narrowed down to mtd, sadowsky, lakland

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by johnbkim93, Aug 27, 2013.


  1. johnbkim93

    johnbkim93

    Jun 24, 2013
    I've been looking for a 5 string bass thats a killer for Gospel, hip hop, soul, funk etc but versatile enough to play many other style such as pop, fusion jazz, some latin etc.
    I love kirk franklin type of gospel, roy hargrove rh factor, robert glasper, D angelo, and Marcus miller. I know I cant cover all those styles but am trying to.
    I was going to go for an mtd but seemed like some people had trouble cutting though the mix. I know there are people who never had those problems but theres still a chance mine might have the problem you know. Maybe a good D.I.might solve the problem. Not sure.

    So! I heard many thing from people and narrowed down to
    1. A used MTD 535 with a wenge finger board. (With a good D.I. if it doesnt cut through the mix well. Do you think it would be fine?)
    2. Sadowsky metro maple fb(Heard theres no difference regarding tone quality between metro and nyc) i need your suggestions with the model.
    3. Lakland 5594 maple fb.

    maple might be too bright but want it because i already have fender jazz custom 64 relic which is rosewood.
    (Maybe i want a bartolini pick up for a darker sound. Maybe i want a soap bar pickup for a different feel.. idk..:( )

    I know they are all top basses out there and its a matter of my taste but i cant try them and i just want to hear opinions regarding the tone that would be best for the style I have said.
    If theres a different bass that fits all better than those, please suggest.
     
  2. Search for sound samples for the Carvin SB5000, it fits right in with the basses you have mentioned and they run $1100-$1400 new, or as low as $800 used. They are my #1 choice
     
  3. But to answer your question I think each of the basses you mention will have no problems working for gospel/RnB. Go on youtube and listen to as many sound samples as you can... Keep an eye in the classifieds, each of those models pop up pretty often!
     
  4. Jazzdogg

    Jazzdogg Less barking, more wagging!

    Jul 29, 2006
    San Diego, CA
    Compare pre-amps. For example, Sadowsky's tone controls are boost-only, while Laklands are cut & boost. To some, these kinds of details are inconsequential; to others they can be deal breakers.
     
  5. johnbkim93

    johnbkim93

    Jun 24, 2013
    How is carvin sb5000 compared with the ones i mentioned? How is it different?
     
  6. bass12

    bass12 Blistering barnacles! Supporting Member

    Jun 8, 2008
    Montreal, Canada
    All the basses you've mentioned are very different from one-another and all are great at what they do. If cutting through the mix is high on your list of requirements then I would go rosewood instead of maple. You're going to get a bunch of people telling you the fingerboard wood type won't make a difference. Well... they're wrong. :D
     
  7. bass12

    bass12 Blistering barnacles! Supporting Member

    Jun 8, 2008
    Montreal, Canada
    Same goes for the passive option. Sadowsky's have an active/ passive switch while MTDs don't (I don't remember whether or not Laklands do).
     
  8. johnbkim93

    johnbkim93

    Jun 24, 2013
    Thanks for your suggestion. Actually cutting through the mix isnt the most important requirement but i just dont want the sound guy having trouble mixing it.
     
  9. bass12

    bass12 Blistering barnacles! Supporting Member

    Jun 8, 2008
    Montreal, Canada
    Unfortunately a lot of sound guys will have a hard time mixing even the "easiest to mix" basses! Seriously, Sadowskys are known for their ability to sit well in a mix and I've had sound guys doing the whole "hmm... could you try this? No, that's not it - is your bass flat? Could you try maybe..." with my Sadowskys. It never ends. :p But if you have a Sadowsky then it really tosses the ball into the sound guy's court. They are specifically designed to sit well in a mix and if a sound guy can't deal with a Sadowsky then there really is no helping him any further. Given your concerns I have to say that I would go with Sadowsky.
     
  10. My 44–02 has a passive switch ( pull the volume knob). But I've never had a use for it. I guess if the battery died during a song. But the battery lasts for months with daily use and can be swapped in 30 seconds.
     
  11. johnbkim93

    johnbkim93

    Jun 24, 2013
    Actually that concern i have cutting through the mix was only for the MTD. Other then mtd, only the tone for those style of music matters.
     
  12. Wallace320

    Wallace320 Commercial User

    Mar 19, 2012
    Milan, Italy
    "All the basses you've mentioned are very different from one-another and all are great at what they do. If cutting through the mix is high on your list of requirements then I would go rosewood instead of maple. You're going to get a bunch of people telling you the fingerboard wood type won't make a difference. Well... they're wrong".

    +1

    "Unfortunately a lot of sound guys will have a hard time mixing even the "easiest to mix" basses! Seriously, Sadowskys are known for their ability to sit well in a mix and I've had sound guys doing the whole "hmm... could you try this? No, that's not it - is your bass flat? Could you try maybe..." with my Sadowskys. It never ends. But if you have a Sadowsky then it really tosses the ball into the sound guy's court. They are specifically designed to sit well in a mix and if a sound guy can't deal with a Sadowsky then there really is no helping him any further. Given your concerns I have to say that I would go with Sadowsky".

    +1 again

    Only con of Sadowsky is... its Vintage Tone Control...

    Its active tone is huge yet even "rough n'ready" like a passive one, so you end up always usin' it
    If your battery runs dry and you ever opt for its "real" passive voicing, you get how important it's Sadowsky's electronic... pure passive sound being so weak and flat...

