There are many different types of bass guitars to choose from, so it can be difficult to find the best short scale bass under $500. However, we have compiled a list of the top 6 best short scale basses to help make your decision easier.
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Don’t let your size be a barrier to getting fun and easy bass. An article on short scale vs long scale bass can help you find the bass that’s right for you.
Short scale basses are basses that feature a shorter scale length (usually around half an octave), which makes them sound more Like-able. You might be thinking, what the hell would people want a bass with a shorter scale length? Well, for starters, most basses have a smaller body and deeper, articulate sound. Basses with a shorter scale length also have a narrower dynamic range, meaning they’ll sound better in heavy, rhythmic music than light, fast songs. And last, but not least, a shorter scale length makes basses easier to play for people who don’t have strong hands or fingers. If you’re the type that likes to play a variety of instruments, you might just love a bass that has a shorter scale length!
Let’s dive in to find out our top rated 6 best short scale bass under $500;
1) Ibanez 4 String Bass Guitar (GSRM20BWNF)
Ibanez is a well-known brand for guitars, and they offer some great options when it comes to short scale basses. Ibanez GSRM20BWNF has a Mahogany body with 20 frets on Maple neck, and the best part is that it comes with a set of high quality pickups. It’s also known for being super lightweight, which makes this bass a perfect choice for any beginner. It’s a best cheap short scale bass, and it sounds great regardless of the style you’re playing.
- 20-fret rosewood fingerboard
- Powered by Dynamix Humbucking pickups
- Phat II Bass Boost and Slap switch
- Diecast tuners
- Scale Length 30.0″
- Highly durable and lightweight with a sleek design
- Sounds great for both rhythm and lead playing
- Frets are smooth after being played in
- None that we could find
Overall, the Ibanez GSRM20BWNF is a great bass guitar for the price. It’s perfect for beginner and intermediate players, and it sounds great in both rhythm and lead playing. The only downside is that there’s no case included, but that’s to be expected at this price point. We highly recommend giving the Ibanez GSRM20BWNF a try if you’re in the market for an inexpensive bass guitar with great sound and playability.
2) Squier by Fender Bronco Bass
The Squier by Fender Bronco Bass is the best cheap short scale bass that has an amazing build quality and design. It’s perfect for short scale bass players who are looking for an affordable instrument that still has a lot of features to offer. The Bronco Bass comes with a split P-bass pickup which provides a ton of low end for its size. Compared to other short scale basses, the Bronco Bass has one of the best necks on the market. It’s thin and easy to play, which makes it perfect for beginner bass players. Squier short scale bass guitars are known for their great value, and the Bronco Bass is no exception.
- Three-ply white pickguard
- One split single coil pickup, black plastic covers
- 20 frets on a maple neck with pearloid block inlays
- Two knobs for master volume and blend, plus a three-way pickup selector switch
- Sealed diecast tuners
- Affordable price
- Great sound for beginners or practice purposes
- May be too basic for some more experienced players
- Limited tonal range compared to other basses in this price range.
Overall, the Squier Bronco Bass is a great choice for bass players who want to learn or practice. It’s perfect for beginners, and it has a simple design. It won’t be the best option for more experienced bass players, but it’s still a great choice if you’re looking to save money on a beginner bass.
3) Dean Edge E09M
The Dean Edge 09M is a fantastic bass for anyone who wants to play the instrument. It has an attractive appearance and comes with high-quality components.
The Dean Edge 09M has a lightweight mahogany body with an attractive natural finish and rosewood fingerboard as well as chrome hardware. This combination makes it a great bass to hold and play for extended periods of time, despite its affordable price tag.
The Edge 09M has an active EMG-HZ Humbucker pickup in the bridge position and an EMG-SA single coil pickup in the neck position. These pickups provide a wide range of tones that can be tweaked and adjusted to fit any style of music. The bass also comes with a volume knob, two tone knobs and a three-way pickup selector switch.
Dean short scale basses are known for their speed and ease of play. This model is no exception, featuring a fast-action neck that any serious bassist will appreciate.
- Mahogany body and neck
- Rosewood fingerboard
- Active EMG-HZ Humbucker pickup in the bridge position
- An EMG-SA single coil pickup in the neck position
- Volume knob, two tone knobs and a three-way pickup selector switch
- Great sound for the price
- Double cutaway body style for easy access to the higher frets
- Die-cast tuners keep your guitar in tune longer
- The finish on the guitar can be a bit thin and susceptible to scratches
Overall, the dean short scale bass is a fantastic instrument for anyone who wants to play an affordable yet attractive and high-quality bass guitar. If you are looking for best short scale bass under 300, the Dean Edge 09M is a great option to consider which has everything you need in a bass guitar.
