Bass Guitars: How to Choose

You’re here probably because you are looking for the best bass guitar that rocks. The most unheard member of the band, someone who looks silent but is actually the supporting pillar of the music, a bassist is not that much different from a guitarist and the guitar he uses only differs by the number of strings and the size. So how do you choose a bass guitar? Other than reading up on bass guitar reviews by the musicians out there, you can find some of my tips here to choose the best bass guitar for yourself.

When selecting a bass guitar it’s important to get the thought about “all bass guitars are the same” out of your head. Bass guitars are probably the least understood in a 4 piece band, its tone is low and barely noticeable but without it music just won’t sound as good and the drummer would probably flip.

If you are picking up bass, there are a few pointers I can show you. It’s important to keep in mind that it all depends purely on your style when playing a bass guitar. Before I go into a ramble all about choosing a bass guitar, here are some of my top picks.

Best Bass Guitar – Legendary and robust, this is the best bass guitar all around.
Best Bass Guitar for Professionals – A tad expensive, but great for the worth.
Best Bass Guitar for Beginners – Decent quality and lightweight for long hours of playing.
Best Budget Bass Guitar – Affordable basic bass guitar without any extras.

How To Choose The Best Bass Guitar

Here are a few things to check out when choosing the best bass guitar for you:

Scale or Size of the Bass Guitar
The first thing to think about is the scale, the bigger it is the heavier it gets, so buy it based on your size, and the scale also affects how low the guitar can be, the longer it is the lower the tone.

Sound
Just like in any guitar, the tone wood used will alter the sound, and you may not notice the difference now but when comparing between two guitars you will. If you are a beginner bassist then the sound will not phase you much and I won’t lie by saying otherwise, so think about the sound only when you have reached a level where you can clearly distinguish between what you ain’t going to need and what would be more sturdy for your music. For a beginner, the sound of the best bass guitar is something that is easy on the ears and that is all.

Build

  • Cutaway – Like an electric guitar, basses have cutaways; this lets you play the higher notes, as a general rule of thumb, you need access to all the frets of the bass guitar, because you will need to cater to a wider range when playing, think about 2 octaves or so on a piano.
  • Bridge – The bridge of the best bass guitar is extremely strong, because the strings are very thick and require a lot of support to hold them in place; a weak bass guitar body is a disaster waiting to happen.
  • Pickup – The pickups of bass guitars come in Precision (humbucker style) and Jazz Bass (single pickup), these change the tone and make them suitable for playing certain songs only, some basses come with both of these pickups.
  • Strings – The numbers of strings also varies; the standard bass guitar comes with four strings, but there are also five-string and six-string basses. Just remember that more strings means more notes and keys, but this also means that you will have a hard time keeping track and muting all those strings.

Others
There are basses called modeling basses, this are bass guitars which are computerized, just like the Les Paul robot, they can alter their tone and copy a lot of other bass guitars, so it’s like buying 1 guitar and getting 7 or 8, expect the price to be a little over than the regular ones.

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