#1
Hello,
I'm thinking about getting myself a bass guitar, I have no experience whatsoever with musical instruments but I wanted to try it out and a bass was my first choice.

What do bass do you suggest?

I wanted something cheap around 200€ for the bass and 300-350€ for both the bass and the amp, I don't really want to spend any more than that since I don't really know how much I will enjoy it and I'm a beginner after all so please don't suggest pricy stuff.

My favorite bassists usually use stingrays, and I've listened to jazz basses and p basses to compare and it was the sound that suited me the most (again, I haven't actually played anything so..) but it's too much of an investment and I can't seem to find a good entry level musicman style bass.

From what I've heard and read I was leaning towards a PJ bass, and out of those I was thinking of getting a Squier Frank Bello Jazz Bass, I'm not a huge fan of skulls but I do like the design and it costs the same as a Squier P Bass Special (around 230&euro.

As for an amp, I was leaning towards a Marshall MB15 or a Marshall MB30, are they good or is there anything better in the same price range? (80€ for the MB15 and 115€ for the MB30)

Also I was really leaning towards buying new rather than getting an used one since I don't know enough about the subject to get good deals and I don't want to risk it, I was thinking of ordering online, probably from http://www.dv247.com/ does anyone have any experience with that site? Is there another cheap site for europe?


Thanks in advanced for the responses.


PS: If it makes it easier for you brits my budget would be around 300£.
#2
I recommend the Squier P-Bass or Jazz Bass.
Ampwise, the Ashdown Perfect Ten is great value.


¦ Epiphone Sheraton II ¦ GFS Mean 90s ¦ Ampeg J-20 ¦
¦ Fulltone OCD ¦ MXR 6-Band EQ ¦ Behringer Chorus ¦ Artec Analog Delay ¦ EHX Holy Grail ¦
#3
For just starting out you should get a starter pack. No need to dump money on gear on something you might not like.
#4
Quote by JMcG92
I recommend the Squier P-Bass or Jazz Bass.
Ampwise, the Ashdown Perfect Ten is great value.

Given that I don't know what I like to play yet wouldn't a PJ suit me better due to more versatility? Or is it not more versatile?
I thought having a bit of both would be a good idea since I don't want to buy either one of them and realise I wanted it to sound like the other.

Quote by MommasHooligan
For just starting out you should get a starter pack. No need to dump money on gear on something you might not like.

I read that buying low quality stuff would ultimately hurt my drive to play, if I can get something better by forking out a little more cash then so be it.
You know any pack in particular that is a good deal?

Is there any low priced musicman style bass within or around my budget?

Thanks for replying by the way.
#5
Whoever said getting low quality stuff will hurt your drive to play is a complete moron. I started out on a cheap ass Berhinger starter set and and I've always had the drive. Which explains why I'm playing in a band.

Starter kits are the way to go. The amps are usually garbage, but the main focus is to play the bass regardless of what ya got. Ibanez and Squire (yeah, I said it) are great ways to go. You will eventually want better gear and be able to save up for better stuff later if you wish to stick with it.

I've been for 4 years and been through a bunch of gear until I finally settled with what I got now as it suits my needs and gives the tone I've wanted.
#7
While I agree that you shouldn't spend too much on your first guitar, having a poorly built instrument does affect your "drive" as you call it, busting your ass out to practice only to sound like a submerged fart would definitely kill one's motivation.

Quote by MommasHooligan
Whoever said getting low quality stuff will hurt your drive to play is a complete moron.

"Morons" like Slash and Frank Bello seem to agree:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mVNMkb4XK48#t=3m28s

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qlp9jfuPBNw#t=3m13s

I think you can get something better than a starting kit with his budget or a slightly better budget, the only advantage of a starting pack is it comes with everything you need to start playing, but once you're past the basics you'll regret having bought a cheap instrument, once you can tell what you should sound like and what you actually sound like.

I say it is better to buy a slightly better guitar and keep it as a backup later on than buying a disposable guitar you'll throw away as soon as you get a better one. And the more you can delay the eventual upgrade the better.
Besides, if you get something decent you can upgrade it.


Quote by MommasHooligan
You will eventually want better gear and be able to save up for better stuff later if you wish to stick with it.

I do agree with you on that, though. Spending too much money on something you're just trying out isn't the smartest way to go.


Quote by Boyakasha
I haven't actually played anything so..

