the ((CHEAPEST)) way into the world of electric uprights?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Jazbreakz, Mar 15, 2000.

  1. Jazbreakz


    Mar 15, 2000
    If anyone can offer any suggestions on this topic, I'd be EXTERMELY grateful! It seems that to get into electric uprights you basically gotta have a DECENT amount of money stockpiled somewhere, which I don't.

    A dream upright for my styles of interest would personally be the EMINENCE Acoustic/Electric Upright,...BUT reality has got me seriously looking at the Epiphone EB-1 Fretless(around $360 bucks) just to get close to ANY upright feel & sound. Would buying the Epiphone be too desperate? or is it "better than nothing"? or is there another way to achieve "upright status"?...AFFORDABLY

    ANY kind of feedback, insight, info. or resources would very much appreciated!
    Thanks, Jaz
  2. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member

    I too have been looking to get into this area. The least expensive EUB that I have tried, that actually felt and sounded (if not looked!) like an upright was the Steinberger NSCR4. There was definitely a big difference in the way this felt and actually required an upright playing style, whereas I think that for some it's closer to just playing a fretless bass guitar.

    The NSCR4 is about £1400 over here in the UK, but I'm sure it's cheaper in the US - everything else is! Still quite a big investment, but way cheaper than the real thing and less likely to deteriorate - very solid build and easy to transport.

    The big thing for me is scale length - if you're looking for something to approximate the Upright then my feeling is that the closer this is to about 41" the closer the sound gets - short scale and upright tone don't go together in my experience. But then I haven't had the opportunity to try as many as I'd like and it seems to be difficult as not many shops stock them and even when they do, they are bought up pretty quickly.
  3. JimK


    Dec 12, 1999
    Bruce- "...short scale & upright tone don't go together"? Have you tried the Ashbury Bass?
    Truthfully, I am always thinking about getting into the world of EUBs; for awhile, I was stuck on the Azola Bug Bass...fairly "inexpensive" at about $1295(couple years ago). The Kydd bass was another candidate.
    ...what I should be worried about is getting around to playing the upright I do have.
  4. I tried one of the original Ashbory bass years ago Great sound but very hard to play in tune. I posted on this subject under basses in the upright bass forum. The only way to join the eurb club without a lot of money is to build your own. I tried the Zeta Educator eurb and it sounded good to me. But I cant have a $2000 toy on social security. I would like to take the pickupe off my upright basses and play with people with more taste. If you cant keep up with high volume levels on stage the next bet is an eurb with as much power as needed. Then wear ear plugs to bring the volume to a safe level.

  5. any link where I can find more information about this EMINENCE bass?

  6. Rockinjc


    Dec 17, 1999
  7. Gard

    Gard Commercial User

    Mar 31, 2000
    Greensboro, NC, USA
    General Manager, Roscoe Guitars
    I'm gonna side with Bruce on this one, if you want the real "feel" of an upright, there's no replacement for the proper scale length.

    I've had opportunity to mess with the Ashbory Bass often, and while it approximates the sound well, it just doesn't have quite the same depth of tone, and the feel of it is all wrong. I can't deal with the hyper-short scale length either.

    There are several less expensive entries into the world of the EUB that are passable, the Azola Bug is not too bad, and the BSX isn't too horrible as a couple under $2K USD examples. The Kydd, while not a bad instrument isn't a good choice for the tone or feel of an upright as it's either a short scale (32") or long scale electric (35").

    I've just entered the world of EUB recently, having finally recieved my NS Design CR5M :D. I'm totally in love with it, by they way, it's an amazing sounding and playing bass, absolutely smokes anything else of it's kind that I've played. Yes, it's somewhat more expensive, but the difference in tone and playability are more than worth the extra green stuff, IMO.

    It just so happens that after I'd ordered my bass back in Janurary, I got hired at the shop that I ordered it from, Bass Central. I'm now a part-timer there. We just happen to have two NS uprights in stock presently, a US5 which is the "flagship" model from NS, a graphite/maple laminate instrument with some really cool and functional things in it's design, but totally non-traditional. The catch is that it lists at $6000!!!!!! :eek: Even with a good discount, you'd be looking at ~$4000+. The other is a CR4, which is the most basic model, a solid maple 4 string with no magnetic pickups, just the EXCELLENT dual piezo system that NS makes. That one is for sale right now for $2200, and well worth it. We also have an Azola Bugbass in stock, but I just can't recommend it as highly, although it's more affordable (I'm not certain of the price, you could call and ask if you're interested: 800-545-8813).

    I've played three gigs and five rehearsals to this point with my NS and it's recieved nothing but rave reviews from everyone, including band members, audience members, other bassists sharing bills, and even Tito Puente Jr who walked over in the middle of a set, pointed at the bass and yelled to me "That thing sounds INCREDIBLE!". :D The biggest problem I have at this point is keeping my electric bass guitar chops up, because this thing is so much fun to play and sounds so damn good.
  8. rllefebv


    Oct 17, 2000
    Newberg, Oregon
    I'm doing just that! It's turning out pretty good, (so far!)... The next hurtle is carving the fingerboard radius. That 72mm, (2.84"), radius is mighty tight and will require removing A LOT OF WOOD!!

    I'm taking pictures of each step and will slap together a website when completed and tested. I'm hoping to play out with it on a 4th of July gig...

    41" scale - I happen to agree with the above opinions
    5 Ply Rock Maple body/neck
    Purpleheart Fingerboard
    Modified Schaller Tuners
    Maple Bridge w/Highlander electronics
    'D' neck

    Wish me luck!

  9. Bob Gollihur

    Bob Gollihur

    Mar 22, 2000
    New Joisey Shore
    Big Cheese Emeritus: Gollihur Music
    The Eminence is very nice - see them at - I really enjoyed playing one at NAMM. Azola makes a wide range of EUBs including some that are very reasonably priced.

    I have made my own, given the fact that a) I don't have a real great need for one, and b) I'm cheap - it takes some effort and a lot of planning, and I'm still refining mine. Read about/see it at

    I have a 34" scale one on the drawing board for my son which may kick off a limited production run.

    The Epi EB1 is a waste of money, don't bother. It's just a vertical fretless electric -- as are many EUBs IMHO -- not that that's a bad thing... just not MY thing. I wasn't turned on by the NS Design I played at NAMM, though I loved it's look (and it inspired my own effort). I'll have to give it another shot since many others like it.

    In any case -- try before you buy if you can -- the world of EUBs (see over 100 makers and homebuilt ones on my Double Bass Links Page - ) is wide-ranging and there are many different flavors.