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winterfire666

Strandberg - somethings cooking - boden bass

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Tried a couple of these now.  Nice basses, finish has been a bit rough on both, sounds like most lightweight basses with similar pickups.  Could never justify anything like the asking price, at £1,500 I would be a little more interested, but still think a Dingwall NG would be a better buy for the tone.

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I bought one on the proviso I could return it... I returned it. 

I was looking for a lightweight bass. The Boden was a comfy but not a great sounding instrument, I spent a few hundred quid upgrading my Korean chop shop bitsas PJ basses Instead with EMGs and Seymour Duncan quarterpounders, bolt mods, Hipshot bridges, Schaller and Fender machine heads, and spent some time on a good setup. £2.4k better off.  Frankly, for the build quality I could do better elsewhere.

Itch scratched, I don’t miss it.  I also came to realise I don’t like headless or five string basses. 

 

2485F552-35B3-4006-A5CB-AD8CE16132C3.jpeg

Edited by PunkPonyPrincess

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If you'd never tried a headless or 5'er before, I'm not sure the Boden would be a fair representation of either of those concepts.

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51 minutes ago, EMG456 said:

If you'd never tried a headless or 5'er before, I'm not sure the Boden would be a fair representation of either of those concepts.

Very true, the ideas in concept with the Boden are all sound, but they way they've been applied have let most who were keen to see the results down.

The end result is only representative of the Boden.

Looks like a pretty big swing and a miss from Strandberg from where I'm standing.

Eude

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3 hours ago, EMG456 said:

If you'd never tried a headless or 5'er before, I'm not sure the Boden would be a fair representation of either of those concepts.

I don't really know what you would need to "try" on a headless.

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7 minutes ago, BigRedX said:

I don't really know what you would need to "try" on a headless.

Not falling off the end of the neck?

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22 minutes ago, EMG456 said:

Not falling off the end of the neck?

The corner of the brass string retainer nut thing on my Washburn Status is so sharp that I quickly learnt never to put my fingers anywhere near the end of the neck.

I'm not sure all headless basses have this useful feature though.

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I’ve played 5 stringed and headless (NS/Steinberger) before but never in the same combination with fan frets — an easy adjustment. I felt the price was not reflected in the sound or build quality of the instrument and that I could do  better by  buying better hardware for what I already own.  Strandberg’s woodworking was presentable but so so, the finish was inferior to my £180 Korean Ash PJ Bass and the neck — an interesting piece of machining technology — was not enough to counter my other misgivings. I felt like I wasn’t getting my money’s worth.

It was lightweight and comfy to hold but that alone did not  justify its price. For £3K I’d rather commission a luthier or do what I eventually did: self-assemble/upgrade with better quality parts and pocket the difference.

Edited by PunkPonyPrincess
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Alan at ACG could do you something similar in design but far superior in build quality for less money... 

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18 minutes ago, Bigwan said:

Alan at ACG could do you something similar in design but far superior in build quality for less money... 

To be honest I’m mostly a punk rock bassist and playing punk on a £3K bass guitar is an enormous form of bogus... I’ve got my instruments all sorted out now; DIY assembled, DIY upgraded, some posh pickups for good sound but nothing obscenely foo foo. If I want to go nuts, I can go nuts on a chop shop bitsa. If I want to sling the thing on the floor and stomp offstage...  yeah... not gonna happen with a £3K foo foo Bass.

Edited by PunkPonyPrincess

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I feel like I might be tempted to try it at half the price. As it is, Dingwalls seem much better made and designed for the money... I know they’re not headless, but everything else is spot on (and Sheldon has said that he has tried headless and wasn’t happy with the tone).

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14 hours ago, PunkPonyPrincess said:

I’ve played 5 stringed and headless (NS/Steinberger) before but never in the same combination with fan frets — an easy adjustment. I felt the price was not reflected in the sound or build quality of the instrument and that I could do  better by  buying better hardware for what I already own.  Strandberg’s woodworking was presentable but so so, the finish was inferior to my £180 Korean Ash PJ Bass and the neck — an interesting piece of machining technology — was not enough to counter my other misgivings. I felt like I was getting my money’s worth.

It was lightweight and comfy to hold but that alone did not  justify its price. For £3K I’d rather commission a luthier or do what I eventually did: self-assemble/upgrade with better quality parts and pocket the difference.

Your views almost entirely represent my experience with the ones Iv tried too.

