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A good proggy bass guitar!

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Cosmiclawnmower View Drop Down
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    Posted: September 17 2018 at 14:55
Ive had a Tokei Korean Rickenbacker copy for years and didn't pay much for it at all (£150?) and assumed its a shed. This didn't matter much to me as i'm not a professional musician (just fiddle about for my own amusement... like many men) but a friend took it to a well known professional bass builder (who I wont name here) who said it was actually a pretty good bit of kit, set it up professionally and sorted the glitchy electrics.. has a slightly wider neck than a real Rick apparently. I thought the pick ups were rubbish but supposedly they are ok Jap pick-ups (toaster-tops?). Anyway, ive had it 20+ years and I like it; im sure that other knowledgeable, professional bassists might scoff but as i'm not going to be setting my self up as anything other than a sad middle age bedroom bassist I guess its ok ;0
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote flyingveepixie Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: September 17 2018 at 07:44
Originally posted by The_Jester The_Jester wrote:

I'd like to buy a new bass guitar somedays. I was wandering how much should I save for a good bass guitar and what are the best bass guitar I could try. I'd like to have a proggy sound. Like a signature sound. Or maybe something unusual. I always wonder if there's an unknown company out there that makes quality basses who are cheaper than the big names.

I already have:

A Douglas (Hofner imitation) bass wich is the first I bought.
An Ergodyne Ibanez
A Takamine acoustic bass
And
A Gibson SG bass


There's no such thing as a "proggy" guitar to my mind. The prog is in the player.... but if you're looking for something with excellent build quality, playability and sound for a reasonable price you could check out some of the old Matsumoku made basses which were made in Japan in the 1980s.  (Aria pro II, Westone, Vantage etc) Plenty of 'em around on ebay and cheap as chips to the point of being underpriced.  I use an Aria pro II SB900 fretless on lots of my recordings. I've had it for 35 years and I still love it.   My other main bass (my only other one actually) is a crappy home made fretted 5 string which cost me £300 on ebay (long story..). Nightmare to play as the neck is about as wide as the amazon river at it's widest point but for some reason it sounds great on recordings....  What I'm really after myself is a nice Fender Precision 5 string in Candy Cola, they don't make 'em in that colour any more though for some reason...


Edited by flyingveepixie - September 17 2018 at 07:59
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Frenetic Zetetic Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 21 2018 at 19:23
I've always gone with Ibanez, and I've never been let down. My main is an RG550 fretless.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Davesax1965 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 17 2018 at 09:52
There's a good point above that buying a Rick will not make you automatically sound like Chris Squire. 

Older readers may remember no-hope guitarists buying white Strats by the shed load: for some strange reason, this didn't automatically turn them into Jimi Hendrix. Can't think why. 

Bass is really all about technique. It's easy to play bass badly and get into bad habits: getting a good sound out of a bass is very subtle indeed. You certainly won't get a fantastic sound out of a cheap instrument, but buying an expensive bass doesn't guarantee that you'll sound good, either. 

Also small things like skimping on strings or having a bad setup will destroy your tone. I can just pick a guitar up and tell if someone can play or not judging on how well it's been set up. 

The good news is that there is a huge selection of basses out there all better made than the planks of wood I (and many others) had to start with in the 1980's. Most are better made than "quality instruments" of the 60's and 70's. 

If the question is "what constitutes a "prog" bass" then that depends on a lot of factors, to be honest. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Boojieboy Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 16 2018 at 14:05
Anything with a rich, dynamic sound range. Sometimes you can take a blander sounding bass and boost the harmonics (mid-range and treble) to bring out more clarity and sound.

I love Rickenbackers, but they're expensive these days, and have had manufacturing issues in recent years.



Edited by Boojieboy - July 16 2018 at 14:07
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Davesax1965 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 05 2018 at 06:05
Also I very much doubt you'd get anything like a similar sound, to be honest. You have to introduce so many effects that the sound of the bass disappears and you're just left with the effects. 

Even with modern VST technology, you can't really replace real instruments. You can get an approximation, but a $150 plugin will not come close to, say, a real Moog modular. It gets especially bad when trying to simulate brass or woodwind instruments, I hear so many VST saxes which sound absolutely toe curlingly appalling. Actually, I used to do a lot of sax session work for bands who assumed that a VST sax would sound passable, and then found it didn't. 

As Chopper says, a discount bass will still feel like a discount bass. If you have pickups which ... don't, and the body is made out of an outhouse door, you can't add to what's not there. And it'll play horribly as well. Having said that, starter basses are a lot better quality from the absolute rubbish I started on many, many years ago. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote chopper Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 04 2018 at 10:54
Originally posted by moshkito moshkito wrote:

Hi,

Just a question about all this ... with all the electronics that everyone can get these days, wouldn't even a cheap bass be able to imitate something else? 


You might get a similar sound  but then a cheap bass is not going to play as well as a more expensive one. There's a reason why they're more expensive.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote verslibre Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 04 2018 at 10:51
Chibson just doesn't have the same ring to it. ;)
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Davesax1965 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 04 2018 at 10:03
As a PS, A Chickenbacker is a normal term for a Chinese Rickenbacker clone. 

See also Chibson. ;-)
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Davesax1965 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 04 2018 at 08:17
This is the same 2006 reissue as mine. Not sure how much my particular reissue goes for now, you can't get them anymore. Besides, I'm in the UK. Have a look on eBay. 


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote verslibre Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: February 28 2018 at 16:54
Originally posted by Davesax1965 Davesax1965 wrote:

The one guarantee I can make is that you won't find a Rick cheap. Unless you go for a Chinese Rickenbacker clone, AKA a Chickenbacker.
.

