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Calebcat
10-12-2010, 01:12 PM
Does anyone in the UU community own one?
Bass was my first instrument, and I think combining my favorite two serves as a great invention. Back to my question, do you like it, or was it just a waste of money?

thirdkingofpleasureville
10-12-2010, 03:59 PM
I played one at a music shop and thought it was kinda cool. The strings are pretty crazy feeling. What I didn't dig was the lack of volume. I thought it was going to have more. You really couldnt do much without an amp, and I don't like having to plug in. They seem pretty much just a novelty to me. One of those big fat mexican basses would be way more fun in my opinion, and there's not much uke-like about it, other than the look.

johndwapa
10-12-2010, 04:56 PM
Really shines when plugged in. Excellent for the price.

trailrider
10-12-2010, 05:03 PM
Seems some major pros are buying and using Ubass. Sounds great and is very portable. I sure recommend it.

Chris Tarman
10-12-2010, 05:59 PM
I don't own one, but I've played two in music stores. The strings are really weird feeling but after 10 or 15 minutes I started to get used to them. They have ZERO volume unplugged, but they're not designed for that. But plugged in, they sound really nice. They have something between a normal electric bass sound and an upright sound. I would think the fretless version would be closer to an upright. The big bonus, in my mind, is that they are very compact and lightweight.

bassfiddlesteve
10-13-2010, 07:16 AM
I own one and I love it. You can read lots of comments from other U-bass owners on the "bass" forum here on UU. The U-bass does have some unplugged volume, at least enough for practice, playing along with recordings or jamming with an unplugged uke player. I would avoid the fretless version. Due to the strings you don't get any of the cool sounds you would normally get from a fretless bass. It sounds the same basically and it's tricky to play in tune due to the short scale. If you get one make sure the strings are installed correctly with no overlapping windings or you may wind up with a busted tuning machine. The strings usually have to be re-stretched and re-installed.

- Steve

the52blues
10-13-2010, 12:35 PM
I am also a bass player and checked one out in a music store and I couldn't put it down. All the bass licks I know were a lot easier on the shorter scale. I took to it like a duck to water. Had I not been there to buy my Jazz archtop Kala I would have snapped up that Ubass right there and then. It will likely be next on the list but I have bought a few tenors off the internet from Taiwan that are comparable to all the fancy $900 to $1000 Hawaiian ukes for a mere fraction of the cost so I need to stop buying them and save up for my Ubass. You can never have too many....

cb56
10-16-2010, 04:31 AM
Own one and play it all the time in my family uke group. We play mostly nursing home/ retirement centers and at church ocassionally. There is a guy over at talkbass.com that plays one in a popular/rock style band so it is a real, gigable,versatile instrument. Not a toy.
It's a different instrument that takes a bit of getting used to. The strings are rubber so they have a different feel to them. It has enough volume to practice alone with but in group settings you'll need a small amp. I use a Fender Rumble 30 bass combo with great results. Sounds GREAT plugged in. Kind of like a cross between a P bass with flats and an upright. (IMO)
BUT I always recommend to folks that they go find one and try it first. You might love it but you might not. It took me about 10 seconds after plugging mine into an amp at the music store to know that I had to own it.
http://i21.photobucket.com/albums/b257/cb56/bass%20rig/UbassRig.jpg

UncleElvis
10-16-2010, 05:47 AM
Am I losing my mind, or did I see a solidbody version of this (or something similar) somewhere?

Or was that a dream I had?

the52blues
10-16-2010, 07:53 AM
Yes, Kala has made a solid body Ubass. I'm not sure if it's on the market yet but Mike Upton played one on a video on their site to show that it is coming. They are also working on a 5 string version.

