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I finally saved enough coin to purchase the Epi Zenith Bass (fretted). What a beauty! But I've now discovered that Epiphone has discontinued the line. That was fast! Certainly the history of this bass has been problematic for sure since its initial introduction required a name change because of a copyright infringement issue. Having solved that and then building what I've found to be a beautiful looking and (more importantly) SOUNDING bass, WHY HAS IT BEEN DISCONTINUED? It almost feels as if there's been a death in the family, but no one seems to have noticed! What's up with that?

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I'm not sure why it was discontinued but it doesn't help that Epiphone isn't a popular brand among bass players, though I wish I could have had a chance at one of those Epi Zenith Fretless basses.

 

The Zenith is a beautiful sounding bass! Quite mellow and as close to a stand up as I've heard. Certainly Epi's not known for its basses although I also own a Jack Casady (wonderful as well). Now Jack's baby is still in production, but the Zenith has gone the way of the TV by the same name. I'm glad I jumped at it when I did!

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The Zenith is a beautiful sounding bass! Quite mellow and as close to a stand up as I've heard. Certainly Epi's not known for its basses although I also own a Jack Casady (wonderful as well). Now Jack's baby is still in production, but the Zenith has gone the way of the TV by the same name. I'm glad I jumped at it when I did!

 

Nice, a couple of years back I had my hands on a Jack Casady and passed on it like the fool I am. If only I had a time machine. [biggrin]

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  • 2 months later...

I've just bought a Zenith, and gigged it for the first time. Overall, as a concept, this is an amazing bass. The range of tones you can get out of it are awesome. It looks the part too. BUT...

As soon as I'd decided to go for a Zenith, to replace my old Ovation acoustic 5 string, I searched high and low (in the UK) and eventually ascertained that there were only 4 left in the country. All of them i Natural finish, and fretted. Dawson's had 3 and GuitarGuitar had 1. I decided to go with Dawsons, as this would give me a chance of getting a good one. The first one came through the post, and immediately got sent back. The finish on the fret board was dreadful, with chips that had been repaired during manufacture. The output from the NanoFlex was low from the 'E' string, and the finish inside the f-holes was ghastly. Like someone had used an axe to hollow it out.

The second one arrived. This was a lot better in most respects. The fret board was excellent, but the strings were flat to the fret board, so the neck relief had to be adjusted before it would play a note. I then found the 'E' string had a horrible buzz that I just couldn't pinpoint. It turned out to be a broken core in the 'E' string. This is caused, in part, by the severe bend in the string as it goes over the saddle. Something to watch out for in the future.

I changed the strings and setup the neck again. This then gave me a chance to try it out, and what a sound! Excellent Hi's, Mid's and deep lows. Great acoustic sounds from the NanoFlex, which picks up the body vibrations, and plenty of power from the NanoMag.

The action was way too high, so I decided to reduce the height of the saddle by about 1.25mm. This brought the action down nicely, but I'd created a problem that I'd first seen in the original guitar that I sent back to Dawson's, which was a low output from the NanoFlex, on both the 'E' and 'G' strings. Eventually worked out that this was due to me not filing the bottom of the saddle, perfectly flat. And I mean perfectly flat. The saddle HAS to contact the NanoFlex perfectly along the full length. Otherwise the vibration is not transferred to the pickup consistently.

Now sorted, this is a lovely guitar to play. The finish round the inside of the F-holes isn't brilliant, but with a bit of fine polish it'll be sorted. The bass is quite heavy, Les Paul type weight, but it is well balanced. It's going to take the place of my Ovation Celebrity CS275 acoustic, and my Fender Jazz. That's how flexible it is.

 

Overall, a lot of hassle, but worth it in the end.

 

One more thing. I can't find a hard case anywhere!!! frustrating!

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  • 1 year later...

I bought a used Zenith bass to use for recording...it is a weird looking bass, which probably put some people off, it is extremely heavy, which put even more people off, and it sounds like an upright...which is why I bought it. I am planning to do some recording next year, using just 1 guitar and a bass, both played by me, and will use this for at least some songs.

 

I have noticed that people complain that there are no new designs in guitars or basses, but do not buy many of them when someone comes up with a new design. Mine did come with a factory case, and I won't part with it any time soon...probably no one would want to buy it anyway.rolleyes.gif

 

mark

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