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kohanmike
07-02-2015, 11:28 AM
Here are some other bass ukes I've seen online recently. I just might get the Oscar Schmidt/Washburn flame maple.

http://www.ebay.com/itm/chuya-online-SHOP-ORIGINAL-MEB1-Ukulele-Bass-Guitar/111692395105?_trksid=p5411.c100167.m2940&_trkparms=aid%3D222007%26algo%3DSIC.MBE%26ao%3D1%2 6asc%3D20140131123730%26meid%3De27b4dc9f0b04e2b97c 97a969dee2f9e%26pid%3D100167%26rk%3D2%26rkt%3D15%2 6sd%3D361318476028

http://www.ebay.com/itm/NEW-Oscar-Schmidt-OUB800K-Flame-Maple-Ukulele-Bass-Gig-Bag-/361318476028

katysax
07-02-2015, 12:06 PM
I've tried the Rondo Bass Solid. The Gold Tone Solid. The Rondo Bass acoustic. Kala acoustic. Kala Sub-U and and Kala California.

The Kala California blows them all out of the water by a long distance. Mike you should come by my house and try my Kala California. For the amount of money you are throwing at all that junk you could get a bass that is clearly much much better.

kohanmike
07-02-2015, 12:43 PM
Thanks Sherry. It's really just a lark for me, I have so much fun acquiring, modifying, rotating. My Gold Tone acoustic is really good and that's my go-to for gigs, the others are just for the fun of it.

mrufino1
07-02-2015, 04:48 PM
The Oscar Schmidt looks nice , but the others look nice but I bet use the same cheap electronics as the hadean. I'm definitely focusing on a California 5, however long it takes. I almost won a gold tone solid body on eBay but I'm glad I didn't now, I would still want the kala. I tried a Cali 4 in a bass shop yesterday and it felt amazing.

vanflynn
07-02-2015, 05:11 PM
Any one out there own/tried the ohana obu-22?

kohanmike
07-02-2015, 05:15 PM
I bought the Oscar Schmidt, I don't mind being the guinea pig. I have a set of Gotoh bass tuners and I'll use a set of Thunder Reds, my first try with them. The preamp on it looks the same as what came on my Gold Tone acoustic, it was fine, but I actually changed it to a very nice Joyo from China. The only variable is the pickup, which also looks like the ones on my Gold Tone and Hadean, so we'll see.

http://www.kohanmike.com/uploads/Oscar Schmidt.JPG

PhilUSAFRet
07-03-2015, 03:49 AM
I've tried the Rondo Bass Solid. The Gold Tone Solid. The Rondo Bass acoustic. Kala acoustic. Kala Sub-U and and Kala California.

The Kala California blows them all out of the water by a long distance. Mike you should come by my house and try my Kala California. For the amount of money you are throwing at all that junk you could get a bass that is clearly much much better.

With respect to your experience with these instruments, could you be more specific?

Rakelele
07-03-2015, 04:07 AM
Most of those Uke Basses look very similar to me (and like copies of Kala's original U-Bass), with the notable exception of the Ohana OBU, the Aquila ShortBassOne and maybe the Goldtone MicroBass.

katysax
07-03-2015, 05:53 AM
With respect to your experience with these instruments, could you be more specific?

So here is why the Kala California is a gigantic improvement over the others I've played:

1. Sound - Kala uses LR Baggs active electronics. The pickup is higher quality than anything else on any of these small basses. If you use a quality amp you can really hear the difference.

2. Balance - The Kala California is wonderfully balanced. No neck dive.

3. Small body - Very comfortable to hold. You don't need a big body with a solid body instrument.

4. Neck - The neck feels great to hold. Fret ends are properly finished.

5. Frets - Kala uses very high quality frets on the instrument.

6. Overall Fit and Finish - Mine is fantastic.

When I play the Kala California, everything about it feels right and it sounds great. It's in a whole different league from the Asian made Kalas - which are not bad at all.

I think the Rondo acoustic is a very good deal for the price although it is quite unrefined. The Rondo solid body that I had had simply horrid electronics. The Kala Sub-U is a great little bass, with a very different sound from the California, but the balance and neck are nowhere near that of the California.

I am as guilty as anyone of buying a lot of junk when the same amount of money would get me something that's really good. Of the ones I have owned the Rondo solid body and the Gold Tone solid body particularly deserved to be called junk. Although in fairness to the Gold Tone, even Gold Tone agrees that the one I got is defective. But from a design perspective I'm not fond of the neck or the weight or balance. The Kala Sub-U that I bought is a bass that I love despite it's flaws, but I have spent some money to upgrade it. As it originally came, the pickup jack was just too cheap.

