GAS Attack! New Bass week?

After reviewing the lord and saviors GAS video, I am still committed to this mission:

I’ve been playing a lot with “dropped guitarists” and feel like it’s hard to cut through on my 4s P even with a flat pick. (similar amp configs 2x10 vs 2x12, 4x10 etc.)

I also have a 5s FL JJ but fretless is sort of goofy for the accuracy of metal.

So, my new mission is to acquire a active 5s HH that “looks cool enough.” (Black isn’t a necessity but just not over the top colorful like Sunburst/Light Blue)

Anyone have some “avoid brands/pickups” or practical suggestions? Budget is $1000-ish.

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Sterling Ray 35 HH by Music Man fits the bill and the peice range. Even better if you can get one used.

At that price, you’re not going to find anything bad, but you may find some things you don’t like.

You can also look at both Yahmaha and Ibanez. Fender doesn’t offer anything in the 5 string with double humbucker space.


For $1k you would have to go used, but that’s okay. Used instruments are great. Anyway, the Ibanez EHB1005ms is a solid bass. I have an EHB1005sms, and it’s got lot’s of nice features, and is super light and easy to play. Certainly a contender in this price range.

But there’s a lot of contenders that are very good.


Yes, Ibanez and Yamaha for sure.


This is is a pretty iconic “metal bass” for sure. Do you think the headless makes open chugs sound better? It may take me a minute to get used to the “look” but it’s not out of the question.

The 4s cheapo was the beginning of this adventure but I wasn’t fond of the look. I really like the more standard 5s design!

Thanks for the input. Ibanez definitely has “the look” and is popular, Yamahas seem to have a great reputation but the low price points almost scare me off.

I’m assuming pretty much every active HH sounds similar enough.

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Standard headstock or headless, neither will alter the overall tone of a bass.


I don’t know that the headless makes the chugs sound better, but is does have a wide variety of sounds and yes metal is quite easy to get.

I recommend it because it is light, and I have a number of basses, all 4 string but the EHB, from different companies, and my lone 5 string is the easiest to fret and play, and the tuners the most precise. Multi scale is easy to adjust to.

Roasted maple neck, stainless steel frets, can go on with the specs and you can read them yourself. It just feels good to play. The neck for all of it’s 5 strings is easier to fret. This is all subjective stuff.

Two cons I will mention. The fret markers don’t contrast well, so if you rely on them to navigate the fretboard it will be a thing. And it has a locking jack which I find annoying as I’m not in the habit of stepping on my wire.

Great bass. So are the TRBX series. Hard to go wrong with these.

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How would you compare it to something like this?

Very similar. I like 35" scale length to get a comfortable tension and a good sound out of the B string. Neck through is nice, and not too heavy for all that. I like the bridge.

The pre amp is different, but the pickups are the same. Looks like a nice bass.

The Bartolinis do have good low range mids and lows

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Thanks for all the quick replies (Eric and Mike as well.) I’ve been itching for this for awhile but just needed some push towards quality. I pulled the trigger on the BTB because of love at third sight!


Yamaha TRBX605. Looks awesome, great quality, sounds great, about $600-ish and will cut through anything :slight_smile:

If you want a step up from that, Ibanez SR Premium or used Yamaha TRB 5 P-II.

Quality on the midrange Yamahas will be generally higher than the Sterlings, FWIW.

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The TRBX definitely fits the bill of similar standards to Ibanez, but for whatever reason I just fell in love with the matte black look. Need to go buy some black face paint now. :rofl:

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Nice. :sunglasses: :+1:

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Oh the BTB will be fantastic for sure, don’t get me wrong - great choice :slight_smile:

Just pointing out that Yamaha, like Sire, are priced way below their value.

Oh wait you got the Iron Label one? hahaha awesome :metal:

I love SR Premiums so much. I couldn’t have resisted this BTB Premium:

But for me I would have gone with the SR Preemos:

Aww yeah. Ibanez does Premium well.


Except for that headstock. The SDGR logo does not scream metal. Iron Label much better


Yeah that Iron Label BTB is on a mission from below.


Well for sub $1k 5 string the EHB is pretty sweet. I can see that you like the matte black look. I have a Legato neckthrough matte black on project. It’s a 35” scale neck through and surprisingly well made but the brand couldn’t get enough escape velocity to make it on to the big time scene. I bought the white Fishman Fluence to swap out the pickup. This will be an awesome setup.

As for @eric.kiser suggestion on the Ray35. They are definitely great. All of musicman Stingray at less than half the price. I’m a big fan. 5 sting stingray are just joy to play.

Here’s the Ray35 and Stingrays

Another one of the Ibanez model that you may want to look into is the Affirma series. Great bass for the money but it’s definitely not for everyone.


Thanks for the suggestions, but understand that when GAS occurs there isn’t much time :wink: I picked up the SW link the BKB. But I still wonder if H vs HH really drives anymore or just creates more of a “metal tone”

I think schecter is in here too, but I’m still working on buying one. Bonus pays out 3/8 so… Right around then!

Yes for sure! Their MIJ models are amazing.