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nice cheap basses

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by bassplayer290, Oct 4, 2004.

  1. bassplayer290


    Oct 4, 2004
    i am 14 years old so i dont have much money to get a new bass. I am willing to spend 200 to 250 dollars on a new bass. If any body knows of a good bass that is in this price range please respond.
  2. Dincrest


    Sep 27, 2004
    New Jersey
    Many. One thing I recommend is that you go to your local music store and play as many basses as you can, even the ones beyond your price range so you can feel what a higher-end bass is like. Only you truly know what feels best in your hands, so our suggestions can only go so far.

    A few examples:

    -Ibanez GSR200- my first bass was an Ibanez and the GSR200 offers better features and more amenities for less money than my starter Ibanez 10 years ago. Highly recommended on these boards.

    -Yamaha RBX170- not as many bells and whistles as the Ibanez but still a good solid bass. I personally prefer Yamaha neck profiles over Ibanez neck profiles.

    -Peavey Millenium BXP- I like Peavey basses a lot. They look, sound, and feel like instruments that are much more expensive.

    -ESP LTD- while the B50 is their cheapest bass, see if you can get some more dough for the B150 or the F104. The F is nice. Active electronics and a 35" scale neck. The B150 has active electronics too. LTD basses are reputed to be well built. I've not played LTDs first hand, but I was contemplating buying one for a good while.

    -preowned. If you're not above buying preowned basses, there are many great deals to be had. Oftentimes a higher-end bass secondhand may present a greater bargain than a new starter bass. I bought my Samick Fairlane 6 preowned and ended up with a peach of a bass (it was practically new) for $200 less than it would've been brand new. People know I love that bass to pieces.

    I normally would recommend Samick, but their basses can be hit or miss. If you're going Samick, I'd go for a Cobra, Tabu, or, higher-end Fairlane but those are beyond your budget.

    But if a more expensive bass than you can afford is what really speaks to you, save up and get that. Bass is an investment. If you have a bass that you really love, you'll always lust to play it. If you have a bass you're kinda ambivalent about, you may not always want to play it. Most importantly, make sure you get one that YOU are comfortable playing. Playability is important. You're not going to want to play a bass that feels uncomfortable in your hands.

    Best of luck finding your ideal starter bass. Believe me, the basses available on a shoestring budget are worlds better than they were 10 years ago when I was starting out. Be sure to keep us updated on your search and I hope you find your new baby.
  3. Truth is, and mind you, this is just one players opinion, and this may be difficult to do(I remember being 14 or 15 and wanting a decent axe), but you might do best to hold off until you can save enough to get a Standard Fender (Mexican) Jazz Bass. About $425.00 +tax. Probably the best bass FOR THE PRICE there is out there . Also, A very decent bass for about $40 or $50 less is the Epiphone copy of the Gibson Thunderbird. My advice: don't settle for something cheap, when for $100.00 or so more, you can get something that will last and will sound better and have a better action.
  4. xcental34x


    Feb 28, 2003
    Memphrica, TN
    Epiphone Rock Bass! Get into it!
  5. Timbo


    Jun 14, 2004
    I heard SX basses are about as good as mexican fenders.
    If he went that way he could buy bass, and also have some $$ for new pick ups, fret job if he wanted, etc..
  6. WoodyG3


    May 6, 2003
    Colorado, USA
    A used bass will probably be your best bet. Look around, play a BUNCH of basses, and find one that suits you. It's hard to give a good answer to a queestion like this. For instance, Peaveys can be a great used value. You could find a Peavey Foundation for under $200 and have a great bass. But, then again, you might not like the narrow neck on a Foundation. That's why the key is to look around and see as many basses as you can and play as many as you can. Have fun looking and take your time.
  7. Figjam


    Aug 5, 2003
    Boston, MA
  8. fresnorich


    Sep 17, 2003
    Fresno, CA
    I recently purchased an early eighties Tokai TPB-64 (pre-CBS P-bass copy, made in Japan). I think the quality control must be comparable to the JV series Squiers you hear so much about. It really is a great bass: 9.5 lbs., very solid feel, wonderful neck, and nails that vintage sound/vibe. It's over 20 years old so it has a few nicks and bruises, but for less than $300, I don't see how it could be beat.

    You basically can't go wrong with a P-bass. Many pros seem to feel that every bass player should have one in their arsenal. It's a meat and potatoes kind of bass, and not the most versatile, but one you could potentially buy and keep forever.

    Most of the Japanese basses seem to be well made, but the ones from the early eighties are supposed to be best.

    You say that you're 14, so maybe you should look for a bass built the same year you were born, or even older. There are many people on this board who wish they had a good ol' P-bass that was at least as old as they are.
  9. rogerbmiller

    rogerbmiller Gold Supporting Member

    Sep 16, 2003
    For that price range, if you are not against buying used and off of ebay, I would suggest the follwong Peavey's, all of which are fabulous basses and all of which sell for between $125 and $250.

