Yahama BBN5 5-String Bass?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by 4stringthing, Aug 6, 2001.

  1. 4stringthing

    4stringthing Guest

    May 10, 2001
    What do you guys think about this bass? I've been playing since April and taking lessons (sticking w/ it) and will get a 5 string bass somewhere around the beginng of next year. I'll be really good by then. I also think a Warwick Thumb is the best way for me to go.
    The Owl likes this.
  2. Hey 4stringthing, all I can say about the Yamaha BB5NII is: BUY IT! I'm at work now, so I can't write more. I'll try to get back here at lunchtime to say a little more. It's an excellent bass. Talk to you later.

    Mike J.
    The Owl likes this.
  3. Nino Valenti

    Nino Valenti Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 2, 2001
    Staten Island NYC
    Builder: Valenti Basses
    Welcome to TalkBass, 4stringthing.

    IMO, this bass is a GREAT bass for the money. Great sound & feel. I'd go for it.

    <img width=275 height=48 src="http://albums.photopoint.com/j/View?u=1174383&a=8647027&p=41535909&Sequence=0&res=high">
    The Owl and bassguyky48 like this.
  4. O.K. it's lunchtime, and I'll give you a quick run down on the BB5NII. Everyone usually tells you to do a search, but, it's BUSTED at the moment. First off, I have a BB5NII, which is the current version of the BB5N. I think the only difference is that the II has humbucking pickups. Also, it's NOT the BB5NA,
    which is an active bass, and it's about $500.00 more than the BB5NII.

    To begin with, this bass looks very much like a Fender with the main difference being that the body and headstock are both slightly smaller, and it balances well sitting or standing. The neck has a very Fender like feel to it, and plays just like a Fender as well. It feels a lot like a 5 string Jazz bass, and the width at the nut is about the same. The overall construction is excellent considering this bass costs $400.00 w/o case. It has two big humbuckers in the usual Jazz positions, and it has the same two volume, one tone control set up. The best part of this bass is its sound. These pickups are very Fender like in tone, except that they're absolutely quiet(when they're both on full) and they have a very strong low-mid growl that I wish my MIM Jazz had. This is what I could not believe about this bass when I tried it out; I was all set to buy an Ibanez BTB405QM, which is a fabulous bass, but this Yamaha had, in my mind, the EXACT Jazz bass sound I was always looking for. If you want a bass that sounds like a very growly Fender Jazz, check this bass out. It's a bass I think a lot of people haven't tried, so they don't know how good it sounds. Also, it's passive which is something I like. I recommend it highly. You don't have to spend a lot to get great sound.

    Mike J.
    The Owl likes this.
  5. LowfreqB


    Nov 10, 2000
    United States
    I used to own a BBN5 the older version with 2 single coil pups. Here's my beef. The pots on my bass which could've been a lemon, were bad to begin with. I blame myself and my inexperience with the bass guitar for buying that bass in the 1st place. However. Even if the pots were good, the older version had no mid range definition and the B string wasn't very tight. Therefore I had alot of muddy sounds. A boss EQ helped, but shouldn't be needed. If you love the bass, and want to take this instrument seriously, save your money and buy a pro quality bass now instead of moving up to it latter. That goes for amps as well. I have spent over $4500 on equipment that I didn't need or eventually did not want, over the past 4 years. If you like yamaha basses, then look into the higher end stuff they sell. The Nathan East bass is very cool, I really like how easily accessible all parts of the neck were. Also the RBX series is nice. I went from the BB to a stingray5. I just like the ray's sound better.
    The Owl likes this.
  6. Angus

    Angus Supporting Member

    Apr 16, 2000
    Palo Alto, CA
    Yamaha = Best 5's for the money of any bass I've played. For a "buy cheap, upgrade later" bass, I think they are MUCH better than anything else. I'd love to get one, actually (but that would require money).
    The Owl likes this.
  8. FalsehoodBass

