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View Full Version : UBASS Recommendations ??



blue_knight_usa
07-01-2016, 12:34 PM
Hi All, I'm looking to pick up a Ubass.

I know Kala is out there but do any of you have different brands you have purchased?

Acoustic with a pickup or electric Ubass?

What kind of pickup came with your Ubass?

I'm going to look for a used one just to make sure I like it but I'm digging the ability to play bass along with the other instruments I play.

I like the small size and portability as I was looking at a regular bass but that's just too big for couch playing with a small amp.

Thanks!

greenie44
07-01-2016, 01:24 PM
Hey Jay -

I don't pick up my uke bass that often, but I love it when I do. To determine that I liked a uke bass, I got a very cheap one from Rondo Music. At the site now (rondomusic.com) they list at $150.

It sounds OK. I hope to upgrade to a uBass at some point, but so far, so good.

One other point. While in Germany last month, I played a fretless uBass. I was surprised that I really liked it - the ability to move around between frets was quite cool. I also picked up some really nice bass strings over there too, but have not put them on my Omega bass yet.

Just some thoughts.

photoshooter
07-01-2016, 03:23 PM
Hey Jay, another vote for rondo music.com
They have Hadean acoustic/electric and solid body basses. I picked up a solid body and the quality is decent. I don't play bass so it's more than adequate for my needs.
At some point I'd like to try the acoustic as well.

edit: to answer your question, both models have under saddle piezos.

Mike

blue_knight_usa
07-01-2016, 03:57 PM
Thanks Guys! I will have to check that out. I only have one soprano uke and probably will only have one ubass. Kala is not far from my house so I was thinking maybe they could hook me up with something cool at their shop. Seems the Kala is what I have seen a lot of and I played with someone who had one last year but never asked to play it.

Need to check out some solid bodies as well as the usual acoustic electrics. I don't thing you get much sound out of the acoustic do you? The only one that had good sound I played was an Ohana bass but it wasn't a ubass. Played one that Daniel Ho had and it sounded great. This is another option I am considering as it has good acoustic volume.

Happy 4th guys!

UkerDanno
07-01-2016, 04:54 PM
I don't pick up my uke bass that often, but I love it when I do. To determine that I liked a uke bass, I got a very cheap one from Rondo Music. At the site now (rondomusic.com) they list at $150.

Wow! I didn't know about those, might have to get one and try to learn bass! I played a little bass about 50 years ago...;-D

kohanmike
07-01-2016, 08:54 PM
I also suggest a bass from Rondo. To play an acoustic in a group, you definitely need an amp, but not when practicing by yourself. I started playing bass about 18 months ago for the ukulele group I joined over 3 years ago by request of our leader. Before that I played guitar for almost 50 years and was often told I should take up the bass, but I didn't want to be encumbered by those long electric basses, forget a stand up bass. I decided to play bass with the uke group when I discovered all the little basses being made.

I didn't like the configuration of the Kala acoustic U-basses, so asking U-Space in Downtown Los Angeles (where Daniel Ho is a partner), they recommended the Gold Tone GT Microbass 23" cutaway fretted (I prefer cutaway). I bought it and it's now my go to for most gigs, especially when I changed the very sticky Aquila Thundergut white strings to the very smooth black Road Toad Pahoehoe (the kind that Kala uses, but Aquila is coming out with a less sticky Thundergut).

Since then I've had a custom fretless acoustic bass uke made that I'm using with the new Kala steel wound nylon core strings (that I'm sure are made by La Bella), then discovered Rondo and jumped on their solid body ukes that I've been modifying to look like well known electric basses (see my signature). I'm up to 8 basses, with 2 more in the near future (after I get the engine of my van fixed).