Why haven't you? Isn't there a music shop near your house? Someone who's profession consists on taking your money should be able to help you choosing an instrum... Wait... Seriously, you should try them out yourself, if you have the chance.
#8
I just don't see the need for a true absolute beginner to be dropping a lot of cash on this endeavor. The quitting rate of people learning instruments is higher than the US divorce rate lol.

http://bass-guitars.musiciansfriend.com/product/Ibanez-IJXB190-Electric-Bass-Jumpstart-Pack?sku=519527

This deal is pretty good. The bass isn't too bad and good for a beginner. The amp sucks but enough to get him started. The Epi Thunderbird package is good as the bass is solid to continue to use and maybe upgrade to some EMG pups.
#9
Don't waste time with starter packs, you pay for a cheap bass, and extra for a mostly useless amp and a bunch of cheap accessories.

I'd recommend Ibanez (GSR200), Peavey (Millennium BXP), and Squier (anything but an Affinity), for inexpensive basses that should be solid enough starter basses to last you a while. As for a starter amp, you can't do much better then a Kustom KBA, and they're dirt cheap used if you can find one.
Composite Aficionado


Spector and Markbass
#10
Quote by MommasHooligan
I just don't see the need for a true absolute beginner to be dropping a lot of cash on this endeavor. The quitting rate of people learning instruments is higher than the US divorce rate lol.

http://bass-guitars.musiciansfriend.com/product/Ibanez-IJXB190-Electric-Bass-Jumpstart-Pack?sku=519527

This deal is pretty good. The bass isn't too bad and good for a beginner. The amp sucks but enough to get him started. The Epi Thunderbird package is good as the bass is solid to continue to use and maybe upgrade to some EMG pups.


let me break it down for you,

cheap pack $200
4 months later "oh my god all my gear sounds like absolute ass" non crap beginer rig $350
"time to go sell my useless starer gear" -$75

total spent 475 bucks in 4 months

alternatively

non crap beginer set up $350
4 months later "man I love bass, I think ill upgrade my rig. Ireally like the playability of my squire, I thinkg I ll get some new pups for it, and maybe pick up a better amp." upgrades 200

sell your starter amp- $75

total $475

see how that works out?
no sir away a papaya war is on
#11
Quote by Mr_Jubby_Jubs
I believe this site ships all over Europe.

Thanks, the site I linked before is a bit cheaper but that one has sound samples from some products which is really helpful.

I'm seriously considering getting a http://www.thomann.de/es/fender_sq_frank_bello_jazz_bass_bk.htm from dv247 which will save me around 100€(bass and amp) compared to other sites.

Is this bass http://www.dv247.com/guitars/vintage-est96-active-bass-guitar-natural--64690 any good? I don't know much about the brand and couldn't find many helpful reviews.
#12
Quote by Boyakasha
Given that I don't know what I like to play yet wouldn't a PJ suit me better due to more versatility? Or is it not more versatile?
I thought having a bit of both would be a good idea since I don't want to buy either one of them and realise I wanted it to sound like the other.


I read that buying low quality stuff would ultimately hurt my drive to play, if I can get something better by forking out a little more cash then so be it.
You know any pack in particular that is a good deal?

Is there any low priced musicman style bass within or around my budget?

Thanks for replying by the way.


There's sterling by musicman which basicly is the lower end models of musicman basses/guitars, but they are very nice!
#13
Quote by Viter
There's sterling by musicman which basicly is the lower end models of musicman basses/guitars, but they are very nice!

They cost twice my budget though, don't they?
#14
I know for a fact that the ''Vintage'' guitar brand does a stingray type bass, one I have recently tested and can attest to its excellent quality.

http://www.jhs.co.uk/vintagebass.html

There we go... I'm not sure where you're from, so I'll assume you're from the Yoo-Ess-Off-Ay and you are working in dollars. I know that the model i was referring to (its called the ES-something or other) is £120 British pounds

Disclaimer, I do know they aren't visually the same, and the tone isn't close at all really, but for both, it's in the ballpark.
Last edited by GrStMyGn at Aug 14, 2010,
#15
Flea's new bass (ingeniously called the Fleabass) would be based on the Musicman wouldn't it? Looks like it is design wise, and I know that's what Flea always plays.

...Food for thought.