Zolton
10-17-2010, 01:21 AM
I'm a Bass player from way back and now into Uke, so you would think the U-Bass would tick all boxes. Tried one last weekend while on holidays. Innovative, and they sure put some thought into getting a big sound (amplified) out of a small instrument. The bottom end was great, less impressed with the mid and high notes and think some equalisation would help the sound here. The strings, as others comment are a trial, and while got used to them, they slow the ability to get across them while playing, and make fretting and intonation more difficult. Some type of "string glide" would assist, and unsure if manafacturers suggest a product. There were good full scale basses at the same store for less $$s so why bother unless you want the visual of a quirky instrument?

sebi
10-17-2010, 06:44 AM
I've been playing bass since 1991 and started playing the UBass about 6 months ago. At first, I thought it would be similar to an acoustic bass, but for me it wasn't and still isn't. When I play the UBass I have to use a different approach than when I play a bass guitar or an acoustic bass. The strings give me a different feel and the size of its neck require me to think UBass, not bass guitar. I use an Ampeg Micro Stack with the UBass and it sounds really full. Nonetheless, to get the full satisfaction on recordings, I have to make full use of a compressor, something I hardly need with my Fodera or Music Man basses.

In conclusion: I love the UBass and I wouldn't want to miss it anymore, even if it means more work than my up-scale basses when trying to make it sound at its best.

Calebcat
10-20-2010, 01:28 PM
I'm pretty much sold on the idea of playing a Ubass. But, I live nowhere near music stores and the few that are around tend to have guitars and marching band gear. Not even standard electric bass. This may be a stupid question, but what would be a cheap, decent Ubass that I could learn to like. I don't mind too much for aesthetics as much as quality. My price range is $0-$250. Or, just the cheapest you have come across.

bassfiddlesteve
10-20-2010, 03:35 PM
This may be a stupid question, but what would be a cheap, decent Ubass that I could learn to like.

You're not likely to come across many used ones. They start at $399 new for the spruce top model like the one I have.

- Steve

Calebcat
10-21-2010, 12:53 PM
Bassfiddlesteve, I was actually looking at one.

ichadwick
12-18-2010, 03:05 AM
I have the U-bass. I used to play a short-scale Supra bass, many years ago (a 25" scale). The U-bass is fun and has a nice, woody sound when plugged in (almost no sound unplugged but fair enough for quiet practice without accompaniment).

Advantages: size, short neck, lightweight, cool looking. Standard tuning.

Disadvantages: strings take a while to settle and stay tuned (like ukes, but better than the Ashbory which never really settles and continues to stretch). Strings are fat and rubbery, so they tend to roll under your fingers - you need to work on a different technique when playing to avoid this (not difficult but needs a bit of concentration) - escpecially when sliding. There are no active controls, and I find the output somewhat unbalanced in favour of the G string. Needs some moderation via the amp to sort that out. The short spaces at the higher frets make it more difficult to play above the 12th fret.

It's been fun re-learning bass. However, I'm looking at changing to a different style - either a Kona Walking bass or an electric upright like the Dean Pace. Might sell the U-bass to help finance one.

marymac
12-18-2010, 09:05 PM
I got a spruce-top UBass about a week ago and have been having a lot of fun with it. I have never played bass before so I have nothing unlearn or adjust to. This is my first amp too (a Roland Bass Micro Cube) and I haven't really messed with all the effects on it yet but it sounds great and runs on batteries. I love that.

As far as the UBass, it seems easy to play, even for a novice. The sound is nothing special when it's not amplified but when plugged in it sounds fantastic. Lots of bottom end. The strings seem to be settling in but I do check the tuning each time I pick it up to play. The Snark tuners work great on the bass; the IntelliTuner 500 I have doesn't pick up the bass tones well enough to be useful.

The tuners on the UBass work quite well. It takes quite a bit of turning to get the tone to change on these strings when you first start using them but once they're stretched out the tuners are great for the fine tuning. I do find it easier to play this with a strap.The finish on it seems quite nice. No rough spots or weirdness in the finish. bindings are nice and clean. Only complaint I have on the appearance is that the battery cover is a gloss while the rest of the uke is matte. What's up with that?

