that would still be potentially more entertaining for me at least).

    The next one is a bit of an enigma for me, the Rickenbacker 4003. I never liked its looks and in spite of being a bit of a Motörhead fan and liking Lemmy's style of playing, I always hated the tone he got out of it. Same with Alan Davey. Then again a lot of bands I liked, right from the days of '70s punk with The Jam to the latest flavour of the month Franz Ferdinand sound pretty damn good.

    Or I could just be silly and bankrupt myself on an Alembic; everyone says they're great so they must be. If I get enough pennies left over from flogging my house (don't worry, it's not just for GAS, I'm not _that_ dedicated!) I might even have enough for a pair of basses or one fairly modest "luxury" model.

    I'll leave it there before this post reaches epic status. I promise to post pictures once I acquire something new.

    Chris.
     
  2. tplyons

    tplyons

    Apr 6, 2003
    Madison, NJ
    For punk you can't go wrong with a P-bass, actually, you can never go wrong with a P-bass. Jason Newsted of Metallica records with them, Jane's Addiction, the Clash... Everyone's recorded with a Precision or something similar, so the tone always works out :)
     
  3. I will go ahead and agree with the last post... p=punk in my mind. I got a black p bass as my first bass, and I love the thing. Good full, thick sound. Somebody please help me with this, but I thought John Paul Jones played a P as well. Someone please correct me if that isn't the case.

    As far as the jazz bass is concerned I also have one of those, and I gotta say that yes, I do think they are more versatile. I love the tone of both, but for me the jazz works better. From what you have written, it does sound the p would work better for you, hence me talking about it first, and the jazz second.

    Fun Fact! (I am so lame... :smug: )
    The Stingray was originally designed to be the next generation of the P bass when Leo Fender was getting started on it. Dont know all the details behind it, but that is what I am told. The 'rays are great for slap, and bad for finger style (for me anyways)... so if you aren't going to be slapping, I would steer clear. Some people play finger style on the Stingrays and make it work very well-I dont however- different strokes for different folks I guess.

    Hope some of that is useful
     
  4. Lewk

    Lewk

    Oct 19, 2003
    soupy112, it's definitly different strokes, cos when i play fingerstyle on a stingray it sings to my ears! it gives me the sound i looooove :)


    but cbh, it's most definitly personal opinion. but i've voted ray.
     
  5. Knew that was comin'! I just didn't think it would be so fast... I think my problem is just the feel of it, rays always felt alittle different to me... I cant put my finger on it (pun very much intended). Besides, my fingerstyle is kinda sub-par which I am sure has something to do with it. But hey, flea always liked the ray.... for whatever that is worth.
     
  6. aww crap, almost forgot to also say.... I abso-freakin'-lutly love the stingray tone, it really is just a playability thing for me. Cant beat that beefy sound, I just dont know if it is right for purposes stated... I mean don't mean to keep ramblin' on repeating myself, it is just...

    ...ok, I'll shut up ;)
     
  7. Figjam

    Figjam

    Aug 5, 2003
    Boston, MA
    Id go with a Stingray. Rick is close though.
     
  8. Get a Geddy Lee sig Jazz.

    That was the fill in option.


    Kaz :rolleyes: :smug:
     
  9. Aaron Saunders

    Aaron Saunders

    Apr 27, 2002
    Ontario
    Definitely the P-Bass, IMHO. Maybe a jazz with a series/parallel mod would do it if you went for the jazz for whatever reason.
     
  10. ThunderBoomer

    ThunderBoomer

    Feb 22, 2004
    I voted for the P. What the hell, everyone with a bass arsenal needs a P in their arsenal.

    I still, after all these years, can't get used to the "odd key down" on MM's although I am sure they are fine instruments.

    The Thunderbird hangs wrong on me, the first fret is too far out to the left. Although if it works for that Donnas chick . . .

    Nice to see a JJ Burnel fan out and about. I loved those early Stranglers records with the "barracuda bass" sound. Just a P with a pick and the right EQ.
     
  11. tplyons

    tplyons

    Apr 6, 2003
    Madison, NJ
    Exactly. ;)

    And the G string on the bottom just makes sense to me. I prefer a 3+1 headstock to a 4 in line.
     
  12. I personally play a jazz bass, but my GAS is for a stingray. I think for the styles you mentioned, either a precision or a stingray would work quite well. I voted stingray. Oh, and John Paul Jones played a jazz bass. Makes me love mine even more.
     
  13. Mattski

    Mattski

    Jan 6, 2003
    Cleveland, OH
    You have got quite the variety of choices.

    I voted fretted Stingray because it sounds like you already have the P thing covered. (I have no idea what a Columbus is, but since you are keeping it versus upgrading, I'll assume there is something between you two).

    I am a big P fan, but if you are expanding your horizens the Stingray is a good departure bass. I have two jazz basses that I have a hard time warming up to(although they have their uses), you already said you don't even like Rickies so why bother (I find them a little one dimensional myself) and then you leap up to an Alembic (in price, anyway) which, IMO, you should have a specific need or desire for before you buy.

    What ever you end up with, I hope you enjoy it. I am envious of anyone going for the next one.

    PS: Spend a little something on the missus anyway. ESPECIALLY if you buy a new bass. :D
     

  14. Thanks, good to know :smug: :bassist:
     
  15. Every bass player needs at least one good P-Bass
     
  16. vometia

    vometia Formerly cbh

    Nov 1, 2003
    Oxford
    Many thanks to everyone who's taken the time to reply or vote so far! I've enjoyed all your comments; keep 'em coming, this stuff is really helpful!


    This one is certainly way ahead on the strength of the replies, and the US Deluxe P has been hovering near the top of my list for quite a while. Unfortunately the "it's only a P and this novel one is much more, er, novel" has always kept it in 2nd place so far, but part of me knows that once I get around to buying one, it'll probably become my nº1 bass.


    As far as I'm able to tell, it's a '70s probably Japanese clone. I think that the quality varied a lot as apparently they could be dreadful, although mine is certainly one of the best examples of a budget P that I've encountered so no real complaints for what it is; but the action could be a bit slicker and the instrument a bit lighter!


    I see that this one has only got two votes so far. The TalkBassers' collective GAS can be unromantic at times. :D

    So it seems that of the repliers the P is the top recommendation whereas the silent majority seem to like the fretted Stingray. I suppose I could try to get both! I also notice that the Rickenbacker seems to have got itself a lot of recommendations, I'd quite like to hear more about that one as well.

    Cheers,

    Chris.
     
  17. Flatwound

    Flatwound Supporting Member

    Sep 9, 2000
    San Diego
    Dude, you must really skip the new bass, and spend the money on the missus. After all she's had to put up with, she deserves it.






    :p Hah! Kidding of course, this is a bass board! But a P certainly wouldn't be a bad thing to have. Buy the wife a card or something.
     
  18. I have a p-bass with a jazz neck, and a p/j pickup config. Best of both worlds. Sounds are easy to change. Mine is a MIM and I don't know if they make an american version but I would check on that.
     
  19. pc

    pc

    Apr 4, 2000
    Montreal QC
    As stated above P=punk. Your P option is an MIA dlx, which has a powerbucker in the bridge position, giving you a sort of MM tone (ok not THAT much, but similar) and making it more versatile.

    This would be MY bass, if the P neck wasn't so thick.

    [​IMG]
     
  20. P. Aaron

    P. Aaron Supporting Member

    Good Luck trying to choose. I have a new (in) 2002 MIA P-Bass that I love. It's a typical Standard P with a 3-tone sunburst, rosewood board, and tortishell guard with the chrome covers. A '62 look-alike...I am smitten.