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Yamaha TRB5II... Owners thoughts

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by rojo412, Jan 18, 2001.

  1. rojo412

    rojo412 Walnut is fun! Supporting Member

    Feb 26, 2000
    Cleveland, OH.
    I've always liked these basses. The sound is really nice. The feel is good. But a little pricey for me to justify buying one (1, I just bought a bass, 2, I have a 5 string already that rules, 3, the bass I just bought needs upgrades).

    Well, at work today, I was searching the GC database and found that I could get a BRAND NEW blue TRB5II for $470! Actually, anyone can... if they can find one. Well, I found ONE! And I thought "Hey, I may have just bought a bass, but this is no lose: a great bass or something I could sell for more than I bought it for."

    So OWNERS, how do these basses cut it in the real world? Do they last? Are they cool? Do they suck? What's up?

    Thanks for any help.
  2. Well, I was a little disappointed with mine, bought it new and sold it after 3 or 4 months. I bought it sight unseen, which was a mistake. The main gripe was, even with a 35" scale I could'nt get the B to sound good, despite trying every brand of string known to man. Another gripe, the pots have a very weak detent, and the bass boost sounds a bit wooly. Apart from those things it was quite nice, well made. I replaced it with a Stingray 5. I've since had the opportunity to try one against an original neckthru with piezo model, and there is really no comparison, IMO, the more expensive one is far superior.
  3. I owned a TRB5P.
    It was PERFECT.
    Best slapping tone I got from any bass I tried first and before.

    I sold it why I was tired of 5-strings.
    Maybe a mistake.
  4. embellisher

    embellisher Holy Ghost filled Bass Player Supporting Member

    Unfortunately the TRB5II does not have the same electronics as the TRB5P.

    I doubt that you would get the same tone from it.
  5. Sure I had it as a back-up and sucked.
    Well, it was less good ;).
  6. Jazzbassman23


    Apr 20, 2000
    rojo, how do I get to the GC database?
  7. I love mine. Can't say that I A/B'd it against others, I just trust my ears.

    Sometimes I let other people play it so I can go out into the room and listen to it !

    The B on mine is the Ultimate Authority !!!

  8. Jeffrey A-Bomb

    Jeffrey A-Bomb Drink Coffee & Destroy Supporting Member

    Oct 14, 2000
    Silver Spring, MD
    I really like mine to! It sounds great to my ears as well and I've got it sounding awesome with my bass rig. Very nice fat tone to it, almost have a nice flea funk tone dialed in. The B String is decent and I can obtain a huge number of tones and play it so easily =] I dig it.
  9. rojo412

    rojo412 Walnut is fun! Supporting Member

    Feb 26, 2000
    Cleveland, OH.
    Well, I ordered it. I have always been a fan of the TRB5II because I could coax some very nice and clean tones slapwise and the spacing is wide enough for my meathooks. I just wondered how they hold up in a gig situation or in real life. I was worried about problems like the truss rod always breaks or the necks warp or something bad like that. Also, it would be my 4th bass, so I have no gripes about it not being versatile enough. I HAVE versatile, I'm just filling in puzzle pieces.

    And Jazzbassman, I work at GC, so it's pretty easy for me to look stuff up. However, if YOU go to GC and ask about anything wacky going on basswise, someone can look it up for you. This month is full of wacky stuff, and not to advertise, but white DeArmond Pilot active 4 strings are $199. Ibanez 406s are $479, ergodynes in grey (can't remember which ones) are really cheap. There's a lot of other stuff too. I'd say check it out AS A CONSUMER! I'M NOT B.S.ing! I'm paying tag price for the Yamaha, same as anyone else. We are trying to get rid of old, special, and slightly damaged stock, so it's going cheap.
  10. Jeffrey A-Bomb

    Jeffrey A-Bomb Drink Coffee & Destroy Supporting Member

    Oct 14, 2000
    Silver Spring, MD
    The neck on the trb5-II is very sturdy, I don't think you'll have to worry about adjusting it a lot =] It's nice and chunky, I dig it!
  11. Wow, you think the neck on the TRB5-II is chunky? It's a bit thicker than the Dean I've been using, but when I think "chunky" I think more along the lines of Music Man or Warwick, not the TRB5-II.

