Anyone know about these Hohner "Steinburger" B2A V Basses?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by SinglecutGuy, Feb 20, 2014.

  1. SinglecutGuy


    Apr 23, 2013
    Employee at a Guitar Shop
    Hey guys, hoping you can give me some info on this bass as I can't seem to find too much online. I just took this in on trade, and I'm having a hard time finding not only what the value might be, but even a year/time period when it was made. I can't seem to find a serial number anywhere on it to look up a date or anything like that.

    Does anyone have experience with these? Any info on value or year range would be most helpful. Thanks so much!

  2. I have an older variation- 4-string, was originally black lacquered and has a detuner on the E string. HORRIBLE active preamp, otherwise well-made and solid. I defretted it badly(functional but ugly), then started a major rebuild, stripping and adding body wings. Cost me $600+, 20+ years ago.
  3. SinglecutGuy


    Apr 23, 2013
    Employee at a Guitar Shop
    Cool thanks!

    Anyone else?
  4. this is all I could find on it

    The HOHNER Professional Series
    was developed in the mid 80s in a
    collaboration of HOHNER with vintage
    guitar legend Thomas Weilbier. Since
    then, the HOHNER Headless guitars
    and basses with the unique headless
    hardware licensed by Steinberger® have established
    themselves as a legendary niche.
    The instruments are short, light and ideal for travel. The G3T
    headless guitars are just under 80cm long and the B2 basses
    just under 1m, yet both series provide a full scale!
    Bronislav Kovarik aka Bruno (Hypnos, ex Krabathor)
    The active HOHNER B2ADB 4-string headless bass comes with a detonable
    bridge licensed by Steinberger, active electronics and two humbucking EVL
    pickups, two active tone controls, two volume controls and one concentric
    tone control. The B2ADB has an active/passive switch and is one of the very
    few active basses that can also be used in passive mode. The active status
    is indicated by a red status LED. You will never be down again because of a
    drained battery!
    Colors: Black (BK) – lefthand model available!, Grey Nickel Stain (GNS),
    Oil Finish (OIL) – lefthand model available!
    The HOHNER B2A 4-string headless bass is identical to the B2ADB, except for
    the bridge. The B2A comes with a standard 4-string headless bridge licensed
    by Steinberger. The HOHNER B2A Headless Bass gives you a powerful sound
    with plenty of punch, grunt and bottom end!
    Colors: Black (BK) – lefthand model available!
    The HOHNER B2AV-WS is a headless 5-string bass in the classy walnut stain
    with active electronics. It comes with a 5-string bridge licensed by Steinberger,
    two EVL J-style pickups, two volume controls and one concentric
    tone control. Like the B2ADB, the B2AV is equipped with active tone
    control and the active/passive switch with the red status LED and the
    foldable leg-rest.
    Colors: Black (BK)- lefthand model available
  5. BruceWane


    Oct 31, 2002
    Houston, TX
    They're very much the same as the Steinberger Spirit line of basses, J-J pickups instead of soapbars. Likely built in the same factory overseas.

    The few I've played, Steinberger or Hohner, were really quite good for the price range.

    A lot of players will not consider them due to looks, so you can often pick them up used for pretty cheap.

    If you're OK with the looks of them, they're pretty good as-is, they also make a pretty good starting platform for pickup and electronics upgrades. Everyting else - the bridge and headpiece - are good as-is.

    Edited to add - the weathering on that particular one would have me a little worried. Looks to me like it may have spent a fair amount of time exposed to moisture.
  6. corsa

    corsa Supporting Member

    Jul 12, 2010
    Fort Wright, KY
  7. audreycashin

    audreycashin Supporting Member

    Mar 14, 2010
    long island, ny
    fivers are rare to see, especially with a functioning leg plate attached...and a hard case? Last clean one I saw was about 500.00
  8. Maxdusty


    Mar 9, 2012
    Michigan USA
    I haven't tried that particular bass, but I currently own a HOHNER B2ADB. The four string with the detunable bridge and soapbar pickups. The Hohner plays really well, nice neck- really a nice bass. Paid $250 for mine used.(perfect condition with leg plate and Hohner soft gig bag)
    The five string you have is a rarer model- I've seen only one at a store I visited in California- if memory serves me correctly it was selling for about $400. Can't remember if it had the leg plate though.

    Thing to test on these basses, if the strings tune up fine with just the tuner wheels on the bridge. Sometimes they're hard to turn and may need a screwdriver to tighten further- if that's the case, look at the screw(s) to make sure it isn't damaged or bent.
  9. Spiffmeister

    Spiffmeister Meister of the Spiffs

    Apr 26, 2012
    Someone switched the back strap button? Don't tell me this bass had neck dive issues? :)
  10. If you're saying this because of the apparent second rear strap button hole, mine had two rear buttons- I assume for better balance when sitting on end.
  11. Spiffmeister

    Spiffmeister Meister of the Spiffs

    Apr 26, 2012
    So that's not a mod? It'd make sense then that there are 2 buttons for easy switching, because it ís an option that can come in handy. But not if you have to move the button every time :)
  12. gleneg61


