SX Lap1 NA Lap Steel Guitar Review

SX Lap1 NA Lap Steel Guitar Review

SX Lap Steel Features

  • A full size 36 fret lap steel guitar
  • Mahogany body with rosewood fretboard
  • Width at the Nut: 2 1/16", String Spacing: 3/8"
  • Diecast chrome tuners, pickup covers, V and T knobs
  • 22 3/4" Scale
  • Single coil pickup w/ 8K ohm resistance
  • String Sizes: 0.35mm, 0.42mm, 0.69mm, 0.90mm, 1.15mm, 1.40mm (not on the one I have!)
  • A protective carry bag included
  • Length: 33", Body Length: 13", Width at Lower Bout: 8 1/4", Width at Upper Bout: 5 7/8", Body Thickness: 1 1/2"
  • On the Subject of 'Pro' Gear

    Read thru the Craigslist ‘Musicians’ section for your city some time. How many times do you see the phrase ‘must have pro gear’? You see that in many, if not most, of the ‘Guitarist, Bassist, or Whatever Wanted’ ads….right?

    Pick Punch!

    I just got this super-cool little device for Christmas from my daughter! I had stumbled across it on the Web just a couple of weeks before Christmas, and knew I had to have one, so I put it on my 'Wish List' and my kiddo got me one.

    DiMarzio DP120 'Model One' bass pickup

    DiMarzio DP120 Model One bass pickup

    I've been looking for the perfect pickup for my Epiphone EB-0 bass, and I have finally found it!
    If you 've been reading my blog, you know that I was terribly disappointed in the Artec 'mudbucker' (anyone want that thing?), and I don't really like the way the Epiphone stock pickup sounds (not a real EB-0 type tone at all). So when I got the opportunity and the bucks together, I bought this DiMarzio DP120. It's a drop-in replacement for the stock pickup; fits like a glove.

    Acoustic Amplification B10 Bass Practice Amp


    Playing with ‘Feeling’ vs. Playing with Technical Proficiency

    Playing with ‘Feeling’ vs. Playing with Technical Proficiency

    I just read a couple of Craigslist posts here in Austin about a certain currently-popular guitarist, the argument being about whether or not he’s a Blues guitarist or a Fusion guitarist, and about whether or not his playing has any ‘feel’ to it or if it’s purely technical in nature.

    That got me to thinking about the relative merits of ‘feeling’ vs. technical proficiency in the context of playing a musical instrument. Now, bear in mind that I’m an old guy, and realize that the names I’m about to throw out here are not the currently best-known names in the biz…but if you’re any kind of student of your instrument (specifically, guitar and bass), you’ve heard these names, and probably heard a lot of their work as well.

    Let’s take Eric Clapton...

    MORE: Artec EBC4-CR Bass Pickup Mudbucker Clone

    Artec EBC4-CR Bass Pickup Mudbucker Clone

    That's it! I give up!

    I received the new Artec pickup from the Ebay seller and installed it in my bass. And Guess What? IT HUMS, TOO!!!

    I don't know if it's inherent in a 'humbucking' pickup that has that much gain/DC resistance (30 K), but this thing buzzes like a chainsaw, no matter what I try!

    It's been years since I've heard a 60's Gibson EB-0 bass, but I really don't remember them humming like this, and this pickup is supposed to be a dead-ringer, tone-wise, for those original Gibson pickups. Huge, Enormous, Fat, Tumescent bottom-end...but virtually ZERO highs.

    Artec EBC4-CR Bass Pickup Mudbucker Clone

    Artec EBC4-CR Bass Pickup Mudbucker Clone

    If you read my review of the Epiphone EB-0 bass that I recently acquired, you know that I got it with a bad pickup, and was looking to replace it, hopefully with something better than the stock Epi 'mudbucker'.

