Bass Recommendation in the $400 Range?

Discussion in 'Bass Area; The Bottom Line' started by jlf2960, Jan 20, 2008.

  1. jlf2960

    jlf2960 Member

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    I have a friend who has recently started playing in a band and needs a new bass. He's looking to spend no more than $400. I'm a guitarist and know very little about basses. His only specificiation is that it not have a pickguard.

    He may end up buying used but what would you guys recommend in the $400 range?

    Thanks
     
  2. ghoti

    ghoti Member

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    That's pretty vague. Bang for your buck, I'd go with Peavey, Schecter, or Dean. Yamaha makes some fine instruments as well. Used Fenders can be had for that price range, as can some Gibson/Epiphone (am I the only one who likes Thunderbirds?)

    Of course, some of the online house-brands are actually quite good quality.

    http://www.musiciansfriend.com/navi...-electric-bass-guitars?N=100001+304428+201000

    http://www.rondomusic.com/bassguitars4.html

    I've played basses from both of these companies, and they're nicer than any Fender of comparable price. If you're buying new, they're probably the best inexpensive ones you can get.
     
  3. Antero

    Antero Member

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    Why does he care about a pickguard?

    The obvious choice would be a standard Mexican-made P-Bass. Good sound, works for anything. That has a pickguard, though.

    My friend uses a Yamaha BB414, which has a P/J pickup setup, good versatility, and runs about $400 street. No pickguard, also. He gets some pretty smooth sounds with that.
     
  4. mcknigs

    mcknigs Supporting Member

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    There are lots of good instruments out there. My advice on this is generally not to pick some particular brand to look for, but to find a good deal on Craigslist or other local classified and go check it out. Eventually you're liable to find a bass that someone paid, say, $600 for 15 months ago, ultimately decided they aren't going to learn to play afterall, and are now selling for $400. Once you find something you might want you can always do some research on that particular instrument prior to buying it.

    -Scott
     
  5. Thor

    Thor Member

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    At the $400 price mark I would definately look for used to help end up with a better bass. Might also be good to be open with the possible need to upgrade electronics. G&L, Lakland Skyline, Fender MIM, Carvin are some that leap to mind.

    Happy hunting and let us know what he ends up with.

    Cheers,

    Edward
     
  6. Jon C

    Jon C Silver Supporting Member

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    G&L Tribute (they can be fantastic basses w/ G&L USA electronics), I have a L2500 that is on par w/ the US made G&Ls. Should go for around $400-450 used ($500+ new).
     
  7. jlf2960

    jlf2960 Member

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    Thanks to all for all the replies. Any additional replies are welcome.

    So far the recommendations I have are:

    • Warwick Rockbass
    • Schecter
    • G&L Tribute L-2000
    • Spector Performance Series
     
  8. Bassomatic

    Bassomatic Silver Supporting Member

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    I haven't played a lot of stuff in that price range (other than used, which is usually the way to go) but I did check out a new Schecter recently that was quite nice.
     
  9. jlf2960

    jlf2960 Member

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    I think its just a cosmetic thing that he just does not like.
     
  10. elkym

    elkym Member

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    hey, ghoti, sometimes I feel like I'm the only one who like Thunderbirds, too.
     
  11. ghoti

    ghoti Member

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    Heh. Yeah, their tone is really warm, fat, and growly. Not nearly as punchy as some other kinds of basses give you, but a fairly unique round, full sound. And they don't look everything else out there, either. Really great for fingerstyle in my opinion.

    The only problems I have with them are actually problems I have with their manufacturer. You have to pay over $1000 to get a 5-string model, and the specs aren't as good as a lot of their competitors'.
     
  12. fretless

    fretless Silver Supporting Member

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    I'd go with the G&L tribute L2000 hands down. Great bass for the money. I've owned 2 of the US made ones and the imports get you 80% there. Super versatile and punchy as all get out. They really sit in a mix well. You can nail a P bass, Jazz bass or Musicman tone with no problem. Kinda like having more than one bass due to it's flexible eq and outstanding pickups/electronics.
     
  13. Bassomatic

    Bassomatic Silver Supporting Member

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    What style of music is he into?

    What bassists does he like the sound of?
     
  14. Mr. Fitz

    Mr. Fitz Member

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    I saw ZZSounds has a Peavey Grind with a hardshell case right now for $389 shipped. I have a Grind and I really like it. I have always been a fan of Peavey basses though.
     

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