Need a 5-string bass - maple or rosewood fretboard?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by jeffnesham, Feb 9, 2021.

  1. jeffnesham


    Jan 19, 2014
    Hi so I joined a country band and a lot of the material requires a 5 string which I don’t have and am In The market for one. I’m settled on a Music Man Sterling 5 for the reason that I don’t have a lot to spend and I realllly like the music man look and don’t want yet another Fender bass.

    so my big question is for a 5 string bass in country music. Does it matter if I go rosewood or maple for the fretboard to get an appropriate tone?
  2. No. There is no appropriate tone. Get the one that looks like the right tone.
    chris_b likes this.
  3. David_70

    David_70 Supporting Member

    Mar 28, 2012
    I have both types of fretboards, and I wouldn’t be able to discern a difference in my own home — let alone in the live band mix. I like both — and almost prefer my sealed maple board, as there’s little to no care I need to do to it (e.g. oiling the rosewood when it looks dry).
  4. Stevorebob

    Stevorebob Well... I Am Here, Aren't I? Supporting Member

    Sep 29, 2011
    Los Angeles
    Whatever tonal difference one might discern between maple and rosewood will be lost in the mix. The only practical difference is visibility under bright stage lighting. For me, rosewood is easier to see. Otherwise, get what feels and looks right to you.
  5. bassbully

    bassbully Endorsed by The PHALEX CORN BASS..mmm...corn!

    Sep 7, 2006
    Blimp City USA
    Played country for years and you have to have a maple board it’s a must!

    J/k makes no difference but I prefer maple boards.
    NigelD likes this.
  6. chris_b


    Jun 2, 2007
    I've had both and IMO the only difference was the maple marked after playing for a few years and the rosewood didn't.

    Make sure your band has no crazy requirements for your gear (some of them like to do that!), get the bass that sounds right to you and enjoy.

    I'd also suggest Lakland Skylines. Not a Fender, sound as good as you can make them and a lot of bass for the money.
  7. jeffnesham


    Jan 19, 2014
    Thanks this I all good Info! Since I’ve never played a five string for an any extended period of time a handful total, I didn’t know if the maple fretboard would help the low b cut through a mix better than rosewood. To me I can hear more growl and bite on my bass with the maple fretboard then the rosewood, but it could be due to all kinds of variable such as pickups body type strings etc.

    TrustRod likes this.
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