I wonder how it’s doing? Social media is very quiet, if that’s any indication...

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9 hours ago, Kev said:

Your views almost entirely represent my experience with the ones Iv tried too.

I wonder how it’s doing? Social media is very quiet, if that’s any indication...

I've literally only ever seen high profile endorser types playing them, usually always in YouTube demos rather than in real life, and they all seem to have given them back.

Lots people excited about trying them, but nothing but radio silence since the launch.

Like I said, a swing and a miss...

Given the fact you can get a completely hand made, fully customised instrument for less, the market for these basses doesn't exist.

Eude

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I'd just love to see an in depth interview with Ola to see where he was coming from with the collection of decisions they've made here regarding the price points vs manufacture location vs the competition vs his own Guitars.

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Since my initial post above, having ambled through the various music shops in Tokyo, the picture hasn't changed much.

More of the 4 and 5 strings have come into stock, and almost invariably they sit around for a long time. The 4-strings have already experienced a first round of discounts (15% or so?), but they're mostly still there.

Every one i've seen, or picked up, comes with high action from factory, and the finish-quality is the same as the very first one I tried... so that was not a "monday morning phenomenon", but just the level to which these are finished. As a fan of both lightweight, and headless, basses - this makes me very sad. :(  

Waiting to see when the first one of these turns up on the used market, but given how few have sold so far... it may be a while. 

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On 09/07/2019 at 19:57, Bigwan said:

Alan at ACG could do you something similar in design but far superior in build quality for less money... 

Having taken a look at ACG's site I tend to agree.

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1 hour ago, visog said:

Having taken a look at ACG's site I tend to agree.

+100!

I've got 2 headless ACGs!

Eude

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I think Ola has gone a bit mad with his pricing. I had a new Boden 7 string guitar back when they were new and harder to come by. I sold it and barely lost any cash on it at the point when I sold all of my guitars to start playing bass, although I did keep my Ibanez K-7 which I'll never sell. 

The pricing of the guitars has jumped substantially, the same model now costs about 30% more than mine did when I bought it new, despite them vastly increasing production numbers. You think economy of scale would bring prices down, but it seems Ola gambled on demand being high enough that he could charge more and more for the same product, increasing the price way ahead of inflation. It reminds me of the financial crash in 2008, when Ibanez increased the price of their Japanese Prestige line guitars by 30-50% depending on the model, to counteract the damage the Yen suffered against the dollar. 

I think Ola has misjudged the bass market. I don't think there is appetite for £3000 Indonesian bass when Dingwall are churning out cheaper mass-produced Indo basses with a spec sheet which makes more sense to people who are into this sort of this, at half the price to boot.

The ergonomic achievements of the Boden guitar don't translate to the bass, I don't think. The Boden guitar is tiny, sits perfectly on the lap or strap and feels almost like it isn't there. The Endureneck is good but in all honesty didn't feel any faster than a traditional neck, though it does help people who struggle with bad technique. If you don't keep your thumb in the right place, you won't be able to play it well at all, but you don't need a Strandberg to learn good thumb placement. I think this will not be a huge success for Ola, after the initial excitement of the target audience, which is likely the "math metal", "djent" or "tech" lot, which I'd also consider, as a small aside, to be three of the cringiest genre names I can think of. 😂

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Has Ola ever addressed the seemingly unanimous criticism of the pricing model?  It’s quite incredibly if he hasn’t and he is truly that out of touch with his potential market, endorsers and super high profile freebies aside.

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I played a 5 string one today in GuitarGuitar Glasgow, pretty underwhelmed. Found the sharp edge of the string holders down at the 1st fret on the G string a bit of a shock, and the lightness of it made me feel like it was lacking substance somehow. I appreciate the thought of the asymmetric neck, but I've played other basses that have done it better for me. Unless money was no object I couldn't see myself spending 3k on one. 

I then picked up a Dingwall D bird on a fancy Aquamarine sparkle finish (at £1400, seemed very reasonable) and it blew the Boden away, tone wise, feeling wise and construction wise. The fan fret system is more natural for me and the tone works better for me. Someone buy it before my G&L sells 😅

 

 

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Yes! I forgot about the sharp edges, the Birmingham ones I tried has that too! It was that and some really rough routing around the bridge and jack area that really shocked me, as at a minimum I thought all of that would be absolutely spot on.

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Bloody hell. I haven’t checked on this thread in a few months but it seems like a damning report for the Boden bass :/

Oh well. GAS gone!

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