Bass Purchase Advice

Oh ESP makes a wide range of amazing things :slight_smile:

https://www.espguitars.com/products?categories=ltd-basses

I’m partial to Yamaha myself. I own this one, and I note Sweetwater has a floor demo for $539 :slight_smile:

https://www.sweetwater.com/store/detail/TRBX604FMDRB--yamaha-trbx604fm-dark-red-burst

Used would be less. I got mine for about $350. The 504 is equally good and costs a bit less as well.

There’s a lot of great basses in the $500 range, especially used.

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on the passive and old-school side, you have all the current Squier range : what you get for the price is amazing. but I agree with @howard : Yamaha and ESP/LTD make great instruments too, no doubt about it.

it would be interesting for you to test various basses from different brands, as they tend to have a certain type of neck. for example a ESP/LTD will have a very thin and fast neck, a Fender/Squier will have a deeper and rounder neck … there’s no rule here, it depends, we all have our very personnal preferences.

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When I bought my first one, I picked up a few Squiers and held them and plucked a few strings (I had even less of an idea on how to “play” than now) and I didn’t care for the neck much. I liked the Ibanez neck on my 370E better, but I couldn’t really say why. Where do Ibanez instruments fall inline on that spectrum? (Squire being deep and round and ESP being thin)

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yes it’s very personnal. I personnally don’t like Ibanez necks at all. they tends to be thin and fast.

(not to say every Ibanez neck will have the same shape, it’s just a tendency regarding a particular brand)

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Yep exactly. I’m the opposite, I like thin fast necks like Ibanez, Yamaha and ESP tend to have.

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that’s perfectly fine :slight_smile: I like heavy round necks (think PB). note that my ol’Yam SBV neck is pretty narrow but very round and not that thin. somewhat JB-like.

again it’s very personnal, we don’t have the same hands, we don’t play the same way. no rule.

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That pretty much sums it up, @brandoncmurphy . . . :+1:

It’s pretty difficult to decide which bass to buy based solely on reviews. One person’s idea of a “slim” neck may not agree with someone else’s, etc. You really have to try it out in person. If you can’t try the actual bass you want, at least try to play one as closely as possible to the model you are considering.

The problem is further complicated in that it’s tough to make a final decision based upon playing any guitar for just a few minutes, either.

Good luck in your search, and happy playing!

Cheers, Joe :slight_smile:

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Update!!! A deal has been reached!! $450 USD for the ESP LTD F4E-NS. It has been tough finding a “real” price for a new one, because this finish is no longer produced. I saw a few used on various sites and one guy was asking $600 for one with chips in the finish and seemed to think I was crazy for offering less. I saw several in the UK and Canadia for around $650-$700 USD after conversion, but then shipping would be crazy as well I assume. But I think $450 is a good price. He listed it as in “immaculate condition” so I’m expecting lightly used. I would have been happier paying less cash and working out a trade of some sort, but I can always try and sell stuff later.

I am currently trying to coordinate pickup. The guy does not respond quickly so it is difficult, but hopefully I will be able to meet him tomorrow (it’s a 2 hour drive that I just happen to be making tomorrow anyway) so maybe pics in about 24 hours! Fingers crossed!!

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Also, I took advice given and went to my local shop today. I literally picked up and played with every single bass they had in the store except the two that were in the $1200+ range. I really didn’t like the Squire necks, but the fretboard was nice on them. The fret wires seemed lower or something on most of them (but not all). I did notice a lot more fret noise with them though…

The Ibanez necks typically seemed much nicer to me, even on the cheaper models. But again, not on all. There were two very different Epiphone models as well. The Thunderbird model was…odd. I didn’t care for the body shape and it just felt weird in my hands. The more traditional Epiphone shape was much better. The neck almost seemed like a middle ground. It was a bit thicker feeling than the Ibanez, but not as thick as the Squires. There was only one pick up very close to the neck though…it was weird. Nothing I hated, bit I still liked the Ibanez the best I think.

I asked the counter guy if there was anyplace I might get to try out an ESP and he was less than helpful. He isn’t the normal guy I talk to and now I know why. So based on feedback from you guys and the very few I have been able to get my hands on, I think I am more a fan of thin neck styles…but the body shape and pickup placement matters to me too I think. I’m glad I have you all as a resource…I never would have imagined those things would matter so much or be so different.

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Yep. Pretty amazing how much every bit of it matters when you get your hands on it. I look forward to hearing more about it when you get the ESP.

Be sure and share pictures over here…

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I love this.
Well done, and bravo for the field research.

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It happened! I got the ESP!!!

I posted a few pics in the Show us your bass thread. It came with a free hardcase too, so that was a welcome surprise. The ones I was looking at online were over $180.

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Sounds like your in the same boat I am or was in. I started my, late in life/return to bass several months ago with a craigslist purchase of a 35+ year old Peavey Foundation bass in like new condition, which I fell in love with. Over the last few months of studying the bass I came to realize my taste in music as well as learning how to play the bass and thought I needed a different bass to satiate my new found taste.
Came to realize I also needed to understand my bass. I was going to put my Peavey into early retirement and get myself a Fender Classic Vibe “70’s” P bass strictly for the sound of a P bass that I wanted, this time from eBay. I’ve since decided to save myself the $400 on the Fender and stick with my first love, Peavey, and learn it. So don’t jump ship too fast unless you have solid reasons to. Just some food for thought.

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