EB-3 Review

manufacturer: Epiphone date: 04/23/2012 category: Bass Guitars
Epiphone: EB-3
The EB-3 is a solidbody electric bass that features a full 34" scale length and adds a sidewinder humbucker and 1 mini humbucker.
 Sound: 8.5
 Overall Impression: 8.1
 Reliability & Durability: 8.3
 Action, Fit & Finish: 7.6
 Features: 8.6
 Overall rating:
 8.3 
 Reviewer rating:
 8.2 
 Users rating:
 8.4 
 Votes:
 84 
reviews (8) pictures (2) 25 comments vote for this gear:
overall: 8.6
EB-3 Reviewed by: dexterholland, on july 19, 2007
7 of 8 people found this review helpful

Features: Mine's a 2005 model, made in Japan (I believe), and features 22 frets, all very big. Frets 1-5 so big in fact that low end soloing is only available to people with big hands. The bass body is all one piece, and is surprisingly thin for the overall size of the bass, which in all angles strikes you as a big bass. Don't know off the top of my head what woods make it, and it's finished in classic SG Cherry Red (the only SG colour if you ask me). It's a very strong SG looking thing, unlike the LP bass which doesnt't really look like a LP. It's the big beefed up Gibson bass bridge, found only on EB's and LP's and the semis such as the rivioli and jack cassady. It's extremely stable and based on the Tune-O-Matic, as also found on Gibson SGs/LPs/Semis. (and others). All the electronics are passive, which is good because the sidewinder humbucker at neck sounds mighty already! You get Gibson Standard control layout of 2 volumes 2 tones, as well as a rotary pickup knob. I find this a downfall of the bass, whilst looking nice is hard to change as quickly as a flick Switch. I leave it on position 2 anyway. Pickups wise you get a Gibson Sidewinder Humbucker (massive in both size and sound) and a Gibson Mini Humbucker, which basically is totally useless if you want your SG bass to sound like an SG bass. Using only the minihumbucker sounds like using a cheap jazz bass, though combined with the sidewinder adds a scent of highs, which is necessary as the sidewinder is all bass and lo mid. Tuners are standard Gibbo tuners, and included in the box you get a bass, though a specially designed EB-3 case is available, though I prefer the "coffin case" you can buy for about 80. // 9

Sound: I play in a sabbathy, zep-esque, hendrix-y, cream etc classic rock band, and the heavy thunder this produces is absolutely necessary for blowing peoples minds and moving the floor! I find it superb for giving the guitar plenty of backing as we are only a 3-piece, though I still use my Fender P-Bass in the studio, as I find it easier to play and the tone of the pickups is more natural, so we can use the studio to make it sound like the SG with much more ease. Live though, the SG rocks over the P-Bass every day of the week! // 8

Action, Fit & Finish: The factory set up is good, though the shop gave it a checkover and small fixes to get it perfect. It's always played superbly, and the strings have last well, and I've never had to make any repairs to it, so I; ll leave this one as perfect! The pickups are good heights as recieved, and the strings included are very good quality. // 10

Reliability & Durability: It's a very solid bass, and everything on it seems very sturdy, though I often have to tighten the strap buttons. They are also very small, I changed them for some bigger ones. Because of it's very tight fit in the case I can't use strap locks as they are too much hassle, I just carry a screwdriver about to tighten before gigs, and sometimes if we're doing a long one I tighten it halfway through. It's all rugged otherwise, and the finish is fine, it has also put up with belt buckle rash very well, only a small few scratches and small paint dents, nothing else. However, I still carry it in it's hard case to be sure. // 8

Overall Impression: I love the bass and for my style of music is perfect. I have been playing bass 4 years, and in the current band for 18 months. It has seen a lot of life and is still carrying on, whilst the guitarist has been through countless guitars. If I lost it or completely broke it, I would be sure to buy another one, though I would probably check denmark street for an old 60s/70s P-Bass first, I find they also have a great sound. Though it could only be an old one, and even then I would most likely get another EB-3, especially if they hd a Vintage one!! I love it all over, but the sound is perfect in my ears. It sounds so low, and at gigs people have commented on it sounding below the kick drum! The weight is heavy which I like, as it makes me feel like I'm playing a big beast. The long neck is also very nice, and the fact that not many people play EB-3s (all have PBs/JBs/MM's/Ibanez's) makes it look quite exclusive, and gives the band a good image as an retro classic rock band. The only thing it could feature to improve it could be possibly a slightly beefier pickup at the bridge, as much as the mini HB is useful as a top end helper for the sidewinder, it can't hold out on it's own at all. // 8

