Dismiss Notice

Psst... Ready to join TalkBass and start posting, make new friends, sell your gear, and more?  Register your free account in 30 seconds.

Hofners? Tell me your thoughts on these basses?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Mob, Jan 12, 2005.


  1. Mob

    Mob

    Jan 12, 2005
    I am a big Beatle fan and i play mostly the 60's and 70's type music. I am planning on saving up for one. But i am wondering what evreyone here thinks of them?

    Thanks

    - Mob
     
  2. MAJOR METAL

    MAJOR METAL HARVESTER OF SORROW Staff Member Supporting Member

    I think they are great instruments perfect for certain styles and songs. The new Hofner instruments in my opinion are superior to the models of the 60 - 90's in terms of quality and construction. Just be aware they are not an all tricks dog.
     
  3. Mob

    Mob

    Jan 12, 2005
    Thanks I really Interested in getting one

    Anyone else have any thoughts?

    - Mobs
     
  4. main_sale

    main_sale

    Apr 26, 2004
    Cape Cod
    I've had my Beatle Bass for 40 years now. I still have it and play it. What does that tell you, other than we are both getting old!
     
  5. iamthebassman

    iamthebassman

    Feb 24, 2004
    Austin,Texas
    Endorsing Artist: Phantom Guitars, Eastwood Guitars
    I make a living playing one(and a Ric too). Mine is a '63 reish, about 8 years old. Consistent tone, very easy to play, FAR superior to any clone, believe me, I've owned a few, the difference is amazing. "Ain't nothin' like the real thing". Very light, very punchy, your soundman will love you.
     
  6. corinpills

    corinpills

    Nov 19, 2000
    Boston, MA
    There's actually a similar thread just a week back or so- you could find it. I think that players who use 5 strings and are concerened with a modern full range sound (Hi Fi, they call it) have a generally dim view of Hofners. They are definitely not for everybody, but they are classics. They really only do one thing well: big, thuddy bass. Some hear mud, I call it perfect.

    I've often borrowed one for recording and recently bought a '67 violin bass. With Pyramid flats, one needs to merely plug in to find an amazing recording tone. In my experiennce, many people try to cover the full frequency spectrum with their bass sound (booming lows, defined mids and spakly, crystal clear highs), which competes in the mix with the full range guitars, the full range drums and God forbid there are keyboards in there as well. Oh yeah, and the vocals need to stick out somehow when the whole thing is crushed with massive compression. It's a huge mix nightmare, but a Hofner very clearly defines it's place in a mix. Most engineers love them to death for that reason.

    Live, they are probably not the most road- worthy, well constructed basses. There's a certain level of craftsmanship in the early ones ('61- '63), but once McCartney made it famous, I think they started to really crank them out. One nice thing about them is that they don't lose their resale value. They are a good investment (that's what I told my wife when she noticed the new bass in the house).
     
  7. The Hammer

    The Hammer

    Jul 13, 2004
    I was over at a friends house last night and he has five of them. 3 60's vintage and 2 modern reissues. I myself play neck thru active basses but I have to say that the Hofner just about plays itself compared to one of my basses. My friend loves them and I have used several of his to record with and they record fine. My friend just recently strung up one of his vintage ones with Thomastix flatwound strings. Sounds incredible! I would definitely recommend any Hofner owner to check out those strings. Also if you are a Beatles fan you may want to look at the Rickenbacker 4001v63 and 4001c64 basses. They are reissues of the Rick that McCartney played and they play and sound incredible. They are out of production but you can usually pick one up on eBay for $1500-2200 and are well worth the money.
     
  8. JohnThomasson

    JohnThomasson Supporting Member

    Feb 3, 2003
    Nashville, TN
    Endorsing Artist: Mesa Boogie, DR Strings, Fender, Source Audio & Fishman
    I love my Hofner reissue Club Bass. Major thick low end booty. It's killer for funk (well not for slapping obviously). I've done a couple of records where I played it on every song. The major drawback for me is it's hard (but not impossible) to get a great sound when I'm playing lines past the 12th or 14th fret. But that's the case with most short scale basses.
     
