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Is there a 5 string, 19mm spacing, 35", 24 fret, lightweight bass with a P bass type tone?


SumOne
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Is anyone aware of a Bass that fits this description:?

 

  • 5 string
  • 35"
  • 19mm spacing
  • 24 frets
  • Lightweight (or at least not a back breaker)
  • Tone: I guess it'd be described as P bass type tone - not bright and modern 'hi-fi', mostly to play stuff like 70's Reggae and Funk and 60's Motown, big solid thumpy low mids, fingerstyle, there won't be intricate tapping going on and no need for any clanky plectrum riffing. I use tapewound strings at the moment which I really like. If it's got active EQ then a mid control would be good but I mostly play in passive.
  • Price: Up to £1,500 

 

Similar sort of Basses I've owned:

  • Sandberg TM5 SL: This ticks most of the boxes so is probably what I should stick with but there are a few little things that I'd change for my perfect Bass: It could be slightly longer (it is 34", 35" would fit me well), ideally I'd like 24 frets (it has 22) and slightly wider string spacing (aparently it goes up to 19mm but it seems more like 18mm if you want them evenly spaced and not sliding off the fretboard). It has active EQ for Bass and Treble - having mids too would be ideal. I'd be selling/trading this if there's anything out there that fits the bill.
  • Dingwall Combustion was good and sort of fitted a lot of the bill other than being relatively big/heavy (I don't think they all are, but I had a relatively heavy one) and very 'modern' sounding and not having a blend between pickups so the tone didn't really change much (just active EQ rather than changes in timbre), and it doesn't have many string options to do things like put tapewounds on it to change the tone. 
  • Ibanez SRMS805 was good but the string spacing was a bit tight and the Bass generally felt a bit too small and cramped.
Edited by SumOne
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There might be something in the MTD Kingston range that would suit you. They have 35" scale length and 19mm spacing at the bridge, 3-band EQ and are relatively light - about 8.5 pounds from memory. It depends really whether the various combinations of pickups available sound enough precision-like. The one I had also had an assymetric profile neck which was very comfortable and easy to get on with. Bassdirect have a lot of these in stock so might be worth a trip to Warwick .

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I can't think of any 'off the shelf' type designs. Sandberg do produce 35 inch scale basses that might be worth a shout if you can live with the string spacing. 

Also with any kind of 24 fret design, be wary as whether the design of the bass allows the upper frets to actually be playable. I like having 24 frets, but only if the frets are playable, otherwise I am fine with a standard 21 fret Fender design.

 

A second hand Mike Lull PJ5 would probably be my recommendation, if you can find one though second hand I think that they go for about £2k or more.  I nearly bought one but ended up with a Sadowsky NYC 5.

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I was going to say the Sandberg VS5 - available as 35 inch scale as an option and the specs say bridge spacing will go to 19.5mm

 

They are usually 22 fret but they are have recently built some 24 fret extended fingerboards for Doug Johns and they do offer some minor custom work.

 

Definitely worth an email!

 

 

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4 minutes ago, pete.young said:

There might be something in the MTD Kingston range that would suit you. They have 35" scale length and 19mm spacing at the bridge, 3-band EQ and are relatively light - about 8.5 pounds from memory. It depends really whether the various combinations of pickups available sound enough precision-like. The one I had also had an assymetric profile neck which was very comfortable and easy to get on with. Bassdirect have a lot of these in stock so might be worth a trip to Warwick .

 

Cheers. Yeah I think a trip to Bassdirect might be on the cards soon, they have always given me decent part exchange rates too. 

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1 minute ago, fretmeister said:

I was going to say the Sandberg VS5 - available as 35 inch scale as an option and the specs say bridge spacing will go to 19.5mm

 

They are usually 22 fret but they are have recently built some 24 fret extended fingerboards for Doug Johns and they do offer some minor custom work.

 

Definitely worth an email!

 

 

 

Thanks, yeah all of the things I'm after are just minor changes to TM5 which does do nicely, so this is mostly a case of me trying to justify getting a new Bass! Marginal gains though, I guess quite a few small changes add up.

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7 minutes ago, thodrik said:

I can't think of any 'off the shelf' type designs. Sandberg do produce 35 inch scale basses that might be worth a shout if you can live with the string spacing. 

