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Newbie looking for a bass

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by bowtieman427, Nov 26, 2010.

  1. bowtieman427


    Nov 26, 2010
    Hi, I am totally new and tomorrow will be looking at a black Ibanez RB-800 Roadstar Bass made in Japan SN starts with an F the seller is asking $200.00
    Seems like a good deal not 100% sure being new and all.
    I never played before and will be jsut starting out.
    What do I look for in a bass ? Would this be a good starter and beyond ?
    Seller tells me it is in excellent condition and would be appropriate for me as a beginner and is something I could easily grow with. From what I read MIJ Ibanez are very good high quality basses, but not really great on resale.
    this is my first post so be nice :)
    thanks in advance.
  2. tkcthulu


    Nov 15, 2010
    Calgary, AB
  3. Not sure on that particular bass, but if you're looking at something in the $200 range look at the new squier's the quality of them has really stepped up the past few years. Go try it out if you have an amp take it with you if not play it through whatever amp he has and if YOU like the feel and sound of it then go for it.

    Good luck with learning and your search
  4. bowtieman427


    Nov 26, 2010
    What is SX ?
  5. SX- cheaply made basses, but loved and praised on Talkbass.
  6. Honestly I know a lot of people have had good experience with SX but if you look at the threads most people have to do a good bit of work on their on to get it up to snuff. In my opinion a good beginner bass will be completely playable out of the box and will be reliable, I know as a beginner the last thing I wanted to do was have to fix a bass I just bought (shimming, straightening a neck, filing frets, etc.)
  7. I'd take a Japanese Ibby LONG before thinking about SX. Go for the Ibanez
  8. tkcthulu


    Nov 15, 2010
    Calgary, AB
  9. this is sarcastic or at least I hope it is :scowl: The guy wants some help and it is my understanding that is what TB is for so if you're going to post be helpful. I;m pretty sure you were being sarcastic but remember to someone who is brand new to bass they may not know the difference between a daisy rock bass and a rickenbacker so they might take it literally (no offense to the original poster's intelligence intended)
  10. GM60466


    May 20, 2006
    Land of Lakland
    RB800 seems fair at that price. How's the neck?
  11. Big_Daddy


    Nov 24, 2010
    Central Alberta
    I'd go with a Fender Squire Precision or Jazz. They feel nice, they sound nice, and they're, in general, great for starting out.
  12. Bassamatic

    Bassamatic keepin' the beat since the 60's Supporting Member

    The Ibanez will likely be a pretty good bass and $200 is a fair (but not great) price.
    You should make sure that all the controls work when it is plugged in, and that they are not noisy when you turn them.
    It should be in decent physical condition - not too beat up, but a few dings and scratches are to be expected.
    If you look down the neck from the end, it should be nearly flat with perhaps a very slight bow.
    Don't feel pushed to buy it - there are a lot of good used basses out there, and $200 is a fair price for a nice Fender Squier as well.
    Be aware the the Ibanez necks are a little thinner and narrower than most basses, in general. If it does not feel comfortable to you, don't rush into it - check out some others first.

    Good Luck
  13. bowtieman427


    Nov 26, 2010
  14. tkcthulu


    Nov 15, 2010
    Calgary, AB
    He's not lying about that. Doesn't look like too bad of a condition judging just from the pictures
  15. ndabunka


    Oct 8, 2010
    There was a run on ATK300's recently. You may be able to pick up a BRAND NEW one of those for $200 to $250. Watch eBay and on this site to find someone who ordered 5 of them but decided to keep only one or two of them. The ATK305 is the five string version and was selling for near the same price in the blow out (At one point these were selling as low as $130 for either the 4-string or the 5-string). It's worth $400 any day so if you bought one but decided against playing, you could sell it easily for the same $250 you have in it...

    Side note - Some are a red color that many either love or hate but there are also black ones...
  16. tkcthulu


    Nov 15, 2010
    Calgary, AB
    +1 for ATK 300, in fact one is going for $210 on ebay right now (a bit higher than the person bought it for but still much cheaper than they were before)
  17. bass rocks

    bass rocks

    Nov 15, 2010
    Peavey milestone
  18. It's nice to say that, with hindsight and all. But by saying that, you might as well say the best instrument is something like an MIA Fender or something along those lines. While I agree that would be the best starter bass, and lord know I wish I had started with one, would a beginner even appreciate any of that?

    My first guitar was some "licensed by Fender Starcaster Sears special." I found out later the neck was warped, frets were lifting, had a plywood body, buzzed like a chainsaw etc. but did I care? No, I played it until the tuners fell off.

    I don't think a beginner notices those little details like fret filing, action, etc. I think they're more just excited to play the thing. I'm not saying those things aren't important, if I'm paying for quality then of course I am going to be picky, but for your average beginner, an SX will serve you just fine. Buy it, and use the money you save to take it to a guitar shop to have them set it up for you and slap a good set of strings on it; maybe even buy some lessons. Most importantly, have a blast and play it like it's worth a million bucks.

    P.S. I currently play an SX jazz bass and think it's the balls. I've had just as good of an experience as I might have had I bought Fender, probably even more so knowing I didn't have to put a big hole in my pocket to get it.
  19. bassbenj


    Aug 11, 2009
    I don't think this is quite an honest description of my experience with SX. (I own 5 of them). A few SX are indeed dogs that have to be sent back (but none of mine were like that) And the same is also true of Squier even of Made in America Fenders. I've seen a few nasty ones out there. I'm not as familiar with Ibanez, but I'm sure it's true there as well. Generally a good one of any of these three brands will be reasonably playable right out of the box. What the people here have experienced with SX is that if you put in the time and effort to tweak it in, it can produce a bass that is the equal of basses costing thousands! Typically that is true for Squier to a degree as well. Normally this is not where a beginner is going at least for a while. But I'd say all my SX basses were totally usable and playable right out of the box.

    The problem a beginner faces is that there are many "entry level" basses often of no-name brands that are horrid. All they do is make you want to quit playing bass. They can never be made better no matter how much modding you do to them. They are nothing but discouragement. That is what you want to avoid. Hence, a beginner when looking for a starter bass would do well to stick to certain "value" brands. Ibanez is one of those. Squier is another, SX is another. Peavey is another. Yamaha is another.

    So how does one choose wisely? Well, one thing is simply availability. You may find a bargain in one of those brands and see none in some others. Another way to choose is to consider the kind of music that interests you. If it's more "modern" then an Ibanez goes to the top of the list. If it's more classic rock then Squier does.

    In any event, one of the BEST ways for a noob to save a lot of cash and get a great bass to play is to look at used instruments. The problem is that a newbie doesn't have the experience to tell if a given instrument is a good buy or not. Hence the way to go if at all possible is to put the arm on anyone you know who is experienced enough to judge instrument quality and drag them along with to the store for advice. You won't be sorry you did!

    Good luck

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