    Anyway, not goin' OT: Sadowsky is absolutely designed to cut thru

    Cheers,
    Wallace
     
  13. I know you´re between the MTD, Sadowsky and Lakland, but I strongly recomend to take a look at Adamovic basses.

    www.adamovic.nl
     
  14. MrLenny1

    MrLenny1

    Jan 17, 2009
    New England
    Andre Gouche plays MTD's.
     
  15. jamersonburton

    jamersonburton

    Jul 22, 2011
    Sadowsky
     
  16. Why would you think that a passive tone control on a bass is a 'con'. It is just the classic passive tone control found on virtually all P and J inspired basses. I actually wouldn't really want a bass without one.

    And yes, Sadowsky bass pickups seemed to be wound to work wonderfully with the Sadowsky pre, and the basses aren't really voiced for 'everyday passive' operation (although they still sound fine).

    To the OP, those three basses sound so MASSIVELY different, that IMO you need to experience the general difference between a super modern sounding soapbar loaded bass versus an active J versus a more 'Bart loaded J modification' before you throw down your money. There should be examples of these general class of basses at most Guitar Centers so you can at least get a feel for these very different tonalities.

    That being said, if you are leaning toward a 'modern J' tone, it is hard to beat a Sadowsky Metro J. I very much like the unique MV models, which are ash/maple (like a 70's J), but yet have 60's pickup position for a bit more punch and grunt. VERY nice all around performer IMO, and a pretty safe bet for what you want to do.

    Edit: Sadowsky uses 'fixed pricing', so the Metro's cost the same no matter where you buy them. You might consider buying a Metro MV directly from the Sadowsky shop. You get a no questions asked 7 day return policy (as long as you don't remove the plastic protection film, etc.). That is a very nice, no risk (other than some shipping cost) to try a Sadowsky and see if it is what you want.
     
    31HZ likes this.
  17. mmbongo

    mmbongo Regular Human Bartender Supporting Member

    Aug 5, 2009
    Carolinas
    Lakland. The J/MM pickup configuration is a complete win.
     
  18. Again, as one who has owned and gigged extensively all three of the options the OP is considering, they are all 'top notch', and they all sound completely, utterly, totally different. IMO, not a 'good versus bad' thing, but rather a tonal preference. That Lakland 55-94 super fat, warm, top end relaxed, mid present punch is VERY nice. The bite and grind of the Sadowsky take on a modern J tone has become classic (through the zillions of recordings by Will Lee, Michael Rhodes, etc.) through the years, and the massive deep low end and 8K+ zing of the MTD wenge models (and other MTD wood combinations) have come to represent that modern Gospel tone (Gouche and Norm Stockton).

    All first rate, and all will give the OP a VERY different playing experience.
     
  19. Chasarms

    Chasarms Casual Observer

    May 24, 2001
    Saint Louis, MO USA
    There are other considerations apart from the tone. I LOVE Sadowsky basses. Of course I love the sound, but the neck feel and general ergomonics is what puts them in the ultimately happy place for me. The neck geometry of Sadowskys is ideal for my taste. I have owned six Sadowskys and all of them were great. Financial circumstances forced me to depart with them, but fortunately, the seventh one is on its way to me as I type.

    I have bought three different Lakland five strings hoping that I can connect with one. I've had a J-J config skyline, a J-MM config skyline and a U.S. made Chi-sonic bass. I just don't like them. They are SUPER nice, but I simply cannot get a feel for the neck. the 55-94 sounded the best to my ears. JO I had was an excellent straight-up jazz bass. The Chi-Sonic bass didn't have enough "sparkle" for me. They have a completely different feel than a Sadowsky. While the Sadowsky is more of a wide/shallow feel, the Lakland is narrow and deeper. I have seen and heard guys that are amazing on Laklands. Tonally, they are fine. They are SUPER well made and look awesome. But not for me.

    The MTD is a completely different animal tonally and aestetically. It's hard to imagine that you wouldn't have a very strong preference between the Sadowsky and MTD as they have striking differences in every way.

    With all of that said, any bass works for any style. Any tonal variations are so subtle to the non-player that they are lost in the mix of a live setting. You can always EQ a good bass into it's pocket in the mix. Buy the bass that compels you to play and evokes the most creativity and expression from you as a player.

    Different people are compelled by different things. I know guys who have guitars feel awful, but they fall in love with its tone and just deal with it, and eventually get used to it, I guess. For me, you could give me one that sounded like the voice of the Heavenly hosts and if it didn't feel right to me, I'd probably get rid of it.

    Take all of this with a grain of salt as any sense of me being a tone connoisseur was lost years ago. After 25 years playing, I have come to realize the subtleties are for me and me alone.
     
    31HZ likes this.
  20. bass12

    bass12 Blistering barnacles! Supporting Member

    Jun 8, 2008
    Montreal, Canada
    The tone for the styles of music you mentioned will be fine with any of those basses. It's a matter of what you want to experience playing-wise. Keep in mind that each of those basses also feel quite different to play. Again, not a "good vs bad" kind of thing - just quite different.
     
  21. Primary

    Primary TB Assistant

    Here are some related products that TB members are talking about. Clicking on a product will take you to TB’s partner, Primary, where you can find links to TB discussions about these products.

     
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