Up to a 5-string? yah or nah?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by BassPanther, May 10, 2002.

  1. How much of a transition, do you all think, would it be for me to go from a 4 to a 5 stringer. The reason I put this into Basses is because I would like suggestions as to what 5-stringers to get.

    Background info:
    I've had my 4-string for about a year now, which is the same amount of time that I've been playing bass. With impending graduation money I'm considering bying a 5-string. I would like to have that low B string to add the fat lows that I like, without having to tune my bass to redicules tunings (I tend to play 1 step down DGCF)

    $500-$800 spending limit, self-imposed (I have no problems with used or blem gear)
    If you are going to make a suggestion please give me a specific brand and model name...please don't say "try a ______(insert random company here)

    Hard Rock/Heavy Metal

    Big, heavy lows but with a clean tone in the mid's and high's

    Thanks for your help in advance.
  2. Brendan


    Jun 18, 2000
    Austin, TX
    1- Transition? Maybe an hour. Well worth it!

    2- MTD Kingston 5. Ask around, these things KICK for about $450 (or less!), have a B string that blows away a lot of $2000 basses I've handled. It's passive, and simple. It works well in the metal situation. Believe me. Has an even tone response across the board, and has some KILLER low end. The string spacing is about like a P bass, and has a wide, flat neck, which makes it a breeze to play.

    Downside? Maybe you won't like the color. That's about it. :D
  3. I had about ten four string basses. They were mainly four string Fender American Precisions which varied in years from 1969 to 1999 and one 1999 natural four string Musicman Stingray that I ended up trading for all five string basses. If you click on the little red house above (my homepage) you can see a few that I gave up and also see five I've gained. I basically traded two for one. It was very hard and scary to do at first and then after the first couple of trades the fever was on full blast and then trading became a piece of cake. I'm getting a Musicman Stingray 5 in about three months or so (in the layaway right now) to finish up my pack and I ain't looking back!

    It has changed my attitude in practice and the way I approach the bass now. I had began to stand still once and play the same things over and over again.

    Five string .....Yah !
    Let it Ring!
  4. CS


    Dec 11, 1999
  5. rickreyn

    rickreyn Supporting Member

    Jun 16, 2000
    Lutz, Florida
    This will look good strapped low and it gets all the fat lows you want. Your will also find the neck very fast and EADG similarly spaced to most Jazz type basses.
  6. i use 4 strings mainly but im thinking about getting a 5 to do covers and stuff like that. im thinkin bout an ESP F-205.
  7. hey
    not that i'm discouraging to from getting a 5 string.....i play one, i know what i felt like with the prospect of getting one :)
    why not try stringing your 4 B-E-A-D, so u get that low B, and spend the money on a decent amp...i assume you gig??

  8. Stringing a four string lower or backwards or anything else really don't compare to a five string bass once it's in your blood to get one. I had often thought about the drop down switch but thought that I would have to be flipping it and stuff real fast.

    Heh...encourage him to get a five! He can always go back to a four.. it's going to be plenty of them for sale soon.
  9. No I don't gig, yet...but I already own a 100W Ampeg BA-115 combo amp so I'm good for an amp right now.
    I'm thinking about a 5-string because I like the flexability I have with it. I wouldn't have to worry about retuning it. Whether I get a 5 or not, I will have my current four string set-up (tuning wise) then my next bass whatever it may be.
  10. LA


    Oct 17, 2001
    The transition from a four-banger to a five-stringer might actually be easier if you haven't been playing that long than if you were a seasoned veteran. I've played electric for 24 years before switching [full time] to a five string last November, and I still don't "get it" some of the time. Develop a go-for-it attitude, pick up a MTD Kingston or Ibanez BTB-405 and get to work! :D
  11. Purs


    Feb 20, 2002
    My first practice with my 5 string went pretty well. Of course it's still infatuation at this point but I think I'm going to really like playing a 5 string.
  12. CamMcIntyre


    Jun 6, 2000
    The Kingston 5, StingRay 5 are great basses. If you can find a DeArmond Pilot Plus, Pro, or Deluxe 5 i think it'd give you what you're looking for. I have a pilot + 5 & just got home from a 10hr back to back performance [2X5hrs a peice] & the bass covered from Driving Rock to ballads to funk. Jazz pickups, jazz neck, active 3 band pre. Try all that you can to get an idea of what you think feels & sounds right. Thats all
  13. embellisher

    embellisher Holy Ghost filled Bass Player Staff Member Supporting Member

    It can be a difficult transition for some people.

    On the other hand, some people have little problem with it.

    I had been a 4 stringer for almost 15 years(except for a 3 month flirtation with a crappy 5 string 2 years before) and bought a Soundgear 6 string because the price was too good to resist. I had wanted a 6, and when I saw the price, I had to buy it.

    I gigged with it the same week. There were a couple of miscues, but according to my bandmates, I did great.

    Today, I play 4, 5, 6 and 12 string basses, and have no problems switching between them.
  14. Turock

    Turock Supporting Member

    Apr 30, 2000
    nah, it's down.
  15. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Total Hyper-Elite Member Gold Supporting Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
    I was playing a four string eight years ago, then I bought a five-string. Then I bought another one. Then another, and another. And yet another and still another. And I just bought another one. Man, I love these things. I mean, if they weren't great basses, why would I keep buying them? I never play the four string any more. Just not enough strings. No, I don't need six strings, or seven ... or do I? Hmmmmm ...

    It's been a while since I've taken a photo of the whole family together, but here they are. The pic's not so hot due to the bandwidth limitations.

  16. hey
    go get a 5'er then :) like the others said try the MTD kingstons and Heirs, Ibanez BTB's (NOT soundgears, the cheap ones suck), Bass Collection (very underated)
    but try and gig a little bit, you'll never know what you need if you don't. And use the B tastefully :) the amount of people i'v known who got a 5 and just transposed everything they knew down to the B. Have fun

  17. Nice collection...I can hardly contain my drool!
  18. My next bass will be a 5 string, and it will probably be an Ibanez BTB 405. They're beautiful. I'm just off to check out Kingston now though. :)
  19. Tsal


    Jan 28, 2000
    Finland, EU
    I think MTD Kingston should give you the tone you want, if not as stock but atleast after adding some nice preamp to help you to lure out the sound.