    Peavey T-40, T-20 and T-45
    Peavey Dyna Bass
    Peavey Foundation Bass
    Peavey Axcelerator

    If you want to get a new bass, I would certianly suggest you look into rondomusic.com (SX and Douglas basses), Carlo Robelli Basses (Sam Ash's private brand) and Rogue Basses (Guitar Center/Musicians Friend's Private Brand).

    I would not bother with Fender Squier's. IMO, they are inferior to the basses I listed above.

    Good luck.
  10. I've heard good things about the Peavey Dyna Bass. I used to own a B-Ninety (no longer produced) and I was MORE than satisfied with it.
  11. fresnorich


    Sep 17, 2003
    Fresno, CA
  12. Turtletheyertle


    Oct 1, 2004
    i still love my fernandes atlas, 350 new.
  13. A9X


    Dec 27, 2003
    Sinny, Oztraya
    Might not be of much use to you '290, as I presume you're in the US, but Aussies could do a lot worse than the Ashton AB1100
  14. bassplayer290


    Oct 4, 2004
    bassplayer290 is a loser
  15. Read the "essex bass" mega thread. They are suppossed to be pretty good. Then you will have money left for an amp or Halo 2. I don't know you so I can't tell you whether or not you are cool enough for one of these. This one is 139 Rondo Music. You can always get a nice Ibanez or Yamaha if the vintage cool route aint your thing. But this is the one I am going to Get-N-Defret:
  16. r379


    Jul 28, 2004
    Dallas, Texas
    I'd have to agree with some of the other posts: I'd look at the used market. A local music store recently had a used Peavey Grind Bass for sale which probably went out the door for $200 or less. I played the thing a little and I thought it played well and sounded pretty good too. Lots of other choices are available as well. If you can, find a friend (someone quite a bit older and more experienced) who would be willing to go with you and try out some basses. Above all, take your time choosing because you're going to have to live with it for a while. See if the store will include setting up the bass to your liking BEFORE you leave with it. Be nice if they threw in a new set of strings, too.
  17. I agree.

    I have decided that its not worth buying new at all as long as you follow a few simple rules, most of which have already been discussed here:

    DONT RUSH!!! no matter how good its reputed to be or how it looks.

    If its too good a deal to be true, dont trust... bass players "usually" are very aware of the value of their instrument...

    ALWAYS test. if youre interested in a bass say on Ebay and you know you wont be able to try it before you buy it, then my advice is forget it.

    Always take some time before or after playing an instrument to look at its details... Neck, Joins, Wear signs, loose stuff...
    Most bass players like to take care of their bass, and they'll try to keep it in mint condition. you want to buy from these people, not the ones that throw their bass around or havent had a setup done in years...

    And mostly, like the first post said, hit the music store before you do anything else, and start testing out different basses.
    Try out some of the cheaper basses, then try out some of the most expensive, and dont JUST listen to the sound, but see what your body is telling you, get a feel for what a good bass feels like.

    I'll give you a look at my latest success story:
    My BassCollection SB465 was purchased 2nd hand form a guy that had it for 3 years. but this guy took real good care of it, apart from the normal wear a porous finish body normally gets around the thumbrest, etc, the wood, neck and electronics were all top knotch.
    This bass brand new costs around the 900€ around here, and I got this one for 350€ :smug: :cool: :p

    :bassist: It kicks ass by the way.
  18. The used-thing is accurate for higher end stuff, but might be missing the big picture, IMHO.

    But the intangible value of getting something NEW should not be ignored, especially if it is a present or something. SOunds hokey, but true. I would think it is bad form if my parents bought me a used present, unless it was a '62 Jazz or something collectable. $250 aint going to buy a collectible, and not much better than the below-mentioned entry level basses.

    Essex, yahama or ibanez.
  19. I bought the sunburst version of this SX bass a week or so ago. Frankly I'd rate this one right alongside a Fender MIM Jazz. A little lighter in weight, darker in color and mellower in tone. The key to SX basses, for a beginner, is to take it to a local shop and get it setup properly. If there are any problems then the shop will tell you, in which case you can ask Kurt, who works at Rondo, for a return slip or a replacement.

    Some of the SX basses can be hit or miss, but I think this particular version is very very good.

    Rondo Music

    SX Jazz Bass

    Though I must admit that I did remove the chrome hardware. It definitely get's in the way.
  20. Joe Nerve

    Joe Nerve Supporting Member

    Oct 7, 2000
    New York City
    Endorsing artist: Musicman basses
    i always say go with the essex basses. they can't be beat for the price, and I think they're better than fender. i've owned fenders and I owned an essex and i'd definitely buy another essex before a fender.

    that being said, yesterday i was getting my amp fixed and while it was being done i was fiddling with an OLP bass for about an hour. i swear that if someone takes one of those basses, throws in a new pickup and electronics, they'll have a kick butt stingray for about 1/4 th price of the real thing. i've played a few of them and the necks feel amazing and even with the stock electronics you get that music man sound - the burpy, farty, funky sound. i totally love those basses.