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Best Bass Guitar for Beginners: Top Choices

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Best Bass Guitar for Beginners: Top Choices

Kick-off your bass playing career in style

We decided to put together a list of models that we feel allows you to hit the ground running. Whatever style of music that you play, all of these bass guitars offer tonal versatility and power. Of course, we've made sure that they are comfortable for those who are honing their skills.

1. Encore E4 Bass: Best to Hit the Ground Running With

image of a bass guitar

To start things off we've gone for the Encore E4 Bass Guitar, which is practically perfect for those looking into picking up the bass guitar.

The Encore E4 design borrows from a very popular deep double-cutaway model that you will probably have seen before. Ergonomically shaped for maximum playing comfort, the bass establishes a figure-hugging feel with curves in all the right places. Whether you prefer to practise in the seated or standing position it sits nicely on your lap or rests snug against your body. Lightweight alder is used in the construction of the bass, whilst the hardwood neck offers a generous scale length to play along.

We should note that youngsters may find it a stretch to get to the lower frets, but we'll explore short-scale options further down the list.

Moving back to the neck and fingerboard, Encore opt for a rounded profile for a substantial feel in the hand. There are 20 frets to explore with a relatively curvy 12-inch radius, which means that your fingers can adopt a natural grip position when fretting notes. Thanks to the double-cutaway body shape the highest frets are within easy reach, giving you the freedom to move around the fingerboard with minimum effort.

image of an electric bass guitar pack with accessories

We also offer the Encore E4 Bass Guitar Pack, which offers outstanding value by including everything that you could need to get your bass playing career off to a flying start.

2. Encore E20 Bass Guitar: Shorter Scale for Easy Reach

image of a bass guitar

Our second entry is another masterful effort from Encore with their E20 Bass Guitar, which is also a rendition of a hugely popular model. A lightweight body with curves in all the right places make the E20 another flexible model for those who switch between seated and standing positions. Wear it high or sling it low, either way, you can slap, tap or pluck your way through tunes with ease.

The hardwood neck with gloss finish offers a chunky profile for a reassuring feel in the hand. Extending your hand along its entire length is a breeze and thanks to the shorter scale length, those with a shorter reach will find it more manageable than a full-scale model such as the E4.

Tonal versatility is the name of the game with the E20, thanks to the split single-coil pickups master volume and tone pots. Deft attenuation allows you to go from chunky low-end to sparkling upper mids and everywhere in between.

The black finish of the body is paired with a white pickguard, whilst dot position inlays guide your way along the fingerboard in understated fashion. Open-type tuning machines maintain tuning stability, giving you the ability to play as passionately as you wish.

image of an electric bass guitar pack with accessories

As with the E4, you can also grab an E20 bass guitar pack, which includes everything that you could need to become the next Flea, Jaco Pastorius, Esperanza Spalding, Tal Wilkenfeld (whoever inspires you to pick up and play!).

3. Chord CCB90 Bass: Sleek Designed for Ultimate Comfort

image of a bass guitar

The Chord CCB90 is a contemporary electric bass and benefits from a compact, contoured alder body with a bolted deep cut joint to its maple neck. Thanks to the combination of slender body depth, ergonomically shaped curves, and deeper cutaways, even shorter fingers can reach every single one of the 24 fingers with ease. The exotic-sounding kabukalli fingerboard is adorned with dot position inlays to guide your way.

A pairing of single-coil and split humbucking pickups in the bridge and middle positions respectively, are controlled by independent volume pots, and a master tone pot. The level of tonal versatility takes from anywhere you wish to go from funk to fusion, hardcore punk to prog.

This is an extremely comfortable bass that is as much at home with slap-bass styles as finger or pick-playing, making it a fantastic model for those who want an instrument that will see them through to beginner and intermediate to advanced playing styles.

4. Ibanez SRMD200 'Mezzo' Bass Guitar

image of a bass guitar

The Ibanez SRMD200 'Mezzo' Bass Guitar is the newest model on our list, but it has already made quite an impact with those who have been lucky enough to get hold of one. Coming from the Ibanez family we already knew that it was going to be awesome, but boasting a punchy 32-inch scale, gorgeous finishes (Candy Apple Red and Seafoam Green) and a sparkling tonal palette, it is a very exciting prospect indeed.

A pair of Ibanez' Dynamix P and J pickups feature master volume and balance pots, as well as Ibanez Custom Electronics 2-band EQ for boosting/cutting Bass or Treble. Fat and thick low-end, tight highs or bouncing mids that pop out unabashed, everything is at your fingertips.

We really can't throw enough superlatives at the SRMD200 'Mezzo' Bass Guitar, it looks cool, sounds sublime, and plays like a dream. What more could you want?

5. Squier Affinity Series Precision Bass Pack

image of a bass guitar

Where would we be if it wasn't for the incredible Fender Precision Bass, the one that started it all. For those looking for that classic charm on a tighter budget, you can't go wrong with the Squier Affinity Series Precision Bass, which picks out all the best bits and then maximises performance for modern bassists.

Lightweight poplar is used in the construction of the body with the customary double-cutaway profile of the P Bass. A lengthy maple neck with a comfortable C-shape profile sits sweetly in the hand, whilst the hardwood fingerboard provides a sumptuous touch for the fingers. A PJ pickup configuration (that's Precision Jazz) opens up a vast range of tones to play with to suit any style from jazz to punk.

Included in this pack you get the Squier Affinity PJ Bass, Fender Rumble 15 Amp, a padded gig bag, Fender strap, and 10-foot instrument cable. On top of all that you also get a 3-month subscription to the superb Fender Play online guitar learning platform.

6. Squier Mini Precision Bass: Scaled-Down Excellence

image of a bass guitar

The Squier Mini Precision Bass is the perfect companion for players seeking a reduced-size instrument with classic styling and a familiar Fender tone. Highlights include a thin and lightweight body, a short-scale neck with an easy-to-play “C”-shaped profile, a Squier split single-coil pickup with volume and tone controls for sonic variety, and a hardtail bridge for solid tuning stability.

It's a Squier, with classic Fender tone, but mini!, Perfect for kids and the perfect present. A pro feeling guitar but in an easy to handle size. All the regular features of a full-size guitar in Squier split single-coil pickup, 5-way switching. The body is made from poplar, the neck is maple and the fingerboard is Indian Laurel.

This is an excellent model for youngsters or those who are just starting out on their musical journey, and could well be the beginning of a lifelong passion.

Dawsons Music & Sound Online

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Visit your nearest Dawsons Music & Sound Store where our in-house specialists can guide you through the decision-making process.

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Pick Up & Play!

Whether you are just starting out on your musical journey or have significant playing experience under your belt, we want to encourage and inspire everyone to take positive action with their instrument aspirations.

If you have always fancied playing an instrument, getting into DJing, or advancing your knowledge on your chosen instrument, we have everything covered from instrument packs and accessories to blogs and instructional videos that provide everything needed to level up!

Click Pick Up & Play to get inspired!