Olympia OB-5 versus OB-3 acoustic bass

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Sequimite, Jun 21, 2019.

  1. Does anyone know the difference between the rare OB-5 and the common OB-3?

    I have a few Tacoma guitars and know about as much about their history and products as anyone. Today I received an Olympia OB-5 CE6/SB. I've only found two other OB-5's on the web and they are also sunbursts. I'm very pleased with the tone and volume, though I have nothing to compare it to, this being my first acoustic bass guitar.

    The top displays very high quality spruce with an incredible amount of silk and the mahogany back and sides also looks good, so they didn't skimp on the quality of the wood, laminate though I presume it is. With Tacoma/Olympia a higher model number almost always means a more expensive instrument and a number of Olympia guitars have solid wood tops. This one sounds so good to me that tomorrow I'm going to try to see the plies at the hole. Unlike the OB-3's it also has Miratone (LR Baggs) electronics which makes me wonder if this is a very early model. Or maybe when they shrank the body on the OB-3 they made the OB-5 for those who wanted the bigger body...

    Last edited: Jun 21, 2019
  2. Correction, the outer veneer on the back a sides is maple. It is a copy of the fanciest Thunderchief, the CB28C, which had maple sides and back and came with the same sunburst. I found a third OB-5 online with the claim that it was made in 2003. Also, unlike the OB-3's that I've seen, the OB-5 has an inlaid pearl logo. The lower bout is 17 1/2" and at the bottom the box is 5" deep. Standard 34" scale.
  3. Nope, laminated top, it appears that the OB-5 is the same as the OB-3 other than the cosmetic differences.