#1
Hey guys. I need a bit of guidance on buying a bass. I record a lot of songs that range from standard to drop c and have had to borrow my friends bass. I've decided I need my own now for my home studio. However when I used my friends bass, it struggled to intonate and keep tuning in drop c tuning.

I've been playing guitar for a really long time now and consider myself quite knowledgable about electric guitars but feel clueless about basses.

This thread is sort of a two part question.

What helps with intonation and tuning stability at lower timings? Scale length? Strong gauge?

And what low budget bass and brands will be good in my situation? I've got a budget of <£200. Maybe able to increase it if needed. Playing down tuned metal with enough versatility to play in standard.

Cheers for any help!
Carl
Main Rig
ESP LTD MH-350NT
Korg Pitchblack > Digitech Bad Monkey
Peavey 6505+ 112 w/ 2x12 (Celestion Vintage 30 and WGS Veteran 30)
[Effects Loop] Boss GE-7 > Boss CE-5 > TC Electronic Flashback
Last edited by Carl21221 at Oct 13, 2015,
#2
£200 is a bit low, for drop C and lower...I'd recommend getting a five string but it's a bit out of your budget
But if you're willing to save up go for yamaha then upgrade when you have a bit more money.

Yamaha TRBX305 5 string
http://www.dawsons.co.uk/yamaha-trbx305-5-string-bass-guitar-mist-green

Other than that you could get a cheap £89 bass then get thicker strings, but they're redwood and I wouldn't recommend it
#3
Style of music?

If you range from E standard and Drop C, you might just be able to get away with 45-105s if you're a light player. Personally, I like 55-120 for C, but if I just want to demo something out quickly, 45-105s are fairly decent.

If I had to choose something within your budget for myself, I'd go for this:
http://www.andertons.co.uk/electric-basses/pid31933/cid682/ibanez-gsr200b-4-string-bass-in-walnut-flat.asp

But if your budget could stretch just a little bit more, I'd go for one of these:
http://www.andertons.co.uk/electric-basses/pid14393/cid682/ibanez-sr300-bass-in-iron-pewter.asp
http://www.andertons.co.uk/electric-basses/pid29939/cid682/squier-vintage-modified-jazz-bass-70s-in-natural.asp
http://www.andertons.co.uk/electric-basses/pid27765/cid682/ibanez-sr305-5string-bass-guitar-in-root-beer-metallic.asp
http://www.andertons.co.uk/electric-basses/pid27767/cid682/ibanez-sr370-bass-guitar-in-sapphire-blue.asp

I've owned the SR370 and the SR305 (which I swapped to get the 370). They are really great quality and very easy to play. The only real difference between them is the body wood AFAIK. On the 370s, it's maple and the 300 is mahogany. They both have active preamps and a pair of humbuckers.

Here's something I recorded with mine just before I sold it:
https://soundcloud.com/corrosionmedia/ibanez-sr370-for-sale-tone-test/s-6i8fK
First is bridge, then both, then neck, all with a flat EQ

Happy GASing!
#4
Generally, bass players don't follow the whims of the guitar players regarding tuning.
That normally only happens when a guitar player adds bass to his repertoire and thinks he has to be tuned the same as the guitar players.

For starters, you'll find that a lot of bass amps/cabinets simply won't reproduce the fundamentals of the notes you've dropped to. Five-string bass players are already aware of the issue; it's a very rare amp that reproduces the 30Hz low B. Normally what you'll be listening to from the bass amp is a complex set of harmonics that *indicate* or point at the note mathematically. Most bass players, including those whose gear CAN reproduce those frequencies, will incorporate an HPF (High Pass Filter) that will essentially ramp off anything below 35Hz. This prevents the amp wasting power trying to reproduce inaudible frequencies.

As mentioned, a five string is probably a smarter solution for you. Rather than buying thicker strings and mangling a perfectly good four-string to fit them, get the five and tune the bottom four where you need them to play with the guitars. Just be aware of the limitations of the amp/cabinets that most players have, and realize that you'll mostly be listening to harmonics well above the notes that you *think* you should be tuned to.
#5
Quote by dspellman
... Rather than buying thicker strings and mangling a perfectly good four-string to fit them, get the five and tune the bottom four where you need them to play with the guitars ...


Agree with dspellman. I don't own or play 5 string, but I know what works (and consequently what does not work) on 4 string.