Bass for flat wounds: G&L LB-100 or Yamaha BB434

Ok, I’m eyeing a second bass that I want to string with flat wounds. I’m going for that classic P-bass with flat wound sound, but I’m looking at non-Fender instruments.

At this point, I’ve narrowed it down to a G&L LB-100 Tribute and a Yamaha BB434. Does anyone have experience with either of these basses? How classic can they sound with flat wounds?

My guitar is a G&L ASAT Tribute (Tele style), and I’m very happy with the quality for the price. The LB-100 is Leo Fender’s later take on a P-bass.

The Yamaha has the split single coil in the neck, but also a J style pickup in the bridge. I like the idea of a little more range on the pickups, but how classic do these sound?

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The Yamaha BB line is really solid. With a PJ setup, you can dial back the J to 10% to 30% and just round out that P a touch and it’s a really good sound. Would be a good choice for flats.

BB734 for little more is a banger of an instrument.

No comment on the G&L, never touched one so can’t speak to it.

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It’s been three hours, and @howard hasn’t been here yet to recommend the Yamaha? Is he okay? :scream:


It was 3am!

Get the Yamaha. Yamaha pickups are absolutely great. The BB734A for a little more has the same pickups as their pro model and is one of the best bass values for the money out there - a lot of people argue it’s the actual top of the line.

The 434 is great too, but you get a lot of additional value in the 734A.

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Plot twist: if the stock preamp in the Yamaha is as good as in older models, you can go with rounds and turn trebles down so much it sounds like flats.
I had TI Jazz flats on my BBG4, and while nothing beats the feeling of those, I recently went back to rounds because they offer more possibilities and sit better in a mix of instruments.
The factory combo of pickups & preamp is so well matched I don’t want to change anything in that bass.
I just wish those rounds were as silky smooth and soft like the TI flats.


434 is passive only.

734A’s preamp is amazing.

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That may be a reason, but it’s not an excuse :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:


It’s true. I have failed in my superhero duties.



(sorry, that’s about at the limits of my Photoshop skills) :joy:


Having owned a 734A I can verify that this is pretty close to what mine sounded like. Note that these are rounds though.

434 for comparison:

Both sound great. 734A has slightly better pickups, active/passive, and is alder with a maple core in the body; the 434 is solid alder.


I’ve not played the bb434 but I played the usa lb-100. I have no doubt that the Yamaha will be amazing. Choosing between the 2 choices for me comes down to number one, nut width. It doesn’t matter or even noticeable to mod but to me it’s the first thing I look for in a 4 string bass.

This is huge between these 2. The BB434 has the nut width is 1.57” and the LB-100 is almost a quarter inch wider at 1.75” the original with of the P-bass that’s even wider than the current champ, Musicman stingray at 1.687” my favorite.

Playing them side by side the 434 would feel faster and more nimble if that’s your thing. I like the more generous spacing of the 100 for sure.

Both basses would come home studio ready with kick a$$ tones even on flats.

I love my ASAT CLASSIC S. It’s pretty awesome especially with the G&L quirky electronics, lol.

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This is great advice, because I don’t know if I’ll be able to try them both out. I might find the Yamaha, but the G&L will be harder for me to track down.

I’ll measure my current bass, which I’m quite happy with. It’s a 1983 Ibanez Roadstar II that I’ve had since high school, although I only came back to playing recently after decades.


I’m visiting my parents this weekend in a slightly larger town than where I live. I managed to find and play a Yamaha BB234. Nice instrument, but I didn’t love the narrowness of the neck at the nut. I’m sure that I could get used to it, but I think I’ll go with the G&L with its larger neck.

Thanks for all the help from everyone.

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They are almost the same nut width :slight_smile:

BB: 40mm
G&L: 41mm

The G&L neck profile is chunkier though.

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I think there are a few different neck profile on the LB-100, on is the 41mm(1 5/8") and another at 1.75".

The two I saw were 1.5” and 1.625”

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Yeah it’s odd. The USA Fullerton series are 1 5/8" and the Imports Tribute series are 1 3/4".