I have not experienced the ShortBassOne. At this point if I were to recommend for a first time buyer I'd say this:

1. For a really cheap U-Bass to see how you like it and don't want to spend much - the Rondo Acoustic is the "best" buy. It has a lot of the faults of the Kala Rumbler (cheaply made, don't like the strings, no access plate in the back). If you want the cheapest it's a better deal than the Kala Rumbler.

2. Kala Acoustic solid top (not the rumbler). This is a few hundred more and worth it. Much higher quality. Better strings (the Pahoeohe strings work overall better than the silver strings). Back access plate. My preference is for the earlier ones with passive electronics.

3. Kala Sub-U Bass - I love mine. In fact I prefer the solid body U-Basses for the size. You need to plug in anyway. Also no feedback issues. Access to higher frets. The only reason I don't recommend this for first time buyers over the Acoustic is that it is a solid body. With some ukulele groups you have to have an "acoustic".

On the other hand if you are have some experience with the bass and you know you are going to be playing it, and you don't mind spending a bit more, the Kala California is more expensive but in my opinion well worth the extra dollars. Analogizing to ukuleles - many people feel that a Kamaka is well worth the extra dollars over a Kala. Most of the U-Basses are comparable in quality to a $100 ukulele. The Kala California is like moving up to a K brand.

Also while all the Uke Basses look very similar, there more differences between them than between one ukulele and another.

PhilUSAFRet
07-03-2015, 10:03 AM
Thank you for your great assessment of these instruments Katy. It is extremely helpful and informative. I will read it several times (I'm old and it takes me a while, LOL)

katysax
07-03-2015, 10:12 AM
Thank you for your great assessment of these instruments Katy. It is extremely helpful and informative. I will read it several times (I'm old and it takes me a while, LOL)

You are welcome. This is, of course, personal to me. Some people really like the Gold Tone Basses. To me the solid body is too big and is ungainly. That I got a defective one certainly affected my impression also. I've also read some complaints on Talk Bass from folks who say they got a "bad" Kala California. On the whole, as in most things, you get what you pay for - for the most part. I think the Rondo basses, especially the acoustic ones, are "better" than what they cost but they aren't as good as the Kalas. The California uBass is an instrument that I've really bonded with. I've been playing it over a year and I love it - it feels right to me - so that emotion definitely impacts my judgment.

Rakelele
07-03-2015, 10:46 AM
Since we're discussing different Bass options: What would you guys say is the loudest of these small Basses for playing acoustically, i.e. unamplified? Perhaps the Ohana OBU, as it has steel strings? I know all of these are basically made to be plugged in, but I play mostly at home. I have a first generation Mahogany Kala U-Bass, and it barely suffices to play along with one uke.

PhilUSAFRet
07-03-2015, 11:48 AM
I tried the Ohana last November in Tampa. It is a substantial, heavy (for it's size) bass and has decent volume. With just a cursory exam, appears to be quality. Louder than the Kala's I've tried.

kohanmike
07-06-2015, 08:08 PM
I bought the Oscar Schmidt, I don't mind being the guinea pig.

Received the Oscar Schmidt, but the preamp or pickup was DOA so I immediately returned it, and updated my signature. Instead, I took in my Bruce Wei custom bass uke to be fixed, and have the Gotoh tuners and Thunder Reds added to it.

katysax
07-07-2015, 05:12 AM
Since we're discussing different Bass options: What would you guys say is the loudest of these small Basses for playing acoustically, i.e. unamplified? Perhaps the Ohana OBU, as it has steel strings? I know all of these are basically made to be plugged in, but I play mostly at home. I have a first generation Mahogany Kala U-Bass, and it barely suffices to play along with one uke.

I have never seen one except in a picture on the net, but the Aquila Shortbassone is reputed to be loud enough to be heard with a couple of acoustic instruments.

kohanmike
07-07-2015, 06:33 AM
Found this on the Chinese AliExpress site. Looks like the exact same manufacturer as the Rondo Hadean basses, but I like that the headplate is the same color as the body. Since it's being shipped from China, which is usually around $60-70, the price is about the same. (Don't worry, I'm not buying it.)

http://www.aliexpress.com/item/MiNi-4string-ukulele-electric-bass-natural-color-neck-thru-style/32302287333.html

http://www.kohanmike.com/uploads/AliEx u-bass blonde.png

bnolsen
07-07-2015, 06:36 AM
(Don't worry, I'm not buying it.)

why not? you are the resident BAS guy right?

mrufino1
07-07-2015, 06:45 AM
The one difference with those and the hadean is those are neck through, they are listed on eBay as well. Still not enough to make me but one, but they are slightly different. Probably the same factory.

kohanmike
07-07-2015, 06:53 AM
Besides the ones on my signature, I have one in waiting, that's enough for now, learned the lesson with the Oscar Schmidt.

