Whats your preference traditional/ vintage style or modern/customs designed basses?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by MAJOR METAL, Jun 30, 2005.


    MAJOR METAL HARVESTER OF SORROW Staff Member Supporting Member

    Whats your personal preference with bass designs and what you play Traditional/Vintage style IE ( Hofner Violin Bass, Fender Jazz Bass) or Modern/Custom designed basses IE ( Ritter , Conklin). My personal preference is Vintage styled instruments with modern features like stronger passive pickups or active electronics.
  2. Andy Brown

    Andy Brown Supporting Member

    Jul 23, 2004
    Rhode Island
    Founder: Wing Bass
    I like a lot of 'em. I've got the classic Jazz and an F Bass coming in. I also like single-cuts.
  3. michele

    michele Supporting Member

    Apr 2, 2004
    Eh, eh ...your preference is Sadowsky. It's the same for me ... ;)
  4. DaveDeVille

    DaveDeVille ... you talkin' to me ?? Supporting Member

    i prefer traditional Fender shaped bodies , although i can
    appreciate some of the modern body designs ...

    electronics ?
    again i prefer passive , but i also own active basses ...

    guess i just love basses that sound and look good .
  5. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    I own a couple modern basses with neck-thru-body design and active pickups and they're good, but my main bass is a stock 1998 Fender Jazz. You can take a Jazz Bass to any musicial situation on earth and totally fit in, whereas you can't say that about these custom basses. I have played gigs where the active basses were completely wrong for the music so I'd switch to the Fender and all would be well. But I've never been in a situation where the Fender wasn't working out.

    Studio bassists will quite often say, "If you want to do studio work but you can only own one bass, make it a Fender." I used to think they were high. After switching back to Fenders a few years ago, I see what they mean now.

    But I have to add that my favorite basses are the ones played by good players. I couldn't give a crap what someone else uses as long as they're good.
  6. Bryan R. Tyler

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

    May 3, 2002
    I greatly prefer singlecut designs (modern-style, not Les Paul-ish) over doublecut designs, so that alone puts me in the modern category. I prefer modern shape for a lot of other reasons as well.
  7. BurningSkies

    BurningSkies CRAZY BALDHEAD

    Feb 20, 2005
    Seweracuse, NY
    My answer is...YES!

    I love good ol' Fender Jazz and P bass looks...but lately I've been into more modern looking stuff. You can't get much more progressive than my new Dingwall. I'm really into vibrant color stuff right now...not necessarily bright, just rich.

    I really don't like the look of 'melty basses' though...Specter and Warwick. And not much into extra pointy stuff.
  8. paintandsk8

    paintandsk8 Pushin' my soul through the wire...

    May 12, 2003
    West Lafayette, IN
    A good mix is what I like. Take a look at my current bass It's got a fender jazz body shape, but it has an exotic top as well as active pickups and a 5 piece maple/purpleheart neck.

    If i had to go one way or the other though, I would stick to the traditional side of things.
  9. Marcus Willett

    Marcus Willett Supporting Member

    Feb 8, 2005
    Palm Bay, FL
    Endorsing Artist: Bag End - Dean Markley - Thunderfunk
    +1. Though I play mostly custom-built basses, they are essentially Fender designs. My main 5 is a Jazz design with a smaller body and Aero pups (passive). My take on the Fender concept.
  10. Eli M.

    Eli M. Life's like a movie, write your own ending

    Jul 24, 2004
    New York, NY
    My current bass is an American Deluxe Jazz but I'm going to be selling it to help pay for the two custom basses I have on order. I've definitely lost interest in the vintage look, as evidenced by the following:

    Nordstrand NJ5 Deluxe with zebrawood top
    Benavente Vortex 5 with goncalo alves top

    Although I'm moving toward exotic looking basses, both these basses will be retaining elements of the vintage thing:
    1. both are double cutaway vintage-inspired shapes
    2. neither will have wooden pickup covers or wooden knobs. I feel that's the point at which it starts to look more like a piece of artwork than a musical instrument and I'd be afraid to take it anywhere.

    I feel confident getting rid of the Fender because I don't see myself getting a gig where a vintage look would be absolutely necessary. One day, though, I'd like to have a custom built J-style bass in a 33" scale with active electronics, for those times when I might like to play something like that.

    EDIT: Spec-wise, my Benavente is essentially going to be a custom 33" scale version of my Fender - alder/rosewood with a maple neck, etc.
  11. I really like the look of jazz basses, and some modern exotic ones, as long as the body shape isn't pointy i generally like it.

    passionatly hate the SG, les paul style basses.

    P-basses are ok but not my favorite (even though i own one)

    i think my ideal bass would be a jazz bass in pure white with a small maple neck, extra light strings and gold hardware,


    a nice bit of kurrilian birch for a body with some kind of red-mahogany stain, a stained maple neck, passive p-bass special pick-ups (one split coil, 1 jazz bass) with a filter switch to change between them.
    and a phaser pedal built into the body with a flick switch to turn it on and off with one round knob for amount of phase. 2-band EQ and a master volume. on a retro- looking white scratch plate. gold hardware.

    maybe a little bit of gold intricate engraving on the body.

    so really i kind of like fusions between the two. modern classical.
  12. Ben Rose

    Ben Rose

    Jan 12, 2004
    Modern....Give MTD, FBass, KL....anything without that chunky square heel. That being said, my favorite sounding bass is my $600 parts jazz.
  13. smperry

    smperry Moderator Staff Member Gold Supporting Member

    Nov 3, 2003
    Bay Area, CA
    Endorsing Artist: Martin Keith Guitars
    Modern, or post. I generally like shapes different from your typical jazz or precision, and I tend to dislike pickguards and control plates...I prefer a cleaner look.

  14. steve_man


    May 15, 2002
    It depends on what you consider modern. For example, Spalt Matrix basses could be considered modern but I think they look like a a piece of wood that was raped by a buzz saw.

    On the other hand I love some of the ideas that have come out over past few years. For example steinberger necks, better aerodynamics and body shapes, use of exotic woods ... I could go on.

    It is a matter of opinion but I have found that I like a foundation (eg. j bass, p bass) that has been improved upon to make it more functional.

    By the way ... Good Thread!

    MAJOR METAL HARVESTER OF SORROW Staff Member Supporting Member

    Thanks Steve :)
  16. Petary791


    Feb 20, 2005
    Michigan, USA
    I'm normally a vintage guy. Rics, and Js, and Ps, OH MY!

    I wouldn't mind getting my hand on a Wal however. Those are considered "modern" right? I also do like Conklins. Ritters are pretty fugly in my opinion.
  17. I love the Fender Precision and there's no doubt that I will ever own one (again) some day. But I also own a modern SingleCut bass. I doubt if Alembic fits in one of those two categories, after all they are around since the early seventies and I consider them to be timeless classics. So...

    "guess i just love basses that sound and look good"

    +1 :)
  18. illidian


    Jul 2, 2004
    I like the traditional/vintage look, sometime with a spin on it.

    Electronics-wise, I like a blend. Passive p/ups with an active pre are nice.

    I like a mix between the vintage and modern sound, more on the vintage side (70's J bass-ish).
  19. mikezimmerman

    mikezimmerman Supporting Member

    Apr 29, 2001
    Omaha, Nebraska
    I like both, depending on what I'm playing and who I'm playing with. Good thing I don't have to choose, huh? ;)

  20. JMX

    JMX Vorsprung durch Technik

    Sep 4, 2000
    Cologne, Germany
    Definitely modern.