This is our review of the Best Acoustic Bass Guitar in today’s market.
We have the 15 Best Acoustic Bass Guitars of all standards and cost to look at. You’ll be amazed at how low priced our collection is.
As an avid bass player myself for 25 years, I am very much involved with examining the many different models and what is best for certain scenarios.
Having become quite familiar with the qualities and features of Acoustic/Electric Bass Guitars. I am now committed to sharing this valuable information.
Electric and Acoustic Bass both have very different unique aspects. The resonance and feel you get from an acoustic bass cannot be matched by the electric model. It can give the player a whole new avenue to explore, giving you new inspiration.
All of us need some advice and guidance when shopping for bass guitar brands and models.
Read on to see which 15 Acoustic Basses we loved.
Quick View, Our Favorite 15
- Dean Eab 4-string
- Best Choice Acoustic Electric Bass Guitar
- Michael Kelly Sojourn 4k Acoustic Travel Bass
- Fender Cb-60sce Concert
- Ibanez Performance Parlour Pnb14e
- Michael Kelly Sojourn Port Travel Bass
- Michael Kelly Dragonfly 5 Acoustic-electric 5-string
- Taylor Gs Mini-e Bass
- Fender Kingman Acoustic Bass Guitar
- Takamine Gb30ce
- Spector Timbre 4 Jr. Short-scale Bass Guitar
- Michael Kelly Dragonfly 4 Port Java Ebony Fretless
- Takamine Gb72ce
- Breedlove Solo Jumbo Bass Ce
- Warwick Alien Deluxe 5-string
Choosing The Correct Acoustic Bass Guitar
I wouldn’t recommend choosing an instrument just by the way it looked. Obviously, there is an element of personal taste when finally deciding to part with your hard earned dollar. Having a better understanding of what suits your musical situation is key.
There are a few things you should know before making a purchase:
Straight off the bat, an acoustic bass has a thicker neck and a larger body size.
The acoustic bass is lighter than a standard electric bass.
As you know the electric bass is quite heavy, so in comparison, you are going to feel a lot more comfortable with an acoustic bass.
Although the acoustic bass is tougher to fret a note due to its high action.
A lot of my review consists of travel, parlor, mini and full size, and short scale basses. Which are all perfect starter instruments for a wannabe bass player.
Here is a chart to assist you with size:
Take into consideration the size of the player. Obviously don’t go buying a child of 10 an extra long 35 inch scale neck if they have small hands.
Short scale bass starts around 30 inches long. The standard length is 32-34 inches. As I’ve mentioned previously the long fingered players can stretch out and achieve more range with 35 inches.
A Fretless bass gives the player a wider range of sound to discover.
You can move very smoothly around the neck without any buzzing whatsoever.
It’s said to be far more expressive as you can slide between notes giving a more distinctive voicing. It’s like the traditional stand up bass where the notes are intonated by your fingers.
The downside to buying a fretless bass would be the likelihood of making more mistakes with fingering. As you don’t have frets to know exactly where to play the note. You’re also less likely to apply vibrato as well as you can on a standard bass. Frets on bass guitars make the vibrato technique easier.
My advice would be unless you’re an intermediate player, then I would aim for a conventional ‘fretted’ bass.
When looking at the materials of acoustic basses, you have two types of wood construction.
Laminated wood: Layers of wood glued together. This type of construction offers low prices but doesn’t resonate with a high standard in comparison to solid wood.
A Solid Wood has a much superior quality in tone and lastability. The majority of instruments are made from solid mahogany wood bodies.
The most common types of wood used are:
- Mahogany, Koa, Spruce, cedar for the soundboard
- Mahogany, Koa, Maple, and rosewood for the bottom and sides
- Mahogany and Maple for the neck
- Rosewood and Ebony for the bridge
I’ve written a far more comprehensive article about everything you need to know about guitar tonewood.
A pre-amp can play many roles for a bassist and is always a handy thing to have in your arsenal. You’ll generally find a use for it in most situations!
The name gives it away – a ‘Pre Amp’ lets you sculpt the sound you want *before* your amp pushes it out of your speakers. That includes before your amp EQ gets hold of the signal if you are using yours with a standalone amplifier.
