The ABZ features a satin finished swamp ash body with a maple neck and wenge fretboard. This provides a warmer tone than the traditional ash/maple combination. It’s also the lightest weight of the entire Dingwall line.
I always thought that my next high-end bass would be an Alembic but as soon as I tried out a Dingwall, I was hooked. The fanned frets felt PERFECT from the first run. My ABZ has all of the tones I need and is just an absolute joy to play.
I only went into the shop to randomly try some effects pedals… I came away with an ABZ, the touch and feel of this bass is something out of this world, easy to play and to hold, light as a feather, professionally well made, killer sounds adn looks, how could I leave it hanging in that shop? We don’t get many of these, in this town. Try one if you can, you’ll see!
My oh my!! A month and a half and this bass has become my no#1 and its getting plenty of wear, oh and these strings!! The older they get, the better they play.
I have now decided to sell all my Music Man basses to convert them in more Dingwalls
I definately want a Super J in my collection and will see about getting a Precision lookalike, going by the ABZ quality and performance I can only assume that the other will be also amazing to play.
So long Sterling Ball and welcome Sheldon Dingwall!!
I really can’t say enough good things about my ABZ. I really love how comfortable it is to play, such even tension all over the neck. This will definately not be my last Dingwall!!!
Holy mother of god!
Sheldon Dingwall is lucky he was not around in the dark ages because he would have been burned as a witch, or whatever Canadian dude witches were called.
I recently bagged myself an ABZ and it quite simply is the perfect bass, in looks, playability and versatility.
I just can’t put the thing down, even unplugged it sounds great!
There is definately some kind of alchemy involved here, I’m absolutely sure of it!
Well, ive now properly broken in my beloved ABZ well and trully, its been all over the place with me and is holding up more than well, i still have the original strings on it too, they seem to be getting better the more scummy they get!!!
What a great bass, its a real workhorse!
Truth to tell I thought I’d never see one of these, however on a trip to Vancouver, from Toronto, I encountered this model at L&M. I put my hand around the neck and went’ Oh DAMN but this is coming with me” It’s my first 5er and the fan fret is simple to adapt to. Just whatever you do DON’T LOOK, just play, and play and play. Because you won’t be putting it down anytime soon!!
I found myself wanting to try a Dingwall Bass back in the mid-’90s during my “Original Band” days but there was no way I could afford the models produced at the time. Then fairly recently the (by all accounts fantastic for the money) Combustion Series was released to much fanfare and caught my eye… hard. Quickly enough after that I wasn’t able to make THAT purchase however, the ABZ Series was released and it’s if Sheldon was reading my mind from across the US/Canada border!
The ABZ is within fairly easy reach financially from the Combustion pricepoint and yet was made from Swamp Ash with a Maple Neck & Fretboard, some of my favorite combination of tone woods that make up “My Sound” with a “wipe-on” finish that saves finishing/polishing time and yet still have a variety of colors to choose from. Add to that the amazing FD-3 4L pickups that are unlike any other pickup on the bass market, the Passive Electronics consisting of a Master Volume, Rotary Pickup Selector, and Master Tone for a wide variety of tones without cost, wiring and battery need that your typical Active Preamp has. When you add in the Custom Hipshot Tuners and Multi-Scale Bridge, Neutrik locking input jack,Dunlop Strap-Lok strap pins, counterbored headstock, 7.5″-16″ Compound Radius fretboard & smaller Banjo frets (ALL of which come on the much higher-priced Dingwall models) and having played a number every chance I get, I’ve decided that the ABZ-5 will be the next bass added to my collection… and so will an ABZ-6 when the opportunity comes. I was an exclusive 6-string player for 5+ years before “moving down” to 5s, but the ABZ-6 is so easy and comfortable to play that it deserves another chance from me. Now if I could convince him to make a fretless ABZ as well…
So glad L&M started carrying the Dingwall line i was lucky enough to play a ABZ in the show room the other day. Just wondering if its possible to order one with a Wenge or Rosewood finger board and Trans Blackburst with out the burst? (just transparent black) Thanks.
I started looking for a high end bass because I was getting to a point that i wanted a very specific sound from my instrument. I started shopping around and had no luck anywhere. Not a single company had what i was looking for…untill i stumbled across Dingwall. I came across them first when i read in a magazine that Lee Sklar played them. I decided to check out the company.
WOW i was impressed. The ABZ had EVERYTHING that i wanted in a bass. Swamp Ash body, Maple Fretboard, 5 string, Modern look to it. The Fanned Fret system is AMAZING. And for only 2000$ i couldnt say no.
The attention to detail is exquisite. The body is made from a very solid, very resonant peice of Swamp Ash,the frets and neck are smooth as can be. The Workmanship is some of the best i have ever seen. Thank you Dingwall for making such an amazing instrument and for such a great price. I’m already looking forward to my next one!
Recently purchased ABZ 5 natural from Bass NW.
Simple passive layout: volume, tone, pickup selector.
That’s where any similarity ends and the Dingwall magic begins.
Not enough has been said regarding the passive FD-3 pickups. They are HOT and no problem with output or response. In fact, the alnico magnets in them put out more signal than my previous ‘active’ basses, without all the EQ hair splitting. There is nothing lacking in the Fury/Dingwall passive configuration. Each setting is it’s own world of tones. Another advantage is there are no batteries to worry about!
