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ALEMBIC


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How good are they?

 

They are excellent instruments. If you have the means, I highly suggest picking one up.

 

Which of you plays one?

 

I have one. I've had it for about 5 1/2 months now. It's been to many gigs and even a couple recording sessions. It has brought a smile to my face every time.

 

Can you get me one cheap?

 

Please see Mr. Cohen's response (above)

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I've been drooling over the Alembics recently as I fancy a shorty maybe a signature model. Seen one for sale on e-bay for $3800. You will not get one cheap.

 

Davo

"We will make you bob your head whether you want to or not". - David Sisk
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The only Alembic bass I have ever played was an Epic. One of their "cheaper" basses. Not my style, but I thought it was really nice. I have never heard any complaints about one except that some models can be neck heavy. How can you go wrong? They pride themselves on the attention given to the guitars they build right down to every detail. Wether or not they are worth the big dough would depend on your willingness to pay, I guess. I doubt anyone would be dissapointed in the quality of it.

 

Their preamps, though, are complete junk. :D

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I had the pleasure of playing a gig with an older alembic. We were opening up a show for a block party near our guitar players block, doin classic rock stuff. We got to talkin with his next door neighbor, and the next thing I know he's holding out an alembic which looks like a series one. It has one pickup, and a zevra wood top. That's almost the extent of my memory, I can say that it had DEAD strings on it and the action was HIGH, but it still played really nice and I enjoyed the effects of the setup as far as expressiveness goes. It felt like a handmade bass, and it was definitely on par with my handmade warwick, I'd really enjoy the opportunity of playing that bass with a nice low setup. Maybe one day.
Hiram Bullock thinks I like the band volume too soft (but he plays guitar). Joe Sample thinks I like it way too loud (but he plays piano). -Marcus Miller
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I used to have a '77 Alembic Spoiler I picked up used. As I recall, I traded a pristine butterscotch Ernie Ball Stingray and about $500 bucks for it.

 

The Alembic had a great sound, but it was so uniquely distinctive that it always sounded Alembic-y. Ultimately, I decided I wanted a more 'meat and potatoes' bass, so I ended up selling it and bought a Fender Am Std. Jazz.

 

That's my Alembic story...

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I have one.

 

I don't really feel that I quite deserve it (I'm a young whippersnapper and haven't been playing for years), but the second I picked it up it just felt perfect for me. It's a 4-string Epic, so not Alembic high-end, but in my opinion any Alembic is high-end.

 

But yeah, they are as amazing as people say. Mine is constructed impeccably, and even though I'm the young owner of a 10-year-old used Epic, I was still treated with the utmost respect and attention when I called them to order a replacement treble pot.

 

I find it very easy to express myself on it, as there are so many sounds i'm able to get out of it. It's set up very well, the action is insanely low and it takes next to no effort to play. It sounds amazing played any style I've tried, from slap to classical.

 

I got a pretty good deal on it as well, I got it for $1190 CDN, about $970 US, and it's in excellent condition. I'm not planning on giving it up ever, unless I absolutely have to. It is an instrument that will serve me well the rest of my life. Now all I need is an amp that doesn;t suck.....

SWR Amps: Amplify your furniture! Errr.... future.
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I Understand what you mean when you talk about your request for a replaceent treble pot. The bridge saddle on my 15 year old warwick flew off during a show. I'm not even the original owner, but I gave the tech for warwick an email and he promptly replied and then continued to send me a saddle for my bass free of charge. That was truly an amzing experience for me, after being jostled around by so many major companies and music stores on account of my age or any other aspect that could cause prejudice. THANK YOU WARWICK!
Hiram Bullock thinks I like the band volume too soft (but he plays guitar). Joe Sample thinks I like it way too loud (but he plays piano). -Marcus Miller
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Originally posted by Mister Flamboyant:

How good are they? :confused:

 

Which of you plays one?

 

Can you get me one cheap?

(1) It's like your first time with a significant other. You'll never forget it.

(2) Mine is a 1977 Series One or Series Two, (some discrepancy there, I have to send them an email one of these days) serial number is below #180.

(3) No, this one's in my will to my best friend. You just have to be at the right place at the right time. I was in a music store the day the original owner walked in and put it on consignment to raise funds for a early-60s P-bass.

 

When it's your time and place, when it's the right bass at the right price, don't hesitate or you'll let it slip by.

:wave:

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I have played a few. Mostly not my cup of tea, but as others have said - superbly made.

 

If you want to REALLY go nuts, go to their website and look at their monthly custom instrument.

 

This is my fav:

 

http://www3.alembic.com/img/sh_bodyfront.jpghttp://www3.alembic.com/img/sh_bodyback.jpg

 

Tom

www.stoneflyrocks.com

Acoustic Color

 

Be practical as well as generous in your ideals. Keep your eyes on the stars and keep your feet on the ground. - Theodore Roosevelt

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Originally posted by Davo-London:

Basses_arent_fish

 

Erm ... is that a music-themed duvet cover we see in your photos? Are you single?

