Peavey TL-Six

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Busk, Mar 21, 2002.

  1. Busk


    Jan 31, 2002
    I picked one of these up over the Net sight unseen for a decent price. Any of you guys have or ever played this bass? Like most Peaveys, they seem to be very reasonably priced on the used market. Anyone have any MP3's of theirs?

    I guess I'll find out if I like it soon enough.
  2. I have owned a Peavey TL-5 for about 12 years and love it. It has quiet electronics although I've heard others say theirs became a little hissy at only moderate treble boost. With the bass, treble, and mid-range sweep, I can get any tone possible. The instrument has held together extremely well through the years with no cracking of the finish or problems with the electronics. I love the relatively thin profile of the neck. Even the gloss finish on the back of the neck doesn't hinder playing fast. I eventually yanked the frets out of this bass and filled the slots with white styrene plastic. As a fretless, the instrument sounds great. However, the mother-of-pearl inlays do buzz a bit. I am on the hunt for another Peavey bass bassed on my experience with the TL-5.

  3. embellisher

    embellisher Holy Ghost filled Bass Player Staff Member Supporting Member

    Back when production 6 stringers were rare and expensive, the TL 6 wsa the only thing that compared to the Yamaha TRB for under $2000. Very nice bass.
  4. Busk


    Jan 31, 2002
    I can't wait to play this thing. I wanted to get into something with an extended range. I play guitar most of the time, but wanted to devote more time to bass. My only other bass is a Rick 4001.
  5. Philbiker

    Philbiker Pat's the best!

    Dec 28, 2000
    Northern Virginia, USA
    I remember seeing a TL-5 in a music store... Absolutely -beautiful- bass. Typical Peavey build quality (that is, very good and probably UNBREAKABLE)

    You will be happy.
  6. My TL-5 has been unbreakable. To think of all the times in 12 years it's been banged around with no problems of any sort is good testimony. I think the TL basses are very good even by today's standards.
  7. Busk


    Jan 31, 2002
    You gotta be thinking Cirrus if you have been reading these threads and want a Peavey. I've seen used 6er redwoods in EX+ going for $1000 from the dealers.
  8. Richard Lindsey

    Richard Lindsey

    Mar 25, 2000
    Metro NYC
    I had one for a couple of years. No real complaints, but I couldn't get happy with the tone. Well made, and as someone said, in the early '90s there were hardly any other reasonably priced 6s around, and the TL-6 was a real deal for the quality it provided.
  9. Busk


    Jan 31, 2002
    Yeah, if I don't like the electronics, I'm willing to drop something else in. It has two split hummers in it. Perhaps, I'd drop in an active Bartolini system of some sort.
  10. Blackbird

    Blackbird Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Mar 18, 2000
    I am the proud owner of a TL-6. I took it to a recording session at a friend's house and the bass recorded beautifully. When I play it live, it cuts through fine. Best of all, because it's a Peavey, they aren't exactly coveted by people who steal basses, so you can focus on playing, which is what it's all about anyway. I may look for a TL-5 or another 6 to convert to fretless eventually.

    Post pics!
  11. I used (and still own, it's on consignment at a store) a Peavey TL-5. The bass felt and played beautifully and it had a deep, warm tone to it. The electronics on mine buzzed a little bit, but that was usually dependent on what kind of lighting was around. Other than that, I loved the tone of the bass and I always got compliments on it's sound. The b-string left a little to be desired (not tight enough), but with proper eqing and technique, it sounded really nice. Overall, I was extremely impressed by the bass. It prompted me to buy a Cirrus 6 string.
  12. Busk


    Jan 31, 2002
    I'll post pics when I get some.
  13. gfab333


    Mar 22, 2000
    Honolulu, Hawaii
    I bought a TL-5 for $1,400 back in 1989 or 90. it was a great playing bass, sounded good, easy to play, and had a nice ballsey and punchy B string. Nice flame maple body too. The one that I owned had soap bar humbucking pick ups (not the split pick ups). The three band EQ 9V preamp didn't work as well as present day hardware, but it was a nice improvement over the passive stuff from the early 90s.

    I sold it about 6 years later for $600. Good bass!

    I wonder what ever became of Tim Landers (the TL in the bass's name)?
  14. Busk


    Jan 31, 2002
    Some questions:

    Any suggestions for an active system replacement for the two split humbuckers should I not like them?

    Also, for 6 stringers, can you just put on an extra heavy B string to deal with floppiness?

    I don't know anything about Tim Landers or what he has played on.
  15. I generally use a 0.128 B-string on my TL-5 and don't find it very floppy at all. Noticeably floppier than on my 35" scale Modulus, but not enough to necessitate going to a 0.130 or 0.135.
  16. Blackbird

    Blackbird Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Mar 18, 2000
    I remember reading Tim Landers was the bassist in the Pat Sajak show, whenever that was on.

    Only the TL-6 had the dual P configuration and Kahler bridge. Later, it was changed to the dual soapbar/regular bridge that was standard on the TL-5.
  17. dgce


    Jun 17, 2001
    Massachusetts, USA
    I'm glad you brought up the B string flop issue. You can often luck up on some nice stuff from the '80s and early '90s that were pretty pricey in their day but because it has Peavey or say Ibanez on the head stock, it did not retain its retail value. I see sweet deals on the Peavey TL-5 and TL-6 all the time. However, older five and six string basses, including boutique shop models often suffer from B string flop because the design was still relatively new at the time.

    Anywho, pickups is what I'm wondering about. I recall the TL-6 had dual P-style pickups at one point (remember that dude how played on the Arsenio Hall show played one). However, the TL-5 had Peavey's old single coil jobs whose name escapes me right now. Some time later, Peavey upgraded the TL-5 (and maybe TL-6 too) to the 2 humbucker set up that looks alot like the humbuckers you see on current Peavey basses. So for you folks with the noisy pickup problems, do you have the old single coils jobs or the humbuckers? I'm really hoping the humbuckers are good to go, because if I do luck up on a newer TL-5 I just might snag it if the price is right. I'm sure the older one is good too (the wood and hardware appears to be the same) however, if you up grade the pickups, you'll likely have to do some slicing and dicing to yr axe along with the cost of the new pickups. Given that, it just might not be worth it.


  18. KeithPas


    May 16, 2000
    Tim Landers plays bass with John Tesh. I saw him on TV a while ago and he is an amazing player.
  19. gfab333


    Mar 22, 2000
    Honolulu, Hawaii
    I agree with DGCE's concerns about replacing the pick ups. You'd have to route out the pick up holes to get replacement pick ups to fit. It could be done, but I decided to buy a new bass instead. It was more work than I wanted to deal with.

    It would be a great project for someone who likes to tinker with basses.

    From the fundamental stand point though, the TL-5 was well made for its time, has beautiful woods, is easy to play (although string spacing is narrow), has a decent bridge, and is an all around decent bass. The pick ups are just about the only item that is obsolete today IMHO.
  20. Busk


    Jan 31, 2002
    I won't be doing any routing. From pictures of this bass I have seen the 2 pups look like the same size as split P-bass pups. Am I wrong or aren't there replacements that would drop in?