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  #1  
Old 03-11-2018, 06:37 AM
Monsum Monsum is offline
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Default Acoustic Bass recommendations

I've decided to get myself an acoustic bass guitar and I'm looking for some recommendations. Price range is up to 700 or $1000.
I'd like it have a pickup, it needs to be fretted and sound as close to an upright bass as possible.

I'm considering Taylor GS-mini bass but from what I read about it, it uses propriety D'Addario strings and if the guitar is discontinued it will be hard to get strings which will work on it.
The other one is Guild Jumbo Junior Bass which is a new product but maybe there are people who had a chance to try it out.
It doesn't need to be a short scale guitar but as a guitar player I'd prefer one which is easy to play.
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Old 03-11-2018, 09:09 AM
Earl49 Earl49 is offline
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Be aware that almost all acoustic basses need to be amplified. They don't put out much volume otherwise - basic physics is the reason the upright bass is so large - and are really only good for living room practice when unplugged. You cannot hear them jamming even with one or two other acoustic players, with only a couple of exceptions (Tacoma Thuderchief, long out of production).

It's a little off the beaten path, but I like my Kala U-bass ukulele. Plugged in it sounds very much like an upright bass. In fact mine was on stage about 90 minutes after buying it. After our set, someone came up to stage side and said, "I could hear the bass, but didn't see it on stage anywhere". I just handed him my U-bass and watched his jaw drop. https://kalabrand.com/pages/u-bass

There have been a number of threads here thoroughly discussing this over the past year. Use the "search" function to find them for more info. Here's one:
http://www.acousticguitarforum.com/f...d.php?t=476007

Last edited by Earl49; 03-11-2018 at 09:16 AM. Reason: added link to thread
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Old 03-11-2018, 01:09 PM
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BoneDigger BoneDigger is offline
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The Tacoma Thunderchief is a great acoustic bass. I had a Breedlove Passport and it wasn't bad either. You can replace the standard strings on any of these with LaBella tape wound strings or flat wounds for a more upright bass tone.

The Tacoma is no longer made, but you can buy them used in your price range.
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Old 03-11-2018, 02:29 PM
FrankHudson FrankHudson is offline
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I'll second the thought of considering a Kala U-Bass. They can sound sorta like an upright bass, but are fretted and easy to play. And you've already mentioned wanting a pickup, which indicates that amplification is in the picture.
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Old 03-11-2018, 05:20 PM
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The Kala is fun, just make sure you check the intonation first.
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Old 03-11-2018, 10:44 PM
Vancebo Vancebo is offline
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Someday I plan on getting a GS Mini Bass. Just get a whole bunch of strings for it if you need to. No need to worry about it. Taylor never changes their stuff. Oops, no wait. Never mind.
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Old 03-12-2018, 11:47 AM
Monsum Monsum is offline
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Thank you everyone for comments and suggestions.

I actually had a solid body Kala U-bass which has been now discontinued. I agree it has great tone but also a few drawbacks; on mine intonation was acceptable only up to the 5th fret excluding the G string which never sounded right to me. It takes time to get used to rubber strings and a miniature fretboard. And last but not least, this bass had a big sound but looked like a toy so it's not appropriate for someone who takes their stage presence seriously .

So I'll probably opt for a slightly bigger guitar.
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Old 03-12-2018, 11:52 AM
banditcosmo banditcosmo is offline
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Check out the Gold Tone M-Bass
25" scale and intonation on mine is very good. I'd recommend changing the strings to Pahoehoe strings though as the Aquila strings can be sticky. And if you don't like the rubber strings they have flatwounds available for it.
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Old 03-12-2018, 11:57 AM
Monsum Monsum is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vancebo View Post
Just get a whole bunch of strings for it if you need to.
In the UK the strings for Taylor GS Mini Bass cost 42 which is about $58, that's a lot especially if you want to have a couple of spare sets, in case they disappear from the market.

Does anyone know if the Guild Jumbo Junior Bass uses the same strings as the Taylor Bass? If it does, there is greater probability that D'Addario continues to make them.
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Old 03-12-2018, 09:01 PM
Steve DeRosa Steve DeRosa is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Monsum View Post
...I'd like it have a pickup, it needs to be fretted and sound as close to an upright bass as possible...It doesn't need to be a short scale guitar but as a guitar player I'd prefer one which is easy to play.
Hofner Contemporary Series Verythin or President Bass:

https://www.thomann.de/gb/hoefner_verythin_bass_ct.htm
https://www.thomann.de/gb/hoefner_hc...ident_bass.htm

Both well within your price range; tapewound strings and an old-school 1x15" bass cab with no tweeter should give you the sound you're after, with none of the hassles of an acoustic bass...
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Old 04-06-2018, 07:37 AM
Monsum Monsum is offline
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I had a chance of trying out the Taylor mini bass in one of the local shops and it is indeed an impressive guitar.
I think it had slightly higher action that I expected but it was still very comfortable to play, probably due to a short scale and flexible strings.
The sound coming out of it was gorgeous, exactly what I had in mind, very 'acoustic'.

But I've noticed that their direct competition - Guild Jumbo Junior Bass - is out in stores now with much better price, apparently it uses the same kind of D'Addario strings.
Judging from only one video it sounds pretty good as well. I might wait for more reviews of the Guild Bass and if it is in the Taylor GS mini bass league there is no need to pay extra.
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Old 04-07-2018, 11:15 AM
wcguitar wcguitar is offline
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Default Hadean for on the cheap...

These Hadean brand bass ukes usually get decent reviews if you just want
to spend a little $$ for a trial run...I have one of the solid body electrics (I know , a different beasty) in white and like it a lot. It has the rubbery type strings but I have found a bowlers powder pack up and down them a couple of times before playing helps a lot, just wipe the strings and fret board after playing..

http://www.rondomusic.com/bluegrassfolk.html
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Old 04-08-2018, 02:19 AM
rsmillbern rsmillbern is offline
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I have a gold tone resonator bass that I really like the sound of. It has a bit more projection and volume than a regular acoustic bass with a smaller size (the body is close to concert guitar size).

I am not really a bass player though and picked this up on impulse.
I played it, it was cheap, and having wanted and acoustic bass for some time bought it.
After some research I wonder if it is a counterfeit due to the price and lack of a pickup, but it suits my purposed (though I hate the idea of benefitting people making fakes)

https://goldtonemusicgroup.com/goldtone/instruments/pbb
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  #14  
Old 04-08-2018, 01:31 PM
momando momando is offline
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I have an Alvarez acoustic bass. It isn't all that loud, but I do use it on occasion when I don't want to carry the upright. Pretty much requires a pick to get significant volume, though, so it is nothing like my usual bass playing. It's not my favorite by any means, but I have yet to find an acoustic bass that lights my fire.
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Old 04-08-2018, 09:04 PM
The Growler The Growler is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Monsum View Post
Thank you everyone for comments and suggestions.

I actually had a solid body Kala U-bass which has been now discontinued. I agree it has great tone but also a few drawbacks; on mine intonation was acceptable only up to the 5th fret excluding the G string which never sounded right to me. It takes time to get used to rubber strings and a miniature fretboard. And last but not least, this bass had a big sound but looked like a toy so it's not appropriate for someone who takes their stage presence seriously .

So I'll probably opt for a slightly bigger guitar.
Try the acoustic model. I have the fretless mahogany model and it's great.
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