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Budget bass recommendations


xgsjx

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A friend is looking to get a bass (he’s a pretty good guitarist) & looking for recommendations for new or second hand basses between £300-450.

He plays a myriad of styles, but gravitates towards funk & soul.  I’m thinking a jazz style bass or possibly an Ibanez may be the way to go. The Sterling Sub Ray 4/5 looks like a good option too.

I figured if there’s anywhere to ask, then here is best. 

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His budget is very realistic and there are many good basses in his price range.

I'm sure he could pick up a nice Yamahas (BB is popular here), MM SUB, Sire and the lower range of Spectors/ Warwicks. I have a Squier PJ Standard which sell in his price range and would, IMO, be a good buy.

I've also heard good things about Revelation which I've seen for around £150. Needless to say there'll be recommendations for Harley Bentons too.

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I’d take a look at the Vintage brand, their basses are much better than the price tags would suggest. I used to read up from pro players who said “I used to play so-and-so brand but now only play my Vintage” and think it was a paid marketing ploy. I then bought one of their Tony Butler Precisions as a backup and found it was the nearest bass in sound and feel I could get to my US Fender. From an instrument that’s a fifth of the price.

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Depends on what he plans to use it for. If it's for recording, find a good passive P Bass, an older Yamaha BB would be great. 

 

If he wants something a bit more fancy then Sire will do it, they even have short scale models now for which might help the transition 

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From my recent experiance with my Harley Benton Acoustic Bass... and ya happy to do a bit of fettling... Go Harley Benton for half ya budget! Quite a few yo choose from P's PJ's J's... plus other model bassed shapes. Just remember reading some of the Delux range may be a little heavy, or that may just be some older models... They do have some more expensive models, have you seen the £250ish Marquess

https://harleybenton.com/product/marquess-4-black-stain/

Edited by PaulThePlug
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Several nominations for Sire. I owned a V3 which was an amazing bass - the only downside was the neck dive which I couldn't resolve, even with lightweight machine heads.

If Sire can resolve this they'll have one helluva bass on their hands.

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3 hours ago, xgsjx said:

Given their human rights record, I avoid Cort. 

You've cut down your range of choice by a significant percentage then. I doubt that there is many, if any, company that has an unblemished human rights record when you dig down through the supply chains, whatever BS they give you about their corporate ethics.

 

 

I would go for a Harley Benton because they're inexpensive and I've never found a reason not to recommend one.

Edited by TheLowDown
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I would recommend this - a Harley Benton PB Shorty. 

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/234081676825?hash=item36805aee19%3Ag%3Alm4AAOSwu61g5stH&LH_ItemCondition=3000

Currently @£42.87 with just under 2 days to go. 

I bought one new a year or so ago for £80.  Yes, £80.  I had intended to change the pickup but, actually, the stock one is fine.  Tuners arent the best but entirely functional.  They are so cheap that it would be easy to dismiss it but - seriously - you could pay 3 or 4 times that - more, even - and not get a better bass.  A joy to play, being short scale, and with flats it sounds like a good old vintage P bass.

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Cheers. He already has a cheap bass that someone gave him. He’s really looking for something to record with. He’ll probably put it through a Kemper. Just now he’s really liking the Sub Ray 4, though he’s liked a few of the basses for sale on here too.

I’m not gonna start a debate on human rights.

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3 hours ago, xgsjx said:

 he’s really liking the Sub Ray 4, though he’s liked a few of the basses for sale on here too.

I’m not gonna start a debate on human rights.

I know that SBMM basses are made in Indonesia - do we know if that's going to be from Cort as well?

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1 hour ago, Ricky Rioli said:

I know that SBMM basses are made in Indonesia - do we know if that's going to be from Cort as well?

It would appear so.  🙄

Well that's a bummer.

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