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Starter 6-string

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by DJ Kuul A, Apr 18, 2000.


  1. DJ Kuul A

    DJ Kuul A

    Apr 11, 2000
    Hi gang,

    I am getting started on the bass (I've been playing guitar for a few years) and I'm interested in going with a 6-string (love that prog rock!). I'm also interested in Minimum Cash Layout. [​IMG] The purpose here is personal enjoyment and jamming with friends, not serious gigging.

    I've tried out a few models in stores (unfortunately, these days I don't have the time for this that I'd like), and seen a few for sale online, and I'm looking for recommendations as to something in the low end worth getting. I've seen some things like a Fernandes Gravity 6, a Tobias (unsure of the model #), and an Ibanez SR506 around the $600 price point, although I'd really like to keep it under $500. A strong contender right now is the Carlo Robelli (Sam Ash store brand), which they sell for only $350 new. It seemed to play fine when I tried it out, but I don't really have much to compare it to.

    Any suggestions/ recommendations will be much appreciated!!!
     
  2. Hey DJ Kuul A..

    My brief foray into 6-string involved an Ibanez SR-506 and I thought it was pretty good. This is 5 years ago though, I don't know how they are now, but the one I had played really nice with a comfortable neck profile and had a lot of tones. Another one you might consider is the Curbow by Cort 6-string, I played one at my local MARS the other day, liked it a lot.. it's got about the smallest body I've ever seen for a 6, and it was about $625 if I recall.. good luck!
     
  3. gmstudio99

    gmstudio99

    Mar 11, 2000
    Cleveland, OH
    Yo!

    I do do some serious gigging and own some higher end instruments and I, too, have been drawn to that Carlo Robelli 6 stringer. I've played it in the store a number of times and keep trying to figure out what's wrong with it, and I can't find anything! It will probably be my next purchase...

    For what you're describing, it sounds like exactly what you're looking for.

    -GM
     
  4. DJ Kuul A

    DJ Kuul A

    Apr 11, 2000
    Interesting! Also, much as I hate to consider the looks of an instrument. . .I find the Robelli to be pretty stylin'. [​IMG]

    (See a picture at http://www.samash.com/shopping.htm)

    Thanks for the tips so far, guys!
     
  5. Brad Johnson

    Brad Johnson Commercial User

    Mar 8, 2000
    Gaithersburg, Md
    Boom Bass Cabinets, DR strings
    www.musicyo.com has 6 string neck thru Tobiases for $499.



    [This message has been edited by Brad Johnson (edited April 19, 2000).]
     
  6. frost13

    frost13

    Apr 12, 2000
    Another possibility is the Dean Edge 6 string. I have the four string and it is a solid, good sounding bass.
    I did play the 6 string at the store and it had a great feel and tone. It would be MY choice.....maybe sooner than later... [​IMG]
     
  7. DJ Kuul A

    DJ Kuul A

    Apr 11, 2000
    I've only read about the higher-end Tobiases. Does anyone have experience with their low-end "Pro" series?

    Is there a website or NYC-area dealer where I could check out the Dean?
     
  8. frost13

    frost13

    Apr 12, 2000
  9. Brad Johnson

    Brad Johnson Commercial User

    Mar 8, 2000
    Gaithersburg, Md
    Boom Bass Cabinets, DR strings
    I have two very old Tobiases (3 digit serial numbers). I tried the later stuff that Gibson put out, I prefer mine to those. The lower end Gibson basses varied in quality. MusicYo is giving a 30 return policy, you'd be responsible for shipping if you didn't like it. I haven't heard anything bad about MusicYo so far, the bass may be worth consideration. If I had to guess, I'd think it was made possibly in Korea, where some very decent instruments are coming from. If I were on a budget and in the market for a 6, I'd probably order one. Of course, that's what "I" would do, what anyone else does is another matter.
     
  10. rojo412

    rojo412 MARK IT ZERO! Supporting Member

    Feb 26, 2000
    Cleveland, OH.
    I've never seen a tobias as cheap as that. But in my life, most cases where something sounded "Too good to be true" it was. The Dean has a 35" scale and EMG passive pickups. I am a snob when it comes to basses, but I gave the Dean a shot. It was only $389 at my local store which usually has high prices. I was shocked! It sounded great. It sounded better than the Ibanez SR406 that I put it up against. Go with the Dean. It's exactly what you want.

    ------------------
    Son, when you participate in sporting events, it's not whether you win or lose. It's how drunk you get. - Homer
     
  11. frost13

    frost13

    Apr 12, 2000
    The Kramer Baretta 5 string at MusicYo is a VERY good bass, especially at that price. I played my friend's and am being tempted by it.....
    Theonly thing for me is...the spacing is a little wide for me....I like closing spacing, but I think others would love this bass.
     