Generally, most players use one to dial in the sound of a particular amp or to replace a standard amp and go directly into a FOH (“Front Of House” or “PA”) system. But they have many functions other than this.
The thing is pre-amps, just like standard amps can vary drastically in regards to the number of features and price. So that’s why we’re here to help you find the pre-amp that’s best for you and your bass sound!
See our Best Pre Amps here: authorityguitar.com/best-bass-pre-amp/
Comfort and Feel
Don’t underestimate the power of comfort.
If you find an instrument uncomfortable, you’re less likely to want to pick it up.
The greatest players of all time play their bass like it’s an extension of their body. Your guitar should fit like a glove.
The best way to find out is to go to your local store and sit down with a few. You’ll know almost instantly what feels good for YOU and your situation.
Just because a Bass is expensive, it doesn’t mean it’s going to be comfortable for you.
Let’s get into the reviews of our favorite 15
The acoustic bass models described below are my choices for the fifteen best currently available. Starting from low priced up to pro level.
The 15 Best Acoustic Bass Guitar. Full Review
- Ample Volume
- Good Build
- Low Budget 5 Star Item
- Perfect For Jamming With Friends
- Satin Natural or Classic Black
The Dean Eab is a low priced very popular Bass that will see you get your foot in the door.
Its ample volume and generous sustain will ensure you are getting the best quality for your buck.
The Dean Eab comes with a decent setup and a solid reliable build. The action is a little high for my liking, so if you’re a complete beginner I would consider paying a guitar tech to lower the strings, as fretting can be a chore on a high action. I would also strongly recommend buying a quality set of strings, as lower end instruments come with awful strings attached.
The electronics are non-active but so easy to use if you want to plug in and play. Dean’s own passive preamp is suitable for home playing and jamming with friends, but it’s not ideal if you’re gigging with a band.
With a genuine Mahogany body and neck, a ‘select’ Spruce top, Rosewood fingerboard you’re actually getting a pretty good deal in build terms.
At this amazing price, you cannot complain. A perfect companion for a casual player but not the best starter instrument for a complete beginner.
Number of Frets 24
- Huge Seller
- Comfortable Neck
- Solid Wood Build
- Great Looking
- Comes In Natural, Black, and Blue
The ‘Best Choice’ Acoustic Bass is a very popular and low priced instrument. For those looking for a way into acoustic bass playing, without spending too much.
Considering this Bass is priced so lowly and is produced with mediocre build quality, you actually can get a decent tone out of it. A good amount of resonance, and a richness you would expect from a product above this price range.
I was surprised by how comfortable the neck was. The frets are actually dressed properly giving you a much better playing experience. Most lower-end basses skip on the build quality and you end up with sharp fret edges. But not here.
The built-in equalizer is a bonus for jamming with friends but don’t expect to be gigging with this bass..
The kit does come with a truss rod adjustment tool. You would need a guitar tech to set this up for you, as the action is a little high for complete beginners.
This model is a big seller so you cannot argue with its popularity. It must be doing something right.
With what you save in $ I would strongly recommend some fingerboard oil, decent strings, and maybe a technician to lower the action. Then, you have the most bang for buck acoustic bass in the low budget price tag.
Product Dimensions 45.5 x 18.3 x 49 inches
- Fishman Electronics
- Reliable Manufacturer
- Unique Design
- Low Price
As we step up a level of quality, I thought I’d add an Acoustic Bass which would suit the traveler among us.
Michael Kelly produces a quality range of instruments right up to the top end. So we’re looking at a quality bass build and exclusive designs of a high caliber.
The Sojourn 4k bass has a unique sound port monitoring design. Just under the Fishman controls on the top of the body lies a soundhole. This was created to give you a much better idea of what sound you’re producing, rather than it all coming from the soundhole out front. A nice little extra!
Considering this is a small travel sized guitar, the Sojourn has a big bass sound. That is down to the Koa build on the top, back and sides.
Not only does the Sojourn look great in its appearance, but it’s also a decent-sounding instrument.
A Mahogany neck and tight grain rosewood fingerboard make this a super little travel bass to consider.
Not only are you getting a top build and design from a reliable manufacturer, but it’s also all at a lower budget price.