Also with any kind of 24 fret design, be wary as whether the design of the bass allows the upper frets to actually be playable. I like having 24 frets, but only if the frets are playable, otherwise I am fine with a standard 21 fret Fender design.

 

A second hand Mike Lull PJ5 would probably be my recommendation, if you can find one though second hand I think that they go for about £2k or more.  I nearly bought one but ended up with a Sadowsky NYC 5.

Cheers. Yeah, none of the things I'm after are really a deal-breaker on their own, more of an ideal wishlist. Fewer frets is fine, nice to have 2x octaves if it's playable though (and perhaps I have a bit of OCD for the symmety of it, 24 kind of feels right). 

 

I'll check out the Mike Lull Basses, If I could find the ideal dream Bass then I wouldn't mind going up to £2k as I only evert have one Bass and will play it for a couple of hours a day for many years, and as far as I can tell expensive Basses tend to hold their value - so it's not a cost, it's an investment! Then again, I've got nothing against just having one <£500 Bass if it fits the bill and plays nicely

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6 minutes ago, fretmeister said:

Just a thought as well - Sandberg will build the VS shape as a Superlight if you make a custom order.

I was looking at that myself a little while ago.

 

Superlight 5 strings in the TT style are usually under 8lb, and some get under 7.5lb.

Ah yeah, I'd forgotten that Sandberg have a custom building thing on their website. I'll check that out.

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1 hour ago, jrixn1 said:

 

Nice one!

 

35", 24 Fret, 19mm spacing, lightweight, 3 band EQ, cheaper than budget....it's got it all! I've never played a semi-hollow Bass before so I suppose that might be a stumbling block- or might be exactly what I'm after. I think a trip to Bassdirect is needed. 

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11 minutes ago, Al Krow said:

Another one in the FS on at the same price if your prefer a different colour: 

 

Spector Spectorcore Fretless 5 string - Basses For Sale

 

Nice. I now realise they are fretless though (although there are fretted versions)....I'm sure semi-hollow fretless sounds great but I'm not sure I've got the skills to cross that bridge yet!

Edited by SumOne
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4 minutes ago, SumOne said:

 

Nice. I now realise they are fretless though....I'm sure semi-hollow fretless sounds great but I'm not sure I've got the skills to cross that bridge yet!

 

The one at Bass Direct is not fretless, despite the written description.  Their listings often have errors or are copied & pasted without checking!

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Just now, jrixn1 said:

 

The one at Bass Direct is not fretless, despite the written description.  Their listings often have errors or are copied & pasted without checking!

 

Ah yeah, I've just been zooming in and was sure it looked like frets.

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I'd never considered semi-hollow basses before but from reading up and listening to a few clips I think it'll do nicely for the sort of warm and fat tones I'm after (one slight domestic issue is that I do often practice at home in the front room with headphones on -  I'm not sure if my wife will be happy to hear my noodling always being semi-acoustically amplified!) 

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Sivcak is also worth mentioning with their TB series as it ticks all the boxes (except 35 inches scale, but why do you want it ?) and are excellent very lightweight instruments.

 

http://www.sollerguitars.com/index.php?option=com_flexicontent&view=category&cid=30&Itemid=101&lang=en

Edited by Hellzero
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4 minutes ago, SumOne said:

I'd never considered semi-hollow basses before but from reading up and listening to a few clips I think it'll do nicely for the sort of warm and fat tones I'm after (one slight domestic issue is that I do often practice at home in the front room with headphones on -  I'm not sure if my wife will be happy to hear my noodling always being semi-acoustically amplified!) 

They’re often no louder than a completely solid bodied instrument, so I don’t see a problem there.

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And don't forget the extraordinary Yamaha TRB-5P series, even if they are a bit more weighty (except 35 inches scale, but why do you want it ?), but definitely the best real PJ fiver. Way far better than a BB2025X.

Edited by Hellzero
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Bass Direct have given a fair estimate for the Sandberg TM5 SL part-exchange so perhaps by the end of the weekend I'll be the owner of a Bass that has 1mm wider strings, 1" longer scale,  two more frets, and a mid EQ.....marginal gains!

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