4805 N. Borthwick Ave Portland, OR 97217 USA
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WOW ! I just got it, and so far (after 30 mins.) my impressions are:
-I love the size/form factor
-string spacing, a big concern of mine, is great. Any closer would've been too close
-man are these Lane Poors BRIGHT ! I expected it to be less bright than my Music Man, but it eclipses the MM on BOTH the top and bottom--big range of tones, which I like. I assume the "skank" is partly the new strings and my 3-way speaker box--I need to turn down that mid/tweet !
-I'm pleasantly surprised at the tension--string vibrato is a breeze, but no sloppiness
-the workmanship is great, your custom brass fittings are especially nice.
Kudos all around David. . .

Dear David;
Received the bass today and it's really MORE than I'd hoped for!! Not that I want to pay more for my next one - but you really should get more for your basses. The craftsmanship is wonderful. The bass is light, sounds fantastic, looks like a million bucks, is easy to play, etc., etc. I'm really pleased with the headphones amp - now I can play anytime, anywhere w/o lugging alot of stuff around. Thank you - really! O.K., later, back to my bass.
Mike (NY)

Just wanted to send you a quick note saying that I really love playing the 5-string you made me!! It fits me in every way! The sound is phenomenal!! It is so good, that the other players I play with (drummers, horn players, and even singers!) always comment on it. When other musicians notice it, that's saying something! Thanks again! Q

Glad to hear you made it back! Still love the bass. You mentioned there were a couple of "oops" when you made it. I believe I've noticed a couple of them, but I had to look pretty hard. The guy where I teach is known as the "Guitar Doctor" around here, and he was quite impressed with the fret work you did. Only things I've noticed about the bass are most likely due to the natural aging of the strings, inescapable characteristics of the wood itself, and nothing a little tweak in the adjustments wouldn't cure. Because of the bass you made me, I plan on selling 3 of my basses. I've already sold one, and when/if I sell the other two I'd like to consider you making another one...completely different of course, except for the "Q". Everyone that has heard and or seen it is in awe!
Quentin (TX)

I cannot tell you how much I LOVE my David King 7string. The tuner placement is perfect and very useful. It stays in tune exceptionally well. People seem to love the tuner placement and headstock design (among everything else). The wood selection is beautiful and the Lane Poors p.u.'s sound AWSEOME. The lightweight body and thin neck are great. It's also very well balanced. But what really continues to impress me is it's sound. The combination of all the compents equal the hippest bass sound I've heard (similar to a Kensmith). It has punch, with a cool midrange that cuts through. The icing on top is cranking the high frequency (on board control) to a little more than 3/4's. This brings out hip "bristling" artifacts while not making it sound brittle. Let me summarize the five star piece of work. After owning several basses in my life and playing thousands in music stores through the years I love my new DK 7 string because: superior woodworking craftsmanship, great onboard electronics, instrument weight, balance and design, and ingenious functionality of each hand machined hardware component. I am truly blown away by this bass. As a result I would love for you to make me a 5 string. Thanks again,
Paul (Eugene, OR)

Hi David,
just a note to tell you how CONTINUALLY THRILLED I am with your bass (which I bought used from you about a year ago). The pickups (Lane Poors) are the shit and the adaptability of the instrument to all styles of playing have gotten me to the point where I don't ever bother to haul any other basses to my gigs (except my Pedulla 5-string fretless Thunderbass, just to practice intonation...). I get a lot of interest from other musicians, I've given out your website to them, hope it comes back to you in business. You're a great bass luthier.
Glenn Goodwin (CA)

Hey guy...
the basses are a dream! At first I thought I really sucked because these basses aren't very forgiving but now I'm really getting decent chops down. The woodworking is just amazing craftsmanship... especially all the glue joints and those integrated back panels!!! The braille markers and thumb rest are superb... I just "feel" the left & right hand positionings more naturally! Also love the tapering at the end of fretted fretboard... perfect place for that Vic Wooten style double-thumb stroke pop-slap technique. Headphone preamp distorts a little... more on fretless than fretted. Of course, this could be the cheap earbuds I'm listening with. Basses are a little heavy but I wouldn't change a thing... they fell soooo o perfect. In fact, only time I notice how heavy they are is when I'm putting them away or carting them in the case. I usually play about 3 hours before I even notice the weight on my left shoulder... and by then I'm usually ready for a break! Seriously, I pick them up and have a hard time putting them down!
I am truly amazed at these basses and am writing Bass Player Magazine to request they do a story on them!
My only serious misgiving is that they seem a little on the bright side, even when I play my right hand closer to the fingerboard. Would raising/lowering the pickups or changing from hex core to round core DR Strings make a difference?
Sincerely, your friend in low-end,
Anthony C. Orlando (Kent, OHIO)

David I've tried very hard to be hyper critical of the basses you made and HONESTLY... I can't find a flaw in them and too many things that just stand out as remarkable traits! They are a little heavy but I don't think I'd want to risk losing the low end tone by hollowing them out. The LP preamp is a little noisy... is he gonna work on that and swap them out for me? You should be making a bundle off these basses, my friend... they are truly works of art. Sorry I haven't gotten around to getting photos done and sent to BP but I promise I will.... Tony0 (OH)

