The bass guitar is one of the most popular instruments out there. In the modern era, it is all about the bass. More and more musicians throughout the world are interested in learning the bass. However, the problem with a traditional, full-length bass guitar is that it can be a bit intimidating to play. They have a long length and tend to be on the heavier side. This “longer length” is the distance between the bridge and the nut.
Playing a standard scale bass for someone that is already familiar with the guitar may not find it incredibly tough, perhaps a little inconvenient but nothing major. However, if you have smaller hands or are shorter in size, playing a full-length/standard-length bass can be a daunting task. Not only that, the short-scale bass guitar has a unique tone to it. This is the reason why many people are interested in getting a bass guitar for short scale.
Here is a Guide To Choose the Best Short Scale Bass Guitar:
About Short Scale Bass Guitar:
Admittedly, short-scale bass guitars do not enjoy the mainstream appeal that other types of guitars do. Or do they? Despite what you may think, Short-scale guitars are all over the place and have been around for a long time. There are many musicians out there whose weapon of choice is the Short-Scale Bass guitar. The most famous of them is Paul McCartney from The Beatles, no doubt about that. You can see him rocking out a Hofner 500/1 “Violin” bass. Meaning the short-scale bass has been a part of the mainstream since the 60s at the very least! You can still find McCartney playing this bass on his solo endeavors. There are many other famous bassists I can name but I guess you get the point.
The Short-Scale Bass offers a much different playing experience when compared to a traditional base. These have much less tension on the strings so fretting and bending is much easier. Since the length of the fretboard is shorter, the frets are much closer to each other which, again, makes them much easier to play. This makes these short-scale basses ideal for beginners, kids, and musicians with shorter hands.
There is more to this type of bass guitar than just “convenience and ease of playing”. By no means I wish to label it as a beginner’s instrument or anything like that. The short-scale bass guitar offers many advantages over a traditional, full-scale bass guitar. Despite the smaller size, the tone that a short-scale bass produces is much more meaty and fatter. This made no sense to me initially because I am kinda dumb but it’s pretty simple. In a nutshell, shorter strings equal lesser tension. Lesser tension means a darker, fatter tone.
Choosing The Best Short Scale Bass Guitar:
Objectively speaking, as logic would have it, the short-scale bass guitar with the most high-quality build and pickups would be the “best”. Unfortunately, what is objectively the best also tends to be quite expensive. So, you should take into consideration the following factors while choosing the best short-scale bass guitar for you:
- Budget: There really aren’t any “cheap” short-scale bass guitars out there. There are budget options but no short-scale bass guitars as available at a dirt-cheap rate like electric and acoustic guitars. There is no point in breaking the bank over one instrument. If you are going to go all out, by all means though. If you can’t, go with something that falls into your budget and you can invest in better amps and processors.
- Comfort: The entire point of a short-scale bass is the fact that it is much more comfortable in terms of playability as compared to a traditional, full/standard scale bass guitar. You need to try these out yourself and see which one fits you the best. The overall shape of the body, the width of the neck, reachability, all of these factors are crucial. If your short-scale guitar is something you are settling for, you might as well get a standard bass and save yourself some money.
- Tone: Aside from the difference in size, another area wherein the short-scale bass differs from a full-length bass guitar is the tone. Whereas a bass with a 34” scale length produces a more controlled tone with proficiency in the mid-range, the short-scale bass is more punchy and impactful. It has a fatter tone despite look comparatively tamer. If you are going to play drop-tunings, you need strings with a heavier gauge though, free tip right there.
In the above article, I provided you guys with a Guide To Choose the Best Short Scale Bass Guitar along with some information and history about the Short scale bass guitar. Hope this article helped you out and thank you for reading!
I am working as Artist Manager/Music Supervisor at 72 Music Management.
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