#1
Hi,
Any recommendations for a fretless bass? I'm looking for a very bright, punchy sound for funk, rock, and jazz. Price range is around $600 (can go higher) and I'll probably buy used. The musiciansfriend selection is pretty slim, so I'm hoping there are other out there that I can't find as easily.
Last edited by Roc8995 at Jun 5, 2008,
#4
3rd. Jazz bass all the way.
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#7
I tried the Squier version of the J-bass today and it wasn't sparkly enough for my taste. Is the fender one brighter, or does it at least have more punch?
#8
Fender's are a lot higher quality. Squier is just a dumbed down version so I wouldn't pay attention to them.
----------------------------
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#9
That wasn't the question. I know Fenders are usually made better, I'm wondering if it is brighter sounding than the Squier, since I have that as a tonal reference.
#10
Quote by Wcw1291
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but yes, get that one. with the extra 100 bucks you can buy some extra strings and strap locks, or just a nice case to guard your new baby.

I think the fender J-bass will be clearer and can probably punch a little better. I haven't played them together, so I wouldn't know.
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Last edited by the humanity at Jun 5, 2008,
#12
fifth'd. I own one myself, and yes, midnight wine is BY FAR the best [and sexiest] color out there. I have gotten many compliments on my baby, from fellow bassists and girls alike.

I really didnt have anything against Squire until i tried out their fretless at GC center. It felt NOTHING like what I had at home. Do yourself a favor a get a MIM. I feel like my particular one was the cream of the crop, dunno if the rest are like that.

Another thing is the BA2 bridge. the low profile help wonders and the thing was made for playing harmonics [you can tell the difference]

Also, do my knowledge, the schecter fretess basses are unfinished, just oiled. I email'd them when i was searching for a fretless

PS. Get fender stainless flatwounds... they sound better as they age, IMHO
My Gear:
MIM Jazz fretless
180W Ashdown 12"
GAS:
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#13
Get the Fender. Srsly. Best starter fretless you can get. Won't cost you a fortune (see random tangent note #1) and is good enough quality to last you awhile. Definitely needs a badass though (I can't afford one ) and I plan on upgrading the pickups eventually (see random tangent note #2) but those aren't so important, the stock ones are alright. But yeah, back to the point, Fender is your friend on this one.

Tangent note #1 - though they did jack the price of all Fenders recently. I got mine for $470(w/tax) new back when the sunburst cost extra at that and now they all cost $479.99+tax

Tangent note #2 - I played one with Fender Custom Shop 60's pickups and a BA, and it was so purtyful sounding.

And everyone knows brown sunburst with a black pickguard is the sexiest of them all. Look at the purdeyness. Again. God I need a new damn picture, but this will have to do.



Quote by IndianRockStar
Take a look at a Schecter Fretless. A Studio maybe. It'll be more bright, though the jazz tones are harder to find, though still for sure there.

Way out of his price range, they start at $750, and finding one used isn't too likely seeing as how they aren't the best sellers anyway
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#14
To be entirely honest, when I think of a fretless bass, I can't exactly think of a bright punchy tone. Of course, using a poly'd/epoxied board would definately help get the sound a bit brighter.
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#15
I would suggest a Wal fretless like Justin Channsolor used but i suspect it may be difficult to get hold of and above your buget but consider it you might be lucky and find one cheap
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#16
Quote by driftrs13
I would suggest a Wal fretless like Justin Channsolor used but i suspect it may be difficult to get hold of and above your buget but consider it you might be lucky and find one cheap


Cheap being about $4000+?

There is little point trying for a fretless Wal. Fender or Warwick would be the best choice.
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#17
For a first fretless, in your price range. you can't beat that Jazz, really.

And I agree with Fett, I love the black pick guard on a nice sunburst.
#18
I'm trying to track down one of the Electron Blue or Sage Green J-basses they did a few years ago, I really like those colors.
I know I said $600 ish, but I'll go more if it means a much better instrument. I'm not going to drop 5 grand on a Wal like the one guy said, though. At least try to get the number of zeros right.
The schecters look pretty nice, my local store stocks the fretted ones so I'll see if I like those at all. Why would I not want an oil finish, by the way?
For strings, I'll definitely use flatwounds. I was looking at the nylon filament wound because they're supposed to have a brighter tone. Can someone explain what I should be looking for constructionwise or brandwise in flatwound strings for different tones?
Also, I was looking at the Cort Curbow bass for the synthetic board. I think that would help reduce some of the chorusing effect that's going on with some of the wood board ones I tried. Has anybody played the Cort or something like it?
Last edited by Roc8995 at Jun 5, 2008,
#19
If you want punchy, flats are not friends. At least use groundwound, preferably roundwound.
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I wouldn't call what we have here on the Bass Forum a mentality. It's more like the sharing part of an AA meeting.

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http://www.myspace.com/rustingbloom
#22
^So I'd have to buy one and then mess with the board right away? Or do some come coated originally?
Thanks to everyone for the help btw. I'm a complete noob when it comes to bass, especially fretless.
#23
I hate to be the Rondo advocate here but, http://www.rondomusic.com/product1521.html

I've had this bass for about 1/2 a year and it has been great. Compared to a number of Fender Standard Fretless models that I've played this one outplayed them by far. Right now I have flatwounds on, but I plan to put some roundwounds on in the near future.
#24
the fenders come with a 'thin coat of polyurethane' according to an email they sent me
My Gear:
MIM Jazz fretless
180W Ashdown 12"
GAS:
NOTHING
#25
That seems like a poor design to me- am I missing something?
I know that on upright basses there is what we call "hammocking" after a while where the strings wear a groove in the ebony. It's easily fixed because you can just plane the ebony ever so slightly to make it smooth again, but if you had something like the fender neck, the grooves would go through the finish- then you'd have to more or less start over with the neck, because rosewood is much too soft to be played bare. Roundwound strings would make the problem even worse, which is what worries me. I'm beginning to look for basses with ebonol necks.
#26
it is not a normal finish. It is putting a steel plate on the neck, without the weight, neck dive, and probably bad tone.
Quote by FatalGear41
I wouldn't call what we have here on the Bass Forum a mentality. It's more like the sharing part of an AA meeting.

Quote by Jason Jillard
HUMANITY WHATS WRONG WITH YOU.


Warwick Fortress>>Acoustic AB50

http://www.myspace.com/rustingbloom
#27
Poly is much stronger than ebony and it will protect your fretboard. Maybe not Fender's "light coat", because who knows what that is, but it will protect it.

I'm with Nutter on the original question though. Fretless basses generally don't do bright punchy rock or funk tones. For the jazz stuff, yeah it'll definitely work, but it won't be very good at doing the rock and funk stuff.
#28
I'm aware that fretless isn't the greatest for the bright tone I want, but I really want a fretless so I'm trying to make it work tonewise. I played a few that weren't quite perfect, but close enough that I think I'll be able to find one with a good tone for what I do.