I haven't played the mahogany top so I can't compare the sound of the spruce top and mahogany top. From the sound samples I found on youtube and elsewhere on the web I couldn't discern any difference so I went with the cheaper top (spruce) and spent the rest on a b-stock concert eleuke (hey, I had to get an amp for the UBass, might as well try out an electrified uke!) Another uke player mentioned to me that he didn't like the whiteness of the spruce top but in person it looks like yellowish spruce wood grain, not bright white to me.

Not sure what else to say about this instrument but feel free to ask questions and I'll do my best to answer.

ichadwick
12-19-2010, 02:14 AM
Mine's for sale, if anyone wants to make an offer.

Shindig
01-07-2011, 05:48 PM
I was not a bass player...well I'm still not a bass player, but I had to have this thing. I've got the spruce-top fretted. I echo the others comments as far as sound and playability. I've had a peg break once, for the reason that Steve mentioned above. The string was doubled up and caused a lot of upward tension on the peg. My music store ordered a new one for free. I hope I can learn to play this thing properly.
Here's a comparison of my UBass and Pocket Uke.
http://i100.photobucket.com/albums/m39/shindig_04/Ukulele%20Stuff/DSCF5548.jpg

Dougf
01-19-2011, 05:20 PM
I posted this to the "videos and links" forum, didn't get a lot of views, thought maybe some bass players might appreciate it. The stuff he does at 2:27 blows me away.

Updated video that starts at 2:27 of the previous:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1zKCLHjSI9A

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1zKCLHjSI9A

spruce
01-19-2011, 05:45 PM
They are also working on a 5 string version.

Which I just played at NAMM last weekend....

ichadwick
01-20-2011, 01:10 AM
I'm pretty much sold on the idea of playing a Ubass. But, I live nowhere near music stores and the few that are around tend to have guitars and marching band gear. Not even standard electric bass. This may be a stupid question, but what would be a cheap, decent Ubass that I could learn to like. I don't mind too much for aesthetics as much as quality. My price range is $0-$250. Or, just the cheapest you have come across.
PM me. Mine's for sale. Would be open to negotiations on price.

Eduardo
02-16-2011, 05:18 PM
I think it's a nice idea and I wouldn't mind owning one but it falls short on both the acoustic aspect and the price point. I feel that an acoustic instrument should give you the option and being played acoustically along with other acoustic instruments. The sound is not there. It is small and portable but as soon as you figure out the size of the amp you have to carry with it, the point is moot. For that money you could get a nice traditional acoustic bass.

Chris Tarman
02-16-2011, 05:25 PM
I think it's a nice idea and I wouldn't mind owning one but it falls short on both the acoustic aspect and the price point. I feel that an acoustic instrument should give you the option and being played acoustically along with other acoustic instruments. The sound is not there. It is small and portable but as soon as you figure out the size of the amp you have to carry with it, the point is moot. For that money you could get a nice traditional acoustic bass.

Most of the Acoustic Bass Guitars I have played are ALSO not loud enough unplugged to compete with an acoustic guitar without being drowned out. So they have the same problem on that front. I don't own one, but I can think of one major advantage to the UBass, even when you factor in having to carry a large amp. It weighs a heck of a lot less than an electric bass, and when I play bass in a bar or club from 9:00 pm until 1:30 am, NOT having an 11 lb. Fender Jazz Bass hanging from my shoulder sounds kind of appealing.

ichadwick
02-17-2011, 02:55 AM
Same experience with acoustic basses. They need amplification because the string energy is too low to allow much projection. Even a good upright bass is pretty quiet compared with other instruments (bowing imparts more energy to the string, however). Plus the surface area of the Ubass and most acoustic basses is relatively small compared with the wave size of the lower notes.

Eduardo
02-17-2011, 05:33 AM
You may be right but i still feel the Ubass is lower than say the Tacoma Thunderchief but that's only my opinion. And of course prices are night and day. But if all you want if lightness just go with an Aria Sinsonido. As a nice novelty it's fine but for the price i still feel there are better options. I'm not saying it's firewood and I'll have one eventually but it's not on the top of my list.

rlan
02-17-2011, 06:53 AM
I bought a Ubass and really like it. Great fun. There is enough volume unplugged to practice and sounds very good plugged in. My problem is that my wife has all but taken it over. The short scale and light weight make for a bass she can handle. So if you are married watch out.

