Yamaha TRBX504 vs. Ibanez SR500E

I am currenty looking for a new bass. So I was searching for reviews and finally went to a huge music shop in Frankfurt, germany today. Norhing is better than having them in hands and test them.

My options I want in my bass:

  • 4 string bass
  • 2 humbuckers (neck and bridge)
  • active equilizer
  • active/passive switch
  • modern design
  • D-shaped neck

Both basses do have all these options, so I was very curious to test them. As reference I took a passive j-bass from Fender in the same price range. Here is my opinion:

The Ibanez equilizer is a real beast! Just tiny changes do have a huge sound effect. The Yamaha equilizer just allow small changes.

Ibanez basses do have cool looking plug for connecting the cable. No need for angled plugs. It’s looking pretty cool, but this also has disadvantages: dont use thick plugs in diameter as they are hard to plug, because they scrub along the wood. The Yamaha has a metal plated plug down below. This doesnt look as cool as with the Ibanez, but seems to be more stable.

This the most important point in my opinion. So I took the Fender first as reference. The Fender is really hard work to get the strings to the frets. In addition the neck is C-shaped which is difficult with my small fingers to keep the thumb on the neck. The Ibanez has a D-shaped neck which is really thin. It’s easy to get the fingers around the neck. The strings are way easier to play compared to the Fender. But there is a clear winner (at least for my preferances): the Yamaha! It feels like playing on a keyboard. The strings are easy to play. The frets are not ratteling. Clear sound.

So my personal winner is the Yamaha XRBX504. That’s my favorite and I think I’ll buy it very soon.

I hope you enjoyed my little review and I was able to inspire you to get yourself into a musicstore of your choice and test them on your own.


Good choice out of two excellent basses!


Yamaha and Ibanez. Hard to choose between those two, all great instruments.

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