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Looking to get a new bass - need some advice

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Pete528, Mar 15, 2013.


  1. Pete528

    Pete528

    Aug 13, 2007
    What's up, everybody.

    I've recently come across a little extra money and decided I'd treat myself to a new bass. For years I have been playing a Fender Jazz Bass (the Geddy Lee model, to be specific) and while it's still awesome and in great shape, I was thinking about getting something new just to help inspire my playing again. I've been on this site long enough to know that you guys know how that goes ;)

    Anyway, I'm looking at a bunch of basses, but I am wondering what the most fun to play ones are. What I'm really interested in is a bass with a distinct tone and good build quality. It would also be nice to have something that is a bit different than my Jazz. If it matters at all, I play all genres of music, my three favorites being funk, jazz, and rock.

    My options:

    1. Sterling by Music Man Ray 34: I've always wanted a MM Stingray but they're too expensive and I don't feel comfortable spending that much on a bass (I'm not professional, after all). The Ray 34s look awesome but are they just a knock off?

    2. Gibson SG Faded: It's in my price range and it looks really cool. I also am interested in the short scale but don't really know much about Gibson guitars.

    3. Warwick Rockbass Corvette: Warwick basses look really cool, and I love what some artists have done with it (like Flea!). This looks affordable but I'm afraid it might be bad quality.

    4. Something else? I don't know too many different kinds of basses, is there something else that's good (preferably under $1k)?

    Thanks for any help :D
     
  2. why not think about a 5 or a 6 string bass!? or a fretless! how about that!?
     
  3. Pete528

    Pete528

    Aug 13, 2007
    I've never played a 5 string bass and it's a little intimidating, since I'm not even that great with 4 strings lol. To me, 6 strings sounds kind of unnecessary as well.

    Fretless actually sounds extremely interesting... I never considered that! Any suggestions?
     
  4. mpdd

    mpdd neoconceptualist

    Mar 24, 2010
    LA
    i really like my L2k, my sb-2, and i like to have a tricked out jazz around

    to contrast the geddy - more strings? active? humbuckers? semi hollow? etc.

    play a bunch of stuff and have fun, i personally am a big fan of the used tb classifieds for saving cash and getting something that isn't a dud
     
  5. Pete528

    Pete528

    Aug 13, 2007
    Maybe I should look into an active bass or something. Sounds cool.

    I'll probably go to a music store and try some stuff out next week. TB classifieds seem pretty legit but I don't really want to deal with used stuff online since a friend of mine works at a music store and can get me stuff at cost ;)
     
  6. SteveC

    SteveC Moderator Staff Member

    Nov 12, 2004
    North Dakota
    If you like your Geddy Lee (I like mine as well - great passive jazz sound) maybe go for an active bass, maybe with "soapbar" pickups to change it up a bit.

    Fretless is also a great suggestion. While waiting for my fretted Roscoe to get built, I played my fretless Roscoe for everything. It worked really well. Fretless doesn't have to necessarily sound like a fretless.
     
  7. Jim Carr

    Jim Carr Dr. Jim Gold Supporting Member

    Jan 21, 2006
    Denton, TX or Kailua, HI
    fEARful Kool-Aid dispensing liberal academic card-carrying union member Musicians Local 72-147
    I recommend a Lakland 44-01 or 44-02. Find a used one that is stock. They are great sounding and feeling active basses. I also recommend the five string versions, the 55-01 and 55-02. They feature a 35" string length and have excellent sounding low B strings.

    Budget???
     
  8. JCheung

    JCheung

    Jan 25, 2013
    Herndon, VA
    I highly recommend the sbmm basses. I've played several and own a ray34 now. I'm not going to say there absolutely no differences but the tone is nearly spot on to its American counterpart and plays like a dream. If you're after a MM tone try a ray34. Also, sbmm just launched several new colors and models including a fretless ray.
     
  9. Pete,
    You were wondering which of these basses is the most fun to play? IMO, they are all fun to play! When it comes to choosing your "weapon" you should first consider yourself and what you like, not someone else and what they like! Then consider your budget and get the best bass for you that you can afford ;) There are a lot of options out there and many choices can be intimidating! When it comes down to it, bass choice is a personal opinion of "best"... What might be the "best" for me wouldn't be the "best" for you and vice a versa... My suggestion is to "go shopping" and test a few out! All different kinds, manufacturers and after that you can narrow down the search a little bit. Also, the internet is a beautiful reasearching tool to check out instruments as well. If you're looking for something that doesn't sound like anything else out there, that can be found on almost any instrument since basses have individual "voices" (which are also like opinions) where how the bass is EQ'd and the amp that is powering the sound can make all the difference in the world. Experiment and go have fun! After all, that is what it's all about right? Of the choices you have listed, I'm partial to Warwick (I have 3 of them) and would recomend it because I love their sound, build quality, etc., etc., etc... The Rockbass series are affordable but they aren't cheap, if that makes any sence. I don't have much experience with the Music man series but I know they are very nice! Same for the Gibsons... Those basses aren't for me but maybe they are for you? Other basses to look at are the Ibanez and the Peavey basses... And don't over look Yamaha either. I know from experience that the Ibanez and Peavey basses have thin necks and many with active pick-ups and good onboard preamps you can dial in tone with... And many of these manufacturers basses can be had for under a grand, especially 4 string models. Fretless instruments are really cool and really fun to play arround with if you're looking to get "inspired" by something new but with the fretless can also come frustrations with intonation... Something to consider with fretless. With lots of choices out there, again, go shopping and have some fun!