UkeNukem
02-17-2011, 02:55 PM
Congrats, rlan, Kala makes quality instruments and you will be very happy with yours. It's a great thing for a uker to have a spouse that's a UAS enabler!

I'm still working on a baritone to bass conversion. I am optimistic that it will produce the sound (using the Pahoehoe strings / active peizo) and general ease of playing of a real UBass. The latest snag involves the finish so I'm getting behind schedule. I'll post a build thread with pix when complete.

rlan
02-17-2011, 05:33 PM
Thanks Bob,
I am a lucky man in that my wife loves music. She plays a few different instruments and really enjoys it. I have very little if no complaint when I drag in something new.

lookingforcurly
02-21-2011, 09:31 AM
I replied earlier, but screwed up and not sure it got posted. Had one for 6 months. the strings were still stretching and this was a nuisance requiring unwinding strings and rewinding with tension to avoid too much wrapping on tuning posts that can lead to broken tuners.

I found the sound was fine with another ukulele or similar instrument, but I did not like the sound with a group including keyboard and guitar. Went back to my Carvin fretless.

I have to say though that I do applaud kala for the creativity. Just not my cup of tea (or bass).

Larry

UkeNukem
04-01-2011, 04:53 AM
Well here is the result. WARNING EXPERIMENTAL BASS UKULELE CONTENT

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2bkyY_ZRLQ4

Playing through a large acoustic guitar amp with 12" speaker. The output from the D/G strings is way too low (unusable) and from the E/A way too loud (very touchy). I'll be modifying the pickup system and/or bridge for better balance. The build thread is here.

http://www.ukuleleunderground.com/forum/showthread.php?44202-Yes-it-can-be-done

the52blues
04-01-2011, 05:34 AM
Kala's solid body Ubass is almost ready for sale. Mike says they'll sell for around $1200. Yikes! that's pricey. By accident I discovered that Beaver Creek has a ukulele bass too. They don't call it that - they call it a travel bass guitar but it's built on a baritone ukulele scale as is the Ubass. It actually has special made steel strings which I am assuming why they call it a travel guitar as opposed to a ukulele bass. It's an acoustic body with a cut away and has passive electronics and looks really nice. Here's the kicker....it sells for around $300 with a gig bag! check it out -
https://www.musicianswebstore.com/products.asp?cat=1572

jop
04-01-2011, 10:58 AM
Is the Beaver Creek tuned as low as a regular bass? Those strings don't look much fatter than normal.

lookingforcurly
04-02-2011, 04:40 PM
Looks like I am the minority here. I had a UBass and liked it at first. Had no trouble getting used to it, or with the feel of the strings. Its portability is hard to beat for a bass too. My regular bass is a Carvin fretless.

I had a problem with the strings forever stretching. About every 2 weeks I would unwind them, stretch them through the tuners to take up the slack, and retune. Otherwise, from constant stretching the strings would over wrap the tuner shaft. Kala has a video on replacing the tuners, so I assume the tuner breakage is a problem. They are pretty flimsy.

I liked the sound through a Line6 bass amp or through a house PA fine with another instrument, but when playing with a quartet (acoustic guitar, keyboards, drums), I did not like how it fit in. I sold it after about 6 months.

bassfiddlesteve
04-02-2011, 04:55 PM
Is the Beaver Creek tuned as low as a regular bass? Those strings don't look much fatter than normal.

Yes, it is tuned like a regular bass. Here's a video review/demonstrattion:


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZBzOPpq7Rvk

Personally, I don't think it sounds too good in this video, at least acoustically.

- Steve

UkeNukem
04-03-2011, 03:59 AM
Great review! I thought about this one during my research phase but the lure of the Pahoehoe strings was too strong. The sound of this one confirms what I thought, very metalic tone, at least acoustically. Does look like a nice instrument, even has the top strap button installed. At $300 it deffinately is not worth modifying, a real Ubass is a better choice.

