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Recommendations for first six string bass

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by bluesmandan, Mar 15, 2013.

  1. bluesmandan


    Aug 17, 2011
    I'm wanting to grow. From 4 to 6. I'll probably buy used (so I can save on the flip when I eventually sell it, which I almost always do!) and will be spending well under $1000 (I'm a multi-instrumentalist, so I'm gear saturated :bassist: and uber-poor!:crying:)

    What do you recommend I look for? Any brands that I should trust/stay away from?

    The basses I've owned: Fender Standard Fretless Jazz, Epiphone Viola (30" scale), SX P/J fitted with Nordstrands (32" scale), and a G&L Tribute "Jazz" Bass. All 4 strings and passive p/u. I'm thinking of going active with the next one...
  2. hsech

    hsech Work hard. My Social Security needs a raise.

    Jun 27, 2012
    Central Iowa
    Carvin makes several good six string models. I have a Carvin Icon six string with 18v active pickups. IMO it sounds great. I bought mine used for under $1,200. I think it was a good pick. There are a lot of good 6 string basses out there, but I'm an old picky guy and only own US made gear.
  3. darkstorm


    Oct 13, 2009
    First off find out what six string basses necks you can get along with. Major diff in playability between 4 and 6 string basses neck size wise.
  4. two fingers

    two fingers Opinionated blowhard. But not mad about it. Gold Supporting Member

    Feb 7, 2005
    Eastern NC USA
    If you are "uber-poor" then I suggest you stick your money in the bank and quit buying gear. It's not a crime to save a few bucks for a rainy day you know. I get GAS like anyone else. But have a little discipline if your are broke. I'm not, so I can buy a few things without getting into too much trouble. But if I were broke, I would sell down to one bass and one amp and put that gear money in the bank.
  5. truecanadian04


    May 4, 2011
    What ever one has the longest scale.
  6. bluesmandan


    Aug 17, 2011
    Uhhhhh. Okay. "Uber-poor" was meant as a funny exaggeration. I'm not on food stamps, dude. I buy and sell music gear on the side, make a few bucks, and buy something I want to use for awhile. Whatever I buy, I'll probably end up making a few dollars on it when I sell it. But I'm not gonna buy a $3000 instrument. Under $1000 is what I'm shooting for. I'm looking for a good bang for the buck... good brands to look for, things to stay away from...
  7. tmntfan


    Oct 6, 2011
    Edmonton canada
    the MTD Z6 is a good one. used should be around $800 or less.
  8. Systolic

    Systolic Supporting Member

    Nov 29, 2009
    Schecter Studio 6 is a great bass for a quality foray into 6 strings.

    Shameless plus: I'm selling one in the classifieds. Check out my sig for a link. I don't know how to make it look pretty(the link,) but it works. :bag:
  9. bassbenj


    Aug 11, 2009
    Since you want to buy used to flip it (or get a huge buy on a keeper) it's hard to say what to get. You just have to see what shows up. For example I bought a high milage Ken Smith 6er for $300. Needed a couple hundred dollars worth of replacement parts and neck work, but it's a killer valuable bass now...if I ever wanted to sell it which I probably never will.

    There are lots of great 6ers out there dirt cheap. Keep an eye on all Ibanez basses as they come in 6, are plentiful used, sound and play like a dream and are easy to sell at a profit. A good choice if you are looking for a modern kind of bass sound and like thin necks.

    On the other side of the coin, if you have an interest in seeing what the passive Fender clone in six string is all about, you'd probably have to get a new SX 6er and do a bit of work on it, but it's only a couple hundred bucks. Only alternative would be a used Fender Steve Bailey or a used Low End 6er IF you can find one cheap enough. (Pickings are rather slim in the classic Fender 6 string department)

    In between there are LOTS of excellent choices. Use Carvin 6er will be a super value (but watch out for "vintage" age Carvins which aren't as nice) Schecter (as recommended here) always look like a million. I got a truly great used Bass Mods 7 string with coffee table top in your price range. They make 6ers too.

    In your price range there are so many great basses. Though rare I've seen Modulus 6ers (like mine) in your price range. If you see one DO NOT hesitate! BUY IT!

    But we can't tell what you'll find. We probably can't even advise you on if you should buy what you find. If it's truly a great bass buy then it will be gone by the time you ask us and we say buy it!

    So all I can say is that if you find some used 6er that you really seem to bond with, then just buy it. If later you find it's not you, then sell it and use your experience to buy the next one (or something else if you find 6 strings aren't your thing) In my case my first one was my fretless Alembic which proved to be too much bass for me in those days, so I had to find something else too, but I still have it and though I don't play it much these days, I still love it and know what it can give me.

    It's all about learning anyway.

    By the way, BluesManDan, six string basses are just KILLER for blues. Even better are fretless 6ers. But blues Nazis will take a fit if you show up with a 6er. And if it's a coffee table bass that looks like it should go with a jazz trio even I have to admit it just looks wrong!

    Good luck!

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