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Semihollow short-scale shootout: what should I be considering?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by EpicSoundtracks, Dec 28, 2017.


  1. EpicSoundtracks

    EpicSoundtracks

    Mar 10, 2006
    Oakland, CA
    Lollar Pickups, Dunlop Strings
    I *really* miss my vintage Guild Starfire I, and while nothing will ever truly replace it, I wanna snag a s/s s/h for practicing and recording.

    So right now I'm looking at the Newark St. Starfires, the Dano '56 bass (maybe not a true semihollow, but still the general vibe i'm trying to find), the Gretsch Electromatic (the doublecut G5442B model), and some Eastwood stuff (I assume their "Classic 4" is made at the same Korean factory as the Gretsch?), but what else should I look at?

    thanks y'all!
     
  2. Uncle K

    Uncle K The bass player doesn't get a sandwich Supporting Member

    Aug 22, 2011
    Erie, PA
    Warmoth
     
    jd56hawk likes this.
  3. Dadagoboi

    Dadagoboi CATALDO BASSES Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jul 1, 2005
    Florida Swamp
    CataldoBasses: Designer/Builder ThunderBuckerPickups:Consultant
    These work for me...

    deHQ2Y4.
    OlgfBVu.

    So do these three:
    QvITLOz.
    pWqNYwC.
    DRMFgRg.
     
    EpicSoundtracks likes this.
  4. EpicSoundtracks

    EpicSoundtracks

    Mar 10, 2006
    Oakland, CA
    Lollar Pickups, Dunlop Strings
    @Dadagoboi, what are the "good" model Harmonys I should look for?
     
    Dadagoboi likes this.
  5. Mustang Surly

    Mustang Surly

    Jul 10, 2013
    The MIK NS Starfires strung with flats are my favs, both ergonomically and sonically. I find the necks super comfortable and am able to get a wide range of usable sounds out of them, especially when augmented sparingly with a couple of pedals (DarkGlass Vintage Microtubes and Hartke VXL ToneShaper). You can alweays do a Novak/Darkstar pup swap if you want to spend the money, but I actually like the Stock Guild BiSonics just fine.

    Of course, if slapping and/or more "modern" tones are your thing, these might not be the best choice. The Reverend Dub King has a more "modern" sound but I find the necks and string spacing on those to be far less comfortable than those of the Guilds.

    I've also thought about hunting down an Epiphone Elitist Rivoli to upgrade with a DiMarzio DP-120 "Model One" pup and Hipshot SuperTone 3-point replacement bridge, but have never gotten around to it.
     
    Last edited: Dec 28, 2017
    EpicSoundtracks likes this.
  6. EpicSoundtracks

    EpicSoundtracks

    Mar 10, 2006
    Oakland, CA
    Lollar Pickups, Dunlop Strings
    i am entirely uninterested in sounding "modern," and I appreciate your input on the Starfire!
     
    Dadagoboi likes this.
  7. EpicSoundtracks

    EpicSoundtracks

    Mar 10, 2006
    Oakland, CA
    Lollar Pickups, Dunlop Strings
  8. Dadagoboi

    Dadagoboi CATALDO BASSES Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jul 1, 2005
    Florida Swamp
    CataldoBasses: Designer/Builder ThunderBuckerPickups:Consultant
    H-22 is the one. I have two '65s and a '67. They all sound and play the same. From what I understand the fairly recent "Reissues" aren't at all like the originals in sound or construction, different bridge and tuners, also. I haven't played a RI but the asking prices I've seen for them are close to what I paid for mine on average.

    It's a big bass for an SS and I think that has a lot to do with the sound. Here's one next to my EB-2 which is about the same size as a Starfire except for the bigger headstock. The H-22 is much lighter than the EB-2, that also has an effect on the tone in addition to the different pickup designs.

    Qc3WMNv.

    If you can find an H-22 to try give it a shot. I bought my first one on a recommendation from Bob Glaub. I was hooked! They basically get one great sound with some variation. They're my favorite among my SH basses. I'd like to try one of the early deep bodied M-85s some day.
     
    EpicSoundtracks likes this.
  9. EpicSoundtracks

    EpicSoundtracks

    Mar 10, 2006
    Oakland, CA
    Lollar Pickups, Dunlop Strings
    great info, and much obliged!
     
  10. Gorn

    Gorn

    Dec 15, 2011
    Queens, NY
    The Epi Rumblekat all day long. Amazing build quality. The sound is what you'd expect. I won't say it's amazing. But it's great for what it is.
     
    EpicSoundtracks likes this.
  11. fermata

    fermata

    Nov 10, 2015
    Hofner is also worth considering--and not just for the 500/1 (violin bass) and 500/2 (Club bass) models. The Verythin CT seems Verycool (sorry):



    And there's also the President CT. If my 500/1 CT is anything to go by, the CT (Contemporary) line is excellent.
     
    EpicSoundtracks likes this.

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