- Reliable Manufacturer
- Best Beginner Acoustic Bass
- Fishman Pickup, Pre Amp & Tuner
- Very Comfortable
- Easy To Play
Another great guitar from Fenders classic series of instruments.
Reliable, affordable, well made. What more would you need from a major player in the guitar business?
Now, if you’re a beginner, here is your starting point. Not because the Fender CB-60sce is low priced and comes from the best known guitar manufacturer. Because it’s from a proven best selling range of bass guitars. It’ll be set up with the utmost quality, giving you the best chance to succeed.
With lower priced instruments you’re always in danger of various build and tuning issues. The lower level bass market cannot compete with a Fender.
With a scalloped X bracing concert sized bass, you’re guaranteed a smooth and expressive low end. The neck is super silky and easy to play. Rolled fingerboard edges and 22 vintage-style frets make it a pleasurable experience.
The comfortable C-shaped neck is the same shape as my electric guitar, it gives me maximum comfort. Especially important if you’re just starting out. The C shape is definitely my favorite.
This is the first Acoustic Bass that comes with a set of good strings: Fender Phosphor-Bronze Bass strings (gauges .045-.100). The setup is ready to go outta the box.
One tip I would suggest is to oil the fretboard, especially the edges. It definitely goes towards a smoother and faster fretboard.
A super comfortable Acoustic Bass from the powerhouse Fender.
Scale Length: 32″
- Flawless Finish
- Very Comfortable
- Punchy Pre Amp Tones
- Built-In Tuner
- Child Friendly
Ibanez is one of the leaders in entry level guitars, so we should definitely be paying attention to their Acoustic Bass selection.
The Ibanez PNB14e is a parlor sized acoustic electric bass guitar African Mahogany top, sides, and back.
African Mahogany is renowned for being hard and durable, so it’ll manage your dings and scrapes without issue.
As the 24.8-inch scale is very similar in size to a standard guitar, it’s super versatile. Sitting on the sofa, carrying it to a lesson, or playing with a band scenario.
The Ibanez Acoustic Bass is comfortable, easy to play, and most importantly beginner friendly, due to its satin finish on the mahogany neck.
The AEQ-SP2 preamp is quite punchy. It also comes with an onboard tuner for that quick live tune-up if required. Totally capable of handling a live band scenario.
The major benefit to this acoustic bass is the comfort factor. If an instrument is comfortable you’ll always feel at ease playing it.
The body finish is impeccable and soft to touch. Another superb low priced instrument from Ibanez you should seriously consider.
- Beautiful Looking
- Unique Build Design
- Tough & Durable
- Fishman Presys II & Sonicore Pickup
Here’s another elegant Michael Kelly product in the form of a travel friendly acoustic bass guitar.
The Sojourn Port travel bass is like no other, due to its unique features and tonal qualities. These small type travel design basses suffer from a lack of lower frequencies due to the size of the body.
Michael Kelly builders have conquered this issue with their Side Port Design. There is a small sound hole just below the eq controls that points directly at the player. It behaves the same way as a monitor would do on a live stage. This gives the player a much better idea of how they’re sounding out front.
The soundhole is also positioned closer to the player’s ear, giving you a much clearer all-around sound. You wouldn’t get this benefit with a standard soundhole position out front.
It’s worth taking note, the Sojourn Port acoustic bass is also built using the dovetail construction technique. This ensures a much safer level of strength and resistance to all the bumps and whacks it will take throughout its life.
If you’re spending your hard earned dollar, it’s good to know your instrument is going to grant you longevity.
The Michael Sojourn is a durable and quality instrument that you can take anywhere, without having to worry about ruining it.
A beautiful looking travel bass that should be in your plans if you are the on-the-go bassist.
24.75″ scale length
- Super Unique
- Narrow Neck Width For Faster Playing
- Fishman Presys+ Preamp
- Intricate Finish
- Great Tone Scope
The Michael Kelly Dragonfly 5 string acoustic comes from a versatile trustworthy family of acoustic-electric basses.
This particular model may suit a player who’s already familiar with the 4 string. You are able to choose between a 4 or 5 string, fretted, or fretless bass.
The great thing about the Michael Kelly range, they are conscious of their audience. They have buyers from all skill levels.
