Best Short Scale Bass Under $500 Reviewed
Electric bass guitars, as subtle as they are, create some of the most dynamic moments in music. From Paul McCartney to Cliff Burton to Flea, bass guitars have electrified the music world since the 1950s. Not all bass guitars are created equal and quantity does not always translate to quality. Let’s take a look at the best short scale bass guitars under $500.
The Squier Affinity Series Bronco Bass is known as the original four-string starter. It revives Fender’s first beginner’s model with a classic tone and feel at a very affordable price. Combining a thin yet well-built Agathis structure and a 30-inch scale maple neck, it is perfect for students with smaller hands and Jason Newstead kid fans.
It features a specially designed single coil pickup finish and a two-saddle chrome bridge for exceptional balance when tuning. It is excellent for both long-time guitarists who periodically shift from six-strings to four and for bass neophytes.
Other features include:
- Die-cast tuners
- 30-scale length Maple neck with “C” shaped profile
- 19-fret maple fingerboard Special design
The Squier Bronco Bass is a good entry-level instrument for young guitarists. But even seasoned bassists play it and they have nothing but encouraging words for this Fender-made guitar. It is not too expensive, not too heavy depending on who’s playing it, and its short neck makes the experience more effortless.
It is impossible to hear Gretsch and not take notice. This instrument offered by one of the oldest and most popular guitar brands attempts to go up against their own vintage line but at a more affordable price.
The Les Paul-like single cutaway, black gloss body shape gives the player good access to thehigher frets. Even with the absence of margins on the front or back of the body, it is comfortable to wear and play, highlighted by its short scale.
The gloss-finish of its maple neck maintains a D-shaped profile adding to the comfort and the 19mm space between the strings atones for the tight location of the frets. The neck is built for easy handling and the slight headstock does not affect the guitar’s balance when it’s strapped.
The fingerboard of the Gretsch G2220 Junior Jet electric bass guitar features white position markers and dots on the side of its neck. Although only 20 frets are marked, most positions are reachable so no need to fret. It is accompanied by a four-bolt neck that balances its attachments and eliminates the gaps between the neck and the guitar’s body.
Its black scratchplate, chrome bridge, pickups, and die-cast machine heads tag team with its vintage features, making this a formidable bass guitar. Backed by extremely lean and clean wiring, this sturdy bass can outclass most of its more pricey competitors without even trying.
The neck pickup of this Gretsch model provides warmth and roundness. This may be due to it being positioned far from the end of the neck to create definition and character without drowning the tone. On the other hand, the bridge pickup brings a bit of a twang to it.
Players with slightly smaller hands will find comfort with the Junior Jet. It is the perfect alternative to get rid of the difficulties of playing long-scale basses and in the long run, be the favorite of jazz and rock bassists as the available tones are amazingly smooth and thorough.
With a 30.3″ scale, this petite black and chrome beauty is simple and efficient. Its tones, like its built, is solid. And with its affordability, this guitar is a steal.
The GSR series of widely-known guitar brand Ibanez offers a low-cost alternative to their popular Sound Gear (SR) guitar line. Their GSRM set showcases short-scaled bass guitars which are specifically fashioned for young bassists and electric guitar players who want a bass guitar but find them too hefty.
The GSRM20B is about 2 inches shorter than other short bass scale guitars. It has a tough, flat-top SR style, mahogany body, and a sturdy maple neck. That neck is covered with a rosewood fingerboard containing 22 frets, dot inlays, and a 1.- inch string nut. Classic Ibanez J and P pickups deck the bridge and neck position, and its awesome die-cast tuners make it even more gorgeous.
The Ibanez GSRM20B Mikro might look like a toy, but it is made to the same standards of the other GIO series guitars. The GSRM20B features a vintage lime green, metallic, small scale SR body, which has the same construction, same materials, and same electronic setup and as its full-size counterpart.
Its short 28.6-inch scale makes it ideal for transporting, cramped home studios, guitar players with smaller hands, young rockers, and beginners.
This lightweight “small but terrible” guitar can surprise even the more experienced bassists. With a price tag like that, it is a catch.
Bass guitars, no question, add character music. I guess good things do come in small packages.