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#2977602 - 02/26/19 10:22 AM Getting GAS-y
Danzilla Offline
MP Hall of Fame Member

Registered: 01/09/04
Posts: 5587
Loc: Baltimore, MD
Well, it's been quite some time since I've bought my last good bass. (Bought an Ibanez last year, real cheap, but it's got issues that make it not as gig-worthy as I'd hope; will end up being part of a gear swap later this year, I hope.) I know I keep saying that I need/want a fretless 5 string, but I've been eyeing up the Gibson EB5 basses for some time. MF will sneak one in on the clearance page from time to time. I just missed out on one of the 2017 models around the start of the new year. Now I see the 2018 model for cheap. And with their 0% financing, too. I am very tempted to pull the trigger.

My Epiphone Les Paul 5, which is my axe of choice, started separating the fingerboard near the nut. Nothing major, just a hair-line crack at this point, but I need to address it. And/or get this new guy to cover it's territory in the meantime.

Biggest question, though - natural, or black? I'd prefer the sunburst of the 2017 model, but that's not an option for the 2018. Probably black. Your thoughts?
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#2977677 - 02/27/19 05:38 AM Re: Getting GAS-y [Re: Danzilla]
Flemtone Offline
Platinum Member

Registered: 12/18/02
Posts: 1857
Loc: Mine Hill, NJ
Personally, I prefer the Natural, but it all depends on the grain of the particular body when you get it. Black is louder (as we all know) and the finish covers up a multitude of sins.

Sweet looking fish, though. A little pointy, but that's just me. Good luck!
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#2977697 - 02/27/19 09:09 AM Re: Getting GAS-y [Re: Flemtone]
Danzilla Offline
MP Hall of Fame Member

Registered: 01/09/04
Posts: 5587
Loc: Baltimore, MD
Originally Posted By: Flemtone
Personally, I prefer the Natural, but it all depends on the grain of the particular body when you get it. Black is louder (as we all know) and the finish covers up a multitude of sins.

Sweet looking fish, though. A little pointy, but that's just me. Good luck!


I've never been a big fan of "natural" finishes in general. Yeah, the grain does matter. These have a "satin" finish which is thin and lets the grain show through some even on the black one.

As to the pointy-ness: I kind of prefer the body shape of the 2013-2015 EB5, but those also have a big pickguard. I'd rather see wood than plastic. And the longer upper horn probably makes this balance a little better. We'll see. Trigger finger is getting itchy and about to pull...
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"Am I enough of a freak to be worth paying to see?"- Separated Out (Marillion)
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#2977814 - 02/28/19 03:56 AM Re: Getting GAS-y [Re: Danzilla]
Flemtone Offline
Platinum Member

Registered: 12/18/02
Posts: 1857
Loc: Mine Hill, NJ
[Satan voice]

Go ahead. Click the 'Buy Now' button. Do it. Dooooooo iiiiiiit...

[/Satan voice]
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#2977855 - 02/28/19 09:41 AM Re: Getting GAS-y [Re: Flemtone]
butcherNburn Offline
MP Hall of Fame Member

Registered: 11/07/03
Posts: 3443
Loc: Onions Peppers Garlic
[Satin voice]

Get the black one baby. It's Smoooooth.....


[/Satin voice]
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#2977860 - 02/28/19 09:54 AM Re: Getting GAS-y [Re: butcherNburn]
Danzilla Offline
MP Hall of Fame Member

Registered: 01/09/04
Posts: 5587
Loc: Baltimore, MD
Click.

And now... we wait.

Aw, yeah. Thank you, Barry "bNb" White, for speaking that into my head.
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"Am I enough of a freak to be worth paying to see?"- Separated Out (Marillion)
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#2978749 - 03/05/19 08:21 AM Re: Getting GAS-y [Re: Danzilla]
Danzilla Offline
MP Hall of Fame Member

Registered: 01/09/04
Posts: 5587
Loc: Baltimore, MD
Gaaah! It's out for delivery today. Here I am at the office, and with a Boy Scout meeting in the evening. The anticipation is killing me.

