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 Post subject: Ibanez SR206L...
PostPosted: March 31st, 2012, 6:13 am 
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Joined: November 26th, 2008, 6:14 am
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Location: Oahu, Hawaii
Just received my Ibanez SR206 yesterday... for the price ($221.00 to my door) this is a great bass! Right out of the box, the intonation is right on, the action is quite low with no buzzing anywhere on the neck, and the sound is very good - it's an active system, with VVT, and a fourth knob for bass boost. The pickups are some sort of soapbar, but have a nice warmth to them, and can get a nice tone for slapping or playing Jaco style. String spacing is small, probably 17mm, but I like it. The neck has a nice profile to it, almost flat on the underside, which helps it feel less wide than it is. It's not much wider than my custom bass... it's fun to play, and now I'll be on the hunt for a six-string chord book!

The hardware is all well made, except for the tone control knobs, which are made of plastic. They are chromed well though,so you can't tell they're plastic until you look closely.

This was priced $100 less than normal ($279), and in the eBay description it just said B-stock. The reason why, I found out, was the neck pickup pot-shaft has a sticky spot in the middle of its rotation as you turn the knob from "1-to-10". The knob looks like it has been pressed on crooked, but I think that something may have fallen on or pressed on the knob and bent the shaft. I haven't had time open the control cavity yet, or pry the knob off (they're all on tight, and no set-screw that I can see), but I'll try in the morning, and take pictures to post then as well.

All-in-all, this is a well put together bass. Even at the regular price of $279, it's a great value. I was hoping to buy an SR506, but they are rare, and the going rate has been been averaging $500 when they do show up on eBay. I had considered some of the Brice basses on Rondomusic, but wasn't confident about build quality, and being stuck with an OK bass. They have had good reviews in the though. But, Ibanez consistently puts out quality basses in all price ranges, so I felt I'd be safer spending the money on this one.

Pictures coming soon...

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 Post subject: Re: Ibanez SR206L...
PostPosted: March 31st, 2012, 6:47 am 
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Joined: November 26th, 2008, 6:14 am
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Location: Oahu, Hawaii
Shipping box... it was $14.99 from the East Coast to my Sister's house in Santa Rosa, Ca. Told her to ship it USPS Priority, but it came Parcel Post. Almost three weeks, but the shipping cost was only $26.33!
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Surprisingly well protected- no indication of dents in the box that could be attributed to the bent shaft...
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BOOM!
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R&B Stretch Bass, Walter Woods 1000w Green-Light Stereo Amp, AccuGroove El Whappo and TR112, assorted axes, amps, cabs...
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 Post subject: Re: Ibanez SR206L...
PostPosted: March 31st, 2012, 7:39 am 
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Joined: January 9th, 2009, 1:34 am
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Location: The Netherlands
Cool, and a nice review.
I've played several 4-string GSR200's and some 'genuine' SR300's (the old flat one with the bent steel bridge, not the current carved top model with heavy bridge) and the GIO's offered much better bang for the buck! Well-made, excellent playability, and the electronics, although very basic, offer lots of possibilities. The combination of a passive treble roll-off and active bass boost is perfect, treble cut and bass boost are usually the only controls I use on my active basses!

I just found out they also make a left handed version of their Micro version, the GSRM20L! It has a 28.6" scale, PJ-pickups and passive electronics and it looks like a fun instrument :)

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 Post subject: Re: Ibanez SR206L...
PostPosted: March 31st, 2012, 8:36 am 
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Joined: July 31st, 2009, 1:21 am
Posts: 236
Cool review man, I always despised the necks on 4 string Ibanez(es?) which have been the only ones I have played but I always thought the neck shape would be better suited for a 5 or 6. I was wondering if you have had a chance to try it out in a live situation yet.


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 Post subject: Re: Ibanez SR206L...
PostPosted: March 31st, 2012, 2:42 pm 
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Location: Oahu, Hawaii
frankenjazz wrote:
Cool review man, I always despised the necks on 4 string Ibanez(es?) which have been the only ones I have played but I always thought the neck shape would be better suited for a 5 or 6. I was wondering if you have had a chance to try it out in a live situation yet.


Jeroen, the micro version sounds cool; I'll check it out!

Frankenjazz - I have an old SR800 4-string, and the neck is very narrow; like a guitar neck. My first bass was P-bass, and the neck felt like a baseball bat compared to the SR800. Now I'm so used to wide necks, I find the narrow SR800 neck to be uncomfortable!

I haven't played the SR206 in a gig situation yet, but I did jam for about 15 minutes at my guitar players studio with it. We were playing fairly loud - through a GK 1001 head, and Accugroove El Whappo Cabinet, and it sounded great. The guitar player liked the sound and tone. It was fun to play. Last night I had a rehearsal, and was playing my Kala U-Bass. At the end of rehearsal I broke the SR206 out to show the band my new bass. Plugged it in and started playing some rock songs.... took my brain a couple of minutes to adjust from playing 4-strings to 6... my eyes and hands needed some time to adjust to the string spacing, and not thinking that the C-string was not the D-string! I'll need some time with it before I take it out on a gig.