    I played a TRB5-II for about an hour through an Eden WT-300/D-410XLT rig, and I have to say that I was highly impressed. The B string is very clear, and the pickups have fairly beefy midrange such that a pleasing growl can be gained from pretty much any setting. Most importantly, the playability is MARVELOUS! The electronics were quiet, although the near-nonexistence of the detents did piss me off; however, having the lines on the knobs makes up for that somewhat.

    I could have walked out of the store with it, had I been willing to drop $1200.
  12. Jazzbassman23


    Apr 20, 2000
    I too went from a Dean 5 to a TRB5II. The Dean spacing was just too tight for me, and even though I'm not a slapper, it still gave me fits. The Yamaha neck is perfect. Like others have mentioned, the electronics could be better, but I typically leave everything flat anyway. If I need to adjust for a room, I do at my amp. And there hasn't been much that I haven't been able to coax out of it. Yeah, I'm real happy with mine. Trans blue btw.
  13. Jeffrey A-Bomb

    Jeffrey A-Bomb Drink Coffee & Destroy Supporting Member

    Oct 14, 2000
    Silver Spring, MD
    Instead of "chunky", I guess I meant more like "spacious" and "comfortably wide".. It just feels very substantial and sturdy :) I mean, I could never play a thinner neck bass now and enjoy it (like the ibanez soundgears).. I've been converted! heh..
  14. Hey guys!

    I have the fretless version of this bass (TBR5IIF) in transparent blue circa 1999. I have D'Addario Half-Rounds on it. I really like both the feel and sound of this bass. It's big and beefy feeling (It just feels very, I don't know how else to put it, "substantial"), and looks both gorgeous, and also huge/imposing (though not garish, or edgy), and having the half-rounds on it really diversifies my ability to produce tones on it (as opposed to the D'Addario Chromes (flatwounds) I had on it before.) I can emulate (though not perfectly) a 5-string active -fretted- bass with it, even including slap and pickstyle, and I can also emulate (though not perfectly) something of a Jaco sound, resulting in the high probability that I won't even need to invest in an active, fretted 5-string, or a "jaco'd" j-bass, so I'm very pleased with it. Using both a 2007 Fender Bassman 250/210 combo and a 1967 Sears Silvertone all-tube 1-15" Jensen paper cone, open back cabinet, I can get both the huge bottom/dazzling highs of the active electronics (thanks Bassman!) and get the midrange growl, sweet waw, and brilliant definition (thanks Silvertone!) that this bass affrds. It is my "flagship" bass alongside a 2008 Fender American Standard J-Bass (with stock Fender 8250 Roundwounds), and a 1984 Electra-Westone X700JB Futura Bass (a P-Bass clone minus the wild cosmetics) retrofitted with a 2008 Fender American Standard P-Bass pickup, sporting La-Bella "Jamerson" flatwounds and foam muting. Yes, I can say, I like this bass very much! In fact, the only complaint I can raise about it is that I could wish for a more "growly waw" on the G-String like there are on the E, A, and D strings (especially A and D).

    Just seeking a point of clarification, though: The pickups on this beast, (part numbers QC428900, and QC429000) are double coiled pickups. What I have been unable to figure out though, is are they "Humbuckers" in the traditional sense, meaning, two coils both directly interacting with the strings, or is it a phantom coil arrangement, where they are basically glorified single-coil pickups with an added dummy coil that doesn't interact with the strings, but only serves to prevent hum? The "soapbar" casing prevents me from seeing the number of magnets, which would answer my question, and just the fact that the spec-sheet says "double coil" doesn't tell me anything, because both a "humbucker" as well as a "phantom coil" pickup would technically classify as a "double coil" pickup. To my ears, they sound more like phantom coil pickups, but I can't be for certain. If anyone knows the answer to this and can share it, that would be uber appreciated. Thanks!
  15. hogbob


    Jan 26, 2010
    I simply love my TRB5PII ... it is the most versatile instrument I've ever owned and it is super in every aspect...Sounds great and the tone can be variated endlessly. The craftmansship is flawless - simply perfect. The stability is impressive - you'll never have to tune during a gig .. Only thing I don't need is the piezos - never use them

    Try it out - if you like the tone, then go for it ... perfect
  16. Well, just got a reply from Yamaha support on my "humbucker" vs. "Phantom coil" question! As I suspected, they are Phantom coils! See the response below:

    "HI John ; these pickups are single coil with a dummy coil to balance hum ,hope this helps EB


    I guess that settles that. :)

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