The first thing that jumped out at me was the width of the neck. It seems a tad on the narrow side. As a guitar player myself, I really like this. But if you’re a traditional old-school kinda bassist, you might not want to revert to a more slender neck action. In fear of getting your fingers jumbled up on top of each other.
The Eq the Dragonfly has to offer gives you an abundance of sounds. This will keep you dialing in for a long time.
With a Fishman Sonicore Transducer (under the saddle pickup) and a Fishman Presys preamp, you’re given enough quality to play with a small band.
So if you’re a beginner and don’t want to be messing around with the dials too much, then Michael Kelly will suggest a bunch of tones for you. The 60s hollow body tone is especially nice. Do you want to instantly get a punk tone? no problem. Simply dial into some pre-arranged sounds and see what you like.
If you’re looking for a bass that has a unique appearance, then the Michael Kelly Dragonfly is definitely something you need to check out.
The intricate inlay work is most impressive. The Ovangkol fretboard is something you won’t find anywhere else on the market.
The ‘smoke burst’ quilted maple body is lush, a color I’ve never seen before. A real treat for the eye and would look great hanging in your study.
If you’re looking to take the acoustic bass seriously, then the Dragonfly 5 is an adequate starting point.
34’ Scale Length
- Trustworthy Manufacturer
- Perfect For Children/Beginners
- Taylor ES-B Electronics
- So Easy To Play
As you probably know Taylor is a major player in manufacturing acoustic guitars. So we have to take note when they produce a low-cost acoustic-electric bass with a difference.
The GS Mini-e Bass is not like any other bass. Taylor joined forces with D’Addario, the biggest string manufacturer to produce a set of strings. These strings are specifically made for this instrument.
As the Mini-E is a foot shorter than your bog-standard bass string scale, they needed to think about the huge loss in tone.
D’Addario then produced a multi strand nylon core that wraps in a phosphor bronze binding. This idea was taken from the world famous EXP D’Addario range. This is the only bass with this unique distinction.
On playing the Taylor Mini-E I found the lighter I played it, the better it sounded. With a less aggressive approach, I found how dynamic it could sound. Even with a slight vibrato, I could create an almost vocal tone to it.
The Taylor Mini-E was so easy to play and super expressive. This kind of instrument would definitely suit a child or complete beginner. As well as the experienced sofa twiddler (a person who watches tv whilst playing! me!).
Get yourself a low priced long-lasting bass from Taylor, you’re guaranteed a good build and longevity with these guys.
23 ½ Scale Length
- Super Cool Looks
- Built In Tuner
- Natural Warm Tones
- Durable Fender Build
- Fishman Presys Preamp and Tuner
The Fender Kingman in my opinion is the coolest looking bass in this review. I know it matters what you look like on stage, I just love the jazz profile neck, the black body, and gold scratchplate. If I were to line all fifteen basses up, this would definitely catch my eye within seconds.
Not only does the Kingman look great, but it’s also been built by the powerhouse Fender. So your guitar will be produced by the best builders with a reputation that exceeds all other companies.
The dreadnought shaped body does feel a bit bulky in comparison to some of the other basses. But I know a lot of bassists prefer to have something to hold on to. It kinda presses back into your gut from the sitting position. Making you hug and play this beast with assurance.
The build consists of laminated mahogany back and sides and a solid spruce top. This is the norm for instruments around this price tag. This is not a bad thing as it’s a reliable sturdy wood type.
The X scalloped bracing provides exceptional resistance and durability. It also ensures you receive a more balanced voice and a warm woodier tone.
The Kingman gives off that jazz bass feels with the classic headstock and block inlays. I found the resonance was noticeably more organic than any other bass so far.
A real steal at an affordable price. Try a Fender, you’ll never look back.
- Reliable Builders
- Great All Rounder
- Deep Lows, Refined Mids
- Smooth Neck
- Easy To Play
If you haven’t owned a Takamine, they are a huge reliable brand that caters to acoustic players of all skill levels. I’ve owned two in my time, I’ve never had a single issue with longevity or performance.
As per the Takamine design, they aren’t the most spectacular looking instruments, but that means little to me. They are a trustworthy manufacturer, reliable and consistent performer. I still think natural elegant looking guitars are the way to go anyhow.
