When I was asked to do another Yamaha bass review for this edition, I jumped at the chance. From one of the most trusted instrument manufacturers, these basses are known for their top-notch quality and enjoyability to play for hours at a time.
The TRBX 605FM is the five-string 600s version within the new TRBX series which takes the classic model to the next level offering EQ system upgrades and new YGD H5 humbucking pickups. This bass offers a lot for the money with these changes added to an already solidly playable, lightweight, and great sounding bass. I had a lot of fun running it through the paces.
Overall, I couldn’t find any real cons about with this bass; just lots of pluses, so I am going to highlight some of my favorite features.
Aesthetically, I love the look and feel of the alder body and dark red burst flamed maple top — it looks like a hard-rocking bass. It is lightweight making it comfortable to play and move around the fretboard with well-spaced strings and frets that could easily make this an everyday player in any genre.
This bass significantly exhibits and embodies balance in everything it does. I’m a huge fan of the straight string pull from the nut to the headstock designs, and the TRBX has it giving a balanced tension feel and sound across all strings as well as tuning stability and overtone reduction.
The tone, volume, and sound are also very well balanced across the strings and up and down the board. While I was ecstatic to see this model offers a full 2nd octave (24 frets), once you get above the 21st fret, the sound thins out and is harder to access.
Tone-wise, I really like what this bass has to offer. Its classic tonewood mix gives plenty of open bottom end. It has an easy to use flexible active/passive 3-band EQ, and I love the option of an Active Mode and Passive Mode with an easy to flip front onboard switch. Within Active Mode, I was able to get deeply rounded and billowy lows even for the low B that didn’t disappoint or back down mids through the highs. In Passive Mode, the tone shape was classically warm, punchy, and fat throughout. I was able to easily color the tone through multiple pedals and pre-amp effects without losing any of its power and deep punch.
Since I play mostly active basses, another feature I’ve come to love is an easy to load in and out battery port. This model offers this handy slide in and lock battery load-in/out design, so no need for the screwdriver. Also, there is a nice little LED battery alert light feature that indicates power losses which would be handy on dark stages or for quick change-outs on the fly — which has saved more than a few gigs.
This is simply a solid bass for the money! Yamaha keeps us happy with another great line of well-designed and crafted basses in the TRBX line. This model offers a lot of value with a trainload of everything you would expect and ask for in a bass. Tons of great player and control features, desired balanced deep sound, and easy tone control result in a fun, easy to play, lightweight, and versatile bass that one wouldn’t expect at such an approachable price point making this bass stand out well ahead in a crowded class.
I highly encourage players out there to give this bass a try in person if you can, it’s well worth considering for any level of playing.
For more information and specifications, visit usa.Yamaha.com.
Street price: $649.99