  12. Brad Johnson

    Brad Johnson Commercial User

    Mar 8, 2000
    Gaithersburg, Md
    Boom Bass Cabinets, DR strings
    <BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by rojo412:
    I've never seen a tobias as cheap as that. But in my life, most cases where something sounded "Too good to be true" it was. The Dean has a 35" scale and EMG passive pickups. I am a snob when it comes to basses, but I gave the Dean a shot. It was only $389 at my local store which usually has high prices. I was shocked! It sounded great. It sounded better than the Ibanez SR406 that I put it up against. Go with the Dean. It's exactly what you want.

    <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    So the Dean sounded "too good to be true", too [​IMG] You gave the Dean a shot, why would you think the situation with the Tobias would be different? I wouldn't be suprised if the Dean and the Tobias were made by the same people. It's quite possible it's the same quality as the Dean, shaped like a Tobias, with different electronics and a thru-body neck.

    There are a bunch of lower cost basses today that could compete with higher priced basses from a few years ago. Production methods have advanced, parts are more common and lower cost, today's "cheap" basses aren't cheap at all. Not very long ago a thru body, active electronics 6 was unheard of for less than $1K. That's mainly because they were not the norm. Now they are.
     
  13. frost13

    frost13

    Apr 12, 2000
    I don't persoanlly know about the Tobias, but I too have a hunch that it comes from the same factory...as well as ESP basses, which you might also check out.
    The Tobias basses LOOK good.....and would probably be a good buy as well. Isn't it nice to have choices?.... [​IMG]
     
  14. rojo412

    rojo412 MARK IT ZERO! Supporting Member

    Feb 26, 2000
    Cleveland, OH.
    Well, I said "most cases."
    Anyway, I think those Tobias basses are made in the same place as the new inexpensive Spectors. They have the same electronics. I've never played or seen them, but I'll check them out. However, I've played new Tobys that cost $2500 and they sound like crap, so a cheap one may just be... well, you know.
    This case, though, DJ should play a bunch of things and get the one that sounds and plays the best. Who knows? Maybe the budget Toby will be the best.

    ------------------
    Son, when you participate in sporting events, it's not whether you win or lose. It's how drunk you get. - Homer
     
  15. JohnA

    JohnA

    Mar 21, 2000
    I don't think I've played a 'real' tobias that I didn't like. I also haven't found many newer tobias' that I DID like.

    I think the new MTDs are nice though. (They don't make a cheap 6 -- just following up on someone else's comments)

    carlo robelli is popular around here as I live right near a sam ash. I've never tried one though.
     
  16. Brad Johnson

    Brad Johnson Commercial User

    Mar 8, 2000
    Gaithersburg, Md
    Boom Bass Cabinets, DR strings
    I know you said "most" Rojo [​IMG]

    I bought a Spector NS-94 last year in mint condition for $300. Neck thru, active 4. It was very nice. I didn't keep it because I pretty well stocked for fours, so I sold it. It played as well as most basses I've seen for around $1k, had nice construction and sounded good. If the low end Tobias is as nice, it's a good buy. I don't know who built the higher end Gibson/Tobiases but they were usually surprisingly bad for the price. Obviously high price is no guarantee of quality.
     
  17. DJ Kuul A

    DJ Kuul A

    Apr 11, 2000
    At lunchtime I hit Sam Ash and tried out the Robelli 6. Not bad. Quite lightweight, and a thin neck which is good for my relatively small hands. I also tried a Yamaha BBN5, which was nice- very solid-feeling. What do people think of these?

    I noticed on the Bass Player website there's an article by Roscoe Beck where he says after years of playing both 5- and 6- strings, he thinks that a 5-string is almost always better. BUT HE DOESN'T SAY WHY!!!!!!!! Oy.
     
  18. embellisher

    embellisher Holy Ghost filled Bass Player Staff Member Supporting Member

    I would recommend the Ibanez SR506, but unfortunately they do not make it anymore. I've got one in translucent teal, and it looks and sounds great. The only low priced Ibanez 6 now is the 406, which is not as fast and does not sound very good. If I needed a new one, I would probably go for the Dean, it has a great feel and sounds great for the price. Or, you could look for a used SR506, I've seen a couple for around $400..
     
  19. DJ Kuul A

    DJ Kuul A

    Apr 11, 2000
    I actually won an SR506 on Ebay last week, but I offered something like $450 and the seller wouldn't take less than $600, which I considered a silly price. [​IMG]

    I've noticed that low-end 6-strings tend to go for more on Ebay than if you find them in a shop. (Incidentally, it used to be that way with wargames, which I collect, but over time their Ebay prices have come way down.)
     
  20. eli

    eli Mad showoff 7-stringer and Wish lover Supporting Member

    Dec 12, 1999
    NW suburban Chicago
    I, too, was pleasantly surprised by the Robelli 6. Seems to me a pretty good deal for the bux...