Hello David,
I have played the bass now for several weeks and one gig and like it more from day to day. Lightweight, a real beauty, no fret buzz despite the strings set low. It has a more usable B string than any other bass I tried. I would recommend the 35" scale to everyone who wants a B string. I love the light weight even if it's a heavy instrument by your standards, all the hard and dense woods add up. The tuning machines work very well and are easy to move. The bass is a real beauty, I love the overall look and the fretboard with the diamond inlays. While 19 mm string spacing makes slapping easy, I might go with 18mm spacing if I had the chance to.
Now for the only downside: the sound of the bass is fine, I love that growl. But I have to set the treble control to maximum to get some real shiny brilliance, some clarity. If I play the bass unplugged it sounds more open and brilliant. Seems I will have to experiment with the pickup coils in parallel, or try out different pickups. The already existing growl combined with some more openness, some more HiFi-ness, that's what I'm looking for.
If I had seen this bass in a shop I would have tried it out and then have bought it regardless if the sound does not completely satisfy me. The playability is outstanding. My back loves the light weight. I would buy the same bass again. All the best,
Manfred (Munich, Germany)

Hi David,
Finally back to Oslo after a month in Rome! I showed your basses to some of my bass playing friends there and the comments were invariably enthusiastic. Even my hypercritical teacher, Ginafranco Gullotto, was very impressed... I also had a chance to give them the first "real world" test by recording on a couple of songs by a songwriting friend of mine: I used the fretless and recorded it straight into her 4-track: the sound was incredible!!!
No real problems to report: the action stayed constant despite the hot & moisty weather in Rome and that's pretty impressive! Only two very minor things: the volume pot on the fretless cracks a little bit on the nearly-off position and the strap peg on the fretted, the one I painted black, has lost most of it's blackness (but that was predictable). Ciao,
Francesco. (Oslo, Norway)

Hi David,
Just a quick note of appreciation 8-) Yesterday I rehearsed with a new band and for the first time I had the chance to give the fretted 5 a nice workout, while until now I had used the fretless. I had to plug straight into a mixer and share the monitor with vocals and guitars, but still the bass sounded amazing! I kept the electronics flat and the instrument allowed me to get a lot of different tones just by varying dynamics and plucking spot. The guitarist, John, who's American, fell completely for the built-in tuner...(did I mention that the tuner on the fretless now works perfectly!? Weird.). Once again I came to the conclusion that those are just the basses of my dreams!!! Ciao,

Most of yesterday night I spent playing the bass, mostly slap but some finger style too. Yes, I agree that it is easy to wear out hands and wrists by simply practising for too long with a wider than usual string spacing, but in those situations it is really a relief to switch to simple rhythmic slap patterns that don't need those widespread fingerings. The feeling that I developed during yesterdays playing is that the bass is very inviting to play around with, I sort of started doing slap stuff that I've never done before, just because I enjoyed it so much. A good instrument can really be a source of inspiration!
The straplocks are great, they work very well with an ordinary strap but I guess will be even more secure with the proper lock part on the strap, too. About strings, I quite liked the ones that are on the bass. The first half hour or so they felt very rough on my fingers, but either they got a bit softer very quickly or I got used to them. I really like the sound! I think I'd prefer these to nickel. The tuner is fantastic, works very well, is easy to use and is completely out of the way when not used. I am very happy that I followed your recommendation to get it. I still think you should charge a bit more for the work of putting it there, though! Did you have any more photos? Will you send over these with the strings-straplocks-and-receipt packet? I'm planning on doing my photo session with it in a few weeks, it will be great to have such a beautiful and charismatic instrument as object. I'll send you a set of pictures as soon as they're ready. Best regards,
Måns Johnsson (Stockholm, Sweden)

Hello Dave,
the bass is here and working fine. It has already gigged for a third of its value and you may count on working on a little brother, or sister, as soon as you come back. I still have some doubts if the other should be another fretless with just a Bartolini pentacoil (for a more Jazz sound), or a regular fretted bass with 2 standard PU like Ken Smith or similar (for some standard gig with slap necessity). The Piezo "growls" too much and the B string has a lower (piezo) volume than the others (maybe it doesn't set properly on the saddle because it is too big and therefore the piezo cannot pick the sound all the way). Now I use the switcher around 10am towards the magnetic. Probably when you are back some work is needed to attenuate the piezo output.
Sandro (Boston, MA)

People in general are just blown away by the bass, you should've seen the looks when I took the bass to a music store to find a case that fits.... Recently, I quit my old band and am looking for a new one so I've been playing on a lot of other band's amplification systems and they are amazed how good my bass sounds through their equipment. So if you want me to write something for you or post to TBL, just ask. Although, you may want to wait until I join a new band so I have a credit after my name.
I appreciate you following up on this. It makes me feel good to know that if I have any problems or questions I can just get in contact. Thanks again-
-Bryan (PA)

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Updated January 1 2005