    Jan 10, 2008
    Osaka Japan
    These Hohners have always come with 2 end strap pins, simply for standing/leaning n for different strap positions plus I've never seen one without the fold out leg rest. Only the original steinbergers back in the early 80's had the pull out curved ones. I've got a lefty 5er as a back up bass just like yours, plays n sounds fine, well made, no probs with it. These 5's were mostly made in the mid-late 2000's so it's likely around 5-10 yrs old I'd say. I bought mine in '08 new from an eBay dealer in the US, paid around $600 then so check on eBay for current used prices.
  13. Patty Clam

    Patty Clam

    May 11, 2016
    Got a Hohner B2A Bass, no idea when it was made. The active electronics are not working, any suggestions? And yes I cleaned the terminals and installed a fresh battery. Also, what the heck is the silver thing in the battery compartment? L-H, OUT- what does that mean, what does it do? Is there an owners manual available for this instrument. No info is available on Hohner website : (
    Last edited: May 11, 2016
  14. superdick2112

    superdick2112 Registered Rickenbacker Enthusiast Supporting Member

    Nov 20, 2010
    The Centennial State
    I have one in black, 4-string, with drop-D lever, and I use it as a camping/vacation/travel bass only.
    As others have stated, the preamp sucks, but at least you can bypass it.
    Balance when strapped up was terrible, but the installation of a Steinberger Synapse strap hook helped with that.
    Steinberger XL basses got it right the 1st time with the pivoting "boomerang" strap attachment.
    Playability & passive tone are not bad, but don't expect it to sound anything like a real composite Steinberger XL bass.
    Denver CL prices on these range from $200 - $400.
    Their most redeeming features are portability & low cost.
    Everytime I play mine, it makes me miss my old XL-2 - I think I'll eventually break down someday & buy a real Steinberger again.
  15. I have a similar Steinberger Spirit four string. The serial number is under the fold out leg rest, hold it open and see if there's a serial number under there might be the same thing. Seems that I read somewhere that the Steinberger and the Hohner rwere basically identical, both built in the same factory etc.
  16. Bob_Ross

    Bob_Ross Supporting Member

    Dec 29, 2012
    Back in the mid/late 1980s I had two friends who owned these Hohner headless basses. This was when my main bass was a genuine Steinberger L-2, so I of course poo-poo'd their ghetto budget instruments

    ...until I did a couple recording sessions at these friends' respective recording studios and, out of convenience, used their Hohner basses.

    Yes, you are absolutely correct: Those Hohners will never sound anything like a real composite Steinberger bass. They sound nothing like a 'berger. But they don't sound too bad, actually! I was pleasantly surprised with how well they sat in the mix, cutting through as necessary without being too pointed or forward, and providing a solid, firm foundation that you could build an arrangement upon. They're fine instruments for affordable cheap wood instruments; it's only because they look like Steinbergers (and because they use all that "licensed-by-Steinberger" hardware) that they get unfairly compared to Steinbergers.

    The real comparison should be to ~30 year old Washburn basses. Hohners kick the crap out of those.
    superdick2112 likes this.
  17. foal30


    Dec 3, 2007
    New Zealand
    I think the one in this thread is an Eighties model.
    Not sure on the back plate however...

    I had a B2A from 89-91 until I could get a Steinberger L2

    The Hohner played ok, as someone else wrote above not entirely convinced on the preamp inasmuch the difference between active and passive output.
  18. ChemDave


    Sep 11, 2011
    Reading, PA
    The manual is very sketchy...when I get a chance I will copy it, make a pdf file and post it under this response. The silver "box" beside the battery is the adjustment for the active electronics your bass contains. I have never messed with that control on my late '80's B2A, but it is supposed to set the frequency response or the level of the active electronics. The manual does not mention this control at all.
    Patty Clam likes this.
  19. ChemDave


    Sep 11, 2011
    Reading, PA
    The "manual" that's attached...I use this term very loosely...was provided when I purchased this bass new in the late 1980's (I believe it was 1986) and are the only instructions provided with the B2A. There is not much in them.

    Perhaps a wire or two between the "silver box" and the rear mounted controls have become disconnected and cause the malfunctioning of your active controls. The manufacturer did not leave excess wiring in this area...if a previous owner was messing with the "silver box" it'd be very easy to break wiring connections. I am more than happy with the passive sound of mine.

    There are string adapters available for these basses (Hohners/Spirits/Steinies, etc.) so that regular bass strings may be installed in place of the double ball end strings...eBay sellers have them (Steinberger String Adapter - Headless Hohner Cort - Bass or Guitar - Made in USA | eBay). A little pricey ($40), but then you can use strings you like. Once installed it's a great add on.

    Anyone parting out a B2A and has a battery box for sale?...the lid on mine is broken and I'd like to replace the box with the era correct parts.

    Attached Files:

    acroce likes this.
  20. Oddly

    Oddly Supporting Member

    Jan 17, 2014
    Dublin, Ireland.
    Nothing to add but I will say that's a beauty. I've never seen a walnut stain one before.