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Why aren't modulus's more popular?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by evito, Mar 12, 2008.

  1. I bought an '05 VJ with passive electronics a few months ago. Its the best playing jazz I ever owned. I put my '75 jazz in the closet and I have a feeling its goign to stay there for a long time.



    I love them, I cant wait to find an other used one. :hyper:
  2. Angus

    Angus Supporting Member

    Apr 16, 2000
    Palo Alto, CA
    Avoid the EMGs and the Q's are great instruments. I played one forever and loved it...recorded. Sounded incredible. But I could never get a live sound I was really happy with except at jazz gigs. Loved the fact that it never went out of tune and is still probably my favorite bass for overall comfort and playability (love the body shape like nothing else), but if I can't be happy with it live then it makes it hard for me. After 7 years I finally sold it because I hadn't seriously played it in 3 years. If it were 34", I'd keep it or buy a Q6.

    The jazzes and Genesis are killer instruments though. If I played jazz's, it would be the one I would own with the maple neck and fretboard. Hate jazzes though. If the Genesis was a 34" scale, I'd own one with soaps and a cedar neck/maple fretboard in an absolute instant.

    As much as I loved the bass, I'm overall happier with my Sonus 6. Great tone live and recorded, has even better playability, and isn't quite as modern. The electronics definitely aren't as strong in the bass as the modulus (which was great for rock gigs), but it's a much more balanced, useable EQ. Super happy. And I know I'll never have the ridiculous customer service issues I had with Modulus.

    But again, if they'd make a 5 or 6 in 34" scale (or if I liked jazzes), I'd own one again. My Q5 is still standard with which I judge everything because it's the bass I know best and the one that will always be the bass that made the man out of me as a player. That and my Tobias are the golden standards for me.

    But I sure hate the Flea basses. They do absolutely nothing for me these days.
  3. evito


    Dec 17, 2006
    Antioch, California
    Wow, I seem to have sparked a bit of interest :). Well I am glad to see that there is a couple of Modulus guys/gals around here.

    I will agree that they are a bit pricey, but if you find one used they aren't too bad (mid to low $1000's).

    I have a Q4 with Barts, it seems that people like the EMG's a little bit more. Why is that? I thought the Barts were supposed to be pretty awesome pickups.

    Also, this may be a discussion more for the pickups section, but does the aguilar pre make a considerable difference? If so, what is it? I was thinking of upgrading but thought I would ask before shelling out the cash.

    Thanks again!!
  4. evito


    Dec 17, 2006
    Antioch, California
    Very sexy!! I might have to be on the hunt for one of those as well :bassist:
  5. Angus

    Angus Supporting Member

    Apr 16, 2000
    Palo Alto, CA
    I don't know- I always seem to come across more people who own Bartolini-equipped basses and more EMG-equipped for sale.

    I don't think the EMGs are really much more common.

    ...then again, I hate EMGs.
  6. NorCal Dog

    NorCal Dog

    Nov 28, 2005
    owned a beautiful vintage white / tort VJ4 for awhile,, absolutely loved it

    then lost a job... bye bye VJ :crying::crying::crying:
  7. Brad Maestas

    Brad Maestas Gold Supporting Member

    Nov 26, 2003
    SF Bay Area
    I have owned several Moduli over the years. One of the first was an old lovely Quantum 5 with a blue-green-burst top (and 2nd rev. EMG's, even though I don't like EMG's). I got it used and it served me quite well for several years. After a time though, the neck began to assume a convex overbow and it became unplayable. It was quite curious as they are not known for these problems. Of course, being an old model, it didn't have a truss rod so there was no way to really correct it. I owned two more Q5's after that. All the Moduli (? :D) that I owned after that first one were equipped with Bart pickups and electronics.

    In early 2002 I got a Genesis fretless 5. Wish I still had it. It was a great fretless. Alder body, alder neck and chechen fingerboard. Gigged and recorded with it for several years before replacing it with an F Bass BNF5.

    Then later in 2002 I got a new Quantum 6. It was the best Modulus I had played so far. Very responsive and much more organic-sounding than some of the earlier examples, despite its phenolic fingerboard. I had originally wanted a wooden fingerboard but I settled for what the store had in stock. It recorded well and I used it as my main live bass for a few years. I warmed up to it and things were peachy. Then at some point I became slightly annoyed with its tone. It was just too clean. Great as a special forces unit but ultimately for me, not versatile enough for me to use alone at shows where I was covering a lot of styles. That was when my love affair with graphite ended and I returned to wood once more. They're great basses though and do what they do well!
  8. msquared


    Sep 19, 2004
    Kansas City
    I actually don't get that vibe at all. It's always seemed to me that Modulus basses are pretty well liked around here. There are some vocal detractors with high post counts who really prefer to keep it traditional, but those people have different sonic goals anyway.

