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ESP LTD B-206SM 6-String Bass Spalted Maple 

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SKU 
#513745000954000
Top Rated

Overview

  • Ash body with spalted maple top
  • Bolt-on maple-walnut neck
  • 35" scale
Description & Specs
  • MSRP:
    $713.00
  • Your Savings:
    - $214.00
  • Your Price:
    $49900

In Stock & Ready To Ship

Gold Coverage: (What’s This?)

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See All ESP 6+ String Electric Bass
ESP

Get your kicks on a 6.

A spalted maple top and ash body combine for beauty and tone on the striking ESP B-206 6 string bass. ESP pickups at the neck and bridge with volume and balance controls are complemented by active 3-band EQ for maximum tone tweakability. 24 XJ frets and abalone dot inlays on a rosewood fingerboard. Maple-walnut neck has a 35" scale.

Case sold separately.

Features

  • Ash body with spalted maple top
  • Bolt-on maple-walnut neck
  • 35" scale
  • Rosewood fingerboard
  • Standard 54mm nut
  • 24 XJ frets
  • Abalone dot inlays
  • Black nickel hardware
  • ESP-LTD tuners
  • ESP DB-6 bridge
  • ESP SB-6 pickup set
  • Volume and balance controls
  • ESP ABQ3 3-band active EQ
  • Case sold separately

If you're ready for more strings, this is an affordable and worthy 6-string bass.

 
Customer Reviews
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Review Snapshot®

by PowerReviews
ESPLTD B-206SM 6-String Bass
 
4.7

(based on 26 reviews)

Ratings Distribution

  • 5 Stars

     

    (21)

  • 4 Stars

     

    (3)

  • 3 Stars

     

    (1)

  • 2 Stars

     

    (0)

  • 1 Stars

     

    (1)

100%

of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

Pros

  • Fun to play (5)
  • Good feel (5)
  • Good tone (5)
  • Solid electronics (5)

Cons

    Best Uses

    • Jamming (6)
    • Practicing (5)
    • Small venues (4)
    • School bands (3)
      • Reviewer Profile:
      • Experienced (4)

    Most Liked Positive Review

     

    Great Bass

    This is the first 6 string bass I have ever individually owned and I have to say, compared to my passive Fender P-Bass, this thing plays like an angel.

    Pros- The...Read complete review

    This is the first 6 string bass I have ever individually owned and I have to say, compared to my passive Fender P-Bass, this thing plays like an angel.

    Pros- The string spacing is fantastic. The problem I had with some of the Ibanez sixers I played is the crazy large amount of space between the strings and the thickness of the fretboard. That problem isn't there with this ESP. The fretboard, while still enormous, isn't so big that it's impossible to play. I can reach the B string with no problem. Another pro is the epic tone and 3-Band EQ. I play in a metal band and the active pickups allow me to output that crazy dark tone with a necessary amount of twang that's just perfect. I also love the finish, but the description is a bit misleading. The top is not spalted maple, it's regular maple that's painted and stained to look spalted. I don't have an issue with that but some people might.

    Cons- This bass is by no means perfect. The stock action is extremely low, and as a result, there is lots of fret buzz. This problem can be pretty easily fixed with a few twists to the dual truss rods. In some spots, the maple wood doesn't feel like it was sanded at all. Several spots on the back of the body feel very rough. Even though this doesn't affect playing, it bothers me a bit. Last but certainly not least, the thing that makes this a recording bass in my book is how unbelievably heavy it is. It weighs well over 10 pounds. If you're going to play this live, strap locks are basically required because the weight of this thing will cause it to fall out of the strap for sure.

    Overall, this bass has a fantastic sound. I would not recommend using it in live shows on big stages since you'll most likely be moving around a lot and it will be tiring and you risk it falling out of the strap. If it is to be used live, I would say try and limit it to smaller venues. For a recording bass, or if you're looking for sound and size and weight is no issue, I say this is easily the best 6 string available for the price.

    VS

    Most Liked Negative Review

     

    Okay but not fantastic.

    I had this bass for about a year.
    First things first, I didn't hate the bass but there were a few things I didn't like once I got perspective from my fender Jazz...Read complete review

    I had this bass for about a year.
    First things first, I didn't hate the bass but there were a few things I didn't like once I got perspective from my fender Jazz bass.

    1. This thing is heavy! After playing a set of songs with my church band, my shoulder would start to hurt
    2. There is not much in the way of tone. Granted this thing has plenty of low end and all, and there is eq adjustabliity. But I think the ESP pickups sound quite sterile as if there is no distinct sound to this guitar, just... does what is needs to do and thats it.