4) Jackson JS1X Concert Bass Minion
The Jackson JS Series is a line of bass guitars that has been popular among beginners and advanced players. This lineup started as an affordable alternative to the JS Series guitars. The Jackson JS series bass neck is also known to be very comfortable for players of any level, with its fast-playing design. The JS1X Concert Bass Minion is the newest addition to the Jackson JS series and it has quickly become a favorite for many bass players.
The Jackson Concert Bass Minion is a short scale bass guitar that is perfect for smaller players or anyone who wants an easy to play bass. With a short scale of 30.75″, this bass can be played for hours without fatigue or cramping up hands/wrists.
The Concert Bass Minion is a perfect entry level bass that has all the features of more expensive models including two Jackson high output humbucking pickups, active tone circuitry, and a high mass bridge.
- Basswood body
- Rosewood fretboard and bridge
- Jumbo frets
- Bolt on construction
- Two Jackson high output humbucking pickups
- Active tone circuitry and a high mass bridge
- Very lightweight and easy to transport
- Fast response time makes it great for playing live
- Great projection means you can be heard over a loud band
- Great sound quality with the right amp and effects settings.
- Non locking tuners
- No tone or volume control for each pickup
Overall, the Jackson JSX Concert Bass Minion is a great choice for anyone looking for an easy to play and great sounding short scale bass guitar.
5) Gretsch G2220 Junior Jet Bass Guitar
The Gretsch Junior Jet Bass Guitar is a smaller, more compact version of the iconic Gretsch Jet. It’s perfect for players who want a smaller sized bass guitar, yet still has the same great sound you expect from Gretsch.
The Junior Jet’s design is based on the classic Jet and has a single-coil pickup, just like its older brothers. The basswood body with maple neck provides great tone, while the rosewood fretboard is smooth and easy on your fingers. It also features a Gretsch Power Jet Humbucking Bass Pickup that delivers a powerful, punchy sound.
- Maple neck with “C” profile
- Two Gretsch mini dual coil humbucking pickups
- Alder body with single ply white pickguard
- Graph Tech NuBone nut
- Anchored Adjusto-Matic™ bridge
- Gretsch “V” Stoptail Bridge
- Chrome hardware with aged knobs and pickup covers
- Comes with a great price for beginners
- Lightweight design to improve playing comfort
- Tuning pegs are a bit small and can be difficult to use
Overall, Gretsch G2220 Junior Bass Guitar is a great option for beginners. The price makes it very affordable and the sound quality of the bass guitar is fantastic.
6) Ibanez 5 String Bass Guitar (GSRM25BK)
Ibanez has a history of making great basses and the GSRM25BK is no exception. This short scale bass guitar is perfect for smaller players or anyone looking for an easy-to-play instrument. The bass is well-crafted and sounds great, making it perfect for a beginner or as an addition to any collection.
This Ibanez short scale bass has a mahogany body with high-performance electronics and a slim and fast maple neck. The rosewood fretboard is smooth and easy to play, making it great for both beginners and seasoned musicians alike. The Ibanez short scale bass is a great choice for anyone looking to get the most out of their instrument with less effort.
- High performance electronics
- Slim and fast maple neck
- Rosewood fretboard
- Ibanez B15 bridge
- Ibanez designed PSND pickups
- Short scale makes it easy to play for beginners or those with smaller hands
- Great sound quality with a variety of amps and effects
- Well-crafted and looks great on stage
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If you’re looking for a beginner-friendly instrument with some nice features and excellent sound quality, the Ibanez GSRM25BK is a great option to consider.
There are a lot of great short scale bass guitars on the market today, and it can be tough to decide which one is right for you. Hopefully, this guide has given you a good starting point for your decision-making process. Each of the bass guitars on this list would be a great choice for a beginning bassist, but there is one that stands out from the rest. (Cheak out Top 10 Best Short Scale Guitars in 2022)
After careful consideration of all these short scale bass guitars, the winner award of our “Best Short Scale Bass Under $500” goes to Ibanez 4 String Bass Guitar GSRM20BWNF!
The Ibanez really impressed us with its affordability and quality. This bass is a great value for the money and would be a great addition to any collection. It’s well-crafted and sounds great, making it perfect for a beginner. Thanks for reading!
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