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wookie
Intermediate Member
Username: wookie

Post Number: 181
Registered: 8-2010
Posted on Saturday, November 30, 2013 - 3:10 pm:   Edit Post

I don't know if anyone does this but I'm looking for a Zon sonus (I think) I haven't played one but I do have a Legacy and it's pretty nifty. So I'm putting this here for you smart people in hopes that someone knows someone or something. I don't have to trade an Alembic, but I have lots of basses so let me know. or I could sell something too... I'm just lazy and I hate making ads.

I'd also like to know the whole hierarchy of Zon if someone here knows it. my Legacy is from the 90's with no truss rod and it's awesome, but it's not comfortable.

let me know guys! Thank you for your infinite wisdom in advance : )
bassilisk
Intermediate Member
Username: bassilisk

Post Number: 127
Registered: 4-2009
Posted on Sunday, December 01, 2013 - 4:34 pm:   Edit Post

I bought a Legacy in the late 80's, back when Joe was still in Buffalo, NY. It was my first boutique bass. I saw an ad in Guitar Player magazine (no bass lit back then) and knew I had to have it.

There were no retail outlets in NYC at the time so he shipped one down to his friend's business (Earth Straps in Staten Island) for me to try. I spent the afternoon with it and only had one request. His original version had the neck pickup right up against the end of the fingerboard and I asked him to move it, similar to the placement on a Ken Smith. Apparently he really liked the idea because that's where it wound up down the line. He only made a couple of models back then - the Legacy with 1 or 2 pickups, and a very "modern" looking model called a Scepter - these are rarer than hen's teeth. I've never seen a used one for sale anywhere since then.

I really loved it and played it exclusively for 6 or 7 years. Of course, the hype about "stronger than steel composite never needing a truss rod" was totally embraced by me, so occasionally while playing I liked to hit some harmonics and push the headstock for a whammy effect. It sure sounded cool! Not such a good idea apparently - I did eventually bend the neck and with no way to straighten it, it went into storage for many years.

I still have it and last year I took it out - playability is just at the uncomfortable level and it's in bad need of a fret job, so I contacted Zon (Joe remembered me!) for repair info. Unfortunately my finances didn't allow me to follow through, but it is on my to do list because it was one of the best sounding basses I ever had. I always felt comfortable playing it as well.

After a few years the business picked up enough for them to move out to California, where they are today. I had a Sonus (ash body, bolt-on graphite with Bart J pickups) for a while. It played beautifully but I found that particular one to be a very aggressive sounding bass and I flipped it. Exceptional build quality though, as per Zon's rep.

Here's my Legacy with custom wound Barts and Joe's proprietary preamp in metallic Pearl.

Zon Legacy
wookie
Intermediate Member
Username: wookie

Post Number: 182
Registered: 8-2010
Posted on Monday, December 02, 2013 - 12:37 pm:   Edit Post

Very nice, Sir!
I have the same model from the 90's it's blue and fretless. It's awesome.
bsee
Senior Member
Username: bsee

Post Number: 2648
Registered: 3-2004
Posted on Sunday, December 15, 2013 - 11:20 pm:   Edit Post

I've owned a Legacy and still regularly gig a Sonus. The Legacy seemed to have a wider neck and was less comfortable to me. There are a variety of flavors of Sonus. Don't worry about the truss rod unless you're planning something really exotic with the tuning. My "regular" Sonus V has a tone similar to a Fender Jazz with a maple board.
wookie
Intermediate Member
Username: wookie

Post Number: 185
Registered: 8-2010
Posted on Monday, December 16, 2013 - 5:07 am:   Edit Post

great bsee!! is it fretless? want to trade? : )


there's a fretless sonus on talkbass but I don't know about the Zon hierarchy to know if the price is good.

thoughts? comments? anyone?
bsee
Senior Member
Username: bsee

Post Number: 2652
Registered: 3-2004
Posted on Monday, December 16, 2013 - 11:47 pm:   Edit Post

Mine isn't for sale or trade. As far as the hierarchy goes, there really isn't one. The Sonus basses are pretty similar with the exception of string spacing and electronics/pickup configurations. One or two pickups, single versus dual coils and pickup placement are the primary variables. The "regular" Zon string spacing is around 17mm at the bridge and Jazz-like at the nut, but they also offer 19mm at the bridge standard on some models. There's not really any better or worse, just options for different preferences. Like Alembic, they can be simple or have fancy top woods. The neck can be plain or have abalone dots. There are way fewer and less exotic options, but the concept is the same making it a bit more complicated to estimate values. In recent years, there are models with wood necks that are less expensive and less interesting. IMO, the really unique thing about a Zon is the composite neck, so why buy a wood version?

As far as the Legacy goes, it felt like the spacing at the nut was wider, though I never measured it. That feeling is why I still play a Sonus regularly and no longer own a Legacy.

By the way, Guitar Center was a dealer back when I bought mine. I went to the five different Guitar Center stores within two hours of my home to pick through their inventory. The best sounding and feeling one of the bunch also happens to have a little flame figure going on in the ash. I haven't seen another like it.
wookie
Intermediate Member
Username: wookie

Post Number: 186
Registered: 8-2010
Posted on Tuesday, December 17, 2013 - 3:36 am:   Edit Post

Bsee! You are an invaluable resource! Thank you so much for that.
enzo
Advanced Member
Username: enzo

Post Number: 343
Registered: 4-2009
Posted on Sunday, January 12, 2014 - 8:49 pm:   Edit Post

Hey Lloyd, I sent you an email. I might sell my Sonus.

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