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Buying a bass guitar

Instruments and Gear
Afro_Raven  
25 Aug 2010 14:49 | Quote
Joined: way back
United Kingdom
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Hey folks!
Afro here; been a while since I posted, hope everyone's well.

Getting right down to it, I'm going to buy a bass guitar, and I want your advice, thoughts, input etc. My budget is 200 - 300 (about 550 bucks), so I'm going for something in the lower price range but not a cheap no-name brand. Suggestions? Recommended brands? Active or passive? Pickup config? 4 or 5 string? Obviously I know exactly how all this matters when buying a normal 6 string, but I just want to know how it differs with bass. In particular, whether I should go for active or passive - is active worth the extra hassle of a battery? I was thinking perhaps Yamaha or Ibanez, as they both seem reliable, sturdy brands and I know Ibanez well. Any input anyone could give would be just lurrrrvely.

That's all folks,
Afro
case211  
25 Aug 2010 14:57 | Quote
Joined: 26 Feb 2009
United States
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I really like Ibanez basses, just personally. Of all the basses I have played around with, I seem to lean toward the active pickups as far as clarity between the notes, but I like the passive pickups(these are stock of course) for the sort of warmth and "life" of the pickups. They have a different feel than actives...more up to your ears, so demo two basses, one active, one passive and let your ears decide...BUT, I would also look at some Dean basses, they have a very very nice line of basses for the price range that you are looking.

But I have limited experience with basses of that caliber :P
MoshZilla1016  
25 Aug 2010 15:55 | Quote
Joined: 10 Jul 2010
United States
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I will most likely get shot for this but have you thought about Peavey. They make OK basses on the $300- 500 range. I've got a millennium with passive pick ups. a friend of mine has a Cirrus with active. I can't tell much difference in sound but the Cirrus has awesome action. Easiest bass I've ever played for that price. Imo Peavey guitars suck( I would'nt hit my mother in law over the head with one....on second thought..) but the basses are OK
BodomBeachTerror  
25 Aug 2010 16:26 | Quote
Joined: 27 May 2008
Canada
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Karma: 25
maybe one of the cheaper Fender Jazz or P basses. try some out
Ozzfan486  
25 Aug 2010 17:35 | Quote
Joined: 01 Oct 2008
United States
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I agree with BBT, plus they have a really cool, classic look to them imo.
jcb3000  
25 Aug 2010 17:47 | Quote
Joined: 09 Jul 2008
United Kingdom
Karma: 4
Yamaha basses are very good for the money! i'd definatly get one of those in your shoes. 5 or 4 strings doesnt really matter, i find myself rarely using the extra lower string anyway so thats really upto you.

With regards to active or passive: Passive pickups tend to have a warm, full, round tone. It gives it more punch, plus you dont have to worry about a battery. On the other hand, active pickups use a preamp inside them so you have more control over the tone. this site here will give a more detailed description with the whole passive/active dilema with a bass guitar:

http://www.tunemybass.com/bass_guitar_buying_guide/bass_pickups_1.html
JazzMaverick  
25 Aug 2010 19:44 | Quote
Joined: 28 Aug 2008
United Kingdom
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Moderator
That's tough to say Afro, you're pretty talented and I'm confident you know what you want when you touch it... so I'd definitely recommend going down to a music shop and trying a sh!t load out for yourself. Might take a while, or it might even be the first bass you pick up!

But definitely try before you buy ;)
deefa  
26 Aug 2010 07:19 | Quote
Joined: 22 Dec 2007
United Kingdom
Karma: 8
There's quite a lot of decent bass's around in your price range Afro. I'd suggest testing a few for each style of playing (fingers, pick and slap) and see which one comes out best. listen out for buzzing. On an expensive base that's probably just the action needs adjusting. Beware excessive buzzing on cheaper models!
gx1327  
26 Aug 2010 11:25 | Quote
Joined: 20 Sep 2009
United States
Karma: 9
epi thunderbird
nater2  
26 Aug 2010 11:41 | Quote
Joined: 28 May 2009
United States
Karma: 4
this is for sure on the cheaper side

http://www.guitarcenter.com/Epiphone-Limited-Edition-Les-Paul-Special-Bass-with-Flame-Maple-Top-103997094-i1169267.gc

i have it and i absolutely love it. in all honesty is sounds better than the fender(not squire) J-basses i've played and it never goes out of tune. i would highly recommend it and with the extra money you could buy an amp or change the pick ups. just my two cents
Afro_Raven  
26 Aug 2010 12:04 | Quote
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Thanks so much for all your input guys, I'll take it all into consideration. I did a bit of research last night and I think I have started to zone in on either Ibanez or Yamaha, but I'm open to anything suitable that comes up!

Afro


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