The Bass-ment

Acoustic Bass Your Thoughts


I don't mean dog house or double bass but I mean an acoustic guitar bass. What do you think of those. I used to have a Fender Japan P Bass Special but when times where tough I sold it. Now times are better. I never had a proper bass amp but only a Dano Nifty 50 bass amp I think it was called. If I get another bass I will have to get an amp if it's an electric bass (unless it's a hollow body bass) but just to learn on do you suggest an acoustic guitar bass so no need for amp?

Something along the lines of this acoustic bass -


I think just to learn and have some acoustic bass sound they're probably good to learn on, provided they're set up well. The ones I've heard are not super loud acoustically But by themselves to practice and have on a stand ready to play they'd probably be great!


Kala U Bass seems to be all the rage in your case :


Ampeg makes really cheap, but good little practice amps for bass. The BA-108v2 is $100 new, and sounds just fine to learn on. If you want a little more oomph, the BA-110v2 has a little more power and pushes a little more air. I use the 110 for living room practice (I live in a condo) and have a 108 which I travel with for hotel use.

I would go with an electric bass, because it will still be useful for you if you have a chance to jam or play out with people (and you can buy or borrow a bigger amp at that point). An acoustic bass is pleasant for home use, but it is never going to work playing out with any but the lowest volume acoustic guitars, and it's probably going to feed back before it can get loud if you try to mic it.

Just my two cents...


Try a gold star resonator bass -- has a big honkin humbucker but looks the part for acoustic music scenes where a normal electric bass is too rock and roll lookin'


I had an Applause (budget Ovation) 4 string electric acoustic. It was ok, a bit sterile for my taste but it was great for practicing. Just loud enough to use acoustically without having to plug in.


I looked into this pretty thoroughly when I thought I might want to buy one for myself.

I decided against it because the ones that were loud enough (to be heard even over a couple of acoustic guitars) when played un-amplified were too expensive and too un-ergonomic for my taste. The Ernie Ball Earthwood Bass, the Guild B30 & B50 and the Tacoma/Olympia Thunderchief were the most likely candidates that I came up with, and they are all out of production, hard to find in good condition and expensive.

The main problem with these instruments stems from the fact that low-frequencies are harder to produce acoustically at volume than high frequencies. This is why the "best" acoustic bass guitars have large, deep bodies (acoustic "doghouse" basses are the size they are, rather than being the size of a cello, for much the same reason). Unfortunately, this also tends to make acoustic bass guitars physically uncomfortable to hold and play. They also tend to be constructed for resonance over durability, which makes them fragile. You will get the best volume by stringing them with round-wound, phosphor bronze strings and playing with a pick. This is another down side for me, as I prefer flats played finger-style.

My personal solution was to opt out of buying an acoustic bass guitar all together and instead buy a Roland Bass Micro Cube RX Amp through which to play my electric basses. It sounds surprisingly good for having only 4 X 4" speakers and will run on batteries for use around the campfire or whatever. It's also a very handy tool for quiet, late-night practice. Small, light-weight, portable.

Has some built-in, tempo-adjustable drum beats to help keep you in time, a couple of rudimentary, built-in effects, some simple COSM amp models, aux in for MP3s or whatever and a headphone jack.

I no longer yearn for a fully-acoustic bass guitar.


Thanks everyone for your thoughts on this.

Thomas, I was thinking of a U-Bass too because I hear it sounds like an upright bass. That's good. The short Uke scale doesn't bother me either. I've tried U-Bass before and it's easy to hit the notes.


I have an early Ovation acoustic bass. Sounds excellent with a full band through a Markbass amp and the PA. Be sure to use a sundhole plug and light strings.


Acoustic bass guitars are good for practicing in the bed room and little else IMO. Unless you plug them in. Then they have a different sound but then I would get a Godin with a Piezo and pick ups so I had a more versatile instrument.

Guild though IMO makes the best acoustic bass guitar - loudest with best tone. Might hold its own against a single acoustic guitar.

If you want an acoustic bass that holds its own acoustically with a full band - guitarron.


Dave Pomeroy made this one work, although nobody was likely paying much attention to him!


Yes but they are plugged in. The "unplugged" acoustic trend really means acoustic instruments plugged in. "Unplugged" is more accurately "acoustic instruments plugged in". A misnomer.


Furch fretless acoustic bass -- magic in the right hands (ie. certainly not mine).

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