I had a Squier P Bass for a few years when I was playing and it was a really good bass.
#16
I understand what you're saying. I'm not an idiot. But its not the gear that drives you to play. It never has for anyone. You can have a badass rig but suck at playing. The TS shouldn't worry about what to get but just get something to start playing.
#17
Quote by GrStMyGn
I know for a fact that the ''Vintage'' guitar brand does a stingray type bass, one I have recently tested and can attest to its excellent quality.

http://www.jhs.co.uk/vintagebass.html

There we go... I'm not sure where you're from, so I'll assume you're from the Yoo-Ess-Off-Ay and you are working in dollars. I know that the model i was referring to (its called the ES-something or other) is £120 British pounds

Disclaimer, I do know they aren't visually the same, and the tone isn't close at all really, but for both, it's in the ballpark.

You didn't actually read anything did you? d:

I linked the vintage bass a few posts ago, I wonder if it's at least as good as the Squier Frank Bello jazz bass I'm thinking of buying.

Also, if you look where it says "Location:" bellow my name it should tell you I'm not a yankee, if not for that the fact that I'm working with euros and asking for sites in europe should give a hint.

Did you test the one I linked? http://www.dv247.com/guitars/vintage-est96-active-bass-guitar-natural--64690 ? Is it well built and does it sound good?

Quote by MommasHooligan
I understand what you're saying. I'm not an idiot. But its not the gear that drives you to play. It never has for anyone. You can have a badass rig but suck at playing. The TS shouldn't worry about what to get but just get something to start playing.

I didn't say having a good bass would increase my drive to play, I said having a bad bass would decrease my drive to play, if my bass
Quote by mikedg18
sound like a submerged fart
As mikedg18 says then I'm much more likely to lose my will to play, at least that's what I think.

I agree that I "should just start playing" as you say, but if searching a little bit and spending a few more can get a better instrument that I'll enjoy more then so be it, I'd rather spend 400€ and be satisfied than throw 150€ away on something bad.

Anyway I appreciate yours and everyone elses help on this choice. (:
#18
Well actually I did read it, hence my (admittedly unclear) description of the bass you described, and then provided a link to further my point with SEVERAL models of the vintage bass you asked about.

I apologise for my mistake with the locations though, I don't read them (to my detriment)

As for a more descriptive account of the bass (which I have tried) ... I can only inform you of my experience of the dozen or so hour-long sessions i have had at my guitar shop, so perhaps take witha pinch of salt. That said...

Would I buy it? Yes, yes I would, and I'm not a Ray fan. The feel isn't dead on, put a copy wont ever be, it IS similar however, I find it has a slimmer neck profile than the actual Ray, which I personally find more suited to my taste. The body, weight and size-wise is similar-to-dead-on to the Ray as well. The thing is built a tad bulkier overall, I find it maybe a touch heavier.

Tone wise, it is a great little bass, the stock pickups are of far higher quality than you would expect from what is probably looked as a ''lower-tier'' in terms of price and quality. It doesn't have the bite I have become accustomed to in an actual ray, but it is definitely trebly and defined.

Overall i'd say it was an Excellent bass, if I didn't have more pressing GAS issues i would quite happily drop the ash for this, even DOUBLE it, it seems worth it.

Hope I helped.
#19
Quote by GrStMyGn
Well actually I did read it, hence my (admittedly unclear) description of the bass you described, and then provided a link to further my point with SEVERAL models of the vintage bass you asked about.

I apologise for my mistake with the locations though, I don't read them (to my detriment)

As for a more descriptive account of the bass (which I have tried) ... I can only inform you of my experience of the dozen or so hour-long sessions i have had at my guitar shop, so perhaps take witha pinch of salt. That said...

Would I buy it? Yes, yes I would, and I'm not a Ray fan. The feel isn't dead on, put a copy wont ever be, it IS similar however, I find it has a slimmer neck profile than the actual Ray, which I personally find more suited to my taste. The body, weight and size-wise is similar-to-dead-on to the Ray as well. The thing is built a tad bulkier overall, I find it maybe a touch heavier.

Tone wise, it is a great little bass, the stock pickups are of far higher quality than you would expect from what is probably looked as a ''lower-tier'' in terms of price and quality. It doesn't have the bite I have become accustomed to in an actual ray, but it is definitely trebly and defined.

Overall i'd say it was an Excellent bass, if I didn't have more pressing GAS issues i would quite happily drop the ash for this, even DOUBLE it, it seems worth it.

Hope I helped.

Couldn't find much useful info on the Vintage website and the video available there didn't really give me an idea of how good the bass would sound but I found a couple covers of musics I know and it it really has a great tone, especially considering the price.


