What are Carvin Thinking?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by sargebaker, Oct 5, 2005.

  1. sargebaker

    sargebaker Commercial User

    May 2, 2004
    Montreal QC CA
    owner/builder, ISLAND Instrument Mfg.
    I just decided to hit up the Carvin BB's (it's been a while) and what's this I see? new model? yeah a $2500.00 Model (6 string)!!!!!!!!!!!! With absolutely no new options other than more and fancier (5A as opposed to 4A :rolleyes: ) wood...

    IMHO this is completely ludicrous! and a terrible move on Carvins part. For that kind of money I'll be going to Modulus, Smith, F, Roscoe, Conklin, Lakland, and MANY other people before I go back to Carvin.

    and I can think of a number of options thaT could debut to MUCH more success. carved tops, hollow/semi-hollow bodies, graphite necks, 7 strings, new body shape, new colours/stains (like those phat CT guitars), different pickups (brands and/or configurations), bolt on models (for 6ers).

    Call me crazy but a B6 kit would most likely cause an uproar in the 6 string market...I know I'd get one! All those kids who want a low-mid priced quality six... a kit with proper assembly by a professional would be hard to beat for the price!
  2. Fealach

    Fealach Guest

    Apr 23, 2003
    Gone to a better place
  3. sargebaker

    sargebaker Commercial User

    May 2, 2004
    Montreal QC CA
    owner/builder, ISLAND Instrument Mfg.
    It's featured in the new catalogue and is new for 06 or somehting...it's not on their site yet but there is a thread about them on the BBs....

    These are the specs:
    34" scale five piece maple & walnut laninated through-neck....
    5-piece AAAAA Quilted maple/black/walnut/black/maple laminated body...
    Matching 5-piece headstock with Quilted Maple truss rod cover...
    Fully rounded body edges...
    H50S neck humbucker and HB2 bridge humbucking pickup & coil splitter...
    Active/Passive P-series Electronics with 18v preamp...
    Clear Gloss Finish...
    Gold plated metal Carvin logo on headstock...
    Gold plated hardware...

    Price: LB70EP $2299.00, LB75EP $2369.00, LB76EP $2449.00

    It is also a no show top and back.
  4. Bryan R. Tyler

    Bryan R. Tyler TalkBass: Usurping My Practice Time Since 2002 Staff Member Administrator Gold Supporting Member

    May 3, 2002
    Was that their list price though? Carvin always marks their list prices up quite a bit higher than their actual sale prices.
  5. Lackey


    May 10, 2002
    Los Angeles
    Hehe, you're trying to play nice Bryan - trust me, dont do it. Suggested MSRP according to Carvin is like 5 grand or more! What are they thinking? They can throw another sheet of maple at a bass and turn it into a Ken Smith? I agree, more bolt-ons and non-Carvin pickups and preamps should be their number 1 concern right now.

    BREAK! However, this new catalog also debuts their Cobalt acoustic bass! A reasonable $719, with Fishman Matrix preamp. I'm very curious to try one out.

    Edit: List prices are $5699, $5849, and $6099 respectively for 4, 5, and 6 string models. Not to mention, you'll pay more for their 35.25" scale length or 19mm bridge spacing.
    Carvins have always been good FOR THE MONEY! But there is no way you can jack the price up on "aesthetics" and hope your customers are too dense to do their own research before shelling out twice as much as they should have to. This new model can't hold a candle to the Elrick Gold Evo 5'er I played over the summer, Pink ivorywood fb, myrtle burl top, full bartolini setup, and handcrafted by a single guy! It's selling price was the same as the 5 string Carvin "Elite"!!!!!
  6. keb


    Mar 30, 2004
    I haven't gotten my catalog yet, but I'd heard about this (and read the thread on the Carvin BBS). I was kinda surprised. But on the other hand, Carvin does seem to get their hands on some nice woods and maybe they want to make some instruments that really show it off.
  7. Richard Lindsey

    Richard Lindsey

    Mar 25, 2000
    Metro NYC
    I'm a Carvin fan in most respects. I can't figure this move. I would never pay $2449 for the Elite 6. I would go custom for that money, and in fact I did.
  8. Bryan R. Tyler

    Bryan R. Tyler TalkBass: Usurping My Practice Time Since 2002 Staff Member Administrator Gold Supporting Member

    May 3, 2002
    Maybe for that price they'll change that terrible 80's metal headstock for us...? :D
  9. sargebaker

    sargebaker Commercial User

    May 2, 2004
    Montreal QC CA
    owner/builder, ISLAND Instrument Mfg.
    dream on! :( I wonder who's in charge and just what goes on in the boardrooms if "add some more quilt and increase the price 65%" beat out "add a pickguard, offer semi-hollow bodies, diff pickups, different headstock styles"

    On another note, since when did Carvin offer Trans White stains on Ash?
  10. Lackey


    May 10, 2002
    Los Angeles
    Speaking of trans white, Carvin has slowly (read SLOOOOWLY) been adding some nice options as well, starting with the 19mm spacing for the LB series, rosewood fingerboards, new finishes, and now fingerboard radius options. Those and the new acoustic bass are all moves in the right direction.