Today I'll be soldering up a multi-disc peizo pickup (I had a bunch of discs from another project) and test into the premap installed in my converted baritone. If that goes well, then I'll work on making a new bridge to maximize the resonance of the top (I'm thinking of individual bridges for each string so I can adjust intonation by just sliding them back and forth), and stick the discs under the top.

I made the bridge floating for this reason, I can always experiment but go back to the original if needed.

KamakOzzie
04-04-2011, 11:34 AM
Just got the pictures from a gig at the Wild Rabbit Cafe last Saturday night.
I sat in with these guys who do about half original material. The other half is covers from Beatles to Bee-Gees, to Jim Crochee to Old Crow Medicine Show. This was my first public gig with the U-Bass. It really made a hit both with the band, and also the audience.

My regular band won't let me play it. A traditional Bluegrass band needs a traditional upright bass-or so I'm told.

Bill
222902228822289

marymac
04-04-2011, 07:42 PM
Glad you have at least one band that lets you play your U-Bass!

UkeNukem
04-06-2011, 11:21 AM
"My regular band won't let me play it."

Luddites! :wallbash:

bassfiddlesteve
04-11-2011, 02:58 PM
When I was at the NY Uke Fest last year Greg Hawkes of The Cars checked out my U-Bass. Here he is with my bass and Jumpin' Jim Beloff:

http://www.tampabayukulele.com/uploads/4/3/7/2/4372503/9881524_orig.jpg

- Steve

JanineH
05-29-2011, 09:09 AM
Does anyone have any opinions on the difference between the two Kala u-basses.

Apart from one being spruce and the other mahogany, the only difference I can see is the quality of the tuners. The mahogany version has Hipshot whereas the spruce has die-cast tuners.

Are the Hipshot tuners really worth the extra 70 on the pricetag?

bassfiddlesteve
05-29-2011, 09:18 AM
The other difference is that the spruce topped one has laminated back and sides while the mahogany and acacia ones are all solid wood. This doesn't make a big difference when the instrument is plugged in though. Kala had to replace one of the tuners on my spruce topped U-Bass when it failed. I'm not sure this would have happended with the Hipshot tuners. Still, I'm happy with my purchase and the cheaper tuners work fine as long as the strings are installed correctly.

- Steve

JanineH
05-29-2011, 09:22 AM
Thanks for that, Steve!

I think I prefer look of the spruce one too :-)

If anyone has a u-bass for sale second-hand, please let me know.

lookingforcurly
05-29-2011, 04:51 PM
Seems like I have the dissenting vote here. I had one for about 6 months. The sound is incredible for the size, however I did not like the sound of it plugged into a large bass amp. Seemed to sound best in a smaller amp or directly into a PA board. I used mine mostly into a smaller Line6 (mostly as a monitor), and then XLR out to a board.

I sold it for a few reasons:
1. The strings seemed to stretch forever. Every month I had to essentially restring it to take up the increasing excess slack on the tuner pegs. The tuner pegs are weak and can break easily with too much string wrap. There is a video on the Kala web site for replacing the tuners, which strongly implies this was a problem very early.
2. The sound got a bit boring. Every time I played it I wished I had my Carvin instead.
3. It sounded best with a small acoustic ensemble. It seemed to get lost with a few instruments.

Marvelous idea, but it was not for me.

we tigers
09-21-2011, 10:04 AM
I own a mahogany Ubass and absolutely love it. It's an ideal bass to have lying around in your living room. I recently used in a jazz trio setting with a pianist and a drummer. It was brilliant. The ideal answer if you've got some GAS for a short-scale, a hollow body or an upright bass; this little fellow can satisfy all three needs.

