maple or rosewood?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by simm, Apr 14, 2012.

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  1. simm


    Apr 7, 2012
    hello all, im new here, been playing bass for about 15 years. Im looking at the g&l tribute l2000 and cant decide on the maple or rosewood fretboard. ive always played basses with rosewood or wenge fretboard, are there any down sides to maple?
  2. SOME say that rosewood is more 'mellow' in sound and that the hard maple is a little brighter.

    I don't particularly agree to a sound difference, but there is a different feel to the two neck boards.

    Somehow, the rosewood feels softer or 'pillow-y' and the maple is more like ceramic or glassy.

    Since your fingertips are a constant and the metal of the fret is too, the relative softness or hardness of the fingerboard falls out of the tone-voice equation once a string is fretted.

    Pick what floats your own personal boat, but either choice aside from aesthetics is moot.
  3. klejst

    klejst Guest

    Oct 5, 2010
    Some say maple is brighter sounding than rosewood, however having played both kinds of fret boards I cannot really tell a difference and if there is I would say it's slight. Based off looks maple can sure look cool, however I honestly prefer rosewood overall on my basses, but that is just me.
  4. Mushroo

    Mushroo Guest

    Apr 2, 2007
    Depending on the finish and your cleaning ritual, well-worn maple fretboards can look kind of "dirty" with age. I like the look, but maybe it is not for everyone.

    Having owned both, I can say they both sound good, not sure if my ears are qualified to hear a difference.
  5. Do you want to play directly onto the wood or through a layer of resin? Rosewood is much, much harder than maple, so rosewood fretboards are not "sealed" and maple ones are. It's just a question of what your fingertips like.
  6. snyderz


    Aug 20, 2000
    AZ mountains
  7. This has been discussed to death around here. Did you try searching?
  8. C'mon Dan.

    If there were no questions like this, you'd be bored and not have anything to say - right?
  9. Looks unless its a fretless.
  10. simm


    Apr 7, 2012
    sorry i didnt try searching, lazy i spose. thanks for the replys though
  11. Szymanski862


    Jan 12, 2012
    I think rosewood is much softer and smoother sounding. Maple tends to have more of a bite. A little brighter with more attack.

  12. :rollno::rollno::rollno::rollno::rollno:
  13. After playing for 32 years when I had a custom bass made I went Rosewood. I agree that the difference is more in feel than sound. I love pre-CBS Fenders and that's where I guess my Rosewood love comes from. But that's Brazilian Rosewood!

  14. soulman969

    soulman969 Inactive

    Oct 6, 2011
    Englewood, Colorado
    What color will the bass your getting be? If it's a Blueburst or Black I'd opt for a maple board. If Sunburst I'd go with rosewood.

    Tonally there is really not enough difference to tell them apart especially in a live mix. My basses typically have rosewood boards and in 35+ years of playing I've yet to have anyone come up to me and say, "dude that bass would sound so much better if it had a maple board".

    You gotta go with what you like but on the G&L models those would be my choices. If I get rid of my Jazz I'd be looking at that L2000 in sunburst with a rosewood board. Nice piece!
  15. Megazap63


    Apr 12, 2009
    London, UK
    The overall sound will also depend on the body wood its matched with.

    Nowadays I mainly play fretless - rosewood, ebony and pau ferro are popular choices - but I also have a MTD KZ5 bass with maple board and mahogany body.

    I feel the mahogany balances out the brightness of the maple and I can get quite a warm sound. I went for a maple board so that notes played on the low B string don't come out too boomy, woolly, muddy (whatever you want to call it). I'm very happy with the choice I made.

    The sound from body and neck woods will also be affected to some extent by the electronics you choose.

    Bottom line is that there are many options out there and the best way to find what's right for you is to try as many basses as possible.
  16. apkbass


    Feb 26, 2012
    I can't tell a sound difference, but there is a difference in feel most definitely. As far as aesthetics, I would take rosewood or another darker wood in any situation, but maple only if it is bound and blocked. There is a reason why the largest percentage of guitars feature rosewood fretboards. Rosewood is good for any surface that sees frequent human contact. It is oily so it naturally accepts the oils found on our skin. However, maple wears greatly with age.
  17. P. Aaron

    P. Aaron Supporting Member

    Rosewood or Maple? Buy it for looks. Buy it for life!
  18. Phenloic.
  19. Gord_oh

    Gord_oh Midtown Guitars: Ulyate Pickups & StringJoy Commercial User

    Oct 4, 2008
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