    FalsehoodBass Guest

    Jul 22, 2001
    Denver, CO
    I bought the same bass but a 4-string used 3 years ago.. the bbn-4. The best $200 i ever spent. It's an AMAZING bass for that price. It hits harmonics better than anything i've ever played, and its nice and light, but doesn't sound thin. I might have gotten lucky w/ this one.. but i'd say BUY IT! my only little problem is that if both pickups aren't at the same volume, it hums quite noticably.
    Heineken Pete likes this.
  9. bassplayingluke

    bassplayingluke Guest

    Aug 7, 2001
    Hi 4stringthing

    I play a Yamaha BB-N5A Natural Edition. Well the only difference of the natural edition to the regular one is the look. (you can actually see the wood it's made of and it's got golden hard ware. I just love it)

    The N5A is an active bass. You can adjust lows, highs, eq-settings, etc which allows you to vary your sound a lot. The reason why i love it is its punchy sound. You just slightly turn up the lows and it's got so much power you wouldn't believe possible. expecially its 'bottom end' is some of the best i ve ever played.

    i dont know how much you pay for one of them in the US but here in switzerland they are 1700 swiss francs wich is arund 1100$. and in my oppinion it's worth every single cent.

    i first wanted to buy a warwick 5-string bass but after i had tried the yamaha, it was easy for me to change my mind. the warwicks i ve tried were bloody heavy and still didnt have the punch of my yamaha even though they costed a few hundred bucks more.

    go for it!
  10. LowfreqB


    Nov 10, 2000
    United States
    In responce to Michael Jewels, My pots did exactly what yours did/does. My bass did have some growl to it, I dont think you can get a similar bass for the money. If I had to buy it again, I would do a complete overhaul and change all the pots, and the pups. I still believe that this bass lacks in mid range, and the B string is not very tight.
  11. Heineken Pete

    Heineken Pete

    Jul 21, 2007
    ...just bought an excellent Yamaha BB5N II at a fair price and couldn't be happier. As others noted, light weight, comfortable, easy to play, especially after playing my 35" scale Modules Quantum 5. Can't say I'm sold on the front volume/rear volume/tone knob setup. I'd rather have volume/balance/concentric tone knob stack. I may copper foil the cavity just because it looks like a fun project. I also splurged on a set of DR Black Beauties that should be a cool compliment to the nice dark blonde finish. All in all?? Great bang for the buck!
  12. two fingers

    two fingers Opinionated blowhard. But not mad about it. Inactive

    Feb 7, 2005
    Eastern NC USA

    (You just replied to a thread from 2001!) :D
  13. Heineken Pete

    Heineken Pete

    Jul 21, 2007
    image.jpeg ...I saw that the thread was vintage, I just wanted to say -even all these years later- that this is a great bass & a solid buy for the $$. image.jpeg
    5StringPocket and GTHintz like this.
  14. pgribs


    Feb 2, 2021
    Ottawa, ON
    I had this exact Yamaha growing up. It was stolen by my dumb b×××× ex roomated. As an odd coincidence i just bought the 4 string version used.

    I now have played both so i will say this

    Cons, 5 string version, the B string was kinda floppy after being used a lot. The neck is wide, but doesn't play bad at all. Pickups are a little muddy at lower tunings.

    Pros, sounds good, much like a growly Jazz. Bright acoustics. Well built and durable. Pickups have some pop to them and sound really good overdriven, albiet not super clear if tuned down. The 4 string version is feather light but i am used to 5 strings with maple necks, that is what I like. GREAT value for money.

    If you are just starting out or need another backup bass, good choice as any. I would say it sounds like a good passive fender which is unsurprising since it has similar tone woods.
  15. ragetoca

    ragetoca Joe

    Sep 16, 2013
    If you want to sell the BBN5 let me know...
  16. The Owl

    The Owl

    Aug 14, 2005
    Used to have the old version myself, excellent bass for the money.

    philsrig(1).jpg TIRylesPhilDeadlyLowNote.jpg
  17. pgribs


    Feb 2, 2021
    Ottawa, ON
    It was stolen
  18. ragetoca

    ragetoca Joe

    Sep 16, 2013
    I am modding one I got on FB