Tobias Line Reviews?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Son of Spam, Aug 22, 2002.

  1. I've heard this bass a few times at different music shops, and the tone is very fat and warm, especially for the price tag. I frankly don't care what it says on a headstock, and am looking for a great tone, and the Tobias 5ers sound pretty nice.

    I just want to know if anyone owns one, or knows someone who owns one, and if they have any downsides I have looked over. I'm gonna check em out this weekend to make sure I like it, and I want to know if I should look for anything in particular (like if there are any bad traits in Tobias I should know of/look for before I buy.)


    BTW, I know someone in Talk Bass owns one, cause I saw his bass in one of his pictures. Heh, I'd like that guys opinion and any others.
  2. SMG

    SMG Supporting Member

    Apr 17, 2000
    metro Detroit
    A lot depends on what model Tobias you are referring to. ALL (capital letters intended) of the American made Tobias basses, the pre-Gibson and the Nashville/Gibson-era, have great electronics. I haven't personally played an actual pre-Gibson Tobias, but have always heard they blow the Gibson era ones away. That said, they must be great, because I have a Classic 5, a Basic 5, a Killer B 5, and a Growler 4 and think they are all superb. Actually, the Classic, the Basic, the Killer B as well as the Signature all share the same electronics, all Bartolini. The Growler and the Renegade have totally different guts, but still all Bartolini.

    The current Korean made Toby series have totally different guts and sound quite a bit different. They aren't bad for an inexpensive bass, but by no means are they among the best sounding for the dollar.
  3. I do mean the American made btw. The 5 String Pro Model. On the website '' they listed two different models in the Pro line, I'm going with the more expensive, mostly cause I can afford it, but I need to check them both out, cause though I can afford the more expensive model, I don't feel like paying 200 extra bucks for no different/a worse bass.
  4. embellisher

    embellisher Holy Ghost filled Bass Player Staff Member Supporting Member

    The ones on the musicyo website are not American made.
  5. Showdown

    Showdown Supporting Member

    Jan 21, 2002
    Honolulu, Hawaii
    I have a Toby Pro 4, which is Korean made (you can see it in my avatar). It is a well made bass (construction wise), that can compete with basses costing twice as much. It uses high quality woods (wenge and flame maple - and the body is made of solid flame maple, all the way through, not just a maple top), and even has threaded inserts for the control cavity cover - something not usually found in a bass in this price range. The weak spot is the preamp. I replaced mine with a Bartolini, and it is a great sounding bass now. For the price (I paid $500 for the bass, and $160 for the preamp), it is a great bass. I've played basses that cost $1500 that weren't as good.
  6. SMG

    SMG Supporting Member

    Apr 17, 2000
    metro Detroit
    Agreed, the preamp is the weakest link. Actually in A/B testing my Toby Pro 6 and my Tobias Classic 5, you can hear that there is an attempt to get the same sort of sound, but there is a huge difference. I say attempt, as it does sound like the frequency curves are set somewhat the same. Musicyo used to claim (maybe they still do) that the preamp was Spector designed. It looks like an old Kramer era Spector preamp, but I would bet that it isn't the same. (Hmmmmmmm....I actually have one of those preamps that I bought from Victor Litz when they had a bunch of leftover Kramer parts, but I feel committed to dropping it into a neck-through Forum that I got without the guts...could be an interstesting experiment, though.) As far as the construction of the Toby Pro is concerned, the only fault that I have ever experienced with mine is one nut slot wasn't cut properly and because of this, one string was always buzzing no matter what note I was fingering on the neck. A bit of superglue in the slot remedied that.

  7. Macron69


    Mar 24, 2000
    Puerto Rico
    Well. i have a Toby Deluxe 5 since '96 and it's a very well contructed instrument. Feels strong and it's very playable. You see them at for $ and it makes me wonder 'cuz when i bought it back then i paid a lot more, but i don't regret the purchase. I'm considering replacing pickups and preamp. but i gotta hear the higher end ones to see if the Barts really make any diference. I also find the shape unique and very atractive. In fact that was the main reason i got it, all the kids over here had soundgears and the ATK was WAY off my budget( now that i have budget, they don't come anymore! :( ). Go ahead! they're good.
  8. punkfunkfreak


    Dec 16, 2001
    do a search and ull find my review on this bass....
  9. Coward Of Reali

    Coward Of Reali

    Oct 13, 2003
    Questions for the Tobias Pro 5 owners:

    Does the B string wobble alot when you play? I've a couple of five strings and the B string tends to do that a lot. Also hows the neck? Too wide? Too narrow? I always see five strings used in metal bands. What other types of music are they good for? and how is it for slapping and popping?
    I'm thinking of getting the guitar but I dont know what to expect on a five string since I never owned one.
  10. If you try the taper wound strings, they will help stabilize a wobbly B, not completely but it will help some!


  11. Showdown

    Showdown Supporting Member

    Jan 21, 2002
    Honolulu, Hawaii
    I've found that 5 strings are very useful in todays country music.
  12. I have a korean made Tobias Pro 5 and it is far from being a bad bass, i agree the electronics suck and thats why i'm having mine changed soon but i'd have to say the beat the pants of other basses in the same price range that i've played.
  13. Coward Of Reali

    Coward Of Reali

    Oct 13, 2003
    Hows the B string? Wobbly? Anyone know the answers to my questions (I'm sorry if I sound rude. But I have a limited time offer to get the pro 5 for a cheaper price)
  14. hands5


    Jan 15, 2003
    good 'ol USA/Tampa fla.
  15. In regards to the B string, it'll depen on you strings and gauge of course but i think its fine.
    Currently i've got DR's on it and its tight as hell but i've had rickenbacker strings on it and it was the worst B in the world. Of course the rickenbacker strings didn't last long.

    I haven't found any faults with mine and i've had it a couple of years at worst you'll need to replace the electornics and pickups but that seems to be a common trend with the korean made tobias'.