The Takamine Gb30ce comes in black and natural colors. The neck is smooth and very playable. Which, if you’re spending hours on end practicing or you’re new to bass strings, this will certainly aid you.
Although it has quite a conservative concert shaped body, this, in turn, yields big lows and a moderate level of mids.
Don’t forget you have plenty of tone-shaping options with the TK-40B Preamp with an onboard tuner.
A very safe practical choice of instrument. The Takamine Gb30ce Acoustic-Electric is an all rounder and won’t let you down.
- So Easy To Play
- Very Comfortable
- Clear & Precise
- Travel Friendly
- Very Light
The simplistic but sleek Spector Timbre 4 Jr short scale bass has a slimmed down body for maximum comfort. Whether you’re a beginner or pro, this will fill your every need.
It’s lightweight and sits beautifully against your waist. With a comforting 30’ scale neck and 20 soft rosewood frets, your fingers are given a treat.
The Spector Timbre certainly is a manageable sized affordable option to consider.
With Fishman Presys + pickup and electronics, there are a number of rich, crisp, and responsive tones to be had. The midrange tone has a clear airy type feel to it, unlike any other bass so far.
I was most impressed by how you can get it out of the case and play it with no setup. The sustain is surprisingly good considering the small size of the bass.
A perfect option for those wanting to play it on their lunch break, or throw it in the car and take it on a camping trip. A safe travel friendly option for those not wanting the hassle of lugging a large bass around.
A superb addition to the Spector family comes in the gorgeous Walnut Stain Matte (above), Black Matte, or the classic natural color.
If you’re the traveling type who needs a bass by your side, here is your next instrument.
30″ Scale Length
- Unique Signature Inlay Design
- Smooth to play
- Truly Beautiful
- Port and Offset Design Soundholes
Another superb Michael Kelly Acoustic Bass in my review. The popular Dragonfly Ebony fretless model is most suited to those around the intermediate to pro level.
A truly mouthwatering instrument to gaze at. It almost looks edible!
Its unique Ovangkol fretboard gives the player a much smoother experience, with ample top end and a full midrange this really is a step up in sound quality from anything so far.
An exclusive offset soundhole is situated on top of the body. This gives the player a much better understanding of what sounds they’re producing from out front. It really is like no other acoustic bass in today’s market.
With the mahogany build neck, you’ll enjoy ample sustain, strength, and a delightful warm tone.
Underneath the sleek Macassar Ebony body, we have the more than adequate Fishman Presys and Sonicore pickup. These onboard electronics are far the best you can get for the price range of this type of instrument.
The signature Abalone & Pearloid Dragonfly design will have you in ore, and the talk amongst your friends.
If you’re looking for something a little special, something unique and beautiful, this is your next bass. And you’ll be amazed at the affordability of the Michael Kelly bass collection.
Don’t scroll by without checking it out.
- Trustworthy Brand
- High Build Quality
- Natural Tones
- Bright & Punchy
- Very Attractive
Here’s our second Takamine of the review, and a model that’s well worth looking at. The Gb72 is one of my favorites for many reasons. In my opinion, anything Takamine will be reliably built to last, they’re always worth taking a punt on.
The build is slightly different from any bass previously in the review. The Gb72 has a dovetail neck joint, in comparison to the standard ‘bolted’ build. In my opinion, the dovetail joint is much superior for your sound.
A dovetail joint is glued into the body and provides a smoother passage for the vibrations to travel around the guitar. It’s a very traditional setup but provides you with a more desirable overall sound.
The tone is very bright and punchy, not muffled and boggy. This is the kinda voicing I prefer in a bass, especially of the acoustic kind.
The Takamine Gb72 is internally braced, meaning you have a high level of stability and wooden reinforcement. Bracing aids the guitar in structural support. It orchestrates the frequency and contributes to the overall character.
The electronics are fitted to give you scope to find many sounds which fit your music. With a TK-40B preamp and the basic three-band eq, you’re able to use this beast in a band scenario.
A bass that stands out as durable, correctly priced, attractive, and able to perform to your high standards.
The Takamine Gb72 oozes quality and confidence.
