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The most comfortable and uncomfortable bass you ever owned.

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by jimmykicker, Dec 27, 2017.


  1. jimmykicker

    jimmykicker

    Apr 13, 2010
    Just wondering what basses that you owned that were the most comfortable and which ones were the worst. And why. Sound here isn’t a consideration. Just ergonomics.

    For me the most comfortable had to be the Japanese Custom Shop ESP j-five. Perfectly balanced. Zero neck dive and easy playing. Light too. Incredible Japanese construction and attention to detail. Too narrow string spacing is the only reason we parted.

    The worst? Thinking a tie between an Epiphone Thunderbird and an LTD B206SM. The thunderbird had the worst neck dive I’d ever seen. You had to hold it up all night which was exhausting and hindered my playing significantly....and the LTD? Ye gods. The heaviest bass on earth. I know it’s a 6 but I bet it weighed 12lbs! My Brice weighs less than 10 and it is also a 6. It also had this huge bulbous heel that made upper frets a real challenge to get to. Electronics weren’t great either now that I think about it. I found the LTD ungiggable. Same as the T-Bird.

    They left my stable never to return.
     
    Bass V likes this.
  2. jd56hawk

    jd56hawk

    Sep 12, 2011
    The Garden State
    I.doubt anyone would find this comfortable to play for even a small set, but the tone more than makes up for any discomfort.
    Then again, never played a Thunderbird where neck dive was an issue I couldn't easily fix.
    20170830_084641.
     
    Dr_Feelgoood212 and jimmykicker like this.
  3. scubaduba

    scubaduba Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Dec 23, 2003
    Michigan
    Most comfortable: pre-gibson Gibson Tobias

    Least comfortable: Warwick Thumb
     
  4. Goatrope

    Goatrope Supporting Member

    Nov 18, 2011
    Sarasota Florida
    Necks:
    My ‘13 German Thumb NT 4 is least comfortable. Not for the way it’s 10 lbs hang on me, but for the really skinny neck profile. But I love it anyway. :(

    Am Fender Geddy Lee Jazz is the most comfortable. No lightweight either, but the neck is perfection for my hands.

    Bodies:
    Least: My ‘77 Rick 4001 has a squared-off binding that digs at the forearm a bit.

    Most: My ‘91 EBMM StingRay 4 H.
     
    Dr. Love likes this.
  5. Spent

    Spent

    May 15, 2011
    Upstate NY
    Most comfortable: Any Spector
    Least comfortable: Fender Aerodyne
     
  6. PianoOfDoom

    PianoOfDoom

    May 30, 2011
    NYC
    least: Peavey T40
    most: Epi ET-280
     
    jimmykicker and jd56hawk like this.
  7. eyeballkid

    eyeballkid Supporting Member

    Jul 19, 2009
    Most comfortable: Warwick streamer Doublebuck or fender American jazz.

    Least comfortable: a damn Ric!
    (Well...other than the mothman... but that goes without saying.. but it was close!)
     
    Last edited: Dec 27, 2017
    jimmykicker and Killed_by_Death like this.
  8. Ampslut

    Ampslut

    May 15, 2017
    I had an 4 string Ibanez Musician that just played like butter. When I decided to go 5 string I sold it. I had a Fender Rosco Beck 5 string that made my wrist hurt after the 2 nd set. I loved the tone and look but neck didn't like me.
     
    bassmangreg and jimmykicker like this.
  9. Bassist Jay

    Bassist Jay

    Dec 28, 2009
    Sterling, CO.
    Endorsed by K.B. Guitars, Nordstrand Audio Pickups, Von York Strings and Gallien-Krueger Amps.
    Almost every bass that I have ever owned has had great ergonomics. My longest tenured basses are my 2 Ibanez SR 500 Soundgear basses that I bought new in 94’ and 95’ but also had a SR 400 that I bought new in 93’. The 2 SR 500’s were my main basses up until 2010. I also had I think a 2012 or 2013 SR 500, a 95’ SR 800 and a 2007 20th 5 20th Anniversary Soundgear Bass. I still love the ergonomics of those basses. They are very comfortable to me and with the thin necks, you can play super fast on them.

    In 2010, I then switched over to Music Man and our of all of those basses that I have owned, I have really enjoyed the ergonomics of the Bongo followed very closely by the Stingray. The Bongo necks fit my hands perfectly and those basses are also balanced very well too. My only dislike on the Bongos are the painted necks so on the 3 that I still own, all are limited runs with either roasted maple necks or all rosewood necks.
     
  10. Most comfortable is my current SR1800E, just two ounces over 8 lbs. & everything just feels great:

    IMG_20171001_111321048.

    Most uncomfortable is a tie between my G&L ASAT & my Rickenbacker 4004.
    The ASAT had bad neck dive, for two reasons, the Telecaster body shape & it was a hollowbody.

    The shape of the body made the neck seem extra long & you couldn't let go of the neck at all w/o it plummeting.

