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stubass

G&L tribute SB-2

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Just thought I'd throw up a review as I'm falling deeper in love with this bad girl every time I play her. I've also played a USA at a gig so can compare the two reasonably well.

Build quality- No issues here, everything looks top class, one or two of the pick guard screws aren't perfectly true but it's barely noticeable. Neck joint is tight as it could be, no rags on the frets and all screws tight.

Finish- I went for the black metallic sparkle and it's utterly flawless, holding it under the light from all angles reveals a really stunning job. The USA was transparent red and was to die for, certainly the tributes hold up this tradition. The neck is smooth but could be smoother, still excellent for a supposedly sub model.

Sound- This thing is essentially a p bass with a bridge pick up and does have the "growl" if you back the bridge pick up right off, it becomes a bit sharper with both volumes up but not an awful lot. The bridge pup in itself is a bit weak but is essentially there to give it some flexibility in the absence of a tone pot. It naturally seems to have fantastic tone and I personally don't miss a tone knob. In this respect, it's the same as the USA as they use the same pick ups. I love the sound of it more than anything I've played. Monstrous! I want to say that it sounds so alive if that makes any sense!

Playability- it balances really well, no neck dive or anything. It's not really heavy, just reassuringly so. It's jazz width neck is fast and easy to play and access to the upper frets are a joy.

Hardware- It uses the same style bridge as the USA ones, with the saddle lock system although they are made in the far east. I think the tuners are different but still of good quality, certainly don't feel the need to change them out. Pick ups have adjustable pole pieces to adjust output from each string individually which is fantastic, took a bit of tweaking when I got it but it's pretty much level now. Also lets you control how "hot" you like them to be.

Overall- Hard to believe these are sub brand basses. I own a mim precision and this thing destroyed it, and aside from the maple fretboard on the USA sb-2 and the lovely transparent paint job, I could barely see or hear a difference.

Price paid new £489

Pick ups neck- split p style passive humbucking. Bridge- oversize jazz style also passive humbucking. Both have independent pole pieces mounted on ceramic bar.

Neck- maple
Fretboard- rosewood
Body- swamp ash

Year of manufacture- 2008 made in Indonesia.

Controls- volume, volume.





Edited by stubass

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Thanks Gary :)

I would have been apprehensive re the tone knob as well but had the pleasure of borrowing one for a while first. I don't miss it at all. For me, the tone is so good anyway I wouldn't want to change it! It didn't even cross my mind til after I'd laid it down.

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I now have Stu's SB-2, and endorse everything he has to say, with one caveat.

I found that I did miss the option of rolling-off as much as i would like, and have had a Basschatter make up a dual concentric volume/tone for each pick-up. Great bass.

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One thing, are these not Basswood bodies rather than Ash? I could be wrong :)

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[quote name='wateroftyne' timestamp='1402467936' post='2473720']
I'd really like to try one of these but I just can't get over the lack of a tone knob....!
[/quote]it really is NOT a problem, you will not miss it

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I've got one and it's brilliant. Very comfy to play - slim neck which I actually very much like despite being a P bass man, and my previous Jazz giving me hand cramps. Sounds powerful, deep, punchy, plenty of growl and bite. Those pickups are HOT - I tend to run it flat out but backing off the volume does mellow the sound a lot. As a rock bass I can't fault it really.

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I acquired one at the weekend.

I was having mixed feelings when I bought it - I'd sold a M2000 which I really liked as part of my downsizing - instant sellers remorse so bought one of the Jazz models which I really didn't get on with and ended up selling within a week.

Got the SB2 which was in dire need of being set up. The action was really high and the neck had a huge arc in it. Somebody at some time had let the truss rod off (completely?) so that it could be turned with the short end of the allen key. Put this right over a couple of days with the recommended 1.4 turn and leave it to settle method.

Lowered the action at the same time and set the intonation which was already out.

Now plays like a dream. The neck is a nice profile and the satin finish gives a very nice feel and makes it very playable.

I agree that the lack of tone knob was a bit of a headache to start with but I've found that running the P pick up at around 75% and the J at around 50% gives me the (phat) tone that I want - tone knob or not!!

The only criticism I have (my own fault) it's RED!!! Not a fan of red basses as a rule - happy to trade for a white one.

 

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