I think Rondo is the way to go for anyone who just wants to dabble in playing bass uke.

http://www.kohanmike.com/uploads/Basses ten.jpg

PhilUSAFRet
07-01-2016, 09:01 PM
I found this comparison article useful. I recently bought an Oscar Schmidt curly maple bass uke for under $250 and am very happy with it, white strings and all. It came with a decent gig bag.

http://www.ukulelemag.com/gear-reviews/gear-roundup-bass-ukes

kohanmike
07-01-2016, 09:12 PM
I like that Oscar Schmidt curly maple, it has a scoop as a cutaway and also around the upper body for your arm. I bought one even less than that, but when it arrived and I started to tune it, the preamp blew out, so I returned it.

http://www.kohanmike.com/uploads/Oscar Schmidt u-bass.JPG

PhilUSAFRet
07-02-2016, 01:21 AM
I like that they have a lifetime warranty as well

UkerDanno
07-02-2016, 02:49 AM
I like that they have a lifetime warranty as well

the Rondos?

ksiegel
07-02-2016, 06:01 AM
MagicFluke makes a nice solid body uke-bass (The Timber). It uses standard flat-wound style string, and just plays like a short-scale bass, without the floppy feel that so many ubasses have.

But it ain't cheap.

http://www.magicfluke.com/Electric-Bass-p/timber.htm

I recently played a Luna Bass Uke, but it seemed that the frets were the same width as a guitar, and that it wasn't super bass-y. Had a nice feel to it, and - here's the really important p[art - I could hear what I was playing, very clearly. No idea of the price, or if it had a pickup.

UkerDanno
07-02-2016, 02:47 PM
I played with a group today and the UBass player had a Luna with flatwound steel strings! I always saw the fat rubbery strings. He said he thought they were cello strings? Who knows what they are?

TheCraftedCow
07-03-2016, 05:40 PM
I have and am a dealer for the EddyFinn line. The Aquila bass strings give it an upright bass sound either electric or acoustic. Currently, they are fretted. Soon they willhave an unfretted version as well. I play mine through a Roland Microcube set on British Combo for the nicest upright sound. I also have a nice solid body bass----and I am not just making this up----that was only played by a young woman in the church music group. She could not carry her part in the singing quartet and play bass, so she traded it for a concert ukulele. I also have a bass dreadnaught body size guitar. It is steel strung. The E/F are brown wood..the Luna Bass is pink, and the E/F bass guitar is black with ivory trim and gold tuners. I am gospel and bluegrass, so the metal string bass sound is not my favorite. The EFs are all new and under warranty thecraftedcow@comcast.net all the basses have cases.

Ukejenny
07-03-2016, 05:51 PM
The members of my uke group gave me a Kala uBass. I think it is the exotic mahogany model. It is great. I really like everything about it.

bnolsen
07-04-2016, 06:27 AM
I played with a group today and the UBass player had a Luna with flatwound steel strings! I always saw the fat rubbery strings. He said he thought they were cello strings? Who knows what they are?

not seeing a source for those flats. the luna doesn't seem to have a truss rod which i would think would be necessary if you wanted to switch between flats and tunderguts.

oof 10usd for the flats!

http://www.lunaguitars.com/query?upc=819998190606

UkerDanno
07-04-2016, 09:36 AM
not seeing a source for those flats. the luna doesn't seem to have a truss rod which i would think would be necessary if you wanted to switch between flats and tunderguts.

oof 10usd for the flats!

http://www.lunaguitars.com/query?upc=819998190606

nice find, I think they're nylon core?! Seems the Luna "ubass" is tuned an octave higher, not sure how that affects play. Would you still play it like a regular bass/ubass?

PhilUSAFRet
07-04-2016, 09:37 AM
the Rondos? - no, the Oscar Schmidts

PhilUSAFRet
07-04-2016, 09:37 AM
nice find, I think they're nylon core?! Seems the Luna "ubass" is tuned an octave higher, not sure how that affects play. Would you still play it like a regular bass/ubass?

Isn't the Luna ubass in reality a "piccolo bass?"

Phuufme
07-04-2016, 09:52 AM
My wife plays a Kala ubass in our band. She loves it and our plan is to sell her Fender Mustang (short scale) bass and buy another Kala.

hawaii 50
07-04-2016, 10:02 AM
MagicFluke makes a nice solid body uke-bass (The Timber). It uses standard flat-wound style string, and just plays like a short-scale bass, without the floppy feel that so many ubasses have.

But it ain't cheap.

http://www.magicfluke.com/Electric-Bass-p/timber.htm

I recently played a Luna Bass Uke, but it seemed that the frets were the same width as a guitar, and that it wasn't super bass-y. Had a nice feel to it, and - here's the really important p[art - I could hear what I was playing, very clearly. No idea of the price, or if it had a pickup.

