I stumbled on to a deal this past weekend and am now the owner of a "Spirit, by Steinberger" XT-2.
Now that i've spent some time with the new edition, I discovered some things I didn't know or expect about a headless. For those looking at a headless or for anyone that might come up on a deal and would like to know a little about the the characteristics, here's my take;
By the way, I don't know if all headless basses share these characteristics of even if all Spirits share these characteristics, but the one I have definitely does.
1. Obviously the physical design makes the overall feel of the headless a lot different than a traditional headstock equipped bass.
2. Playing the bass on a knee (thigh) is different because it moves around a lot more than than a traditional designed bass. The flip-out knee rest helps, but doesn't eliminate the movement. The body is light, so there is no anchor on one end of the neck. The size of the body also allows some rotation of the whole bass (the neck being the axis of rotation).
3. The bass is a lot more stable being played on a strap, but the rear mounted strap button and no horn places the the neck further to the left (for right handed players). Playing a low "F" note on the "E" string requires a long reach. A strap extension is recommended and I've included some pictures of my own design.
4. Truss rod adjustment is really easy and very sensitive. I actually loosened mine all the way off and continued turning it counterclockwise until the road began to tighten again which added neck had relief. Must be a dual action truss rod.
5. Playing it unplugged is strange because it's so quiet. I had a tendency to pluck the strings harder than usual because of this. Plucking harder caused rattle so I raised the action. I ended up lowering the action and playing lighter with the bass plugged in.
6. Setting intonation is simple, but sort of clumsy. There is no screw to turn for adjustment; the individual saddles slide longitudinally along the string and all four are locked in place by a single set screw.
Spirit by Steinberger XT-2
Four string two humbucker pickup electric bass