I don't know if Magnus' channel and blog are already mentioned in this thread, but check them out
http://playubass.wordpress.com/


http://www.youtube.com/user/bassMAGics#p/u/13/TUj7B2nePJ0

bigchiz
10-26-2011, 10:22 AM
Any opinions of the Kala SUB Ubass? Street price is about $450, US.

bassfiddlesteve
10-26-2011, 01:09 PM
Personally, I'm not interested in the solid body u-basses because they look like miniature electric bass guitars. I like the fact that the standard u-bass blends visually with ukuleles and the acoustic volume is very handy for practicing without an amp. When I want a solidbody electric bass I'll just grab one of my Fenders.

- Steve

bigchiz
11-13-2011, 05:47 AM
Makes sense, I already have a solid body Ibanez SDGR bass. Had the pleasure of playing on a fretted mahogany acoustic ubass on Tuesday at our local uke jam for a couple hours. On Thursday went and bought my own, a spruce top fretless. Can hardly put it down!

Some have said the ubass doesn't have much sustain, and that's true. In that sense it's like the Hofner bass Paul McCartney played.

bassfiddlesteve
11-13-2011, 08:31 AM
I actually like the lack of sustain since I use my U-Bass in place of my upright bass. I'm not sure how it would work with a full band, but it sounds nice with ukulele and other acoustic instruments. Here's a video of The Barnkickers playing at a house concert in Georgia. I am playing my U-Bass though a Gallien Krueger MB150S combo.


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mz7TS-5CWAM

- Steve

Kimosabe
01-01-2012, 05:54 AM
I've got a great semi-hollow for sale, made by Road Toad himself, the prototype maker for the Kalas. It's black limba wood and is fretless.

Why am I selling? I just don't have the time to master the bass. I put in a couple of months working on walking bass, working with a great book by Ed Friedlander, but I kept going back to playing classical pieces on the uke and now think it's time to get a better uke for playing classical.

It sounds great when amped through a good amp. I tend to turn down the the higher frequencies and up the lower, comes out with a nice stand up like tone and it sure is easy on the fingers.

I'd like $600 plus mailing costs and I'll throw in the case which is a baritone case.

cb56
01-01-2012, 08:49 AM
Wow! Great deal. Wish I had the cash.
I love my spruce topped ubass. Going on the same set of strings for 1 1/2 years now.
It's currently the only bass I own right now but the only playing out I do with it is in our uke group.

Jon Moody
02-10-2012, 05:11 PM
I just bought a Hutch Hutchinson model U-Bass. I was one of the many skeptics out there about the validity of this instrument, not thinking it much more than a gimmick or schtick instrument like the Ashbory basses of old.

I was wrong. This is a great bass and I can see where it will work in some situations. For me, I double on electric and upright in musical theatre pits, and this will probably be used on those occasions where there isn't room for both instruments.

bassfiddlesteve
02-10-2012, 05:13 PM
IFor me, I double on electric and upright in musical theatre pits, and this will probably be used on those occasions where there isn't room for both instruments.

I also double on upright and electric bass and play in theatre pits. I never thought of using my U-bass there but it's actually a great idea. Thanks!

- Steve

Jon Moody
02-10-2012, 05:21 PM
I also double on upright and electric bass and play in theatre pits. I never thought of using my U-bass there but it's actually a great idea. Thanks!

- Steve

Glad to do it. I actually went with the Hutch mainly because I thought that the slotted sound holes would be less feedback prone than the regular one in the other models in those cramped quarters. Plus, it looks cool!

When running your U-Bass into an amp, do you put a preamp in front of it, or just direct?

bassfiddlesteve
02-10-2012, 05:33 PM
When running your U-Bass into an amp, do you put a preamp in front of it, or just direct?

I just plug it directly in to my Gallien-Krueger MB150 combo, the same amp I use for my other basses. I usually roll off some highs for the U-Bass. I don't use a preamp with any of my basses (my upright has a Realist pickup).

- Steve

Jon Moody
02-11-2012, 04:33 PM
I just plug it directly in to my Gallien-Krueger MB150 combo, the same amp I use for my other basses. I usually roll off some highs for the U-Bass. I don't use a preamp with any of my basses (my upright has a Realist pickup).