I saw one of these Magic Fluke basses at the HMS store....but it is not on their website.....best Ubass I have seen.....solid feel and the steel stings make it way better intonation seems good...

bnolsen
07-04-2016, 10:41 AM
Isn't the Luna ubass in reality a "piccolo bass?"

if true you would need an octave pedal. piccolo bass isn't exactly compelling...

kohanmike
07-04-2016, 08:53 PM
I'm very curious about the Luna strings. I'm going to call them Tuesday morning to find out they're nylon core, if so, I may just try them on my modified 21" scale Rondo bass uke at the lower octave.

Futurethink
07-05-2016, 03:56 AM
Luna makes three hollow-body ukulele basses. They are tuned one octave higher than a bass guitar. These are not a U-Bass (which stands for Ultra-Short-Scale-Bass). As far as I can see, Luna does not offer a U-Bass.
http://www.lunaguitars.com/query?upc=819998182946
http://www.lunaguitars.com/query?upc=819998182953
http://www.lunaguitars.com/query?upc=819998182960

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qOKhUAyNmcc

Kamoa also makes a hollow-body ukulele bass (again, not a U-Bass). I find the sound very compelling;
http://kamoaukulelecompany.com/ukuleles.php?sid=49

At summer NAMM I saw a solid body from GoldTone with LaBella steel strings. It’s listed on their website as being available with either steel or polymer strings (fretted or fretless)
https://www.goldtone.com/product/7394/
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SLlCXfV2h2k

kohanmike
07-05-2016, 07:39 AM
Tried calling Luna a few times and there's no one that comes to the phone. They're web site has some bad links and phone numbers also.

I'm sticking with the Kala metal strings, Road Toad Pahoehoe and suggest going to the Rondo or Gold Tone bass ukes.

PTOEguy
07-05-2016, 08:11 AM
Here's a description of my experience with the Hadean Uke Bass

http://forum.ukuleleunderground.com/showthread.php?121292-Hadean-Uke-Bass-UKB-27

bonesigh
07-05-2016, 05:57 PM
I have a Kala Exotic Mahog Ubass I'd let go. It's barely been played. Has a gig bag. Been meaning to put it up on the marketplace. Told the hubby I'd sell a few ukes so this will be the first to go. If anyone is interested I'll make a video sound sample. 300 you pay shipping (:

blue_knight_usa
07-05-2016, 08:51 PM
Good info thanks!


I also suggest a bass from Rondo. To play an acoustic in a group, you definitely need an amp, but not when practicing by yourself. I started playing bass about 18 months ago for the ukulele group I joined over 3 years ago by request of our leader. Before that I played guitar for almost 50 years and was often told I should take up the bass, but I didn't want to be encumbered by those long electric basses, forget a stand up bass. I decided to play bass with the uke group when I discovered all the little basses being made.

I didn't like the configuration of the Kala acoustic U-basses, so asking U-Space in Downtown Los Angeles (where Daniel Ho is a partner), they recommended the Gold Tone GT Microbass 23" cutaway fretted (I prefer cutaway). I bought it and it's now my go to for most gigs, especially when I changed the very sticky Aquila Thundergut white strings to the very smooth black Road Toad Pahoehoe (the kind that Kala uses, but Aquila is coming out with a less sticky Thundergut).

Since then I've had a custom fretless acoustic bass uke made that I'm using with the new Kala steel wound nylon core strings (that I'm sure are made by La Bella), then discovered Rondo and jumped on their solid body ukes that I've been modifying to look like well known electric basses (see my signature). I'm up to 8 basses, with 2 more in the near future (after I get the engine of my van fixed).

I think Rondo is the way to go for anyone who just wants to dabble in playing bass uke.

http://www.kohanmike.com/uploads/Basses ten.jpg

SailingUke
07-06-2016, 05:30 AM
I just picked up a Hadean solid body from Rondo Music.
I wanted a bass to travel with in the rv. I believe the solid body will do better than my Kala acoustic.
I play fretless so intonation is not an issue. For what this uke costs it is more than adequate for my infrequent bass playing.

sonomajazz
07-08-2016, 05:52 AM
For my money...the Ohana U Bass(correct SailingUke?)...let us know what you decide...