MTD USA vs MTD Kingston

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by MMBaltu, Mar 2, 2020.

  1. Hey! This is my first post here... I'm a site viewer since 2017. I was interested in buying a MTD bass, specifically the MTD Kingston ZX5 or the Kingston Andrew Gouche. I was just wondering if the difference between the Kingston Andrew Gouche and a 535 was that big for that price difference. Thank you for watching this post!
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  2. Hercules

    Hercules Supporting Member

    Feb 13, 2016
    Southern Illinois
    greetings! the Kingstons are great basses. currently i have 2 KZ5s and a fretless ZX5 and i love them. i used to own an AG5. it was a phenominal bass too but i traded it for the fretless. the ZX5 and the AG5 are completely different basses. you should definitely try out both before u buy if possible. as far as how these compare to the USA MTDs, there is no comparison. i have never owned one but i have had the priviledge of playing a few at the MTD booth at summer namm. they are all very special. handmade by the master luthier himself. they look, feel, and play like a dream. even to a hack like myself it is obvious but when u see and hear one in the hands of a great talent like Andrew Gouche or Norm Stockton it is truly magical. if you have the option i highly recommend a USA model.
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  3. Nightman

    Nightman If it ain't low, it's got to go! Supporting Member

    Jun 3, 2013
    Atlanta, GA
    I currently owned a KZX5 (2013) and it is a phenomenal bass! The KZX has the USA grade electronics and the tone is more modern, but it's both active and passive with perfect tension on the low B string, and suitable for a wide range of playing situations. I've own several boutique basses including a USA MTD 535 that cost far more, but the ZX5 can perform with the best of them. IMHO. I bought this bass new and is the only bass I've owned for more than a couple of years!!
    I've read comments where other owners experience issues like fret buzz or weak signal, and it could that the bass just needs adjustments, as it does not come out of the box ready to gig! Get it set up properly with a good set of strings and you'll be set.
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  4. Hercules

    Hercules Supporting Member

    Feb 13, 2016
    Southern Illinois
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  5. MMiller28

    MMiller28 Supporting Member

    Apr 27, 2003
    The USA basses are in a different galaxy from the Kingston models. You're talking about a bass made by Michael, his son, and three other guys in a garage in New York against something made on an assembly line on the other side of the world.
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  6. Nightman

    Nightman If it ain't low, it's got to go! Supporting Member

    Jun 3, 2013
    Atlanta, GA
    True and selling prices suggest that! The Kingston ZX models are higher quality basses and considered to be in the boutique category, unlike the regular Kingston line.
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  7. Green1


    Sep 23, 2010
    Scottsdale, AZ
    I have only played a few Kingstons and I thought they were nice. The 535's are much nicer in my opinion. I currently have four and it still amazes me how very consistent they all are. My wife often asks me which is my favorite, or which one would you ever sell and I can honestly say I don't know. They are all very special and I don't feel like one is noticeably less than the others. I think Mike and his crew have really perfected the 535 model.
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  8. Samatza


    Apr 15, 2019
    I play a Z6 and it's a really nice bass, I mean very, very nice in feel and tone. It is still however worlds apart from a USA MTD bass. I would love to own a USA MTD but cannot afford one so the Z6 will have to do for now.
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  9. ad9000

    ad9000 Supporting Member

    Mar 30, 2004
    Leucadia, CA
    I owned a Z6 for a while - for some reason it just never inspired me that much, though it sounded pretty good, was well constructed and played easily. My major complaint was that the active electronics sounded a bit harsh in the treble region. I now have a 2014 MTD American 535-24 which is truly a magic instrument - in addition to being beautifully crafted, it delivers 100% and always takes me to places I didn't expect.
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  10. ZSN624


    Apr 15, 2018
    How would you guys compare the Kingstons made in China to the old Czech made ones? Are they at the same level?
  11. GioBassist


    Sep 9, 2016
    Hi! I got an used Kingston AG5 days ago and it is way amazing with all those Bartolini electronics on it, I was surprised by that big gain. I could dig all the USA MTD tones that I like on it :) these are of a great quality, this bass put my MIA Special P Bass, and my modded MIM Dlx Jazz V with Aguilar 5J-HC pups and OBP-3 to sleep in their cases lol. If you find it in a good price used, like I did, it’s a very good investment and instrument by itself.
    Hercules likes this.
  12. FrettlessZeke


    Dec 20, 2016
    I have 4 Kingstons. a CRB that I rarely play, a KZ-5 a KZX-5 and a AG6. Obviously I am a fan. They are great great Basses. They were gigable from the start. Great tone, good action and I love the Bart electronics and I have Hipshots bridges on the KZX and the AG. All of them have had professional setups and are a pleasure to play and three of them have been set up by Mike for me. They aren't "custom built for specifically for me" basses, but I am willing to admit that at my hack level a $9000 custom AG would make little difference in my play. So for me I am already getting great satisfaction from my Kingstons and having Michael build me a custom bass is on my "some day" list. He does great work
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  13. Per my TB moniker, the first bass I bought was/is an MTD Kingston Heir. Still love it - and definitely feels/plays "above its pay grade". I've never ever seen, let alone played, one of Mike's U.S. made basses. Would love to buy a U.S. made, but I'd have to win the lottery before that happens.
    Hercules likes this.