    ~Insomnatic
     
  10. pghjeeper

    pghjeeper

    Mar 11, 2011
    What about a good old fashioned p bass? You can get a highway one for 500.00 if you search and possibly a made in Japan fender, they have the best necks of the late 80's early 90's basses, IMHO
     
  11. SirMjac28

    SirMjac28 Patiently Waiting For The Next British Invasion Gold Supporting Member

    Aug 25, 2010
    The Great Midwest
    +1
     
  12. Depending upon your budget, the vm squier fretless is awesome for the price and you can throw in pickup, bridge, pre upgrades if you have cash left!

    btw, my geddy lee has a hipshot Dtuner, sadowsky humcancelling pickups and a 3 band audere peamp which makes the bass 100 times more versatile really! just throws new life into the bass! you could think about that!
     
  13. SteveC

    SteveC Moderator Staff Member

    Nov 12, 2004
    North Dakota
    And I have a Geddy Lee for sale... :)
     
  14. mrjim123

    mrjim123 Supporting Member

    May 17, 2008
    Elkhart, IN
  15. georgestrings

    georgestrings Banned

    Nov 5, 2005
    I would strongly recommend you take a look at the SUB Sterling halfway down this page at $499 - these are great players that aren't all that common, and are sure to gain value besides... Furthermore, it has a neck that's very similar to your GL, and is made in the USA... If I didn't already have one, I'd be all over this...

    http://used.guitarcenter.com/usedge...y=38&q=music man&distance=100&sort=0&dir=desc


    - georgestrings
     
  16. TheFenderBender

    TheFenderBender

    Jun 27, 2012
    Schecter Stargazer 4's are pretty nice.
     
  17. Wallace320

    Wallace320 Commercial User

    Mar 19, 2012
    Milan, Italy
    You can buy both Sterlin' by MusicMan Ray34 for around $. 600.00 and Warwick RockBass Corvette fretless for around $. 400.00 :cool:
    I'm serious

    Cheers,
    Wallace
     
  18. Malak the Mad

    Malak the Mad Over the River and through the Looking Glass Supporting Member

    If you like the shape and feel of a Jazz body, but want a different sound altogether, see if you can try out a Blacktop Jazz. It sports a pair of Blacktop Precision pickups, instead of the usual Jazz pickups. I tried one out and it's a freakin' cannon. I hope to make one mine someday…y'know, just 'cause.

    One other thing is it's price. It usually goes for $500 brand new.
    http://www.fender.com/basses/jazz-bass/blacktop-jazz-bass
     
  19. Maxdusty

    Maxdusty

    Mar 9, 2012
    Michigan USA
    It would be nice to offset a Fender-style bass with one that's different enough to offer an alternative sound to what you have already. Nothing wrong with the Fender sound, but I agree with some posts above about getting an active with dual soapbar pickups. It's akin to having a Fender Strat and a Gibson Les Paul. Both good for different kinds of sounds.
    That being said, you can go to Guitar Center online, go to the used bass section and order anything from there regardless of what store carries that item. Shipping is only about $20 and there's a wide variety of basses to choose from. Used is good because you'll definitely get more bass for your money plus they have a 30 day return policy. You can find some hard to find basses, some which are getting hard to find as they are discontinued. Some other basses I would recommend are Tobias (Growlers are $699), Spectors (Rebop or Euros go for about $699), Ibanez (SR700 goes for $499.99).
    A REAL MusicMan Stingray goes for $899.99 and above, a Bongo goes for $999.99.

    There are many more but these basses fall within your price range if you consider used, but you'll be getting a bass that would otherwise be much more expensive and off your radar like a real Stingray.
     
  20. Not at all a fan of the SG bass. Really, I've been pretty disappointed w/ every Gibson bass I've played. Bummer, really... I like the look of them.

    Others you may consider are Lakland or MTD. Both offer some really nice players.
     

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