LMAO!

Originally posted by Davesax1965 Davesax1965 wrote:

Personally, I use a Danelectro Longhorn short scale for my bass work. But then again, I've never been conventional in my bass tastes. ;-)

How much was it?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Davesax1965 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: January 31 2018 at 09:25
Simple answer - "not really". 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote moshkito Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: January 31 2018 at 08:40
Hi,

Just a question about all this ... with all the electronics that everyone can get these days, wouldn't even a cheap bass be able to imitate something else? 

It seems rather strange to me, that you have to buy a Stratavarious, in order to get a good violin sound (so to speak!), when you can easily replicate it nowadays with some reasonable electronics, at a very do'able price? 

I imagine that as one gets more proficient that he/she would want the real thing itself ... but that might be just me thinking at this point. 

I have an Epiphone EB-3 (hard on my small fingers), and a short scale Ibanez that I have not gotten to fool around with enough yet!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Tom Ozric Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: January 31 2018 at 06:52
Originally posted by Davesax1965 Davesax1965 wrote:

The one guarantee I can make is that you won't find a Rick cheap. Unless you go for a Chinese Rickenbacker clone, AKA a Chickenbacker.

The last time I had a chance to buy a Rick 4003 at a reasonable price was in the mid 80's, when no one wanted them. I had the money in my pocket at the time. Things are slightly different now. ;-)

I can't recommend a Rick as the double truss rod system is a hideous idea. If not properly adjusted, Ricks tend to have all kinds of neck problems. They really are overpriced rubbish.†

Going through a list of "prog" basses - nor would I go for a Precision bass if I wanted a cutting, solo sound. Personally, I'd go for a Gibson EB-3 or the excellent Epiphone copy or a Jazz. The Squier Classic Player 60's jazz is excellent, pretty cheap and you can get some interesting noises out of it.†

If you want to go high end, try a WAL. If you can find one. Other options are also Thunderbirds, but they may a bit thuddy.†

Personally, I use a Danelectro Longhorn short scale for my bass work. But then again, I've never been conventional in my bass tastes. ;-)
My Ricky is a 4001, 1980 make. It needs some work, but plYs well. I love it. Iím always awkward when Iím playing a mateís P-Bass for recordings.........
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Davesax1965 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: January 31 2018 at 05:34
PS Try looking at Warwicks as well. 

By the way, I do play bass. For solo prog rock noises, I'd be tempted to go single coil rather than humbuckers. 

Edited by Davesax1965 - January 31 2018 at 05:35
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Davesax1965 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: January 31 2018 at 05:33
The one guarantee I can make is that you won't find a Rick cheap. Unless you go for a Chinese Rickenbacker clone, AKA a Chickenbacker.

The last time I had a chance to buy a Rick 4003 at a reasonable price was in the mid 80's, when no one wanted them. I had the money in my pocket at the time. Things are slightly different now. ;-)

I can't recommend a Rick as the double truss rod system is a hideous idea. If not properly adjusted, Ricks tend to have all kinds of neck problems. They really are overpriced rubbish. 

Going through a list of "prog" basses - nor would I go for a Precision bass if I wanted a cutting, solo sound. Personally, I'd go for a Gibson EB-3 or the excellent Epiphone copy or a Jazz. The Squier Classic Player 60's jazz is excellent, pretty cheap and you can get some interesting noises out of it. 

If you want to go high end, try a WAL. If you can find one. Other options are also Thunderbirds, but they may a bit thuddy. 

Personally, I use a Danelectro Longhorn short scale for my bass work. But then again, I've never been conventional in my bass tastes. ;-)
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Tom Ozric Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: January 31 2018 at 05:13
Usually, any bassist who chooses a Rickenbacker as his (her) bass, is a champion for me.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote SteveG Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: January 31 2018 at 04:00
Originally posted by The.Crimson.King The.Crimson.King wrote:

It's not the bass that makes it "proggy" but how it's setup and played.  When I played bass in late 70's prog bands I had an Ibanez Rocket Roll Flying V bass.  Beautiful instrument.  Then in the early 90's I finally played a Rick 4001...OMG it was the smoothest playing most tonally versatile bass I'd ever played.  Got a great deal on a used 1 for about $500 (in 1991) and have never cheated on her with another bass since.  A Rick doesn't mean you'll sound like Squire or Geddy, it's all in the signal processing and type of strings (rounds or flats).  A great feature of the 4001 is a separate output for bridge and neck pickups.  I get a mind blowing sound by running the neck pickup clean and the bridge pickup throught a distortion box.
So did Chris Squire on Fragile. Except he used a Fender guitar amp for neck pickup and a bass amp for bridge pickup, I believe.

Edited by SteveG - January 31 2018 at 04:00
"Madonna and Lady Gaga are prog, Parliament/Funkadelic are more prog than the Beatles ever were.....Wrap your closed mind around that." said the joker to the thief.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote Bobby J Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: January 30 2018 at 23:00
USA Fender Jazz Bass, great Prog Bass, great bass period, I also own the Geddy Lee Jazz bass, Mexican version great bass
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote The Neck Romancer Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: August 11 2013 at 16:59
I've got a fretless Geddy Lee Jazz Bass and an Ibanez BTB575FM. 35" scale, heavy Rotosounds, excellent active EQ, too bad it requires two 9V batteries.






That's not my picture, btw. I also have a cheap Chinese double bass but it hasn't seen use with a group (yet). Both of those basses have EXCELLENT tones (the Ibanez is really versatile and the B string sounds perfect) but, if I could do it, I'd sell them both and buy two Wals.

A Mark III Wal with these exact configurations but fretted...


... and a fretless Mark I Wal just like Colin Edwin's.

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