    I will say that the spalted maple is abosolutely gorgeous and I still love it even though I have sold it now.
    The Bass does have TWO truss rods and it was deliverey properly set up.
    The pickups don't have a huge dynamic range which is something I have spotted in cheap basses where if you are playing soft it is really quiet and if you pluck slightly harder then the volume shoots through the roof. This bass doesnt do that, its pretty consistent and thus easier to be part of a band and not this annoying thing that makes loud noises sometimes.

    All in all a good solid bass but don't expect any real nice tone out of it unless you are willing to look at upgrading your pickups (good luck) and even then you still dont know.
    I would suggest saving a few more hundrend clams and getting perhaps and ibanez with bartolinis.

    Reviewed by 26 customers

    Sort by

    Displaying reviews 1-10

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    3.0

    Okay but not fantastic.

    By Ultra_Samurai

    from Australia

    About Me Experienced

    Pros

    • Even String Volume
    • Fun To Play
    • Good Feel
    • Solid Electronics

    Cons

    • Flat Sound

    Best Uses

    • Jamming
    • Practicing
    • School Bands
    • Small Venues

    Comments about ESP LTD B-206SM 6-String Bass:

    I had this bass for about a year.
    First things first, I didn't hate the bass but there were a few things I didn't like once I got perspective from my fender Jazz bass.

    1. This thing is heavy! After playing a set of songs with my church band, my shoulder would start to hurt
    2. There is not much in the way of tone. Granted this thing has plenty of low end and all, and there is eq adjustabliity. But I think the ESP pickups sound quite sterile as if there is no distinct sound to this guitar, just... does what is needs to do and thats it.

    I will say that the spalted maple is abosolutely gorgeous and I still love it even though I have sold it now.
    The Bass does have TWO truss rods and it was deliverey properly set up.
    The pickups don't have a huge dynamic range which is something I have spotted in cheap basses where if you are playing soft it is really quiet and if you pluck slightly harder then the volume shoots through the roof. This bass doesnt do that, its pretty consistent and thus easier to be part of a band and not this annoying thing that makes loud noises sometimes.

    All in all a good solid bass but don't expect any real nice tone out of it unless you are willing to look at upgrading your pickups (good luck) and even then you still dont know.
    I would suggest saving a few more hundrend clams and getting perhaps and ibanez with bartolinis.

    Comment on this review

    (3 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

     
    4.0

    Great Bass

    By Bassoon401

    from Rhode Island

    About Me Experienced

    Ask me a question

    Pros

    • Cool Looking Finish
    • Fun To Play
    • Good Feel
    • Good Tone

    Cons

    • Cheap Feeling Wood
    • Extremely Heavy
    • Fret Buzz

    Best Uses

    • Jamming
    • Practicing
    • Recording
    • School Bands
    • Small Venues

    Comments about ESP LTD B-206SM 6-String Bass:

    This is the first 6 string bass I have ever individually owned and I have to say, compared to my passive Fender P-Bass, this thing plays like an angel.

    Pros- The string spacing is fantastic. The problem I had with some of the Ibanez sixers I played is the crazy large amount of space between the strings and the thickness of the fretboard. That problem isn't there with this ESP. The fretboard, while still enormous, isn't so big that it's impossible to play. I can reach the B string with no problem. Another pro is the epic tone and 3-Band EQ. I play in a metal band and the active pickups allow me to output that crazy dark tone with a necessary amount of twang that's just perfect. I also love the finish, but the description is a bit misleading. The top is not spalted maple, it's regular maple that's painted and stained to look spalted. I don't have an issue with that but some people might.

    Cons- This bass is by no means perfect. The stock action is extremely low, and as a result, there is lots of fret buzz. This problem can be pretty easily fixed with a few twists to the dual truss rods. In some spots, the maple wood doesn't feel like it was sanded at all. Several spots on the back of the body feel very rough. Even though this doesn't affect playing, it bothers me a bit. Last but certainly not least, the thing that makes this a recording bass in my book is how unbelievably heavy it is. It weighs well over 10 pounds. If you're going to play this live, strap locks are basically required because the weight of this thing will cause it to fall out of the strap for sure.