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overall: 9.5
EB-3 Reviewed by: gibsonsdh, on june 14, 2004
3 of 3 people found this review helpful

Features: - Made in Japan - 22 frets 34'' scale - Solid top - 2 volume and tone knobs - 3 way switch: 1-rythm, 2-both pickups, 3-treble - 1 big sidewinder humbucker - 1 mini humbucker - Neck mahoganyBody Mahogany - Fretboard rosewood - Chrome hardware // 10

Action, Fit & Finish: There were no mistakes with this 4 string at all. No some parts were not picture perfect but the rest was. For the parts that wasn't perfect they was still better than average. // 8

Reliability & Durability: Not unless I take this bass and break it by throwing it off a building. I expect it to last for as long as I need it doing anything. Everything on this bass is 100% correct. // 10

Overall Impression: The band I'm in plays grunge style music and grunge covers. This is a good match or great. I did have a Fender precision bass, the EB3 blows Fender P Bass out of the water. If it was to be stolen, I would buy the samething right back even if I had $4,000 for another bass. I love the pearl trapiziod inlays, it makes it as pretty as it sounds. There is bad thing about it, it is top heavy. You always have to hold it up. My favorite feture on this bass is the switch. It makes all the difference. I comparred the EB3 to the Fender jazz bass. There both around the same price range. The EB3 has more variety and deeper and fuller sound. This is a great bass and I highly suggest it to any bass player. // 10

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overall: 4.5
EB-3 Reviewed by: mittens16, on july 28, 2005
1 of 8 people found this review helpful

Features: Made in 1999, in Japan. 24 frets, thin neck which I enjoy, normal frets. I am not sure what kind of wood it is but it dents extremely easy. The finish on mine is cherry but you can also get it in black. It is an SG body as you can see in the pic, ok now the bridge is extremely complicated on this thing you can adjust it anyway you want to but it ir really hard to set perfect, it took me hours. Passive electronics. You have 4 knobs, 2 tones and 2 volumes 1 tone and one volume for each pickup. Also a pickup selector switch, you can use the bridge pickup both pickups or just the neck pickup. You have a sidewinder pickup at the neck which is extremely bassy and a mini humbucker at the bridge. // 8

Action, Fit & Finish: The guitar was set up poorly, and you cant adjust the bridge well either because it is a 3 position and if you bring it down low the bass will buzz alot, and when you get it set so it doesn't buzz the strings are quite high off the fretboard which leads to slow action through the neck (no good at all). Ok the pickups were also set up poorly I adjusted the hight to where I wanted them and you can also turn the little magnetic screws in the pickups to lower or higher them kinda handy because you will definately want to do this. And yes just as everyone else said it is neck heavy and if you let go the head stock bashes off of the floor. // 4

Reliability & Durability: This bass will withstand live playing, but be really careful while transporting, keep it in a hardcase because the neck is set and can break or crack if left in the cold to long. The strap buttons are basic, nothing special about them. I guess you can depend on this bass but you might want to bring a backup just in case. I do enjoy the cherry woodgrain finish and it seems tough but the body dents extremly easy so be careful. // 4

Overall Impression: I play mostly punk music and a little bit of rock, this bass does not suite either well. I have been playing for 5 years now and I think I will stick to my Fender Standard Jazz Bass (around the same price). I did read a lot of reviews on this bass before I bought it and a lot of them were good, but I really honestly would not recoment this bass to anyone, it is a really big hassel. If it were stolen I would definately not buy another one. I hate everything about this bass it doesnt really have any cool features other then it looks cool that's about it. I am comparing this bass to my Fender jazz bass, and this bass is completely different in all ways, just because it's different doesn't mean it's bad, but I just dislike this product, it is a bad design and a disgrace to Epiphone and Gibson products. // 2