  9. JohnThomasson

    JohnThomasson Supporting Member

    Feb 3, 2003
    Nashville, TN
    Endorsing Artist: Mesa Boogie, DR Strings, Fender, Source Audio & Fishman
    Also, I picked the Club Bass because I like the single cut away "Les Paul" shape of it, it had more definition than the Cavern Bass and the '63 or McCartney bass has a weird feel to me that I was never comfortable with and the Club is the cheapest of the three.
     
  10. I've never owned one, I've wanted one forever, I've played dozens of them and I couldn't find one that felt good or spoke to me. I've played new ones and old ones, middle period ones- I really disliked the feel of the necks, I remember one white '67 or so- all the fancy inlays and everything- the nut width had to have been an inch and a quarter! I love a small nut width- but there is such a thing as too small.

    I would totally love to find one that works for me- but it hasn't happened yet.
     
  11. Mob

    Mob

    Jan 12, 2005
    I live in Canada and there are no Dealers anywhere around me that ships Hofner. What would be the best place to order it from?

    musicianfriend and music123 dont do internationaly...
     
  12. JohnThomasson

    JohnThomasson Supporting Member

    Feb 3, 2003
    Nashville, TN
    Endorsing Artist: Mesa Boogie, DR Strings, Fender, Source Audio & Fishman
  13. Mob

    Mob

    Jan 12, 2005
    Do you guys think there is a much of a diffrence between V62 and the V63?
     
  14. Aaron Saunders

    Aaron Saunders

    Apr 27, 2002
    Ontario
    Never really been a fan, they always seemed hideously overpriced. I played an Epi copy on Monday night, and I was very much not impressed...'course, that's not a Hofner ;).
     
  15. iamthebassman

    iamthebassman

    Feb 24, 2004
    Austin,Texas
    Endorsing Artist: Phantom Guitars, Eastwood Guitars
    And John at BE will ship anywhere.
     
  16. BassmanRon

    BassmanRon

    Dec 31, 2004
    Nobody's mentioned yet that Hofners are neck-heavy -- out of balance because the hollow violin body is so light. They are known for intonation problems, and that certainly is an issue with my Hofner.

    I'm a huge Beatles fan, too. I don't know of a Hofner owner who is NOT! It looks great hanging on my wall among my Beatlest posters, but it's soon to come down and go on eBay to help pay for the Warwick Thumb 5 I recently added to my collection.

    I don't think even an ardent Hofner fan would suggest it could serve as your main bass, let alone your only bass, unless you're in a Beatles tribute band.

    -- Ron
    HappyMac@comcast.net
     
  17. DaBassman

    DaBassman

    Mar 25, 2002
    Oneonta, NY
    I've had one for 33 years (it's a 1968, I got it used)
    I love it because it's a McCartney Beatle Bass (and I'm a lefty) ....other than that...........I wish I could say I love the way it plays....it's a chore just to keep it playable....but I wounldn't sell it!!!! How's that for a non-answer to your question??? sorry :confused:
     
  18. +1 Exactly. I had a '65 Hofner, all original, from about '78 to about '95. It was my no. 1 bass from '78 to '82. It is indeed a chore to keep playable. I had to have my neck reset a couple times, temperature changes were a real bite, it had intonation problems. And it just isn't the right vibe for most music.

    I also bought mine because I'm a Beatles fanatic. I actually gave mine away (really - GAVE IT AWAY), even after someone offered me $2600 for it. (I don't think he would have come throught, and if he had, he'd have been a bigger idiot than I suspected he was.)

    It's OK if you play with a pick (or plectrum for you Brits), but I pretty much quit doing that and went to fingers almost exclusively in the early 80s. The Hofner's not a comfortable bass to fingerpick, at least not for me. Strings are close together and my right hand just couldn't get comfortable. And the weight, or lack thereof, I didn't consider a plus. There was not enough butt to it to keep it hanging in one place and feeling solid. There's a reason (or reasons) why Macca went to a Rick and a Fender.

    That being said, I wish I had mine back, even if I would never play it. I'd hang it on the wall and take it down for jazz combo stuff.
     
  19. MAJOR METAL

    MAJOR METAL HARVESTER OF SORROW Staff Member Supporting Member

    The Craftsmanship on the Cavern Basses is at Hofner's best.
     
  20. apollo11

    apollo11

    Aug 19, 2004
    New York
    I've heard that the Hofner company has been sold in the last month or so. Hopefully this doesn't have an adverse affect on the traditions of the company and thier products.