Price paid: £ 120
Purchased from: GAK.co.uk
Features: 5 string Kramer Striker Bass guitar.
- Made in Indonesia, Unsure of production year, possibly 2005 Onwards
- Bolt-on Slim Maple Neck w/Reverse pointy headstock, Solid Alder Body in a Kramer Striker Shape, 24 Jumbo Nickel/steel frets
- 34" scale length
- Laminated top with Metallic Black finish
- Dual-Rail Kramer Passive Humbucker pickups; Neck/Bridge
- 3 control Knobs; Volume, Tone, and a Tone boost knob/switch
Kramer is now owned by Gibson and this appears to be one of their budget range 5 strings. // 8
Sound: Unlike some other budget 5 strings, the low B is very clear through the pickups and sounds perfect. Very pleased with the sound considering the budget price. Can produce all ranges of tones, but I prefer its bright, punchy sounds. I've played through all number of small practice amps and much much larger stacks and I have no complaints on the performance. With the addition of the tone boost switch (Which is turned off/on by pulling/pushing the 3rd knob), this bass has very wide range of great tones that are achievable. // 8
Action, Fit & Finish: The factory set up was okay out the box, but I did alter the higher strings which were extremely low for my liking (But can be a very good thing if you prefer low action). The nut was perfect out the box and haven't changed it since purchase. The metallic black finish looks wonderful and shines in the light, no flaws what so ever.
However, as expected with such a low priced bass, the plastic cover on the back which covers all the wiring, was poorly cut and placed. Doesn't affect the apppearance of it whilst playing, but does remind you that this is a budget product. // 7
Reliability & Durability: I would rely on this bass without a backup for live playing. It's very solid and sturdy. After playing with it for years and travelling with it, it's sustained very few scratches (not visible on the finish anyway) and the finish itself has never chipped or cracked.
One critisism would be the B string tuner is very easy to knock out of tune. Other than that they stay perfectly in tune whislt playing. If this were stolen I would definitely try and buy another if I could find one (They appear to be discontinued), as this is a very low priced yet reliable bass. // 8
Overall Impression: I've had this bass for 3 or 4 years now, and it still impresses me. I was looking for a five string that could handle very thick low strings and this bass handles them perfectly.
In its metallic black finish this five string version screamed METAL to me and is what I primarily play on it. It can handle other styles though and is a great first step for a player looking for his first five string. The only addition that I would love this bass to have are locking tuners so they don't become out of tune when you accidently nudge them.
All in all, it is a great low budget 5 string for someone who wants to try fivers out. If you can find one at the price I did, I would recommend it over any other fiver at this price range. // 9