    So I began a quest for the replacement pickup, looking at the DiMarzio Model One, Darkstar, etc., all of which cost more than I really wanted to spend on a bass I only paid $100 for. Then I spotted the Artec EBC4-CR on Ebay, and available from Guitar Parts Resource as well. Although the price on GPR was a good deal more than the ones listed on Ebay, I decided to go with GPR because they were shipping from Ohio, rather than from Hong Kong. I just thought it the safer way to go.

    However, when I received the pickup and installed it, there was this absolutely horrible 60-Hz hum, approx. 1/4 as loud as the thru-put signal! Well, I thought they probably had a bad one in their inventory, so I returned it, stating the issue it had with the humming (this is supposedly a humbucking pickup, remember...). They sent me out another one...

    Gear Review - First Act model ME105 Bass Guitar

    Gear Review - First Act model ME105 Bass Guitar

    Don’t laugh just yet….this little bass is far, far better than the price would suggest! The one I have was advertised (used) on Austin Craigslist for $30, but I ended up swapping a couple of old effect pedals for it straight-up. It had stickers and the residue of stickers all over it, badly needed a truss-rod adjustment and overall setup, and generally looked and played like crap…until I cleaned off the stickers, boiled out the strings (which weren’t really old to begin with), and did a decent setup on it.

    General Description/Features:

    - Double-cutaway solid Basswood body
    - White pearloid pickguard
    - Maple neck/Rosewood fingerboard, 32” scale
    - ‘P-Bass’ style pickup
    - Cast, sealed ‘Gotoh-style’ tuners
    - Single tone/volume controls

    The finish appears to be a translucent blue with sparkles, over a black base.

    Douglas Pisces Bass Review

    Douglas Pisces Bass Review

    See all the specifications of this bass here:
    Douglas Pisces Bass

    Douglas Pisces Bass Initial Impressions

    This bass is basically a ‘lookalike’ of a ’51 P-Bass, or if you like, early Telecaster Bass. The model I have is the two-tone sunburst, and I have to say, first thing, that the finish on this bass is just absolutely gorgeous. I’m sure it’s a polyester or polyurethane finish, but it doesn’t seem to be any thicker than a nitrocellulose lacquer sunburst finish would be. It’s very well buffed out, to a fantastic high gloss. I’m not such a huge fan of that enormous black scratchplate, but I think if it were white, against this finish, it would be even more obtrusive. I plan to take it off and see what the finish underneath looks like, and if it’s as good as the rest of the body that’s not hidden by the scratchplate, I just may make a replica from Plexiglas, either plain clear or in a tinted/smoke type, so you can see the sunburst outline thru it. Enough about the finish…suffice it to say that it’s very, very nice. When I first pulled it out of the box, my mouth involuntarily formed the word, ‘Wow!”. That just about says it all.

    I found just one little issue in my first few minutes with the instrument; that of its tendency to want to ‘spit out’ the cable plugged into its input jack. The jack’s tip-contact tang was a bit long, so it didn’t “latch” onto the plug tip properly. I tweaked it with a pair of needlenose pliers until it worked, but it’s still not optimal, so I’ll be replacing the jack with a new one very soon.

    I had to do the tiniest bit of tweaking on the setup to eliminate a fret-buzz here & there, and it will probably be a bit of an ongoing process until the neck gets fully ‘settled in’ with being played on. The intonation, as best I could determine by ear alone, seemed just about perfect right out of the box.

    Click to read more of the Douglas Pisces bass review.

    worthim's picture

    Douglas Hadron 625 Guitar

    Douglas Hadron 625 Guitar

    Douglas WRL 590 Floyd TBL Blue

    Douglas Hadron 625 is constructed with dual cutaway solid Mahogany body with neck-thru design is light-weight (7 lbs) and has comfy contours for hours of play! HSH pickup configuration gives you a palette of tonal variations to dial in. 22 frets on the 3 piece mahogany neck opens up those high notes for you to solo to your heart's content.


    worthim's picture

    Douglas Pisces Bass

    Douglas Pisces Bass

    Douglas Pisces Bass Description

    The Douglas Pisces by Rondo Music is a great inexpensive bass with really cool retro features! To this reviewer, it looks like it is fashioned after a Fender Telecaster bass.

