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Upgrading Ibanez Gio to S.U.B. Ray 4 - Waste?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by m0ranwad, Apr 1, 2013.

  1. Stick with the GIO until your budget grows

    27 vote(s)
  2. Upgrade to the S.U.B. Ray4

    25 vote(s)
  1. m0ranwad


    Jan 29, 2013

    My wife has my bass rig budget even tighter than my leash :smug:

    I am currently gigging with a bottom feeder - Ibanez Gio GSR200. Would love to make an upgrade, but $300 is about all I can do for now. I'm strongly considering the Sterling by Music Man SUB Ray4.

    Would you consider this a small step-up, or a waste?
  2. FourBanger


    Sep 2, 2012
    SE Como
    It is a small step up in quality but also a step sideways in style and tone. You GIO will make sounds the Ray won't, and vice versa. If you dramatically like one over the other after playing them a few times the decision should reveal itself.
  3. m0ranwad


    Jan 29, 2013
    I really liked the feel of the Ray4, but I've yet to sculpt my tone yet. My focus is still on proper technique.

    I do hate the pointless "Phat EQ" on the Gio, though.
  4. boynamedsuse

    boynamedsuse Supporting Member

    Oct 13, 2010
    The Phat II EQ is not that bad. Ignore it and you have a standard VVT setup on the GSR200. It can produce some good tones IMO. In any case, if your Ibanez doesn't have the "usual" Gio problems (unstable tuning, rough fret edges, etc.) and if I was in your shoes, I'd stick with it until you can afford a more solid upgrade. You could also consider buying used, which opens up a lot more possibilities.
  5. aproud1

    aproud1 Don't surround yourself with yourself. Supporting Member

    Aug 13, 2007
    Cincy, OH
    +1 What is it you don't like about the Ibanez?
  6. m0ranwad


    Jan 29, 2013
    Buying used is definitely an option. I've been keeping my eyes open on Craigslist, but it's been pretty stale as of late.

    I have had a good relationship with my Gio so far. Recently did my own set up, and I'm pleased with the intonation, tuning, action, etc.

    I guess I'm just looking for an excuse to change things up.

    Maybe I'll just try Flats for a change of pace ;)
  7. Hopkins

    Hopkins Supporting Member Commercial User

    Nov 17, 2010
    Houston Tx
    Owner/Builder @Hopkins Guitars
    I think for $300 you can do much better than either of them on the used market.

    Between the two of them I would choose the S.U.B. I have never played an Ibanez, bass or guitar, that I have liked the tone or feel of. With the only exception being an ATK

    But for the same $300 I would choose a Squier VM or CV personally. What kind of music do you play? What tone are you after?
  8. verycoolname


    Jan 28, 2013
    +1, well said. If you're happy with the Gio keep it.

    Swapping, in my opinion, is like going from a sedan to a slightly higher quality SUV (if my lame analogy makes sense); yeah, it's better quality, but all in all a different vehicle.
  9. avvie


    Oct 12, 2010
    Maui, HI
    I have a Gio200 and I upgraded it with a $35 preamp from Al's Music Source on EBay and a coiple of Dragonfire pups. Got a buzz issue to ground out but other than that I dig it.
    It's become my main axe over my '10 Sr300
  10. madurolover


    May 21, 2011
    Tampa Fl
    The GIO is better than the movie, not by much
  11. AaronMB


    Aug 17, 2012
    Central Oregon
    I'd also suggest watching the used market for a while. $300 can go a long way with the right deal; perhaps try watching the TB/Craig's listings for a few weeks.
  12. FourBanger


    Sep 2, 2012
    SE Como
    If you do like your Ibanez a $300 used budget can easily get you a recent SR300 or even better if you are patient.
  13. PotsdamBass8

    PotsdamBass8 Supporting Member

    Jan 23, 2005
    Long Island, NY
    I would wait until you have a more solid idea of what you want in a new bass, and then definitely buy used if you can.
  14. Flabass


    Aug 11, 2008
    St. Petersburg
    Save up and wait until you find one you really like.
  15. If you're gigging with a band, put your gig money aside until you've enough put aside enough cash to fund a bass you like better.

    Also another vote form buying on the used market. There are several U.S. made Peaveys in the classifieds for under $400. Furies, Foundations, or Patriots are all great basses that in my experience are fully gig-worthy. A lot of big names have played Peaveys.
  16. I have an Ibanez GSR200 and it is not bad, my first bass. Mine would need retuning nearly every other song. Good tone, skinny neck.
    For a slight amount more money, I recommend a Squier Vintage Modified Precision or Jazz, or a Custom Vintage.

    I absolutely love my Squier VM precision bass, about as much as my Fender Jazz.
  17. StrangerDanger

    StrangerDanger Supporting Member

    Jan 3, 2010
    What are you using for an amp? The amp upgrade may be a much better way to spend the money.
  18. theretheyare


    Sep 4, 2010
    Brooklyn, NY
    Endorsing: Arkham Vacuum Tube Amplification
    I got a Sub ray (damaged body, $179) and i was surprised how well it was made for such a cheap bass. Very clean fretwork, could do a very low setup. Sounded good too, loud and agressive, not that far of the real thing. been having a lot of fun with it.
  19. m0ranwad


    Jan 29, 2013
    That was where most of my money went. Got a decent rig, and it definitely allows me to better sculpt the tone.

    Had someone trying to convince me to buy the SUB, but I do prefer the thin neck and style of the Ibanez.

    Will probably set aside gig money as suggested. Thanks for all the input.
  20. I love my SUB 4 string. I have the SB4 model. Great bass for under 250 bucks.

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