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 Post subject: Re: Ibanez SR206L...
PostPosted: March 31st, 2012, 4:56 pm 
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Joined: November 26th, 2008, 6:14 am
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Location: Oahu, Hawaii
OK, more in this bass.... turns out the knob was either installed crooked, or knocked crooked, and was rubbing against the body. I pried it off gently using to spoons as leverage, and re-installed it... it rotates straight and smooth now.

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Pickups as adjusted from the factory....

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OEM battery still strong - showing 9.7volts... Tested the bass without the battery, and no sound! Totally active system - no battery/no sound! Unplug your cord when not playing....

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Control cavity cover was a tight fit, and needed to be gently pried out using a thin blade... interior has shielding paint...

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The neck is finished well, and the frets are dressed cleanly, with no sharp edges anywhere... it's broad, but flat, and maintains it's thickness up to the 15th fret, before joining the body.

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Specs sheet from American Musical Supply website....

Body: Agathis body
Neck Material: Maple
Neck Type: GSR6
Neck Dimensions:

Scale Length: 34 inches (864 mm)
Width at Nut: 54 mm
Width Last Fret: 84 mm
Thickness 1st Fret: 21 mm
Thickness 12th Fret: 22 mm
Radius: 400 mm

Frets: Medium frets
Fingerboard: Rosewood
Inlay: Pearl dot inlay
Bridge: B16 bridge
Bridge and Neck pickups:

Name: Dynamix
Model No: DXH-6B
Construction: Humbucking/Passive
Magnet: Ceramic
Powerful with good midrange punch

EQ: PHAT-II (GSR)
Hardware Color: Chrome


Oh yeah, strung with Elixer Nano Webs... which seems to be what most new Ibanez's are strung with. Good feel, good tone, with a snappy edge if you want it....

Over all, a fun and well-built bass. I'm going to be enjoying learning chords on this!

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R&B Stretch Bass, Walter Woods 1000w Green-Light Stereo Amp, AccuGroove El Whappo and TR112, assorted axes, amps, cabs...
http://www.myspace.com/thestrangershawaii


Last edited by fivebass52 on April 1st, 2012, 2:41 am, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Ibanez SR206L...
PostPosted: March 31st, 2012, 7:27 pm 
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Joined: March 14th, 2008, 10:57 am
Posts: 2579
such a deal! great review, thanks for posting that.


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 Post subject: Re: Ibanez SR206L...
PostPosted: July 18th, 2013, 10:09 am 
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Joined: March 12th, 2008, 5:13 pm
Posts: 782
I just got me an GSR205L, same as yours but 5-string, and I agree with everything. And I have to add that it's the best budget bass I've ever had, and best new bass for under $300. Ridiculously good.

As mentioned, the fret job is remarkable - no sharp edges and pretty consistent. It ain't no Lakland or Sadowsky, but better than MANY new Fender I've had in my lifetime. . .

I thought it was going to be super light, like 7 lb, but it actually is about 8.5 lb, so it feel pretty solid. I love the ergonomics: nice body size, balance, and nice neck profile. I thought the string spacing was going to be too narrow, but I agree it's about 17 mm. Feels wider than Warwick, and a tad narrower than a Music Man SR5.

I love the sound, too, like a nice Jazz bass and it's pretty quiet and punchy. I wish it had a passive bypass, and maybe that it were available in other colors, but hey, at this price, it just amazing.


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 Post subject: Re: Ibanez SR206L...
PostPosted: July 20th, 2013, 5:22 pm 
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Joined: November 26th, 2008, 6:14 am
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Location: Oahu, Hawaii
Jeroen wrote:

I just found out they also make a left handed version of their Micro version, the GSRM20L! It has a 28.6" scale, PJ-pickups and passive electronics and it looks like a fun instrument :)


Lefty007, glad to hear you like the bass. I haven't played mine much since I bought it, but I like playing it whenever I pick it up to play. It has a nice, smooth sound to it.

And, as Jeroen mentioned, Ibanez has their Mikro bass models, with a 28.5" scale - one of them is a lefty 4-string (black of course!), but they are making a righthand 5-string that would be cool to try out. Now if I were to buy a lefty 4-string, and a righty 5-string, and routed the 4-string to accept the 5-string neck.... hmmmmmm! ;)

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 Post subject: Re: Ibanez SR206L...
PostPosted: July 30th, 2013, 8:20 am 
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Well, I guess I have revise my review. Took that bass on a 3-gig weekend. Flew from to NYC and back. I had setup the bass nicely in Miami. Upon arriving in NYC I noticed that the action had gotten lower - meaning that the neck moved, so I raised the saddles a bit. Played fine at all gigs. Is not the best sounding bass, but it does the job. It does sound like the best $300 I've played, though - a long way from the budget basses from a few years back.

Problem is when I came back. I guess it was less humid back home than in NYC, so the frets, which had been pretty flush to the fingerboard, started sticking out - so now I have sharp fret ends sticking out. And the neck moved again and the action is higher than before. Not a big deal.

But proves that the woods used are not seasoned and are still very much alive. I really didn't want to spend any money on this bass, so back to the store it went. Great bass as it is for beginner or first time 5-string owners.


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