    Overall, this bass has a fantastic sound. I would not recommend using it in live shows on big stages since you'll most likely be moving around a lot and it will be tiring and you risk it falling out of the strap. If it is to be used live, I would say try and limit it to smaller venues. For a recording bass, or if you're looking for sound and size and weight is no issue, I say this is easily the best 6 string available for the price.

    Comment on this review

    (5 of 7 customers found this review helpful)

     
    5.0

    Nice instrument for the money.

    By goldfinger777777

    from Chicago, IL

    About Me Experienced

    Ask me a question

    Verified Buyer

    Pros

    • Awesome Price
    • Fun To Play
    • Good quality
    • Good Tone
    • Solid Electronics

    Cons

    • Frett-end Edges Rough
    • Seriously Heavy

    Best Uses

    • Jamming
    • Practicing

    Comments about ESP LTD B-206SM 6-String Bass:

    This bass is solid and heavy. You could use it to demo a brick wall and it probably wouldn't even go out of tune. This can be a negative due to its extreme weight. This instrument is very heavy even by bass standards.

    The tone is warm with excellent sustain.

    The electronics are responsive and offer a wide range of tonal characteristics.

    Be prepared to do an exetnsive setup; string heights, intonation, pick-up height (min). I found that the fret-ends along the lower edge of the neck are very high and tend to grab my hand as I slide up-and-down the neck. After re-shaping the frett ends a bit this bass plays awesome.

    Comment on this review

    (1 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

     
    5.0

    Outstanding Bass

    By Millo-Salsa

    from Honolulu, HI

    About Me Experienced

    Pros

    • Fun To Play
    • Good Feel
    • Good Pick Up
    • Good Tone
    • Solid Electronics

    Cons

      Best Uses

      • Jamming
      • Practicing
      • Small Venues

      Comments about ESP LTD B-206SM 6-String Bass:

      this bass is very well made, the details on the construction are nice. There are not flat frets or anything like that. In general an excellent bass for anyone looking to upgrade to six strings.

      Comment on this review

      (0 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

       
      5.0

      For the money its well worth it

      By StratMan56

      from Some where TN

      About Me Professional Musician

      Ask me a question

      Pros

      • Fun To Play
      • Good Feel
      • Good Pick Up
      • Good Tone
      • Solid Electronics

      Cons

        Best Uses

        • Jamming

        Comments about ESP LTD B-206SM 6-String Bass:

        Wow is all I can say ,I would sell all my fenders before selling this baby. Nice action.

        Comment on this review

        (5 of 6 customers found this review helpful)

         
        5.0

        Really nice for the price...

        By Bones

        from Santa Cruz, CA

        About Me Professional Musician

        Verified Buyer

        Pros

        • Good Feel
        • Good Tone
        • Solid Electronics

        Cons

        • Fret Buzz

        Best Uses

        • Jamming
        • Practicing
        • Recording
        • Rock Concerts
        • School Bands
        • Small Venues

        Comments about ESP LTD B-206SM 6-String Bass:

        I wanted to get a 6 string since I've only had 4 and 5 string basses and wanted to try a 6 string out but didn't want to spend a lot. I looked at all the others in this price range and this is the best of them. It has a nice active 3 band electronics (as opposed to 2 band or just a Fat boost), nice EMG style pups and a great spalted maple top and solid tuners and bridge. I got one used in good condition and it only had a minor ding in the end of the head-stock - which i was able to smooth over with some fine sandpaper and then rub with a little wax to make it shiny. You can barely see it now. Also, it buzzed on the high C and high G at the first fret but i loosened the truss rods (yes, it has DUAL truss rods!) a quarter turn and the tiny bit of extra relief made the buzzing go away. The electronics are good - not a huge amount of change but enough boost to get more phat and more pop. The price is so low you can easily upgrade the pups and preamp if you want and still be out only about 1K$. This is a really nice looking and sounding 6 string for the price with better than average value.

        Comment on this review

        (5 of 7 customers found this review helpful)

         
        5.0

        BEAST!