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overall: 7.8
EB-3 Reviewed by: lorrythebassguy, on may 26, 2008
1 of 1 people found this review helpful

Features: Its a Korean made SG bass, solid Mahogany body and top, mahogany neck with a rosewood fretboard, transparent Black Cherry colour, SG shaped body, 3-way adjustible bridge, passive, typical 2-vol, 2-tone plus a 3 way rotary Switch, mini humbucker in the bridge position and Sidewinder in the neck, standard grover tuners, came with a small cable and the truss key. // 7

Sound: The bass has quite a good, broad tonal palette. I play mainly rock and punk covers and originals. I use an Ashdown EB12 amp and they suit each other quite well. The sidewinder in the neck is fat, punchy and powerful, gently rolling in the tone pot adds a bit of variety. The mini Hb has a unique 'popping' sound. it's trebley but not metallic (well at least intil you kick the tone all the way up! ). When selected together using the 3-way rotary Switch, lots of different sounds can be achieved. The bass has good buttom end and enough high end to add variety. Sound great for classic rock and blues covers. Generally I was impressed with the tonal palette. // 8

Action, Fit & Finish: When I first played it, the action was high. It got on my nerves so I lowered it using the 3-way adjustible bridge. It took me a while to figure it out, but it's easy enough. The p'ups were fine and I haven't adjusted them once since I bought it just over a year ago. The finish is great! The grain shows through the transparent cherry finish, which looks quite stunning. Would be a nice colour for a QMT. I don't think the guitar has any obvious flaws other than it's abit top heavy. // 7

Reliability & Durability: I've gigged it around a lot of the last year or so and it has never let me down yet! I can see this bass being around for a good ten years yet before it needs anything major doing to it. The bottom strap button did fall off once at school, but I soon fixed it, and added strap locks to hopefully stop it from happening again. I'm one of them cautious people that always takes a backup, but I don't really need one (unless the strap button falls off! ). One word of warning is that the bass is top heavy, so you wouldn't want to play for more than an hour, or your arms might get tired. The finish hasn't warn thin yet, and I would have expected it to around the bridge pup where I use a pick most. // 8

Overall Impression: This bass is great for lots of styles on music. I play classic rock covers with my band and this bass does a great job! The pickups are nice and achieve wide tonal variety. My favourite features are probably the Neck pickup and the finish. I wasn't too keen on the supplied action, and the top heaviness is annoying at times. If it were lost or stolen I would probably get another one or something similar. overall it would be great for a beginner, or your first 'decent' bass. // 9

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overall: 8.2
EB-3 Reviewed by: Gen.Braddock, on february 02, 2011
1 of 1 people found this review helpful

Price paid: $ 299

Features: Made in Korea yet set up in the USA. 22 large rosewood frets with trapazoid, peral inlays. Solid top Body and neck are mahogony. Cherry finish. Double cutaway. Tri-bolt bridge Passive electronics 3 way selector switch One large humbucker at neck and sidewinder humbucker at bridge. // 9

Sound: I play mostly hard rock/heavy metal with GHS flatwounds, 45-105 through a 100 watt Acoustic amp. Let's just say, with these humbuckers, I can reach way down low for that heavy sound whenever needed. That being said, this bass is also ideal for jazz and blues, having that smooth, warm sound stylistic of the genres. Slap is difficult with the bass, but with the right amp settings and some practice, it sounds pretty good. I used a Boss DS-1 distortion, a Dunlop standard crybaby, and a Boss DD-3 delay with this. The dealy works well, but the low sounds this bass can make jsut wreaked havoc on the distortion and wah, so i sold them and am using the monet to get a Boss ME-20B. It has a three way selector Switch to control which pickups you use. On 3, it has a very full, warm sound. On 2, it has a sound reminiscent of a single coil bass or Geddy Lee's sound in the mid 80's, teh same is applied to 1. In all, pretty tonally sound, can be very warm or rather bright, but you should be able to get a good sound out of it no matter what. // 8

Action, Fit & Finish: This bass was setnup well, had to lower the action a bit but other than that fine. I do however get a weird buzzing sound from the nut from time to time so I am considering getting a new one. Pickups were fine, as was the bridge and everything but the input jeck, but some tightening took care of that quickly. One problem is the tuning pegs are not as good a smy alst bass, Squire Jazz, but its nothing but a minor inconveniance. // 7