Need to get home and play some New Orleans funk on it for Mardi Gras, before my wife tells me I need to give it up for Lent.
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"Am I enough of a freak to be worth paying to see?"- Separated Out (Marillion)
NEW band Old band

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#2979138 - 03/07/19 11:45 AM Re: Getting GAS-y [Re: Danzilla]
SteveC Offline
MP Hall of Fame Member

Registered: 06/29/01
Posts: 5172
Loc: Grand Forks, North Dakota
I like natural myself.

I've been pretty G.A.S. free for 5-6 years now. Paying off debt. I'm down to my house payment and vehicle (and the usual monthly stuff of course) in about 8 days. Pretty awesome.

I do have a bit of an itch again. I'd like another Roscoe 5 with different electronics than I have now. Maybe a jazz configuration. But only if/when I can pay CASH. I think I have finally learned my lesson.

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#2979263 - 03/08/19 08:21 AM Re: Getting GAS-y [Re: SteveC]
Danzilla Offline
MP Hall of Fame Member

Registered: 01/09/04
Posts: 5587
Loc: Baltimore, MD
Well, I have to admit, this was a good purchase. Not perfect, but really darn good.

I know... with out pictures, it doesn't exits. I'll try to get some good ones over the weekend. Interesting thing - in the case, it came with a picture of it on the Gibson tech bench, with the QC checklist attached.

I was worried when my wife confirmed that it had been delivered. She said that it wasn't packaged well. Not much tape on it, and it wasn't very tight. She was wondering if it had been opened or tampered with. Fortunately, that was just the outer box. The sealed Gibson box inside was in perfect condition. Inside that box, there was a little bit of paper and cardboard packing, and the gig bag (inside of which was the bass). There wasn't a ton of room for shifting, but it wasn't as tightly packed as I expected. But since there were no issues, I can't complain.

The bass was tuned down a whole step, to account for shipping and temperature changes, I guess. Action was/is relatively high. The minimal finish really shows of the grain, much better than in the stock MF website pictures. Nice swamp ash body; and the light black finish up the back of the neck is smooth and looks nice. Almost like the worn-in neck on my LTD Telecaster copy. Feels great. From the 10th fret up, the fret edges were a little bit rough. Not "slit your hand open during glissando" rough, but a little bit noticeable. That said, at rehearsal last night, it wasn't too bad. There is also a minor defect/scrape on the treble side of the neck up at the nut. Not anything to scream about, but enough that I'll take a picture and note it when I register the serial number with Gibson.

The Babicz full contact bridge is nice and solid. not as heavy as I was expecting it to be, but solid enough that the sustain is great and no real buzz/ringing that a lot of standard bass bridges have. I wish the case candy had included a manual for how to adjust the action and such on this bridge, as it's not like any other. I had to track down a video on Babicz's site, and now I think I understand it enough to do a good set-up tomorrow.

The humbucking pickups have solid beef to them. They are also coil-splittable on the volume knobs. Not a whole lot of 60 hz hum in single coil mode, but some. Both pickups together in single coil mode humbuck well. The passive tone pot is decent; better than on my Schecter, but not quite as sensitive as on my Lakland. Not sure what kind of strings came stock on it. They were kind of rough. I will probably switch them out for some DR's or D'Addarrio NYXL's, or try something new. But by the end of last night's rehearsal, they were wearing in and feeling better.

I think this covers the sonic territory of both my Lakland Darryl Jones and Schecter T5 basses, and close enough to the Epiphone Les Paul. Fat enough in humbucking mode, just enough of a scooped nasal tone in single coil mode. We have a couple of funky tunes where I do my poor man's attempt at slap & pop, and it did just as well as the Lakland for that. Not that I'm going to get rid of the other basses yet, but I think this is a good enough all-around bass that I could get by without a backup.

I'll rate it a B+ as is.

Pros: Nice neck feel
Versatile pickups, with good output
Relatively light weight and acoustically resonant, without sounding thin and cheap plugged in
Thin finish lets the wood grain show through. (Hopefully it will hold up to lots of live use.)
Comfortable and well balanced; minimal neck dive.
Body construction and neck joint are pretty flawless and smooth.