- Steve

I had an MB150 for a while; great little amp!

I'm mainly using Phil Jones Bass amps now, and their 5 band EQ is very powerful, so I think I'll be fine direct too.

karadoo
02-12-2012, 10:07 AM
last week is firt time I played kala u bass & i like it:D
I want to build it by myself with carbon fiber .
I will use shadow pickup same Kala.
but i want unplug sound louder

what's better body size & scale lenght ?

unplug volume Thundergut VS Pahoehoe string ?

If it same. I will made semi hollow.

My sketch33580

Sorry for my bad English.

-Thanks-

Jon Moody
02-14-2012, 12:28 AM
Good luck on building one; that sounds great! Personally, I liked your far left baritone version. It reminded me of a jazz guitar.

As for a louder unplugged volume, I don't think you're going to really achieve that with the size of the instruments. If you look at regular scale acoustic/electric basses, they have to have a body that is much bigger than an acoustic guitar to achieve any sort of volume and you still have to gig with those plugged into an amp. The only acoustic/electric bass that I played that sounded loud unplugged was the old Tacoma Thunderchief. Then again, the body size of that was quite large compared to others in the area.

karadoo
02-14-2012, 08:56 AM
Good luck on building one; that sounds great! Personally, I liked your far left baritone version. It reminded me of a jazz guitar.

As for a louder unplugged volume, I don't think you're going to really achieve that with the size of the instruments. If you look at regular scale acoustic/electric basses, they have to have a body that is much bigger than an acoustic guitar to achieve any sort of volume and you still have to gig with those plugged into an amp. The only acoustic/electric bass that I played that sounded loud unplugged was the old Tacoma Thunderchief. Then again, the body size of that was quite large compared to others in the area.
After research & Discuss with my friend who's bass player.

Cann't make lounder for unplug coz string in tension less.

U Bass sound character is from that string.

If change wound or steel string . sound so like normal acoustic bass.

So that I will design on small semihallow body with PU.

33646

Thanks so much

Bobby BellPepper
03-04-2012, 06:26 PM
I have a left handed KALA U Bass.

I love it! It is a different animal from an electric bass, but can be an amazing instrument to have in your arsenal. It sounds much like a stand up bass, through a proper amp. I play thru a small Genz Benz 300 W Shuttle, with an 8" cab, or a Carvin MB 12- both of which are top notch amps.

I think it does need a bit of added oomph, IMHO, in the pickup area. Given the specific range of the Shadow Pickup, EQ needs to be liberally applied to get the best out of this instrument, and the super short scale does take some getting used to, so- give yourself a week for getting in tune with the scale of it, prior to gigging with it...

But really, it is a well made, innovative, cool, and fun-to-play instrument- great for practice, or, with a small amp, for playing with acoustic guitars! Great also for small jazz and blues combos.

ukulefty
03-04-2012, 11:37 PM
I played bass (incredibly badly) for about six months back in high school but never really took to it. Too big and I hated steel strings. I had a jam on the Kala U-Bass at Ukes for UNICEF on the weekend and let me tell you, I didn't want to put the U-Bass down!!!

So much fun and much easier to play in my opinion! The strings are fat and weird but I liked them.

http://ukulefty.files.wordpress.com/2012/03/u4u2012_x_034.jpg

I'd love one - but reported tuner snaps and endless string stretching puts me off....

chrimess
03-05-2012, 09:02 AM
Karadoo,
the Thunderguts are a definite improvement both tonally and in terms of tuning stability.



last week is firt time I played kala u bass & i like it:D
I want to build it by myself with carbon fiber .
I will use shadow pickup same Kala.
but i want unplug sound louder

what's better body size & scale lenght ?

unplug volume Thundergut VS Pahoehoe string ?

If it same. I will made semi hollow.

My sketch33580

Sorry for my bad English.

-Thanks-

coolkayaker1
03-05-2012, 09:09 AM
Greg is my favorite Car.

I know he's a uke maven, and I wish he'd tour with the uke (like he did with The Cars last summer).


