#1
Hey guys I currently play guitar (electric) and I want to take up bass on the side. I am looking for a cheap bass to start out on. My guitar teacher is going to start teaching me bass as well (his primary instrument). I want to spend less than ~$250 on whatever I get. Other than visual styles (IOW the shape/design I like) I am still kinda clueless as to whether I want a P or J bass. I like the classic look and as the thread states I like to play blues, alternative rock (RHCP, strokes, etc), and classic rock (LZ, beatles, cream, etc). I mainly have my eye on some of the Squire basses (although probably not the affinity series), sx models from rondomusic.com (great deals...if their basses are as good as their guitars I will probably go this route), and perhaps some of the Ibanez models (GSR100EX maybe?). Any suggestions would be appreciated.

Also, I have a Peavey Valveking Royal 8 5w tube amp. I am assuming I would have to purchase a separate amp for the bass. If so do you guys have any suggestions? I have no knowledge of bass stuff but if bass amps are anything like guitar amps, I would like something with a great tone like my valveking gives me (all tube).
~Nick
#2
First off, check the FAQ. Some great suggestions for both bass and amps.

In my opinion, either a P bass or a Jazz would work in your situation. Try them both out and see what works for you...
#3
Quote by anarkee
First off, check the FAQ. Some great suggestions for both bass and amps.

In my opinion, either a P bass or a Jazz would work in your situation. Try them both out and see what works for you...


I agree but i would lean more towards a jazz.
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#4
After reading extensively through the FAQ I still have a few questions:

1. It seems like the Squier basses are far more respected than their guitar counterparts. If this is the case I would still consider the affinity series. I am on a budget so cost is a factor.
2. I would rather spend the majority of the money on nice strings and a nice amp that gives great tone. I know with guitar amps many all tube practice amps provide a much greater tone quality than many of their SS amps which may have many more effects. With regards to bass amp, are there all tube amps? In other words, what factors should I look at in an amp to assure good tonal quality.
3. After looking through the list of suggested budget amps, I found 3 that seem to be highly regarded and within my price range:
Peavey Max 110
Warwick Blue Cab 30
Ashdown Perfect 10

The Peavey is the only one of the three that doesnt have a line out ability to supplement with additional speaker cabinet. However being that tone is the most important factor to me I feel like the abilities of the Peavey would suit me best. Any opinions? The Perfect 10 also looks fabulous and for only 10$ more than the Peavey maybe the way to go.

4. How do the sx basses hold up when compared to squiers and other budget level basses?
~Nick
#5
I don't know as much about the specs of amps as I wish I did but...

1. Yes, Squier basses are generally far more respected than Squier guitars. In fact, a lot of people around here think of them as one of the best selections of a starter bass.
2. All I can really tell you here is that you're correct in assuming your amp/strings can help your sound more than your actual bass. Unless you have a really crappy bass, which a Squier is not.
4. I had to google SX basses just to attempt this question. Maybe I've completely missed out on a trusty brand, but my instincts would be to choose a Squier over SX. Really any of the basses mentioned in the FAQ are good basses from good companies. Go to a store and play some and see what you like.
#6
Honestly I wouldn't get a squier bass unless I paid more than 200 for it.

http://www.musiciansfriend.com/product/Squier-Standard-Jazz-Bass-?sku=510627

That'd be my budget bass (that default color too) if I didn't have the opportunity to go straight for an American J. Honestly that bass is gonna sound good enough for almost everyone short of a pro for blues/classic rock/alt/etc.

The problem is squiers tend to not get fully put together... Have a seriously good look at it before you even play it and make sure everything's tight and whatever.

As for amps, any of the three you mentioned are gonna be good, that's just the straight up fact there. I'd lean towards the Warwick.

I personally like DR Marcus Miller strings too (they give my J a pretty hefty sound, you might find better strings, but whatever)

anyway yeah.
#7
Is there a reason you would avoid the affinity series basses? Also when you say they often are not put together well, what should I check for? I guess I am just confused as to whether that is more of a general statement or if you have specific areas that you are referring to.

I think I will just go with the Peavey or Perfect10 because of the features and the price being lower than the Blue Cab. Every dollar counts at this point. Keep the advice coming!
~Nick
#8
SX basses are hit or miss it seems. I've heard from a few people say that thier egreat and kick the crap out of Squiers. I've have also heard the complaints about the infamous, "My bass has an orange fretboard".

Affinity's are the lowest of the low:

Affinity < Standard < Vintage Modifed

However by no means are they terrible basses, I started out on one and its served me well. They are also know for being somewhat hit or miss, So just check it out before you buy it to make sure you don't get a lemon.

One amps, I really don't think it matters which amp you get at this point. A small, starter amp isn't going to provide an amazing tone, and you will prolly want to upgrade to something bigger and better once you get the hang of playing, anyways.
#9
I'm somewhat in the same boat as you in that I switched over from guitar pretty recently and have fully committed to bass. I know very little about bass amps but I'm going to get a Warwick Blue Cab 60. I currently have a Squier P Bass Affinity Series that I got about 9 years ago. It is what it is, a starter bass. You're probably not going to hang on to it for more than a couple of years so for the money you'll be paying I'd say that you can't go wrong.
#10
Do you think for the style of playing I want to do the J bass would suit me that much more? I am leaning that way as I hear the smaller neck will suit someone with smaller hands like myself better.
~Nick
#11
Only way to know is to try them both out. I find that I need the larger sized neck on guitar. I've only tried basses with similar sized necks so I don't know what a narrow necks feel like. I'd imagine they'd add a bit of speed to your playing....could be wrong though.
#12
the thing with low end squiers like the affinity series is that the QC isn't up to much so you could get a total POS or a really nice bass for your money, it's a definate case of try before you buy.
Quote by bassmanjoe08
Dan

