Hohner Arbor series

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Nekomata, May 16, 2021.

  1. Did a search, but that yields only little, and sometimes contradictory information. Therefore, I'm opening this thread, hoping that you experts will chime in.

    I'm curious about the Hohner Arbor series. Right now, I'm 'looking at' a P-bass copy (pictures below). Not the ones with only 'Hohner' as a 'pearl' inlay in the headstock (those were, I think, from the '70's, and built in Japan, right?); also not the ones that were branded as 'Arbor' (also Japanese, I think).

    As far as I know, these were made in the 80's (previous century) in a Korean factory. The neck, I believe, is a single piece of maple and gets quite good user feedback. I cannot make out, for sure, what the body is made of. And whether the electronics were half-decent.

    All info is welcome!

  2. Maxdusty


    Mar 9, 2012
    Michigan USA
    I don't know too much about the Arbor series, but I've owned a few Hohner basses, a Phoenix, a PJ Professional series and the headless B2ADB. The Arbor series,(the inexpensive line) was run alongside their higher end Professional Series during the same period.
    From what research I've done back when I picked up the PJ Professional, they are Korean and made in the Cort factory. However, Hohner (the German company) who had these produced by Cort had very high QC standards they set for their instruments, so it's actually rare to find a badly made Hohner. Electronics on the ones I've owned and tried were very good for the Headless and the Phoenix (both active/passive with the same preamp), the PJ Pro was passive and was pretty decent if memory serves me correctly, was similar to a VM or CV in quality, again talking electronics and pickups.
    I know the PJ Pro I owned was solid wood, I'm not sure about the Arbor series if that's solid wood or what MIK basses would sometimes use on their basses, plywood. The quality of work on my Pro series, body, finish, neck and fretwork was great though. No issues there.

    That looks like a beautiful bass, I would pick it up in a heartbeat if the price was good.
    Last edited: May 16, 2021
    Nekomata likes this.
  3. Defiantly mid 80's there was Hohner & Marlin basses, that were both out at the same time. Hohner basses were IMO better even the Arbor series, though they did their own take on the P body shape.
    Nekomata likes this.
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  5. Maxdusty


    Mar 9, 2012
    Michigan USA
    Certainly cuts down on weight and from the what I can tell of the wood around the routing work, that looks like it's layered wood ie. plywood. Nothing wrong with it, my son's MIK Fender Squier series P bass is also plywood. Interesting too that the cavity is also painted.
    Nekomata likes this.
  6. Found this little thumbnail:


    and took the 'SB 403' moniker to the Hohner historical guitar models list:

  7. 6tqtxXT.jpg
    The Hohner started to sound weird and did no longer respond to the controls. Now I would most likely not be able to fix anything serious, but I had a peak underneath the pickguard. That partially brought back the volume control, but the bass still sounds like crap.

    Maybe I'll find myself some cheap replacement components. But there's no rush, since this is far from my main player now. Although I like the light weight (laminated body, indeed, as my picture also shows) and the looks.
  8. Primary

    Primary TB Assistant

    Here are some related products that TB members are talking about. Clicking on a product will take you to TB’s partner, Primary, where you can find links to TB discussions about these products.

    Sep 28, 2021

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