Reliability & Durability: This bass is made of Mahogony, it's very strong! I have struck the head many times and it dents what it hits. I have not gigged with it, but I would say it is pertty strong. Hardware seems lie it will alst for a few years, not the highest quality but prety good. Strap buttons are good and seem like they will hold. Only problem is the common neckdive. This does get to be a bother as the neck is very heavy, but you learn to dela with it and I really don't mind. I have not really gigged, but I would depend on this solely without a backup, very reliable, though bear in mind it does get havy so have a good strap. Finish is nice, very strong and simply pretty to look at, covers up smudges well too. // 8

Overall Impression: Overall, this is an ideal match for my style of music and the sound that I specifiaclly want out of me bass. I have been playing for about a year and 1/4 at the time of this review and i have wanted this bass since the beginning, and the wait has paid off. If it were stoled, I would defiantely buy it again, maybe get in a custom arctic color. I love the selector switcha dn the smooth playing style, but the weight and neckdive can be a bother, so watch out for that. Other than that, I highly reccomend this bass to any beginner/intermediate player and would consider a fine purchase. // 9

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overall: 9.4
EB-3 Reviewed by: unregistered, on april 27, 2011
1 of 1 people found this review helpful

Price paid: $ 299

Purchased from: Guitar Center

Features: This model was built in China and the quality is impressive. I've been playing the bass/guitar for over 40 years and own several bass guitars now. I owned a Gibson EB3 from 1971 and it was stolen a few years later. I now own a Gibson reissued EB3, but wanted that old look of the original EB3 which Epiphone provides. This Epiphone EB3 is as good as my old EB3 and my current reissued. It is long scale which is nice and the two humbuckers do a great job. I was never crazy about the three position switch, but I like the retro look it provides. I don't consider that an issue however, with the switch, the two volume and two tone knobs you can produce your sound. The finish is impecable, I've seen much more expensive basses with much worse finish. // 9

Sound: The two humbuckers do a great job. With the three way Switch and the two volume and two tone knobs you can dial in your sound. I play mostly contemporary christian music, however I also play around with rock. This bass does the job no matter what I'm playing and what style I'm using. I play it through both an Ampeg (SVT & BA15) and Acoustic (200 watts through 4 10's and 1 15) and the sound is excellent. // 9

Action, Fit & Finish: The factory set up was very good, however I always tweek it a little to fit my style. But the way mine came out of the box would have sufficed most players. I prefer flat wound strings, so that is mainly what I changed. The action is near perfect. Since it was made in China, I took my time in inspecting the guitar before I took it home, honestly I could not find anything wrong with it. At least with the one I bought, the factory did an excellent job in building this bass guitar. I own 25 guitars and have not had this quality with much more expensive models. // 10

Reliability & Durability: I've owned my Epiphone EB3 for about a year and it gets played once or twice a month. I have several basses and I Switch around. I have not had any problems with it. It stays in tune remarkably well. I take very good care of my guitars, but the finish is holding up very well including the body gloss and hardware finish. I can depend on it and when I'm not planning on gigging with it, it all too often becomes my back up axe in case something happens. // 10

Overall Impression: I'm and old rock-and-roller and today I play mostly contemporary christian music. The bass can handle any style with ease. I've been playing for over 40 years and consider myself well versed on guitars. I have several Gibsons, Fenders, Gretch, Epiphone, Oscar Schmidt, Applause, Ovation, Mitchell, and a 43 year old Electra viola bass. The one thing I wish I could change is that it is kneck heavy and when you let go of it the kneck slides down. Overall it reminds me of my 1971 Gibson EB3 in every respect, and if this one was to be stolen as my 1971 was, I would replace it right away. // 9

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overall: 9.2
EB-3 Reviewed by: Slotholopolis, on july 21, 2011
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Price paid: $ 299