Scale Length: 34″
- Superior Tone Covering The Full Spectrum
- Pro Build
Now, this may look like just another ordinary acoustic bass. But you’d be wrong to think that.
The superior tone capabilities from the Breedlove Bass put it above the rest of the review. A fuller, rounder voicing at both ends of the spectrum. These features elevate this acoustic bass to the top of my wanted list.
You could almost say it has similarities to the stand-up bass with its superb array of tonal territory. With bold-yet warm sounds and big bass response.
The Breedlove owners out there have described the resonance as almost ‘grand piano’ like. Now, how many brands can boast this feature from their beloved fan base?
You may notice the innovative ‘Side Monitor’ soundhole, this allows the player to know exactly what tone they’re emanating from the front of the body.
The volume and tone controls are hidden inside the soundhole. This is a subtle but sensible approach I like. It keeps the instrument looking sleek and smooth. There are no worries about smashing buttons off when putting the bass away, or knocking a knob whilst performing live. I don’t know why all basses don’t use this design, it makes so much sense!
With a professional build grade, the Breedlove has Ovangkol back and sides and a beautiful red cedar top. Under the hood, we have LR Baggs EAS VTC electronics, and as we mentioned before the volume and tone are under the soundhole.
The neck has a 1.69 nut width and a 34’ Okoume Neck with a soft silky ebony fretboard.
For just a little more in cost, why wouldn’t you treat yourself to the Breedlove Solo Jumbo Ce Acoustic-Electric bass? It’s simply superior in sound.
- Used By Pros
- Best Bang For Buck
- Adjustable Nut
- Superb Electronics
The Warwick Alien Deluxe is the last of my best acoustic bass reviews. From a family of superb four and five stringed instruments.
I’ve chosen the 5 string Alien Deluxe, as it’s perfect for a player who wants a pro-level bass. Artists such as John B Williams and Jonas Hellborg have this model in their collection. So, already we have an idea of how exceptional the Warwick collection is.
The Alien Deluxe 5 String in my opinion is the best instrument within this price bracket.
The Bass has a big strong resonance that you cannot find on another bass in this review. I like the warm but clean nature of the tone. I always like to hear exactly what I’m playing. Even down to how much pressure you’re applying to a string.
You can almost carve out both single and double bass accents if you experiment with the on board electronics.
Let’s take a quick look under the hood. The Warwick includes a Fishman Sonicore Piezo Pickup with the option to dial in with the notch, brilliance, and faze controls.
The Faze control is a must for the live musician, as it controls the level of feedback and stops you from killing your audience.
I also liked Warwicks own machine heads. If your machine heads are cheap and nasty, there is no way you’re ever going to stay in tune. And there is nothing worse if you’re playing in a room full of people!
A super benefit I must mention is the Just-a-Nut III. This feature gives you total control over the string height and intonation with the precise adjustable nut.
This will definitely aid the longevity of the instrument. If you can adjust the string height/intonation over time, with the movement of the guitar’s wood, the bass will last years.
The Warwick Alien Deluxe 5-string is a pro-level streamlined style Bass. If you’re looking to take your bass playing seriously, you really should own one of these bad boys.
Q: What is my most important step in selecting a new acoustic bass guitar?
The most important thing for you to do is to audition different guitars thoroughly. By visiting stores that sell a good selection of models, you can take the time to play different ones. Being comfortable with an instrument is 100% important.
This will help you narrow your choices down to a few and then pick your favorite guitar. The good thing is, they’re super low priced.
Q: What are the most important aspects of each different model to consider before buying my favorite acoustic bass guitar?
Pay careful attention to your perception of each bass guitar’s overall sound, tone quality, fretting hand comfort, and playing ease. You’ll also know what feels most comfortable for you. Some instruments fit like a glove.
Good luck in your search for your next acoustic bass, I have covered plenty of options for you with various budgets to consider.
Don’t Forget Essentials:
A word on strings:
Don’t forget to buy the correct strings for your bass. Obviously, the travel-sized and short-scale basses need different strings to a long-scale bass. Choose from a lighter gauge if you’re starting out (or for children) to a heavier set for more depth.
Here are our recommendations:
Short Scale Bass Strings: Check Ernie Ball Strings on Amazon
Long Scale Bass Strings: Check D’Addario Strings on Amazon