Yeah, shut up, it's cool. :D Sheet music, you know.

 

I have an excuse - I'm not out of high school yet. I promise you it will not be on my bed when I'm 30. Then again....

SWR Amps: Amplify your furniture! Errr.... future.
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Originally posted by basses_arent_fish:

Originally posted by Davo-London:

Basses_arent_fish

 

Erm ... is that a music-themed duvet cover we see in your photos? Are you single?

Yeah, shut up, it's cool. :D Sheet music, you know.

 

I have an excuse - I'm not out of high school yet. I promise you it will not be on my bed when I'm 30. Then again....

Hey, I think it's cool... and I'm 31. :) My girlfriend also gives it her seal of approval. So there you go.
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How good are they?

Alembic is the Bentley (meaining even better than Rolls Royce) of basses.

 

Which of you plays one?

I've had a Spoiler 5 for over 18 years.

 

Can you get me one cheap?

The epic is their entry level bass. I think it's at least in part CNC made. It's still probably better than most basses on the market. The custom and signature models are all hand made and very expensive.

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Forgot to mention that I owned a fretless Epic 6 for a few years. "Cheap" is an unfair adjective to associate with the Epics, they are SO WELL PUT TOGETHER from wood to electronics that they'll blow away 90% of the competition in their price range. Sit down with one and see.

:thu:

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Originally posted by GTRBass:

How good are they?

Alembic is the Bentley (meaining even better than Rolls Royce) of basses.

If that held true once, it certainly doesn't now. Unless Alembics are now rebadged Warwicks with fancier woods, predominantly owned by footballers...

 

To clarify: I like Alembics but I'm not sure about the (often fully blinged) VW Phaeton 4WD coupé that is the Continental GT...

 

Alex

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Originally posted by GTRBass:

The epic is their entry level bass. I think it's at least in part CNC made. It's still probably better than most basses on the market. The custom and signature models are all hand made and very expensive.

No - the Epic isn't made by CNC any more than their other basses. The bodies and necks are still hand carved. CNC machines slot the fingerboards of all their instruments - even the customs. And yeah, I think it is still higher quality than a lot of other similarily priced basses out there - the quality of materials and workmanship are just so high.
SWR Amps: Amplify your furniture! Errr.... future.
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Hey,

 

I must be the only one here, but when I tried an Epic I felt nothing special. It was a good instrument overall, but not impressive - there are lots of similar basses. I think that Alembic is pretty much based on wood work (all those inlays, different layers, special shapes, etc.), as many luthiers do, so they can produce beautiful basses (more jewels than basses - 24K gold??? is it necessary?), but they are stuck with electronics that were amazing twenty years ago, but not anymore. Consider the price. I really like the series II electronics etc., but the instruments are, come on, 6000-10000 US$??. And they weight a ton!

I think Alembic must be really happy of their marketing strategy.

 

Since I'm a newbie, I should introduce myself a bit: 12 years playing, played pro/semipro gigs at major clubs all over Spain. My collection includes a Tune Bassmaniac, Zon Legacy Elite, Ibanez MC-924 and Yamaha BBG4SII. Over the years I tend to try everything that I see, so I have played Ritters, Pedullas, Foderas, MTDs, Status, the Parker Fly, Warwicks, Fenders, etc.

 

I think that there are many good instruments at reasonable prices. The other day I really enjoyed playing a Washburn passive cheapo through a good combo. If you look for a bit 'extra', prices start at about 2000 US$, easily over 3000 US$. So a bit of additional pleasure costs a lot. I am as attracted as anyone to those high-end basses, and feel GAS often. But then I see amazing woods on cheap Carvins, Peaveys, etc. And the Aguilar OBP-3 preamp is ridiculously cheap - I wonder if we are paying too much. I have run my Zon straight to desk with flat EQ and headphones, and it sounds fantastic, but the Yamaha (about 10% of the Zon's price) is not that worse. Actually, it is pretty good, too. The Zon's better, but not 1000% better (maybe 200% better?).

 

I think that if we rave so easily about basses that, for any reason, retail at 7000 US$, we are misleading the buyer and contributing to unrealistic perceptions. Even considering we all love our instruments and feel proud of owning them. I tihnk the most crucial factors for any bass is that it is comfortable to play and suits your playing style: neck profile, body shape, balance, etc. - then, quality electronics and PUs that deliver the type of sound you're after.

Alembic has some strengths but I am yet to become a believer. Maybe when I try a Stanley Clarke or Mark King...

 

Just my opinion.

 

Cheers

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Have had my Alembic Orion Six for over five years, still love the sound every time I pick it up. The Orions are not "Series" electronics but still have a very big sound. Here's on of my favorite Alembics, an eight string owned by Trip Wamsley. I've actually had this one in my hands a few times and it played surprising easy for the landing strip of a neck.

 

Wally

I have basses to play, places to be and good music to make!
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