Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Fruity, Sep 18, 2005.

  1. Fruity


    Sep 18, 2005
    UK, Scotland
    To cut it short, I'm buying a new bass guitar, probably a fender jazz, and I was looking at a shortscale model. I was wondering what the advantages/disadvantages of shortscale basses are in general, thanks. Sorry if this has been posted before.
  2. bluemonk


    Dec 17, 2002
    There is a Fender short-scale jazz? I'd never heard of that. Where did you find one? Short-scales are very helpful for people with shorter arms than others. I had an EB-O years ago and loved it. Why work against yourself by playing something too large? There's a reason why short people don't make the best basketball players. But with a lowered net...WOW! :smug:
  3. Funkengrooven

    Funkengrooven Turn it down? You gotta be nuts!!

    I too, have never heard of a shortscale Jazz...I have heard of the Fender Mustang Bass....not a real good bass IMO.
    ALL My basses are shortscales, even the one currently being built at DPCustom.
    All are 29 or 30 1/2 inch scales.
    I played fullscale P-basses and Hamers for years and sold them all.
    I am WAY more comfortable on a shortsacle.
    All mine are strung with Rotosound RS-66S Swing bass shortscale strings.
    In addition to the two in my sig I also have a 2002 Gretsch Electromatic shortscale, single pup, bolt on neck. Made in Korea.
    Not a bad axe just not great. The Gretsch rides around in the car so I am never without a bass.
    The Dano and the Epiphone have a lot more character.
  4. A9X


    Dec 27, 2003
    Sinny, Oztraya
    Fruity, do you mean the SX Jazz shortscale? Looks good to me, and I'm going to get one in the next couple of weeks myself These have had good reports from people here that own them, both in the P and the J.

    I have a lot of short and medium scale basses and if they're built well, setup properly and strung with decent strings they sound fine. However the longscale mafia may try to get you to beleive otherwise.

    I agree with bluemonk "Why work against yourself by playing something too large?"
  5. Futurebass


    Jun 22, 2005
    Mike Watt said he switched to short scale bass just to keep playing after experiencing physical problems.
  6. Hey short scales aren't just for little people! I'm 6'2" and I love playing short scales. They're so fun and if you have a long reach on a regular scale you have a longer reach on a short scale. I plan a short scale for my next buy, either a Fender Competition Mustang or an SX P, depending on how much money I don't have at the time. Short scales make me happy! :hyper:
  7. plexibass


    Jun 30, 2005
    i play 2 dan armstrong plexiglass basses. i have 1969 clear and a 1970 reissue [1998]. i also have a hofner and a FRETLESS dan armstrong london. i'm 5'7 with arthritis so i just prefer shorscale as it does'nt tear my hands up as much as a long scale.
  8. Edword


    Jun 23, 2005
    I eventually became dissatisfied with my Mustang, and traded it away. After I tried a 34" scale bass, the Mustang's strings felt too loose. I kept my shorter-scale Beatle bass copy, as it's fun to play, but it's not my main instrument.
  9. Kurt Hans

    Kurt Hans

    Mar 17, 2005
    I used to own a a 77 Mustang. It wasn't the greatest sounding bass but it was tons of fun to play. Now I play a Warwick Streamer with a 30" scale and that thing sounds great. Most people that don't like short scales take issue with the decreased string tension, saying that it makes their sound muddy. While this was true with the Mustang I've never had any issues with the Warwick.
  10. A9X


    Dec 27, 2003
    Sinny, Oztraya
    Playing devil's advocate here, how do you know the "muddiness" was due to the lower string tension on the Mustang? With the same scale length and strings, the tension on both will be the same. However there are large differences in construction, woods, mass, pickups etc between the two, and that I feel is more likely the difference in tone between them, not string tension.

    I like the lower string tension on my shorties.

    PS: I'd like to try a Warwick with a 30" neck some day. If only they had wenge necks (just 'cos I love wenge)
  11. I just got a Waterstone TP 12/32 short scale 12 string bass. It is 32", semi-hollow body, and it has a bright and CRUNCHY tone!! I love it. It is SOOOO fun to play, feels like a toy compared to my other two 34" Waterstone 12 string basses. Those basses have a huge, almost organ like tone, and this short scale bass is a nice complimentary bass to those ones.
  12. [​IMG]

    I have the following short scale, and it's not muddy AT ALL.

    I will record something with it soon and upload it for y'all to hear.

  13. Pennydreadful

    Pennydreadful Goin out West

    Jun 13, 2005
    Arlington, Texas
    Most of my basses are short scale. It wasn't intentional- it just seemed the stuff I wanted happened to be short scale. They can be muddy, but your instrument's worth a damn, then it probably won't be. It's not like an automatic thing- short scale = muddy. Nope, not at all.

    And I'm a big guy- about 6'3" - 6'4"- so they're not just for small guys, or girls, or beginners, or whatever. They're fast, and can be a lotta fun.
  14. JebusChrist


    May 23, 2005
    Im getting a 32 inch scale Fender Urge soon, don't know if that's considered short scale or what. But my school has a short scale bass that no one knows anything about (it's red, no pickguard, one p bass pickup, and it says "gremlin" on the headstock. Looks like a cheap p bass)
  15. Alvaro Martín Gómez A.

    Alvaro Martín Gómez A. TalkBass' resident Bongo + cowbell player

    Although I'm not a fan of short scale basses, I always thought that the Fender Urge 1 was a great bass. In fact, I like its versatility (I think no other Fender aside from the Urge 2 comes close in this aspect), but I was very disappointed after talking with a recording engineer here who told me that when recording with a well known local bassist who have this instrument, he always has a tough time trying to get a fat sound from this bass. That's why this bassist recently got many pedals (equalizer, exciter...) to get a decent recording quality. I told him that a 32'' scale bass has a looser feel because the strings have less tension and maybe that's why he's having that problem. IMO, short scale basses are great for solo players like Stu Hamm or Stanley Clarke. But if you're a pocket player, 34'' is the way to go. 36'' are great if you have a low B, but the whole instrument feels very hard to play. I'm not suffering from GAS after getting my Bongo, but I'd love to have a Dingwall some day. I think that's the perfect solution to the scale length/playability/tone relationship issues, and the TalkBassers who own one seem to agree that it isn't difficult to get used to the fanned fret system.
  16. Kurt Hans

    Kurt Hans

    Mar 17, 2005
    Yeah, you're right.