Danelectro Longhorn vs Hofner Contemporary

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by pinkfreud, Feb 17, 2010.

  1. pinkfreud


    Feb 16, 2010

    I am guitar player that loves to play bass when I have to record original compositions. So I am an occasional bass player.
    I played 2 Squier basses in the past but I never felt comfortable with them because they were too big for me. I have small hands.
    So now I decided to try some short scale bass.
    My attention came upon this 2 choices:


    For recording necessities or overall quality what would you recommend me?

    Thanks a lot!
  2. ricca


    Dec 24, 2009
    Reggio Emilia ITALY
    Danelectro, more versatile and good sounding, I love mine.
  3. They are actually pretty different.

    The Danelectro will be alot lighter as it is fully hollow and the Hofner CT has a center block in it. The block will give that bass added sustain though.

    They are both nice so if price is an issue than go with the Danlectro but if you really want a smaller neck the Hofner neck is skinnier than the Danelectro.
  4. pinkfreud


    Feb 16, 2010
    Thanks for the quick feedback!
    I heard about the Danelectros that they don't have a powerful output signal.
    As I said, I need the bass for recording.
    Do you think it should be ok?
    Anybody did any recording with a Danelectro Longhorn?
  5. Dynacord


    Jan 1, 2005
    I've recorded with the original 1960s danelectros before (and Hofner too) and they recorded really well - they are passive and not high output but still totally usable (a little single coil hum can be an issue just like a jazz bass). I gigged with some of these basses (I had Danelectro, Silvertone and Coral variations) and output was never a problem. The issue of them being somewhat low output is true but overstated IMO.

    The new 'dead on' ones have a somewhat higher output from what I've read though I've not tried one yet - but seriously thinking about getting one as I don't currently have any dano-type bass - my only hesitation is that I have not found a really comfortable way to play the Longhorns when standing. Still, I love their sound and like the look (not to everyone's taste I know) and personally prefer to the Hofners (though nothing wrong with them).
  6. Rob Martinez

    Rob Martinez

    Sep 14, 2005
    I have read the CT Hofner will have a more "modern" sound, because of the center block. The Dano a more "vintage" tone. Depends on what matters most to you, I suppose.

    The center block is why I play an Icon instead of the CT. I want a hollowbody sound. I recorded with my Icon yesterday, sounds amazing! My friend wants me to re track everything I have done with my Fender P bass, he prefers the Icon!
  7. I owned a Hofner CT and the center block does not change the overall classic Hofner sound. While it has the center block it has the real german pickups which the Icon does not have. The sustain is a little more but the classic Hofner sound is still there.

    The Danelectros are lower output than the Hofner CT (which is rather high output actually) but many people have recorded with them no problem. The bass player from Golden Earring stands out as one.
  8. Mr. Mig

    Mr. Mig

    Sep 7, 2008
    I have never played a Danelectro, but the Hofner HCT is far more versatile than alot of people give them credit for.
  9. jblock


    Mar 20, 2004
    I played them both side by side a few times as I was also deciding between the two a couple of months back and the Hofner is definitely better made from a fit and finish perspective. The neck on the Hofner felt a lot better to me. And the tone and volume knobs on the Danelectro just feel too flimsy to me. The Danelectro didn't seem much lighter to me. You'll need to decide yourself about the sounds, but the Hofner CT is extremely versatile: both pickups full on gives you a very tight modern sound, roll back the bridge pickup for the classic Hofner sound or roll back the neck pickup for a Fender Jazz sound.
  10. bamba22

    bamba22 Commercial User

    Dec 24, 2009
    owner of beginner-bass-guitar.com
    the Danelectro have cleaner sound in recording
  11. pjmuck


    Feb 8, 2006
    New Joisey
    Really? Did he use one on "Radar Love"? If so, that's very impressive.

    Hofner: fat, round, and tubby. Almost requires using a pick to add any attack/clarity (+ palm mute). Fingerstyle, can almost sound like an upright.

    Dano: honky, mid-toney hollow tone, more versatile overall, IMO. Also amazing classic tone when used with a pick + palm mute. Fingerstyle cuts through better than Hofner.

    You'll have to decide what sound(s) you're going after, as neither can cop each other's sounds. The lipsticks of the Dano and humbuckers of a Hofner are both pretty unique.
  12. Yes he did.
  13. I'd like to do a side by side of these two. I currently use a tapewound-strung Eastwood Classic 4 but would like to get something a little treblier for more "lead" bass/chord playing, and I'd like to stick to short scale.
  14. Dynacord


    Jan 1, 2005
    And Jack Bruce, John Entwistle, Gary Tallent and Joey Spampinato - lots of others I'm sure... Bruce Thomas with Elvis Costello used one of the Jerry Jones Longhorns quite a bit.

    PS: pinkfreud -- are you with the Polish band 'Pink Freud'? Clever name.
  15. GM60466


    May 20, 2006
    Used longhorns are usually reasonably priced and a lot of fun to play. The Jerry Jone Longhorn is a great bass but not cheap. It won't have the rolling thunder tone of a Hofner, or the "look". Heck, get one of each.

  16. ricca


    Dec 24, 2009
    Reggio Emilia ITALY
    I have both but for treblier sound and chords i reccommend the dano with rounds.
    The new longhorns model has an adjustable bridge, so intonation is no more a problem (intonation on hofners can't be fine tuned). If you play often past the 5th fret you need an adjustable bridge.
  17. I think the emphasis here should be on the feel of the bass, not it's sound since both the Longhorn and Contemporary have usable voices and record well. I own a violin bass and although I love it's tone, it just doesn't feel right due to the height of the strings above the body and the body's shape. I prefer the Dano's flatter deck and lower strings.
  18. pinkfreud


    Feb 16, 2010
    So far lots of feedback regarding my question. Thanks a lot guys! :)

    In the recordings I want the bass guitar to sound as a proper bass: low frequencies and at the same time to distinguish the notes.
    Danelectro seems to be too bright - I need the bass to play its normal role, to cover the typical ground.

    So now I am more inclined to buy the Hofner Contemporary.

    Also I have to admit I love the Longhorn design and its sweet sounds. :p

    Nope, this nickname was an idea I had years ago when I was in high school. Later I was very surprised to discover that someone else had this idea too. :cool:
  19. Danos are pretty cheap. Look used and maybe you can get a Dano and a Hofner Icon for the cost of the Contemporary.
  20. Dynacord


    Jan 1, 2005
    FWIW I just got one of new Danos (also via Thomann) and put flats on. I think for recording, I could get a good traditional tone.

    The band Pink Freud is pretty good...