    The Douglas Pisces bass body is made out of solid alder. The body isn't laminated, but is made from a few pieces of solid alder.

    The color choices are white, black and 2-tone tobacco burst. These models come with a bolt-on Maple neck with the 'new' Rondo headstock design. The well constructed design has an adjustable truss rod, very smooth maple fingerboard. As always, Rondo Music designs their necks and bridges to be fully adjustable allowing for superior action. This bass guitar is really easy and fun to play. non locking tuners

    The body is shaped with comfortable contours allowing you to play for hours. In the body rests one single passive pickup, one volume and one tone control, fully adjustable bridge, and chrome hardware

    Douglas Pisces Specifications

  • Width of the neck at the nut: 1 21/32"
  • Width at the 12th fret 2 3/16".
  • String spacing at the bridge 3/4" At the nut 1/2"
  • 20 Frets Scale Length 34"
  • Overall length 45"
  • Width at the widest point: 13"
  • Actual Weight is only 8.5 lbs


    Douglas Pisces and Fender Tele Bass Compared

    Overall, this bass has the retro features and the playability of the old standard - the Fender Telecaster Bass. Not comparing it to the value of that classic, but I gotta admit it looks, plays, and sounds pretty cool!

    Thanks to Jeff at for his awesome GUITAR PICTURE! Visit for more great vintage guitar and bass images!

    Get the Douglas Pisces Bass here!

  • worthim's picture

    DIY SX Jazz Bass Project

    SX Jazz Bass

    SX Jazz Bass Project - BEFORE Pic

    I love SX Jazz Bass Guitars! I regularly search for B-Stock guitar and bass items. This time, I found an SX Jazz bass with a peeling pickguard. It sat around for a while in the Rondo site, so I didn't really hurry to buy the B-Stock SX jazz bass.

    B-Stock Bass Guitars

    I also noticed an SX Jazz style bass neck that was finished, but needed the nut slot cut. I thought, "That's a great project for bass guitar." So, I made a list of the parts I would need to make a really cool natural jazz bass with black pickguard and black block inlays. That has always been a favorite look (to me) for the jazz bass.

    Disclosure: We are a professional review site that receives compensation from the companies whose products we review. We review each product thoroughly and give high marks to only the very best. We are independently owned and the opinions expressed here are our own.

    To summarize, I needed the B-stock jazz bass, one pickguard with 2 single-coil pickup slots, the neck, and 2 US Genuine Fender® pickups. (Duh.) Ya gotta upgrade the pickups.

    Around the time I was preparing for all that I noticed (on Austin.Craigslist) a beautiful, one-piece, solid mahogany P-Bass body. (Ding! Salivate...) That story is in another blog post!

    So, I got all the parts in, stripped the SX Jazz Bass, and fitted the pickguard by filling the screw holes and drilling new ones to match the pickguard. With the pickguard set, I mounted the pickups by drilling pickup mount holes in the proper locations, and securing them with a foam mount instead of springs. Under the foam is a grounded brass plate to reduce noise a bit. Read More to see the finished bass guitar!

    worthim's picture

    Yamaha APX500 Review

    Yamaha APX500 Review

    The Yamaha APX500 review I found on youtube is a real good one! The reviewer gives a complete overview of the nstrument unplugged. In looking for others, covering the guitar plugged in, I found the latter video.

    I'm looking for a yamaha acoustic electric, and found one of these for trade on Austin Craigslist... In my search, I have discovered the tonal quality is fairly rich, and the Yamaha APX500 is moderately priced.

    Check out the Yamaha APX500FM with a great thin profile and beautiful Flamed Maple top!


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