Yamaha Nathan East Body Style Models

I would like to get one of these, but I am looking for a P Bass sound. Can anyone recommend which in the series would match my needs? Ican only spend about $ 500 used.

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Nathan East as in BBNE2? It’s a neck through so one in p or jazz would not come cheap. As for the shape that’s just like any jazz or p bass shape.

If you want Yamaha this is a good one

Nathan East Yammies are not going to be anywhere near your budget sadly.

If you want a P bass sound, buy a P bass.


Sadly, even if you have $3000 right now you can’t get one, they are not available anywhere new at that price. I have a signed one and not wanting to play that so I’m looking for the second one to play.

Check out the MB Japanese lines, they are around $400-600. Nathan East actually used a really Rare MB-1 5 string, the Unicorn. It looks closest to what you are looking for.

If you want a Yamaha with a P-bass sound, I would recommend a BB. Of the current line the BBP34 is the nicest for passive-only at around $1500; the BB734A is the most versatile choice at about $750.

Amazing blue on the BBP34:

Historically, you’d want to look for a BB1024X, 2024X, BB2000, or BB1200/1200S. These will be expensive used, probably as much as a new current model.

The motion bass line that Al recommended is also awesome. Really cute medium scale bass. Probably sounds a little less like a P and more like a standard P/J though.

I really love the SBV-550 but the looks are not for everyone; generally it’s a love/hate thing. But the tone is incredible and the quality is through the roof. This one looks pretty much identical to mine:

Thanks for the responses. I know I can’t find the actual Nathan East models at this price. Just want the similar body shape. I keep seeing used N89 models around this price. Can anyone give me an idea of their tone? Can I get a P bass sound out of it?

At the end of the day, if you want a P bass sound get a P bass. The Squier Classic Vibe is highly recommended.


I really don’t want a Fender or Squier. Hate their looks. Just want the sound.

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For your price range, maybe a BB434 or a used BB734A then?



will probably be just higher than than for a used 734A but I’d hold out for it if you can.

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The problem is if he likes the Nate E bass this one should look just as bad as fender, lol.

There’s nothing wrong with that. I was a contemporary design lover before, I have Ken Smith, Tobias, Spector, with the only exception of Musicman until Covid, then it was the quest for the elusive Unicorn P bass.

@BASSMAN777jc I can tell you that none would have the P bass sound like fender family because those brands have their signature tone. The Spector performer model comes close with in both looks and tone on their double humbucker model but oddly enough not the pjs.

Like I said if you want a Fender P bass sound get a Fender P bass, even if you change pickups, it’d still sounds like a Fender P bass, it’s their secret sauce. Don’t worry your taste will change, and one day you’d come to appreciate the look of the Classic Fender.

The N89 looks like the TRBX174 why not it has the PJs set up it should put you in the right range. That’s a 24 fret neck so take the tone comparison with a grain of salt.

I think we should probably back up and find out what he means by “sound like a P-bass”. My P-bass sounds a lot different than, say, Jamerson’s did.

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Thanks for the help. Jamerson’s sound is one of my favorites. I’m a huge McCartney fan, and would love to get a Hofner sound, but the Hofners are too much of a one trick pony.
Hope this helps.
I saw Low End Lobster review a Yamaha BB414, and the P sound was exactly what I’m looking for, but they are hard to find. If the BB434 sounds the same, I may just go for that despite the body style. was just hoping to find the smaller body Yamaha.

That’s because you’re using two fingers, non? :wink:


I bought the BB434 as my first bass, and it was great quality for the price. When I started, I had no musical background, and I didn’t want to invest too much without knowing how far I would go with bass. After reading review after review, I knew that I didn’t want to get anything with build/manufacture issues, so I went with Yamaha. The BB434 is a great bass. In the end, I sold it to finance a P bass purchase, mostly because I wasn’t crazy about the pickups. Looking back, I could have just upgraded the pickups, but at that time I wasn’t comfortable doing that myself, and I didn’t want to invest the pickup price + labor to get a better sound (to me). In hindsight, I should have spent a little more and bought the BB734.

This site compares the 234/434/734 and will give you an idea of what each sounds like with different pickup settings. Good luck, and let us know what you end up getting.


Well, that plus the alder body and mids-heavy ceramic pickup :slight_smile:

BB734A has fantastic pickups, FWIW.

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P and $500 ? Squier Classic Vibe.


So tonewood?