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Looking At Carved but Need Opinions.

Discussion in 'Basses [DB]' started by joeyd, Apr 22, 2009.

  1. I have the opportunity to buy what is supposedly a fully carved upright bass at a good price by a company known as Vienna Strings and would appreciate any additional info. The bass is approx. 10 years old, appears to be in excellent condition judging from the photos as I haven't seen it in
    person as yet, and is a Hamburg model. It's fitted with a Fishman pickup, new adjustable bridge and as opposed to the photo on their website, is a violin body shape rather than a Gamba. The website http://www.viennastringsusa.com/products/bass/hamburg.html reads well of these instruments but I think they are actually assembled in China from what I've read which isn't a bad thing as some really fine instruments are coming from there now. I can't argue with the price of $1,000 for a decent upright but I feel I need to be a little cautious and do a bit more homework on this one. Thanks
  2. Eric Swanson

    Eric Swanson

    Oct 8, 2007
    Boston, MA

    A few humbly offered thoughts. I have no experience with these specific instruments. In general however, $1000 is quite inexpensive for a carved DB. You may be going out on a limb to assume that it is "fairly decent" without having played it or having it reviewed by a luthier.

    Whatever its' quality and condition, don't forget to include funds for the likelihood of getting a setup done by a reputable luthier, maybe some repairs, and some new strings, perhaps.

    So, without playing the bass, you may be considering a $1700 - 2000 bass when all is said and done. At that budget, there are some other options that may be worthy of consideration.
  3. drurb

    drurb Oracle, Ancient Order of Rass Hattur; Mem. #1, EPC

    Apr 17, 2004
    +1! Excellent advice.
  4. shadygrove


    Feb 14, 2008
    Marysville, WA
    Here's a thread a recent post on the Hamburg basses. Most of it is 4 or 8 years old... seems to be in an orbit that passes through TalkBass every four years :p


    Someone else was looking at one of these 3-4 months ago... you can use the search function in the basses forum to track down the thread.
  5. fdeck

    fdeck Supporting Member Commercial User

    Mar 20, 2004
    Madison WI
    HPF Technology LLC
    Yes. From what I can tell, Vienna Strings = Jim Laabs. Not to say it's a bad or good thing, but it might help when searching for info.

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