One word described Carvin's 1999 basses:
tone. Two significant options were added, that would
dramatically change the tonal characteristics of Carvin basses.
The first was the HB2 bridge pickup with coil
splitter. This humbucking Alnico pickup, combined with the new
J99 single coil pickup and the previous year's 501B active/passive
electronic created an entirely new sound. Added to that was an
option to feed the strings through the body with the Hipshot bridge
which provided increased sustain and improved clarity and punch.
As an introductory special, the strings-thru option was offered free
on any Custom Shop bass.
Click each picture for a larger
The B4 and B5
basses remained unchanged (other than the above new options).
The prices increased slightly, to $479, and $619.
The HC17 ABS case
for either model was $80, and the HC18 vintage tweed hardshell case
for either model was $110. However, the HC17 case was offered
for free with any order.
The LB20 and LB70
(left) continued their role as the mainstay basses of the Carvin line, and
the new HB2 option was prominently featured on the LB70.
Prices for these two models remained
the same, at $579 and $649. As on all basses for '99, the
strings-thru option, matching headstock and HC17 ABS case were offered
for free on any Custom Shop order.
showed off the new HB2/J99 pickup configuration, but was otherwise
unchanged. The same "free options" special was offered
on this model, and it had the same base price of $719 as it had in
The LB76 (left)
and was available with the HB2 option, although the catalog didn't
show a model with this option installed. These two basses were
actually the same as the '98 catalog, digitally placed onto a new
background. The price remained the same at $819,
and the freebies Carvin offered were also available on this model.
Early in the model year, the LB76A
Anniversary Model (left) had a page to itself, but by the end of 1999,
the new LB76W
(along with a four and five string version) was now the featured
item. The model sported all the standard options as the LB76A,
but with a highly figured Claro Walnut top, 3-piece walnut/maple/Claro
Walnut body, and 5-piece Maple and walnut laminated neck. The W
series was priced the same as the A series, at $1129, $1199, and $1299
for the 4, 5 and 6 string versions.
The BB70 and BB75 were
unchanged, and could also be ordered with strings-thru body, and the
HB2/J99 pickup configuration. Prices on these models remained
the same, at $749 and $819.
The AC40 and AC50
had no changes for 1999, and the same catalog photo was used (although
on a different background).
The prices and case options on these
models were unchanged from the previous year, and like the LB and BB
basses, the strings-thru, matching headstock, and HC18W case (not the
HC17 as on the others) were offered for free with any Custom Shop