When I was at the NY Uke Fest last year Greg Hawkes of The Cars checked out my U-Bass. Here he is with my bass and Jumpin' Jim Beloff:

http://www.tampabayukulele.com/uploads/4/3/7/2/4372503/9881524_orig.jpg

- Steve

bassfiddlesteve
03-05-2012, 12:30 PM
I'd love one - but reported tuner snaps and endless string stretching puts me off....

The tuners won't snap as long as the strings are installed correctly and the strings eventually settle down and stop stretching, just like ukulele strings. I wouldn't let either of these issues deter you if you want one.

- Steve

Jon Moody
03-22-2012, 04:03 PM
Karadoo,
the Thunderguts are a definite improvement both tonally and in terms of tuning stability.

I'd argue the improvement in tonality. They made my U-Bass sound closer to an electric bass than an upright; the drummer at church compared the sound (with the Thunderguts) to Noel Redding with Hendrix. That's not an improvement, that's a preference. I quickly switched back to the Pahoehoes, since they were definitely what I wanted out of the U-Bass.

Tuning stability? Maybe I got a bum set, but even after two weeks I was still tuning the strings up a full step after leaving them sit with the bass in the case for a day or two.

Gillian
03-30-2012, 05:31 PM
I just got my hollow, fretted spruce top yesterday. I've never played a bass before so I have nothing to compare it to. My first song was CCR's "Down on the Corner" which was easy to memorize.

I'm sure it would sound better going through a proper bass amp, but it sounds just fine to me going through my little Roland AC-33 and my old Crate GFX-30. I'm learning the proper 'touch' to use to not get buzzing. I'm curious about Aquila's Thundergut strings, so I'll order a set to check them out.

Such fun!

arpie
04-03-2012, 03:07 PM
..... I've never played a bass before so I have nothing to compare it to.......

I can relate to that Gillian - I've just ordered a Spruce from the States as an early birthday present!! :) Can't wait for it to arrive - now only have to get an amp & whatever else is needed to get it up & running!! I think I'll get a portable 9v one ....... somehow!! Any tips on a good website for absolute beginners???

cheerio

Roberta

bgrif
04-06-2012, 02:03 PM
Has anybody had this happen to a Thundergut string? Luckily a friend noticed this on my U-bass last night before it snapped.35982

Gillian
04-07-2012, 11:58 AM
..... I've never played a bass before so I have nothing to compare it to.......

I can relate to that Gillian - I've just ordered a Spruce from the States as an early birthday present!! :) Can't wait for it to arrive - now only have to get an amp & whatever else is needed to get it up & running!! I think I'll get a portable 9v one ....... somehow!! Any tips on a good website for absolute beginners???

cheerio

Roberta

For a beginner, this website (http://www.studybass.com/) is fantastic. Easy to understand with very helpful interactive elements. This site provided the "light bulb" moment for me. In an hour, I was playing R, 5, b7, R bass lines!

The Saint
04-07-2012, 10:07 PM
Has anybody had this happen to a Thundergut string? Luckily a friend noticed this on my U-bass last night before it snapped.35982

Hi. Not sure if I'm allowed to add a link to another forum, but over on TalkBass they have a huge thread about the uBass and one of the topics concern the problem you have. I can save you the trouble of searching through 100's of pages by saying that it was an early problem with the early Thunderguts, but it has been resolved and the new ones appear fine. I hear that if you contact Aquila they will replace them.

Hope that helps...

Gillian
04-13-2012, 06:50 AM
I was looking for an amp that was small, lightweight, had enough punch to fill our uke club meeting venue (2500 sq ft) and didn't cost too much (<$300) Well, after much research and side by side testing at several music stores, I decided on an amp: the Laney RB2. 30W 10" speaker, 26lbs. ($150-$200)

I'd never heard of Laney, a UK company, until my local luthier introduced me to one. If you are looking for an amp that really sounds good with the U-Bass, add Laney to your list. And no, I don't own stock i the company:)