    On the downside, seems like every few months they nudge up option prices a couple bucks, a few years ago a five piece neck was $100, now it's $180, a few months ago rosewood fingerboards were N/C, now it's $20!

    BTW, I just added up all the possible options for this new model. At the very maximum, they should sell it for no more than $2000 for the sixer. Where does your extra $450 go when you get this "Elite"? It ain't going to resale value, I can well guaruntee!
  11. So is the body style the same? Im surprised Carvin's making a move like this, IMO what they really need is a new body style. Granted I love the two that I have, my only complaint has been that they look alittle, well dated. I dunno they need a new body style, and since when did they start offering 19mm spacing? Do they do it on their sixes? I remember when I ordered my six they wouldn't make the neck any wider than it was, and this was maybe a year ago.
  12. MODNY

    MODNY Guest

    Nov 9, 2004
    IMHO carvins may sound good, but they are almost as ugly as bongo's
  13. NJL


    Apr 12, 2002
    San Antonio
    I guess there's no link? Is it just in the mailout?
  14. keb


    Mar 30, 2004
    Haha, yeah, the only thing that bugs me about the Carvin kit bass I put together is that damn headstock. They're not quite as pointy as they used to be, but they've still got that pointy legacy look going. I'm thinking of busting out the saw and sandpaper to round it out a little, and then refinish it (and maybe replace the tuners with some Fender-style elephant ear types.) (EDIT: actually, nix the tuners, the headstock doesn't look big enough for them to fit.)
  15. Doug Parent

    Doug Parent Supporting Member

    May 31, 2004
    San Diego, Ca.
    Dealer Nordstrand Pickups.
    I have to agree with the general tone of these posts. I lived in san Diego for years and wandered into the showroom2-3 times year over 5-6 years.

    The degree of change, the pace, and the type of advances they make on thier basses is slow. I've seen it with thier R series heads and cabs too.

    The new B series heads and cabs are a good indication of things to come, and quite frankly, the only offering I'd consider. Too many other manufacturers offer too much more for the same or similiar money.

    I've posted before on this subject. I see a great opportunity they are wasting to capitalize on a section of the market due to fixed ideas or stubborn adherence to "time honored" manufacturing designs.

    35" scale, different manufacturers electronics options-(EMG, BArtolini, BassLines, etc) attractive body and headstock shapes. Its all CNC, whats the big deal? :confused:
  16. KenToby


    Aug 15, 2002
    I just got my new Carvin catalog in the mail the other day and after taking one look at the new Elite basses I thought to myself, "Where else can you get a beautiful American made neck through multi laminated , 5A Quilted Maple top AND back plus a multi laminated 5A Quilted Maple headstock (front AND back), gold hardware, multi laminate graphite reinforced neck, gloss finish, on and on, for just over $2000?".
    My Smith Elite with virtually the same options lists at $6800.
    My experience tells me that this new Carvin might be the best deal in its class. No?


  17. Christopher


    Apr 28, 2000
    New York, NY
    I agree with most of the posts in this thread. Carvin's done a lot to keep up with the boutique PRS/Superstrat competition on the guitar side of things.

    The basses, however, have adhered to essentially the same body shapes for the last 10+ years. It's time for a top-to-bottom redesign.
  18. Sweet! I've been waiting to get another six string carvin, i've already got a bb75p that I really love. I honestly don't understand how they can sell such finely constructed gear for so cheap. I do lean on the side that their electronics and preamps are a bit plain sounding, but all things considered, for the prices out the door for a custom to built bass, it's amazing. I'll be ordering one shortly, and will post reviews...I just need that student loan to get here soon. :)
  19. stingray69

    stingray69 Talkbass Legit Supporting Member

    Aug 11, 2004
    St Louis Area
    I have absolutely nothing against Carvin basses myself, but I can help but agree with a few other posts here. If anyone had that kind of money to spend, would it be on a glorified base-model Carvin? We all know what kind of basses can be had for THAT kind of money! Crazy.