1. Please take 30 seconds to register your free account to remove most ads, post topics, make friends, earn reward points at our store, and more!  
    TalkBass.com has been uniting the low end since 1998.  Join us! :)

Looking for a 5 string fretless

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Joris, Mar 14, 2000.

  1. I'm currently looking for a 5 string fretless bass. I have considered a bass kit from carvin, but as I'm European it costs gold to get it here (it'd have to be shipped on order), and the dollar it as expensive here as it's never been, so I lost interest.

    I looked at Yamaha, but didn't find a 5 str. f.l. in the 400 bucks range. Does Yamaha do options on standard basses? I am also a big fan of Ibanez (I have a SR 6000), but I don't know their fretless options. I guess I'll have to check in the store, or maybe one of you can give me a start.

  2. Rockinjc


    Dec 17, 1999
    Buy american... we need the money.

  3. eli

    eli Mad showoff 7-stringer and Wish lover Supporting Member

    Dec 12, 1999
    NW suburban Chicago
    For 400 US$, you might have to look at Dean. Nice thing about those is the scale is 35". I don't think Ibanez or Yamaha offer fretless in that price range on 5's. Look into Fender, too -- they seem to be offering TONS of options these days.

    [This message has been edited by Eli (edited March 14, 2000).]
  4. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member In Memoriam

    Yamaha recently introduced a new TRB range which I think is actually worse than the old one. Just before they did this, one of the shops in London bought up all the stock they could get of the old TRB's and sold them cheaply. At the time I tried a TRB5F - fretless 5 string. This was very good - great sound and playability. I was almost convinced,but when I came back 2 or 3 days later they had all gone. I really regret not buying it on the spot, but I tend to believe you should think about a major purchase like this.

    Anyway - if you can get a cheap TRB5F - go for it - there might be a few knocking about in Europe now - but don't get the new range.
  5. Bruce,

    I live in Holland, where even the thought biggrin. of a second hand bass (any which one) is rare. I consider myself extremely lucky to have found a second hand 6 string to my liking. I imagine that finding a 5 string fretless is somewhat hard in a country with only 15 million people, and the main music style being electronic dance, hiphop, and rap (which I don't take seriously). So, there are only a few people in this country that make music with musical instruments. Most of the people I know don't even know what a bass guitar is, let alone a 5 string, let alone a 5 string fretless!!!

    Having said that, and having searched for 2 months now, I think I will buy the first bass I come across... unseen. It happens to be a Samick XB5639BFL. Which is not bad, 'cause I started bassing on a Vantage 725B, which really is a Samick, of which I am still fond of. The only problem is... Samick doesn't make it anymore, so I hope someone will have it in stock.

    So unless someone has realllllly bad experiences with this XB range of basses, I'm gonna buy it.

    And that should be the end of it.
  6. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member In Memoriam

    Haven't heard of those, but I think I mentioned elsewhere that it might be worth your while getting over to London and having a look around. You would definitely have a choice of several fretless 5-strings in each shop and if you planned well, could get in 5 or 6 bass shops in one day, which might give you up to 50 basses to choose from - only about 2 minutes to play each though!! wink. .

    There are 2 or 3 in Denmark St. - very central and then the other two "must visit" places are the Bass Centre and the Gallery in Camden.

    Even if you don't do it this time - it's worth thinking about. Ferries and Eurostar trains are quite cheap and I have been over to Schipol on cheap flights visiting friends in Netherlands and Germany recently. I didn't see any Bass shops in Holland! But Nike trainers are cheaper.
  7. JimK


    Dec 12, 1999
    Joris-there's a 5-string unlined fretless Roscoe bass here in a Va. Beach store with your name on it smile.
    I tried to trade for this damn thing TWO years ago to no avail...everytime I go into that store, I remind them of that little fact.
    Check out www.alphamusicva.com
    There may be a photo of it...

    I just checked the link; there is a photo!
    Click on "basses" & then "Roscoe".
    More good news, Joris...they even have a "toll free" phone number!

    [This message has been edited by JimK (edited March 20, 2000).]
  8. phreak


    Mar 20, 2000
    If you want to spend the money and you can get them where you are go for the Warwick thumb 5 I just tryed one 2 weeks ago it was the best fretless 5 I have tryed

    For alot less you could go for a Tobias Killer B if you like A-sym necks
    hope this helps
  9. Just another thought along these lines - If inexpensive is the goal - the Cort Curbow 5 strings are all under $500 and heavily discounted most everywhere. I have a 4 and truly enjoy it. Since I'm a Fenderfile at heart, I didn't think I would but it has proven to be an excellent "cyber-bass" and more. These all have active electronics and a definite "boutique" look. Check one out.
  10. nanook


    Feb 9, 2000
    I'm impressed with the quality, sound and design of the Cort Curbow 5 string fretless. You can shop around and get one for about $400 but the case is an extra $65 or so.
  11. Player


    Dec 27, 1999
    USA Cincinnati, OH
    I played the Cort Curbow before I got the Carvin and IMO they're not in the same league. The Cort felt cheap and sounded thin and was noisey. The single pickup placed very close to the bridge really limits the sounds and the EQ was too noisy. I am also partial to the sound of wood though, and the Cort has none.

  12. Bruce, do you mean there are *bass* and only bass stores in London??? My admiration for the UK grew once again. In Holland, the largest music store I know has about 50-60 basses, with 10-20 used ones among them, so that's the score on bass in Holland. The last time I went to a store I didn't get strange looks asking for a 5 string fretless, all the other times (bass effects, 6 string basses and all other "odd" things) I did. The salesman however, had serious doubts about the usefulness of a low B. He said the B string sounds muffled and too low in volume. I guess he hasn't heard a low-A-below-low-B coming out of my rig then!

    Hambone, I think Holland is completely oblivious to the existance of Cort, I think. Getting it here adds about 200-300 bucks I think, so it'd be too expensive here. But hey, the Cort Curbow is definitely one of the best looking basses I ever saw!! Man.... beautiful. But it's luthite. I like wood.... a lot.... especially for a fretless.... I think biggrin.

    Oh, and I think Japanese is the better choice, the dollar being so high and the Yen a bit more affordable. In other words, Samick.

    Thanks for all replies. Although most basses cost more than I'm willing to spend on my first fretless bass, I have plenty of ideas now. I'll consider them if I like playing fretless enough to spend more money on it to get a higher quality bass. But I just as easily might decide to build a bass myself.

  13. I seem to have posted twice. Delete, then.

    [This message has been edited by Joris (edited March 23, 2000).]
  14. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member In Memoriam

    Yes there are at least 3 "bass only" stores in London and a couple of other places which have bass "floors". The Bass centre in Wapping has hundreds of basses and is always being visited by pros from Europe and even the US when they are in town!
  15. SmartLobster


    Mar 26, 2000
    Jeeee....5 string fretless, huh? Well, that matches the Warwick this site is givin away...who knows...ya might just get ut.

    Speaking of fretless, how the heck can people play them...i practicly rely on those stoopid dots to guide me...i'd be screwed without em...i'm evil like that.
  16. rickreyn


    Jun 16, 2000
    Lutz, Florida
    I have an opportunity to trade my 4-string for a Yamaha TRB5F. Is this the good one or the dud? The guitar was purchased about 18 months ago in the states.
  17. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Total Hyper-Elite Member Gold Supporting Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
    Boy, have I got the bass for you!

Share This Page