        By tanbo15

        from El Centro, CA

        Comments about ESP LTD B-206SM 6-String Bass:

        i gave it a nine overall because in order for you to really hear the sound you have to have a decent rig or you might just not like the sound :S, the second reason is that ive gone through a lot of strings on this bass, and about 4 out of 5 times its been the D string.....idk if thats just my bad luck or the bass, but in my opinion this is the best bass in this price range and better that some other pricier basses
        this bass has the features you expect but executed in a great way, the 3 band eq is excelent and allows you to get any sound you might want or need. the tuners are good, bridge is good, and the pick ups are good as well
        very well made for this price range, ive played other basses at locall music stores that are six strings and way more expensive and this bass holds up
        cost effective bass, with a sound of a much more expensive one

        Comment on this review

        (11 of 13 customers found this review helpful)

         
        5.0

        Blown Away

        By Russell Durity

        from Trinidad & Tobago

        Comments about ESP LTD B-206SM 6-String Bass:

        I resisted the temptation to buy a 5 or 6-string bass for the past six years.I have however tested a few made by Yamaha,Ibanez,Carvin and Fender,in music stores ,and owned by others in my country,Trinidad & Tobago, and have found none to my liking.I either didn't like the overall sound of the instrument,that is,pick-ups and electronics,the width of the neck,or string action, so i was happy with my Fender Jazz,until i saw the ESP LTD B-206SM ON this website, i was sold on the look. I ordered my instrument from another website(This website was out of stock),and received it in two weeks(i ordered a Hard-shell case as well,and took most of the time).My instrument arrived in mint condition,no blemishes anywhere,it was "gig ready" right out of the box,and is well balanced,the neck is narrow to my surprise,and the action,though a bit high for me,was easy to adjust with no problems.It has a single Truss rod,but it's a "Bi-Flex" Truss rod,which is very useful,as the neck can be adjusted in either direction,very useful in the tropics where i live.The acoustic sound of the B-206SM is unbelievably clear,whats even better,is that the ESP pick-ups and on-board preamp reproduces that sound accurately.It's three-band EQ is very easy to use and just as accurate,no sudden increase/decrease features,but rather a gradual more "natural" approach to sound shaping,and this is a feature i love,i also love the extra "heel" at the bottom of the neck,it sits inside of the body,i suspect it contributes to extra sustain.The B-206SM uses one 9-volt battery,as opposed to two,this i like not just for the economics,but because the preamp doesn't come across as overwhelmingly loud as other models,i'm using a GK 800RB,as my bass rig,and it sounds fantastic on it with little or no tweaking on the amp,the neck and bridge pick-ups give me a wide variety of tonal possibilities,and amazingly,with almost no damping,they sound just as clear as pole-piece pick-ups,amazing clarity for Soap-bar pick-ups,i was never a fan,but i am now,ESP did a great job with these.Alto Music tells me that all ESP guitars ship with SIT Strings,so that's what i'm using and they sound great!!.I use D'Addario EXL 170s with my Fender Jazz,and the SITs sound similar to those,at least to me.Finally,i have had the B-206SM now for almost a month,i've been playing it daily for 6-8 hours a day,preparing for a Gospel concert(the transition from 4-string to 6-string isn't easy for me),did the gig on the 29th of May with full Orchestra and singers, a two hour performance,and the battery held up,i had a spare,but thankfully,i didn't need it,i'm still using the same battery it shipped with.This is a great design by ESP,clearly a great item for the price,a 3-band EQ is rare on guitars in this price range.Check out ESP Guitars.com for additional info,and even a downloadable "Owners Manual".Thanks ESP,

        Comment on this review

        (3 of 5 customers found this review helpful)

         
        5.0

        Good, but...

        By Anonymous

        from Undisclosed

        Comments about ESP LTD B-206SM 6-String Bass:

        I've already reviewed two other ESP basses, so this should be easy as pie--This bass was set up in tune and perfectly set right from the box. The action is great. There is a 97% buzz-less fret board, aside from the 6th fret B string on mine. The pick-ups are great - EQ is great.Here's the quality problem. The back of the tuning heads are the color of a fairly (pale) rusted penny, and that's not affecting the sound, but it's annoying that they couldn't have checked. ASLO, the bolts that keep the neck and body attached are a tab bit discolored, and screwed on almost wrong. --All in all, this is a wonderful bass, the finish is great, the pickups sound great, it's easy to tune, and is (as much as I WOULDN'T have liked to know) very resistant to drops, even dropping it onto a steel girder, and then the floor.

        Comment on this review

        (0 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

         
        5.0

        Following Up To My Previous Post...

        By NDNplanner

        from Albuquerque, NM

        Ask me a question

        Comments about ESP LTD B-206SM 6-String Bass:

        Following up to my previous review, i took the bass in to get the wiring problem fixed, and the short of it is, while i was disappointed that i had to take a brand new instrument in to be repaired right off the bat, now that i have had time to really get to know this bass, i would highly recommend it to anyone! Great action and response. Cheers.

        Comment on this review

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