    I love Modulus basses. They do record very well, and any engineer who can't get them to sound good in a mix either needs a different bass player or a different hobby (because it's sure not a profession if that's the case).

    Clinical? Sterile? It's all subjective. I still believe that it's mostly in the hands. If the Modulus is what makes your hands produce great music, what's the problem?
  9. Phalex

    Phalex Semper Gumby Supporting Member

    Oct 3, 2006
    G.R. MI
    That's exactly my issue with them. I love the sound my buddy Jim gets out of his Modulus, but it just doesn't work for me. It plays like a dream, but in my hands it just sounds like crap.
  10. anastasio24


    May 24, 2003

    I do agree the customer service, which I only tried to use to ask a simple question, is the worst I have dealt with and I have owned Pedulla, Roscoe, Lakland and Fender so far. Only Modulus gave me any problems. Pedulla and Roscoe have been the best to deal with.
  11. iriegnome

    iriegnome Bassstar style Supporting Member

    Nov 23, 2001
    Kenosha, WI 53140
    I have to say, I love both of my Modulus basses! I have a custom made Genesis 4 and a Genesis 5!
  12. Flintc


    Aug 15, 2006
    Totally different sounds. There seems to be a bit of polarization here - for every Angus who can't tolerate EMGs, there's someone like me who couldn't imagine how anyone in their right mind would put Barts on a Modulus! (And then Angus complains because his Modulus didn't sound right! Imagine that!)

    I've had only one experience with Modulus customer support, which occurred when I was placing an order for one to be built to my specs, through a dealer. I called Modulus to check on the reliability of that dealer. The phone was answered by the CEO! He knew the dealer and reassured me that everything was fine. And the bass arrived about 6 weeks sooner than he estimated!
  13. rockstarbassist

    rockstarbassist Banned

    Apr 30, 2002
    The Woodlands, TX
    Endorsing Artist: HCAF
    Yeah, I have to say that it seems going through your dealer gets you the best results. Doesn't bother me any. They're more eager to get back to me, knowing they're getting a sale anyhow. :)
  14. jamfree


    Nov 10, 2005
    Is this true? I can get a Q5 in a 34" scale? Is it a special order?
  15. Jim Carr

    Jim Carr Dr. Jim Gold Supporting Member

    Jan 21, 2006
    Denton, TX or Kailua, HI
    fEARful Kool-Aid dispensing liberal academic card-carrying union member Musicians Local 72-147
    I would have bought one, but the price was the deal killer. At Rudy's in
    NY I played a Q5 in a gorgeous honey brown/green/yellow burst. Sounds
    strange, but it looked great to me, and my tastes generally run toward
    3tsb fenders or solid colors.

    The evenness of the each note on the neck blew me away after years of
    playing older fenders with their idiosyncrasies. When I later got my
    Sadowsky, I found similar evenness, but with a warmer, more
    complex/organic tone. Still gassing for that one Q5.

    I wonder who has it? It was about 4 years ago.
  16. Sean Baumann

    Sean Baumann Supporting Member

    Apr 6, 2000
    Livin' in the USA
    I'd own a genesis if they were not so expensive. I had a Q5 with a sick burl top and EMGs that I loved. It was not a good match for my rig at the time, at least in my perception. I did not totally dig the feel of the Q5 neck or the scale length, the tone was very nice and even. I liked the stability as well.
  17. eedre


    Feb 26, 2007
    St. Louis,MO
    Price - all the money is in midrange priced basses $500<$$$<$1500
  18. I've got two - and they're probably my two most indispensible pieces of gear. I have a Q5 with EMGs (18v pre,) and a SPI Custom 5 with Bart soapbars. Between these two basses, I get most of the sounds I need, and they never fail on me. There's something to be said for having a very reliable piece of gear, which a Modulus bass surely is.

    Then again, I can understand why some people wouldnt find the Modulus tone useful.
  19. droskobass


    Oct 8, 2007
    Montreal, Canada
    Former Part-Time, Non-Commission Employee MOOG Audio
    Moduluses Are popular. They always had long backorders and they sell all of the bases they make. Some of the biggest names in Bass play their instruments and they do about zero advertising.

    Compared to any other "Graphite neck" manufacturer they are doing phenomenally well.

    Sure composites are a niche market within a niche market, but Modulus is the front runner.
  20. rockstarbassist

    rockstarbassist Banned

    Apr 30, 2002
    The Woodlands, TX
    Endorsing Artist: HCAF
    I will also add that your rig makes a WORLD of difference, especially in the Quantum camp.
    I had an Eden 800B + Whappo Jr. rig for a while for gigging, and you couldn't beat it w/ a stick.
    Downsized to some Mesa gear (price wise anyway), and it just isn't the same, and I'm back to Eden heads and cabs. They just match better to my ears, FWIW. :meh:

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