    The RIC was 9-1/2 lbs., too heavy for my neck, and the neck was extra thick in all directions.
     
    wildthing, mikewalker, DavC and 6 others like this.
  11. BlacknWhite

    BlacknWhite Supporting Member

    Least comfortable for sure was The Thunder bird. I think I owned it for a month and got rid of it. Such an awkward bass lol but it looked cool... My '78 MM Stingray is by far the most comfortable bass I have ever played. Sits well and balanced. Plays like butter and the MM sound just wins me over. Following in close second was an old Mexican Fender P.
     

    Attached Files:

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  12. jimmykicker

    jimmykicker

    Apr 13, 2010

    Seems like everybody runs into that one. No matter what you do, you just can’t physically bind with it.
     
    Ampslut likes this.
  13. jimmykicker

    jimmykicker

    Apr 13, 2010
    That’s where I was. If you had a slick strap it headed towards the floor. If you had a grippy strap, it pulled on your shirt which is also uncomfortable and annoying. It also looked very cool. But horrible balance. The ESP I mentioned? It was so balanced you could take your hands off it with a slick strap and it just stayed there. Only bass I ever had that well balanced. Friend of mine owns it today. I go to see his band play and I get the chance to sit in and visit.

    In fact that’s it in my profile pic although you can’t tell much about it.
     
    BlacknWhite likes this.
  14. BlacknWhite

    BlacknWhite Supporting Member

    That SR is nice. My buddy had one and it sounded great and played awesome. Very nice bass
     
    Killed_by_Death likes this.
  15. jimmykicker

    jimmykicker

    Apr 13, 2010
    It’s strange how different our hands are. I used to own a lot of Ibanez basses. Swore by them. They are great. Fast and sound good....But i realized that a lot of the times after playing my hands hurt. Especially my thumbs when I played them. To a level i didn’t understand. Then I discovered why. The thin quality of them seems to be appealing to a lot of players is actually an issue for me. To me? It’s like an over pinching type of thing and it cramps my hands. I’ve got bing hands and long fingers. I discovered fat “baseball bat” types of necks and realized that was the source of my pain and why I wasn’t improving as a player. I love fat necks like Squier Active Jazz V, pro Tones, and old precision necks. They just feel good and I don’t have the strain on my hands with them and I play better. I also realized that 5s and 6s worked better for me too. I only own one 4 string today as a result.

    I do have one Ibanez though. It’s a Talman and it’s a 5. It doesn’t have an SR type neck.
     
    picnic01 and Gumby562 like this.
  16. Tony In Philly

    Tony In Philly Gold Supporting Member Supporting Member

    Oct 25, 2007
    Filthydelphia, USA
    My personal perspective of comfort is more about setup and strings used. For example, I have a Ric 4003 that felt stiff as a board until I put TI strings on it. Now she is a gentle mistress that I can I can twist and turn with all night long.
     
    Shlabotnik, nixdad and jimmykicker like this.
  17. lowdownthump

    lowdownthump

    Jul 17, 2004
    Most comfortable is my MusicMan Caprice. Weighs in right under 8 lbs. with a the most comfortable easiest playng jazz style neck I’ve ever encountered.
    My Classic Vibe 60’s P is a close 2nd with its slim profile neck , Vintage style frets, and lightweight basswood body . Most comfortable Precision I’ve ever played.

    Least comfortable was a Musicman Stingray USA SUB. Weighed 10lbs and neck was too chunky for my small hands.
     
    wildthing, Benko and jimmykicker like this.
  18. superdick2112

    superdick2112 Mile High Bassist Supporting Member

    Nov 20, 2010
    The Centennial State
    Most comfy = my USA Spectors.
    With their curved & contoured bodies, they are the embodiment of ergonomic.

    Least comfy = my old Ric 4080 doubleneck.
    15.5 lbs. of neck-cramping back-breaking bass.
    Sure looked & sounded good though, and I sure wish I hadn't sold it...
     
  19. Nedmundo

    Nedmundo Supporting Member

    Jan 7, 2005
    Philadelphia
    Least comfortable: DiPinto Belvedere semi-hollow. The upper strap button was around the 16th fret, which produced a long reach to first position when standing (see G&L ASAT, above). The neck itself was fantastic, but I didn't like the body's ergonomics. It was otherwise a wonderful bass. (I had a boat anchor Peavey T-40 in the 1980's, but don't remember it well enough to deem it "least comfortable," and it didn't have the long reach issue of the DiPinto.)

    Most comfortable: G&L L-1500. This had the best playability of any bass I've owned, and an ergonomically friendly downsized version of the L-2000 body. It felt really maneuverable on stage. The G&L bridge is comfortable for palm-muting too.
     
    lowdownthump and jimmykicker like this.
  20. Most comfortable ,Fender P Bass..
    Least comfortable,Spector Euro.. Just couldn't find a comfort zone on me with that one..
     

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