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The Oscar Schmidt bajo sexto electric accoustic twelve string Bass, a personal review

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Blazer, Dec 28, 2004.

  1. Blazer


    Nov 27, 2003
    The Netherlands
    Rogue luthier employed at Knooren Handcrafted bass guitars

    Okay, today I visited a store which had all sorst of interesting stringed instruments and found that the Washburn owned Oscar Schmidt brand offers a couple of interresting instruments for a a very respectable price.

    One of them was a curious instrument which, from what I understand comes from Latin America. The Bajo Sexto is a six course twelve string bass guitar tuned from low to high: eE-aA-dD-GG-BB-EE , much like a twelve string guitar but a full octave lower. It has a very short scale length and a fairly deep resonant body.

    When I asked the guys in the shop if I could plug it in and give it a go they said that for the sake of their amps, I should plug into a bass combo, so I ended up plugging it into an Ampeg Bass combo with a 2x10 speaker setup and gave it a go. From the get go I realised that I needed to play it with a pick, fingers just wouldn't cut it at all. I also felt that the wide neck (At the nut it's wider than a Yamaha TRB6 six string neck) would take some getting used to. The electronics system is a piezo with active four band EQ. The short scale length also made it difficult to keep in tune. Given the large body it was prone to feedback.

    So how does it sound? Deep, plump and cool. Those octave strings adding some serious chime and I soom was rumbling away on Chris Squire's bassline of "Yours is no disgrace" but I found that when turning the treble down a bit I could also play some baroque and some cello suites from Bach. While Jeff Ament's bassline of "Jeremy" also was among the possibilities here.

    But I ended up not buying it (Even though I did have enough money on me to do so), it was a dog to keep in tune and because of the wide neck difficult to play, added to the fact that you need the tunes to fit the sounds that hail from this oddity. And frankly I think that most people who would have seen me coming home with it would see it as a gimmic.
  2. iamthebassman


    Feb 24, 2004
    Endorsing Artist: Phantom Guitars, Eastwood Guitars
    You're not from Texas are you?
  3. NJL


    Apr 12, 2002
    San Antonio

    nor has he heard Max Baca play...