Don't stop being you <3


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I think after this relentless adding for the last 10 mins, that Dan is the coolest looking. Goddamn welsh people and my great etc etc etc etc etc granddad is welsh.
#13
Well luckily my local shop is a fender deal and has a couple squiers in stock. Their prices are often times less than MF. The only problem is that since I haven't yet played bass (only guitar) I am not sure what to look for. I guess it will be like testing out the last 4 strings of a guitar.
~Nick
#14
Quote by ccrnnr9
After reading extensively through the FAQ I still have a few questions:

1. It seems like the Squier basses are far more respected than their guitar counterparts. If this is the case I would still consider the affinity series. I am on a budget so cost is a factor.
2. I would rather spend the majority of the money on nice strings and a nice amp that gives great tone. I know with guitar amps many all tube practice amps provide a much greater tone quality than many of their SS amps which may have many more effects. With regards to bass amp, are there all tube amps? In other words, what factors should I look at in an amp to assure good tonal quality.
3. After looking through the list of suggested budget amps, I found 3 that seem to be highly regarded and within my price range:
Peavey Max 110
Warwick Blue Cab 30
Ashdown Perfect 10

The Peavey is the only one of the three that doesnt have a line out ability to supplement with additional speaker cabinet. However being that tone is the most important factor to me I feel like the abilities of the Peavey would suit me best. Any opinions? The Perfect 10 also looks fabulous and for only 10$ more than the Peavey maybe the way to go.

4. How do the sx basses hold up when compared to squiers and other budget level basses?
~Nick


1. Squiers are pretty good basses. Probably the best of the low budget basses.
2. There are all tube bass amps however those start around $1200. They don't make all-tube bass combos as far as I know. Solid-state for bass though is just as good
3. The peavey has the most transparent tone of the bunch. So you'll be able to tweak your sound more with it.
4. I'm not too knowledgable about the SX basses except that some are good value and others aren't.
Proud Owner of a Fender Jazz 24 V

Private Simmons of the Red vs. Blue club. PM Fret13 to join.

Things to come:
Carvin or Trace-elliot rig
EBS Valvedrive (Newest edition )
#15
SX basses are somewhat hit and miss. Sometimes you can get one that sounds great, others its duff. sometimes the QC is top notch others its a let down. But for such a popular brand and also being a budget company they do immensely well.

Depending on whats in stock you get better options than squier, a better pricing scheme than Squier, and definitely better customer service than squier.

Im not bashing squier, they are a hugely sucessful starter company an their basses are of much higher quality than their guitars. Yes SX have a few lemons but so do companies like squier. Really i think it comes down to personal choice. Im far more likely to look at SX's mainly for the maple necks. But thats just personal choice.

If you were to go quier though I would go for the standard series.
Le Sraah
#16
Thanks for the advice guys. If the solid state amps are just as good as the all tube for bass, would I be best just to get a small practice amp to start on? I don't plan to gig anytime soon, however that is in my mind for the future. I would still like to be able to play with a guitarist or possibly a drummer. I really like the quality of Peavys I have heard in the past (I have one for my guitar and it is great). Any feedback on those amps is appreciated.
~Nick
#17
Quote by ccrnnr9
Thanks for the advice guys. If the solid state amps are just as good as the all tube for bass, would I be best just to get a small practice amp to start on? I don't plan to gig anytime soon, however that is in my mind for the future. I would still like to be able to play with a guitarist or possibly a drummer. I really like the quality of Peavys I have heard in the past (I have one for my guitar and it is great). Any feedback on those amps is appreciated.
~Nick


Definitely get a small practice amp as it's the most economical approach. If you aren't going to be playing gigs anytime soon then a small practice amp is perfect.
Proud Owner of a Fender Jazz 24 V

Private Simmons of the Red vs. Blue club. PM Fret13 to join.

Things to come:
Carvin or Trace-elliot rig
EBS Valvedrive (Newest edition )
#18
What size are you talking as a practice amp? I know for guitar 5w is sufficient. My valveking can be cranked but from what I read 5w doesn't even cut it for practice with a bass. Any suggestions on specs or models?
~Nick
#19
Quote by ccrnnr9
What size are you talking as a practice amp? I know for guitar 5w is sufficient. My valveking can be cranked but from what I read 5w doesn't even cut it for practice with a bass. Any suggestions on specs or models?
~Nick


i practice with a 30 watt at home but people practice with less or more, when my rumble 100 was at home i'd practice with that because 100 watt amps can be made quieter but 5 watt amps can't be made louder
Quote by bassmanjoe08
Dan

Don't stop being you <3


Quote by fatgoogle
I think after this relentless adding for the last 10 mins, that Dan is the coolest looking. Goddamn welsh people and my great etc etc etc etc etc granddad is welsh.
#20
For practice at home, 15W is definitely enough. For practice with a drum set, you need at least 100W, I'd say. Unless there's a PA ofc. Well anyway :p

I don't think that, if you're just starting out on bass, you should be too concerned about the tone. Tone with bass is important on a whole different level and in an entirely different way than with guitar. Forgive me for saying so - this is, after all, a bass forum - but with guitar there's sooo much more to tone than with bass. That is, if you're a starter.


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