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MIJ ATK 1205 vs. MM Bongo

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by emblymouse, Jun 21, 2014.

  1. emblymouse

    emblymouse exempt Supporting Member

    Jan 22, 2006
    Hi, I work up with a bee in my brain, help me out please.
    The Ibanez in question is a Prestige top o' the line and has a J pickup in the neck position. The Bongo is a...Bongo.. And I already own it. They price out very close. Never played an ATK, this one is Made In Japan unlike the budget ones you see. Is the quality comparable with the Bongo? Is the quality that much higher than the budget series?
  2. mmbongo

    mmbongo Five Time World Champion Supporting Member

    Aug 5, 2009
    I can't imagine downgrading to an Ibanez, but that being said..what is it you don't like about the Bongo?
  3. pedroims


    Dec 19, 2007
    I have only played a top Ibanez, a groveeline bass, it was really a boutique level bass. Some people will consider going to EBMM to Ibanez or Yamaha a downgrade but it is not always true, specially the top models.
  4. I wouldn't consider that a downgrade at all...I just purchased the new Prestige ATK1200, and would think it just the opposite
  5. emblymouse

    emblymouse exempt Supporting Member

    Jan 22, 2006
    It might just be my ears are tuned to a more passive old school sound since I last owned one. I'm using a tube setup now and new cabs with no tweets. This ATK appeared and it seems to be a bridge between the 2 schools visually and I'm thinkin' sonically as well. I 've never played one, folks say it does the Stingray thing pretty well and this model has the J pick up too. Worked for Lakland:D.

    I am trying to keep an open mind about the brand, it does conjure up 'budget' bass I know. These go for $1900 or so street price but look just like the $599 ATK's.:cautious: Of course this may all boil down to boredom and GAS but I may have an opportunity to trade for one. My brain goes BBZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ
  6. mmbongo

    mmbongo Five Time World Champion Supporting Member

    Aug 5, 2009
    If you want that passive, old school sound I would think Ibanez goes in the opposite direction. Before you spend $1900 on an Ibanez, check out a Mike Lull, Spector Coda, Roscoe, or Carvin. If I'm spending that much, I want a USA made instrument..but that's just me.
  7. 4StringsEnough


    Mar 9, 2008
    Japanese made instruments are the highest quality in the world. Those of us who do not live in the good ol' US of A can judge these things a little more objectively.

    Put it this way, which will break down first and more often: a Chevrolet or a Honda?
  8. Hopkins

    Hopkins Supporting Member Commercial User

    Nov 17, 2010
    Houston Tx
    Owner/Builder @Hopkins Guitars
    I love MusicMan basses, but I would take the ATK over the Ibanez in a heartbeat, just on looks alone.
  9. ubnomnar

    ubnomnar Supporting Member

    Dec 28, 2009
    So Cal
    ^ :beaver:
  10. Hopkins

    Hopkins Supporting Member Commercial User

    Nov 17, 2010
    Houston Tx
    Owner/Builder @Hopkins Guitars

    Ehh, you know what I meant.
  11. While I love the Bongos.

    Yamaha and Ibanez are very similar in structure, business wise. They make quality instruments for a the price in their Low -Midrange models.

    But their top of the line range are some of the best basses money can buy.

    The Bongo is an amazing instrument, but for the price I would take a Japan Ibby or Yamaha over them in a second.

    I've played an ATK 1200 and against a Stringray, there is no question. I'd take the ATK.

  12. To the OP...there is no comparison between the ATK1200 and the lower series ATK's.
    I ordered a Prestige and took a chance. I'm damned glad I did.
    I've also owned a couple Musicman basses, but IMHO they pale in comparison to the ATK Prestige.
  13. CoarseBass


    Dec 28, 2002
    I love EBMM basses, nothing scratches the 2 band Stingray itch like a 2 band Stingray. And I'd love to get my hands on a Reflex in SSH.

    But I also love Ibanez basses, and my main gigging bass has been an ATK for 2 years now.

    High end EBMMs are, in my experience, always great sounding, impeccable quality instruments. So are high end Ibanezs.

    You can't lose, but as this thread shows, perception is reality. Lots of people see Ibanez and see cheap, low end, beginner, etc. Lots of people don't know what they're talking about, but the fact stands. If that bothers you...you might sleep better owning the EBMM bass.

    Also check out the ATK805. For half the price, the Korean ATK is 95% the bass either 1200 or a US EBMM is.
  14. I think you're comparing apples and oranges. While the Chevy to Honda comparison is probably right, these are two high end instruments from companies that make very good basses. Also, each has very different components. Is it construction you are concerned about or tone? If the actual ATK and Bongo basses in question are the ones I think you are talking about both should be very high quality. What it boils down to, in my opinion, is what is the sound you're looking for? Weight, feel, style, etc. These are very different basses. I would keep an ATK over a Bongo. I think someone mentioned a Reflex, that's interesting mix of both basses.
  15. emblymouse

    emblymouse exempt Supporting Member

    Jan 22, 2006
    Thanks for all the replies. Sometimes it's just good to put your thoughts into words rather than bouncing around in your cranium. I had a brief flirtation with someone about a trade involving these 2 and the ATK looked like it might have some more trad sounds with that J pickup. I was mostly wondering about value and quality vs. the much cheaper ones.
    But as it turns out no deal, the Bongo remains and I am glad. There is nothing else like it and it's a good foil for my other 5 a Valenti PJ strung with flats. All this has made me curious about high line Ibanez stuff tho, especially the ATK. I will keep my eyes out the Korean 805's since the 1205's are so few.

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