Depending on your rig, the way you have it set, how and where on the body you play, this bass comes through for every style of music, short of an actual upright bass.
I noticed a bit of pop on the selector switch but I’m not too concerned about that.
The excellent bridge came shipped
with the saddles loose but afterward I intonated, locked the saddles down, and now it’s set.
A Peterson strobe tuner or similar is recommended for initial intonation. The instrument is dead on.
Weight is not an issue.
The fanned frets are not an issue. There is a feeling of satisfaction in playing a low B string without the flabbiness. The even string tension results in an instrument that is piano-like, with over a minute of resonance and I can actually feel in its swamp ash body.
The ABZ price includes a very nice gig bag with lotsa storage pockets including a ‘rain shroud’, and it’s made by Levi. Rubberized handles, zippered folders and pockets for whatever. A complete package IMO.
For me,the sound is worth every Canadian penny.
I’m stoked about finally owning a Dingwall. Now I know what all the hubbub is about. Sure I would LOVE to play a ABZ-3, Sklar or Prima model but if you can afford it, check out the ABZ line and thank you Sheldon and the crew.
I recently bought an ABZ, Its running mate would be a Lakland 55-94 so I was a little worried the passive electonics would not keep up with the LH3 preamp. NO WORRIES, the dingwall cuts though the band mix without being cumbersome and does not interfear with other instruments. I am working out 4-5 nights a week and wear a bass for 4 hours a night on top of my day job. its extreamly light weight and easy to dial up a tone, was not sure I liked a satin finish but when you play outside in Florida, it can get miserable. the satin finish stays smooth and lets your skin breath. This is an awesome bass for those who have to wear one for a living. I can dial up a Metal tone or 50s tone with the flip of the wrist, Hats off to Sheldon on another winner, I will be ordering a custom Dingwall in the not to distant future
A friend of mine kept going on and on about how great Dingwall basses were. I had heard one of the Afterburners about 8 years ago when my band opened for another Christian rock band. After many views of the Dingwall website and countless youtube videos I was hooked!! I immediately put my Elrick NJ5 up on Ebay and I also sold one of my Carvin SB5000′s. I was going to by the Combustion bass, but when the Elrick sold for more than I thought it would I immediately made up my mind to get a ABZ5. I found one on BassCentral and bought it. I was, and still am, floored by the ABZ. A myriad of tones with just a twist of the rotary switch. The notes are so articulate and clear sounding. The day I got the bass I had a gig that night and went ahead and played it. The fanned frets didn’t scare me and our keyboardist was blown away by the shear tenacity of the bass and how it cut through the mix. This is the first “boutique” bass I’ve ever owned that has the balls to play most styles of music, convincingly!!! The only downside of the ABZ5 is…. This may be the last bass I’ll ever buy!!! Sniff, sniff…. Unless I can muster up the money for an Afterburner II!!! Sheldon and Team…. YOU ROCK!!! Thank you, thank you, thank you!!!
tried an ABZ 5 with 2 band glock pre, great sound, compared it to my z3, and AB1 (with same glock pre and fd3′s from around 2009)
the ABZ is a spectacular value, with sound quality and tonal variations that make it as beautiful sounding an instrument as any in the collection. it has a voice its own, while holding its own with the multiple Z’s and AB1′s and 2′s, Z2, and Super J’s i had at my disposal during the comparison, I can’t wait to get one
Undoubtedly the best 5-string bass on the market. Everything from the tone wood to the pickups are just perfect for literally any genre. I bought my ABZ a couple months ago and I haven’t looked back. I picked one up at a local guitar shop and fell in love with it right away. If you’re serious about your tone and you want a bass that plays insanely well, then this is the one for you. Words simply cannot explain one’s relationship with a Dingwall – you will have to play one in order to understand.
I am looking to improve my playing and tone and have heard nothing but great praise from the people that have one. I have recently started pkaying again after 20 years of not I have always wanted a great sounding bass and I am partial to the p bass but the abz looks and sounds great
Just curious… I am lucky enough to live within 10 miles of an official dealer. Will they have a selection of basses to try out, or do your dealers just take orders?
Also, I live in LA but do not have any connections to get into NAMM. Will your reps be showing basses anywhere nearby before, during or after the show, say at the local dealer?
Hi Charles, sorry for the late reply. Bass San Diego usually has something in stock. Our basses sell pretty quick though so it’s a good idea to call first.
Hi I recently purchased from Mark @ Bass Direct UK my Dingwall Afterburner 4 in purpleburst and I am simply amazed at the quality of build & sound, it has already become my go to bass, thank you so much.
One quick question, is it possible to upgrade it into active/passive?
Thanks again & regards
Hi Steph, Thanks so much for the kind words. It is possible to add a pre-amp to your bass. You’d need to find a qualified local tech that can rout the body for a battery box and drill the top for the added controls.
Hello, in March 10th this year, I was in your agent Big Guy Music ordered a ABZ5, do not know when the specific time to arrive.
Looking forward to your reply, thank you.
I have an ABZ fitted with a JOhn East P-retro preamp.. It has a rechareable battery that sits in the control cavity and is charged through the jack socket… Fully reversible, no holes required…
Our current lead time is 9-12 months from the date of order.
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