Not sure what that difference is with neck through.

Jon Moody
07-07-2015, 07:04 AM
I have never seen one except in a picture on the net, but the Aquila Shortbassone is reputed to be loud enough to be heard with a couple of acoustic instruments.

I'd be VERY interested in finding one and hearing it. Having played a number of regular sized acoustic/electric basses on gigs, only the Tacoma Thunderchief and Warwick Alien models really hold their own in a truly acoustic setting. And the bodies of both of those are gigantic.



Not sure what that difference is with neck through.

Many say that a neck-through bass has better sustain and tone, because the transfer of sound from the neck to the body is not interrupted by a neck joint. But with such a small bodied instrument like the U-Bass, I highly doubt you're going to notice ANY tonal difference at all.

bnolsen
07-07-2015, 09:57 AM
i think "neck through" tends to be overplayed. The pickup does most of the work and good bolting is pretty tight. I would rather have another area of adjustment where the neck pocket can be shimmed (and I did shim my hadean omega).

mrufino1
07-07-2015, 03:36 PM
I agree. I do think it affects the feel if you play up there a lot, but only have had one neck thorough in my life (actually, a set neck) and if you're playing up by the neck joint all the time anyway, uke bass is not for you! ;-)

But that was my point, I don't think the neck through makes any difference, especially with that same bad preamp and inexpensive pickup. They work fine, but anything with them in it is going to sound pretty much the same.

I do think the kala California basses are different because they feel really comfortable. I liked the neck on the one I tried a lot. But, I just finished playing a wedding showcase on my hadean and didn't have any issue with it and didn't think about getting another bass while I was playing...

Croakie
07-11-2015, 10:54 AM
A little late to the conversation ..........I have an Ohana OBU. It is a very nice instrument with a full acoustic sound. As far as I know, the roundwound strings are only available thru Ohana. Unfortunately I can not play this thing due to physical limits. Hopefully it will find a new home soon.

I am so happy that Kala came along with these rubbery strings and the short scale necks. Started with an acoustic mahogany and recently received a new Cali.
The Cali is the easiest and most comfortable, I would not hesitate to buy another.

PhilUSAFRet
09-12-2015, 08:59 AM
I like my Samick, 3" longer than a UBass. Currently coveting an Oscar Schmidt Maple bass uke.

83353

kohanmike
09-12-2015, 02:31 PM
I bought that Oscar Schimdt from eBay Arkansas Musicworks for $240, I really liked the looks of it, but within minutes of playing it, the preamp crapped out, so I returned it. That prompted me to fix my custom u-bass that was sitting in a closet waiting for fix ups.

PhilUSAFRet
09-12-2015, 03:25 PM
I bought that Oscar Schimdt from eBay Arkansas Musicworks for $240, I really liked the looks of it, but within minutes of playing it, the preamp crapped out, so I returned it. That prompted me to fix my custom u-bass that was sitting in a closet waiting for fix ups.


I have a separate post trying to find other owners to see about their experiences. So far, you are the only one and price-wise, I'm looking at the same seller. I'd like to think your's was a "fluke" but you never know.

kohanmike
09-12-2015, 08:20 PM
I noticed that other dealers on eBay sell that bass uke as much as $380, could be ArkansasMusicWorks has seconds or blems and doesn't say so.

If I were to get the SmallGuitar mini P-bass, the first thing I would do is replace the pickguard with parchment pearloid to change it up and make it more unique looking.

http://www.kohanmike.com/uploads/Small P bass render.jpg

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7 tenor cutaway ukes, 3 acoustic bass ukes, 8 solid body bass ukes, 7 mini bass guitars

• Donate to The Ukulele Kids Club, they provide ukuleles to children's hospital music therapy programs. http://.www.theukc.org
• Member The CC Strummers: https://www.youtube.com/user/CCStrummers/videos (https://www.youtube.com/user/CCStrummers/videos)

88 fingers
01-13-2018, 02:26 PM
UK Dream..plays great..everyone I play with is impressed with the deep sound this little fellow puts out

kohanmike
01-13-2018, 08:05 PM
Two year gap in your reply. I actually ended up buying one then, pink and on sale for $150, then took it to Pat Wilkins and had it painted Fender surf green. It's my favorite bass of the 18 I now have (yep, I deep in gear acquisition syndrome).

http://www.kohanmike.com/uploads/Small P-bass done 600.jpg

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7 tenor cutaway ukes, 3 acoustic bass ukes, 8 solid body bass ukes, 7 mini bass guitars

• Donate to The Ukulele Kids Club, they provide ukuleles to children's hospital music therapy programs. http://.www.theukc.org
• Member The CC Strummers: https://www.youtube.com/user/CCStrummers/videos (https://www.youtube.com/user/CCStrummers/videos)