What Brand/model of bass guitar to buy?

lrod1707

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I'm gonna have some Musicians Friend reward points available for use next week. I played bass like 25 years ago for a bit as a secondary instrument but stopped and dedicated myself to the drums. I had a Washburn back then and sold it to a friend during that time. I'd like to start playing the bass again and decided to spend the points on a new bass guitar. Nothing pro, it's just for fun!
What would you guys recommend?
I've been looking at the Jackson & Yamaha 4 string bass guitars. They seem like decent quality within the price range I'm seeking but I'm open to anything else. My max is going to be $300! I'm also open to both passive or active bass guitars.
Let me know what you suggest!
LRod
 
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lrod1707

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Curious as to why the Junior bass? I think I'd want a full scale bass but maybe there's a reason why you suggested it?
By the way, maybe you used that vendor as a reference only. Musicians Friend has that exact bass for $299 which would be great considering my budget will be $300
 
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ThomFloor

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I read/saw a review of it on YouTube once and it weighed in pretty high, punching above its weight. But yes its a short scale - comfort factor?
 

lrod1707

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I read/saw a review of it on YouTube once and it weighed in pretty high, punching above its weight. But yes its a short scale - comfort factor?
Probably! I'd love to try one out though. I think a short bass might not work. I just checked Guitar Center's inventory online and they have it in stock locally. I think I'll stop in this week and check it out.
 

jsp210

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This may stretch your budget but a Fender Aerodyne is a mid-tier offering that has both Precision/Jazz Bass pickup and looks really nice and made in Japan. It was recommended to me by a couple of pro players I work with from time to time.
 

cruddola

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I'm gonna have some Musicians Friend reward points available for use next week. I played bass like 25 years ago for a bit as a secondary instrument but stopped and dedicated myself to the drums. I had a Washburn back then and sold it to a friend during that time. I'd like to start playing the bass again and decided to spend the points on a new bass guitar. Nothing pro, it's just for fun!
What would you guys recommend?
I've been looking at the Jackson & Yamaha 4 string bass guitars. They seem like decent quality within the price range I'm seeking but I'm open to anything else. My max is going to be $300! I'm also open to both passive or active bass guitars.
Let me know what you suggest!
LRod
Buy what you can afford! Buy a used one. With six decades of drumming behind me I have yet to buy a brand new drumkit. I've bought new hardware and cymbals only. Drums? Nah. The return on a new kit is lousy for the most part. You'll always upgrade later. Put the best strings on it. My brother played on a cheap bass for years with the very best strings available. As he upgraded on the pickups and later the whole guitar he never had a need to upgrade on the chosen specs of strings. He mastered those strings sets by the time he did his final upgrades. He replaces worn strings with the exact specs. Kinda like new heads on a cheapo drumkit. He won't ever switch his chosen brand or their profile either. No different than some drummers will never change stick profiles either. Me, I play with pretty much any sticks. The only brand I'm a slave to is Yamaha's HexRack and 900-series hardware regardless of drum brand I happened to own.
 

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lrod1707

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Buy what you can afford! Buy a used one. With six decades of drumming behind me I have yet to buy a brand new drumkit. I've bought new hardware and cymbals only. Drums? Nah. The return on a new kit is lousy for the most part. You'll always upgrade later. Put the best strings on it. My brother played on a cheap bass for years with the very best strings available. As he upgraded on the pickups and later the whole guitar he never had a need to upgrade on the strings. He mastered those strings by the time he did his final upgrades.
Thanks but I'm kind of the opposite. I like buying new. My whole Classic Maple kit, hardware, cymbals etc.. was bought new. And for the bass since it's just for fun and just to start playing again, I'm buying something new that's max $300. I really don't have any concern with the resale value. Thanks for the advice,
LRod
 

JazzDrumGuy

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The basic Yamaha 4 string is okay. The Ibanez Sound Gear also is nice and under $200. I think I'd go Yamaha - they have a nice mahogany or violin colored bass.

I have 2 basses - a Dean 4 string fretless with active pickups, and a Squier Jazz Bass in sunburst. I really dig the fretless with flat wound strings, although it is hard to play without the fret lines! The neck is buttery smooth and great for slapping. The active pickups really add volume and low end and it has a bass boost......just a wicked instrument. Unfortunately, something is jacked up with wiring and it likes to pop the amp! I will have to get that fixed.

The J-bass is awesome - classic look, feel and sound. I am planning on taking it apart and aging it ("relic" style) because the wood is just too new and the chrome too shiny. I want to make it a throw back to a 60's style, and also upgrade the pickups to USA's and change the pots/wiring. Frets feel great and it's light. This was to be my sole bass but I scored the Dean for cheap off CList ($60!) so it had to be done and I also have a fretless now. I think I got the J bass for $200 used although it looked new.

I think you can get a new Squire vintage bass like this under $300. I'd check CList, too!

 

lrod1707

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This may stretch your budget but a Fender Aerodyne is a mid-tier offering that has both Precision/Jazz Bass pickup and looks really nice and made in Japan. It was recommended to me by a couple of pro players I work with from time to time.
Thanks, I'll definitely have a look!
 

lrod1707

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Well I just ordered the Yamaha RBX170Y. It was on sale for $159.99 from $219.99 at Musician's Friend so for that price, I think you can't go wrong. It's got great reviews everywhere that I've read and seen. Another plus is that I got it for free because of all the accumulated points I have at Musician's Friend. I think since I was looking for a Bass just to have fun, this Yamaha will be more than enough. Thank you all for the guidance!
LRod
Screenshot 2020-09-15 at 5.30.32 PM.png
 

Ox Han

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Some of the danelectro hollow body, short scale basses sound really cool. They are usually under $500.
The more expensive squire electric guitars are pretty good. I might look at their more expensive basses if you want a fender type bass.

If you want to raise the budget and really go for it, Japanese made fenders are really good. I'm sure the mexican ones are good too. I knew I wouldn't stop playing so I bought an American Performer PBass and have zero regrets. No issues. Stays in tune. Easy to play for a drummer.
 

lrod1707

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Some of the danelectro hollow body, short scale basses sound really cool. They are usually under $500.
The more expensive squire electric guitars are pretty good. I might look at their more expensive basses if you want a fender type bass.

If you want to raise the budget and really go for it, Japanese made fenders are really good. I'm sure the mexican ones are good too. I knew I wouldn't stop playing so I bought an American Performer PBass and have zero regrets. No issues. Stays in tune. Easy to play for a drummer.
Thanks! As you can see up above I've already bought a Yamaha. In the future if I ever decide to get anything more substantial, I'll be looking at those more expensive options. I honestly think the Yamaha will be fine without any future upgrades because I bought it more for fun than anything else. And like I said, it ended up being free because of rewards points. The drums are my priority instrument and that's where I have no issues spending cash.
 

Ox Han

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My bad. I didn’t read that last post. Well, if it doesn’t work out you’ve got options. Bass and drums go together like bbq and beer.
 
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Lazmo

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20 years ago, we couldn't mention the tuning fork brand on this forum (DCI back then) but you generally can't go wrong with Yamaha, especially one for free, on accumulated points. I have had no exposure with their basses, but have had only excellent experiences with their guitars and drums... oh, and a fast tricked up café style RD400.
 

lrod1707

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20 years ago, we couldn't mention the tuning fork brand on this forum (DCI back then) but you generally can't go wrong with Yamaha, especially one for free, on accumulated points. I have had no exposure with their basses, but have had only excellent experiences with their guitars and drums... oh, and a fast tricked up café style RD400.
It just arrived yesterday but I'm on a trip and will be back home tomorrow. I'll post about it in the next few days.
 
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