Cons:
Some rough fret work
Gig bag is decent, but not great. A tight fit.
Strap it came with is cheap; will definitely be replaced.
No instructions for adjusting the bridge.
Was hoping for a little more taper in the neck width, but still not bad.
B string generally sounds good and taught, but there is definitely a difference in sound in notes played on that string vs. the E string. At least there's no difference in output. We'll see how it manages over time, or with a new set of strings.
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"Am I enough of a freak to be worth paying to see?"- Separated Out (Marillion)
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#2979361 - 03/08/19 05:42 PM Re: Getting GAS-y [Re: Danzilla]
picker Offline
10k Club

Registered: 06/13/04
Posts: 13635
Loc: Near 12th Street and Vine...
Looks like a sweet little bit of fish to put on the plate. Have much fun!
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#2979397 - 03/09/19 01:47 AM Re: Getting GAS-y [Re: picker]
butcherNburn Offline
MP Hall of Fame Member

Registered: 11/07/03
Posts: 3443
Loc: Onions Peppers Garlic
Best of luck with the new beast.

Sadly the setup on internet purchased instruments may not compare to buying at an old Mom & Pop so it's almost expected to require some amount of setup and yes, the strings never seem to be what we had hoped.
Hey... you got a gig bag, don't knock it. We know tight can be good in many ways (there's probably an emoji I should put in here).
The strap? You knew it would be an emergency backup at best, maybe pass it on to a beginner. The frets? Make sure they re not lifting and return it if they are but, usually knocking off the edges make the play-ability much better. Keep in mind cost to benift here as it

Give it some time, even with the old strings. A rudimentary setup and some hour can turn to puppy love and the next set of tweaks may be a marriage in heaven. Don't be so quick to judge, I've made that mistake before.
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#2979651 - 03/11/19 04:33 AM Re: Getting GAS-y [Re: butcherNburn]
Flemtone Offline
Platinum Member

Registered: 12/18/02
Posts: 1857
Loc: Mine Hill, NJ
I think you should send it back immediately. Actually, if you send it to me first, I'll be sure it gets forwarded back to MF within the decade.

Here to help.
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#2979662 - 03/11/19 06:27 AM Re: Getting GAS-y [Re: Flemtone]
Danzilla Offline
MP Hall of Fame Member

Registered: 01/09/04
Posts: 5587
Loc: Baltimore, MD
Sure, just send me your address.

Oar knott!

Gave it a quick action adjustment, and it played well at church and at a rehearsal. Still need to make a few tweaks, but it's almost there. Sonically, very happy with it. Loving the feel of the neck. Fret edges aren't lifting, so no need to return this baby. Just minor gripes, none of which add up to a major issue. Time to keep showing it some love.
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"Am I enough of a freak to be worth paying to see?"- Separated Out (Marillion)
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#2979733 - 03/11/19 05:06 PM Re: Getting GAS-y [Re: Danzilla]
Flemtone Offline
Platinum Member

Registered: 12/18/02
Posts: 1857
Loc: Mine Hill, NJ
Sa-weet! Enjoy the new fish!
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Play. Just play.

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#2982198 - 03/28/19 08:24 AM Re: Getting GAS-y [Re: Flemtone]
Danzilla Offline
MP Hall of Fame Member

Registered: 01/09/04
Posts: 5587
Loc: Baltimore, MD
Sorry for the delay, but here's a few pics of the fish:


Dual humbuckers & a Babicz bridge





Oddly, the headstock has a laminate.



Gigbag is decent. A bit of a tight fit, but decent protection.



All in all, I'm very happy with this one!


Edited by Danzilla (03/28/19 08:26 AM)
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"Am I enough of a freak to be worth paying to see?"- Separated Out (Marillion)
NEW band Old band

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#2982296 - 03/28/19 04:29 PM Re: Getting GAS-y [Re: Danzilla]
butcherNburn Offline
MP Hall of Fame Member

Registered: 11/07/03
Posts: 3443
Loc: Onions Peppers Garlic
Congrats Man!
Looks cool, enjoy it.

Instead of a 5 string, I wouldn't mind a 3 string.
Seriously.
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If you think my playing is bad, you should hear me sing!

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#2982363 - 03/29/19 04:31 AM Re: Getting GAS-y [Re: butcherNburn]
Flemtone Offline
Platinum Member

Registered: 12/18/02
Posts: 1857
Loc: Mine Hill, NJ
Pretty plank-o-wood! Enjoy it loudly.
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