You did help, very much, I'll try look around more for opinions on the build quality and whatnot before I make my choice.

The more I see about this bass the more I like it though.

I've narrowed it down to:
http://www.dv247.com/guitars/vintage-est96-active-bass-guitar-black--57984
or
http://www.dv247.com/guitars/squier-frank-bello-jazz-bass-guitar-black-rosewood--42568

and since I want to order it from the same site I'd have the following amp options.
http://www.dv247.com/search/3156/0/ProductPrice/Ascending/-/1/
everything on this list up to 130£, (I would list it, but it'd be sort of long and I don't know enough about amps to narrow it down)

which one would you guys suggest?

EDIT: I knew what I heard sounded too good to be true, apparently it was with a seymour duncan pickup and not the original one, well at least I know it sounds superb if I upgrade the pickup.
Last edited by Boyakasha at Aug 15, 2010,
#20
I'm not particularly well versed in amps, I use a friends as I am strapped for cash, but I have become quite accustomed to ashdown amps and the tourbus is everything you could really wish for from a practice amp. Other people might suggest a peavey though, however volume and tone, while factors probably aren't pressing factors for a practice amp.

As for those two basses... well...

They are VERY different. I have only tried the Frank Bello once, and I can conclude that it was a solid instrument, not phenominal but well worth its asking price. It does however appear to be little more than A precision-special bass, which you could find cheaper if you looked around.

I personally would go for the Precision/Special type bass, but that suits me more tonally and feel wise. If I had the money to get both, then I would, their quality is identical in my opinion.

Its a matter of taste and possibly more importantly that appropriatness of each bass. You'll probably find the Precision/Special styled bass to be far more versatile, whereas the tone on the Ray styled is far mor unique, and, dare-I-say-it niche tone.
#21
Quote by GrStMyGn
I'm not particularly well versed in amps, I use a friends as I am strapped for cash, but I have become quite accustomed to ashdown amps and the tourbus is everything you could really wish for from a practice amp. Other people might suggest a peavey though, however volume and tone, while factors probably aren't pressing factors for a practice amp.

Wow, for £45, if this amp is in any way decent then I'll have to pick one up myself.


¦ Epiphone Sheraton II ¦ GFS Mean 90s ¦ Ampeg J-20 ¦
¦ Fulltone OCD ¦ MXR 6-Band EQ ¦ Behringer Chorus ¦ Artec Analog Delay ¦ EHX Holy Grail ¦
#22
Quote by GrStMyGn
I'm not particularly well versed in amps, I use a friends as I am strapped for cash, but I have become quite accustomed to ashdown amps and the tourbus is everything you could really wish for from a practice amp. Other people might suggest a peavey though, however volume and tone, while factors probably aren't pressing factors for a practice amp.

Will just bass and treeble controls be enough? Especially if I buy the Frank Bello which doesn't have a tone knob.

Quote by GrStMyGn

As for those two basses... well...

They are VERY different. I have only tried the Frank Bello once, and I can conclude that it was a solid instrument, not phenominal but well worth its asking price. It does however appear to be little more than A precision-special bass, which you could find cheaper if you looked around.

I personally would go for the Precision/Special type bass, but that suits me more tonally and feel wise. If I had the money to get both, then I would, their quality is identical in my opinion.

Its a matter of taste and possibly more importantly that appropriatness of each bass. You'll probably find the Precision/Special styled bass to be far more versatile, whereas the tone on the Ray styled is far mor unique, and, dare-I-say-it niche tone.

I believe I'll buy the Frank Bello one then, versatility is important, especially when I don't even know what I like to play yet, I'll get the vintage one and upgrade it's pickups once I'm ready for my first musicman style bass.
#23
Ah, I see my mistake with the Frank Bello signature; its actually a Jazz Bass with a split-coil P-type pickup in place of a Jazz neck Pickup. However would you not consider trying to locate on of these:

http://www.andertons.co.uk/bass-guitars/pid15148/cid560/squier-standard-p-bass-special-in-black-metallic-with-rosewood-neck.asp?utm_source=googlebase&utm_medium=pricecomp&utm_campaign=GoogleShopping

It is similar with the Jazz neck and pickup array, only the body is slightly different (precision styled). It also comes equipped with individual pickup volume controls and a master tone, which probably far surpasses the Frank Bello in terms of versatility.

It is also the same prace, and I reckon you could easily find a used one for far less.