To buy or not to buy - electroacoustic fretless with busted electronics

Guys I need a hand deciding whether to buy an Ortega D2 4FL fretless electroacoustic bass.

I tried it out in the shop on a whim and I felt a major twitching in my GAS. The RRP is about 1000 USD, but this has been cut to about 750 USD because there’s something wrong with the electrics: the acoustic bit works fine, and the preamp seems to work (the light goes on) but there’s no signal to the amp.

Does anyone have any experience with electroacoustic instruments? I’m wondering if it’s worth buying and then sending to a luthier to fix the electricals. I’m sure the 250 USD saving should cover the work.

What do you think ? Worth a gamble? It’s a nice instrument and would totally fill a gap in my collection. But if it’s irreparable then it’s probably best not to get it…


I was never a fan of acoustic basses and although I have heard of Ortega I know nothing about them.

IMHO for $750 you could purchase a fine standard Bass for less money.

Also, if you are a beginner the fact that it is fretless may be an issue for you.
Just sayin :+1:


Actually @Celticstar even though it was my first time on a fretless, it wasn’t that bad. Although I’m pretty tone deaf lol. :grin:

I don’t really feel the urge for another standard electric bass… Not at the moment anyway… Do you think I could get a cheaper electroacoustic?


I know a lot of people that own a Kala UBass and they seem quite happy with them and they are cheaper.
The strings are a bit pricey though.

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I cannot speak to this brand but I will say do not fear the fretless. I just started playing an unlined fretless a few weeks ago and have been surprised at how easy it is to play accurately in tune.


And you don’t have to worry about fret sprout or uneven frets :joy: :joy: :joy:

Come to think of it even intonation should not be an issue on a fretless instrument :+1:


Yeah it’s pretty sweet :+1: - I’m just wondering if I can recover the electrical part within budget…


@Ed Not sure if its worth it.

The Ortega uses a Fishman Presys Preamp with 1/4" and XLR output. You can buy a new one for about $100 and do the install. Just make sure you don’t damage the bass in anyway. This depends on how confident you are in doing so. If you take it to a luthier it’ll cost a lot more. For the extra $250, buy it new and everything is warranted. After all you already know the preamp can be faulty, or worse the pickup.

Just my way of looking at it.


Plus, I can set my action nice and low without worrying about fret buzz.


Unfortunately the model is apparently out of production :frowning:. Maybe I should check around the local luthiers. One guy might be able to handle it - he’s pretty rude but they say he’s like some kind of savant with basses …


I’m not a fan of acoustic/electric bass though I have my eyes on the Godin A4, it’s not really acoustic, just piezo bridge. I own several Fretless and tried several Fretless I really prefer the solid body over the bulky acoustic body. If this is your first Fretless experience I’d highly recommend solid body.


Maybe so … The solid body does sound a lot less hassle. …

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Yeah my experience is that affordable acoustic bass also prone to the chronic feedbacks


A coworker has a really nice one that is also a feedback beast.


Hey @Ed !
I love playing my acoustic. Some people like them, some don’t.

This doesn’t sound like a good deal. Too many unknowns and working with a luthier could easily bring it back to full price and, like someone else said, you would be better off just buying something that works when you get it.

Having said that, offer them $500 and see if they’ll come down on the price.

Also, if you loved playing it, then maybe the extra hassle is worth it.


Yeah @eric.kiser you know how it is - you set your eyes on a new baby and it’s like love at first sight but then over the next couple of days the rational mind takes over :slight_smile: . I thought “I don’t have an acoustic and I don’t have a fretless so why not buy an acoustic fretless?” It’s a nice bass and the sound is so different for me but, yeah, all the unknowns are a bit worrying.

I’ll keep my eye on the shop and if the god of basses smiles on me and price falls a bit I might make an offer :slight_smile: :slight_smile:


I had a Michael Kelly with Dragonfly inlays, was a beauty, played great.
Zero issues at all, zero. Great bass, just not for me.
Cost $300, sold it for $350.
The body was too big for me at the time.