Purchased from: Guitar Center

Features: My EB-3 was made in China and set up in America. The long scale (34") neck provides 22 frets on a neck that is decent width, larger than the small EB-0 but not so big that it requires the fingers of E.T. To play. Both the body and the neck are made of mahogany which makes it a bit heavy. I purchased the Ebony finish which is just gorgeous. The Tune-O-Matic bridge makes adjusting it to your liking a breeze. There are two volume and two tone controls as well a 3-way selector which allows: 3-Neck, 2-Both and 1-Bridge. // 9

Sound: I love the signature Gibson/Epiphone sound, especially as far as basses go. I love the fact that this bass is a long scale because of the extra sounds you can coax out of it. The low bellows on the E string can vibrate the paint off the walls if you're not careful (easily approaches the bellows of an authentic Gibson). The two pickups are also a big reason I bought this bass. Even though the bridge pickup is very small and doesn't do a whole lot on it's own it's mostly there for support of the huge chromed out Sidewinder humbucker on the neck. The Sidewinder is a monster and sounds awesome. If your amp isn't up very high and you Switch the selector to the 1 you won't hear any noise out at all (I've seen some questions about this). I recommend keeping the size of the mini humbucker in mind when looking at this instrument because it is a great addition but some may misinterpret the point of it. // 10

Action, Fit & Finish: The guitar was set up well out of the box (Guitar Center had to have it shipped because it wasn't in stock). Well, the second one was at least. I had to send my original bass back to the company because the bridge wasn't properly attached to the body. I returned the bass to the company and a new one was mailed out the same day I mailed the old one back to them with a renewed warranty without any problems. // 8

Reliability & Durability: I've not personally bumped or hit anything on the guitar yet but from what others say it is easily dented. I get that it's an electric guitar and most of us play rock music with it but it's still pretty easy to not bang it on things, simply paying attention to what you're doing will avoid most if not all of the bumps and bruises. The mahogany body and neck may dent easy but it I don't worry about it one bit, it's a very sturdy wood. The finish on the ebony is simply gorgeous but because it's a solid finish where you can't see the woodgrain like on the cherry it's easier to notice the fingerprints and such that will eventually get on it. A warm washcloth does the trick to get rid of the pesky smudges and such. // 9

Overall Impression: In my opinion this is the best bass for the price, hands down. Compared to the EB-0 this bass is head and shoulders above it's counterpart. The 0 is a short scale where the 3 is a long scale, the 0 has one pickup and the 3 has two. Not to mention that at a place like Guitar Center you can purchase a 3 year unlimited warranty on the 3 where you can't on the 0. To put it in perspective the Epiphone EB-3 is $1, 000 cheaper than it's Gibson counterpart with not too much of a difference as far as quality goes. I love this bass and given an unlimited budget I'm not so sure that I'd buy anything else. // 10

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overall: 8
EB-3 Reviewed by: vorjohn, on april 23, 2012
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Price paid: € 255

Purchased from: thomann

Features: I bought that bass and it is my first. It's a 2011 model made in Japan. It's fretboard is rosewood. It has mahogany body and maple neck all the other features is fantastic but I don't think its a good bass for the beginning because of the hard fretboard. I think that the frets is ok because bass frets must be like this and not as guitars // 8

Sound: As a sound that bass rocks. It gives you the perfect sound of a metal and rock bass. Slap doesn't sound bad it sounds great for a player who has started now but I think it depends on what strings you put up on it. The switch 2 is awesome because that sounds is what that bass must have. Switch 3 is a metal sound with higher bass level. Don't try it with a dist pedal with a lot of distortion better use it with switch 2. // 8

Action, Fit & Finish: I think that this part is very clear. I thought that the factory made this bass awesome but when I tested it in my home the first day I was really disapointed because of the bridge and the poticknobs. // 7

Reliability & Durability: I have played live a lot of songs that suits with this bass and I think that a very rock and metal bass player should give it a try. The strap isn't a good part because of the neck button but I think this guitar is fantastic for live performances. // 9

Overall Impression: I play all the styles of music so I can't tell it suits me perfect. To make all the sounds I like I must buy a lot of pedals. I am playing 2 years and I own a Harley Benton 80w amp and a Behringer overdrive pedal. If it was stolen I would probably buy it only for my live performances. I love everything in this bass because it was my first. I wouldn't compare it with anything in this money it's the best. // 8

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