The Best Bass Guitars Under $1000 in 2019: reviewed and rated right here
It’s a great time to be looking for the best bass guitar under $1000 because we’ve made your search so much easier. We’ve picked out the top electric bass guitar models you can get for a very reasonable price. Gracing our list are basses from Fender, Ibanez, Schecter and Washburn – trusted names with a reputation for delivering quality in sound and build.
When you’re ready to move up from your starter bass and are looking for an instrument that can take you to new heights, do consider the models on this page. Your next guitar could be one of them.
- Our Top Bass Guitar Picks Under $1000
- 1. Fender Aerodyne Electric Bass Guitar
- 2. Schecter Stiletto Studio Electric Bass Guitar
- 3. Ibanez SRFF805 Electric Bass Guitar
- 4. Fender Deluxe Active Jazz Bass Guitar
- 5. Ibanez SR800 Electric Bass Guitar
- 6. Spector Legend 4 Electric Bass Guitar
- 7. Washburn Taurus Electric Bass Guitar
- 8. Yamaha TRBX505 Electric Bass Guitar
Our Top Bass Guitar Picks Under $1000
|Fender Aerodyne Electric Bass Guitar||If you’ve always loved the classic Fender tone, the Fender Aerodyne Jazz Bass is for you. With its sleek looks, this all-black bass is sure to impress not only visually but sonically as well. The Fender Aerodyne bass sports a specially designed slim basswood body, maple neck, stained rosewood fretboard and the combo of P-Bass and J-Bass pickups.|
|Schecter Stiletto Studio Electric Bass Guitar||The Schecter Stiletto Studio-4 is another top bass under $1000, combining a neck-thru-body design with lots of tonal power. Part of the popular Stiletto Series, the Studio-4 is a versatile player and proves to be a fantastic companion for bassists of different music genres. In addition, the Schecter Stiletto Studio-4 is a real beauty with its exotic bubinga top.|
|Ibanez SRFF805 Electric Bass Guitar||The Ibanez SRFF805, AKA the Ibanez Bass Workshop SRFF805, is a five-string multi-scale bass guitar with fanned frets. The bass side has a longer scale than the treble side, giving players better intonation as well as a more consistent attack and tension in every string. Bartolini BH1 pickups capture the sound of the SRFF805 efficiently for a great overall tone.|
|Fender Deluxe Active Jazz Bass Guitar||What does the Fender Deluxe Active Jazz Bass have that other basses don’t? Two Vintage Noiseless Jazz Bass pickups, that’s what. These pickups make this bass an extremely flexible instrument with a powerful tone suitable for any music style. It’s also got that classic Jazz Bass look so it looks great too. And yes, it’s priced below $1000!|
|Ibanez SR800 Electric Bass Guitar||The Ibanez SR line has always been popular among demanding musicians not only because of the impressive performance of the basses in the series but also because of their affordability. The Ibanez SR800 is our pick for this list of great bass guitars under $1000 with its combination of design, electronics, materials and defined, clear sound.|
|Spector Legend 4 Electric Bass Guitar||Spector guitars have a reputation for being jaw-droppingly expensive, but the Spector Legend 4 Classic bass guitar is set to change that with its reasonable price. The Legend 4 Classic bass sports a maple body in a standard NS curved shape. It has an active pickup configuration with SSD INC pickups that deliver a unique tone you’ll surely find interesting.|
|Washburn Taurus Electric Bass Guitar||The Washburn Taurus series of basses are some of the company’s most affordable. For this list we’ve chosen the T24nmk, a model with a neck-thru-body design. Despite its price, the Washburn Taurus T24 can compete with high-end pro-level bass guitars effortlessly with its quality materials and components as well as its awesome tone. Great quality for less than $1000.|
|Yamaha TRBX505 Electric Bass Guitar||The Yamaha TRBX505 is a fantastic performer and the bass guitar package with a clip-on tuner and stand costs just a little bit over $500. This makes this kit one of the best bass guitar packages you’ll find under $1000. The Yamaha TRBX505 is a five-string model that features a mahogany body, a five-piece maple/mahogany neck and active-passive electronics.|
If black is your power color, you’ll love the dark looks of the Fender Aerodyne Jazz Bass. This under-$1000 model takes the Jazz Bass style and amps it up with modern cosmetic modifications. It’s all black, there is no pickguard and the control knobs, tuners, bridge and hardware are all given a smoked chrome finish. Even the top-mounted Stratocaster output jack is done in black. Fender describes the effect as “darkly alluring,” and we can’t help but agree.
The Fender Aerodyne Bass has a slim, specially shaped and contoured basswood body that features a carved top and cream binding. The maple neck has a C-shaped profile and the stained rosewood fingerboard has 20 medium jumbo frets. To keep the dark design consistent, Fender opted not to put any inlays on the fingerboard. You do get side dots for guiding your hand across the fretboard, so no need to worry about going to the wrong fret.
The Aerodyne Jazz Bass also features a P/J pickup configuration. At the middle position you’ll find a split single-coil Precision Bass pickup and at the bridge there’s a Jazz Bass single-coil pickup. It has two control knobs for volume and one for tone.
- Striking visual appeal
- Slim body and neck construction makes the bass lightweight and comfortable to play
- Unique smoked chrome tuners, bridge, control knobs and hardware
- Great amount of tonal range with P/J pickup configuration
- Initial setup is necessary
- Low-range tones not as pronounced
An exotic wood like bubinga is rarely found in bass guitars under $1000, yet the Schecter Stiletto Studio-4 has it, right on top of its mahogany body. But body wood alone doesn’t dictate the performance of a bass guitar, so let’s take a look at the other specs of this model.
The Schecter Stiletto Studio-4 has a multi-laminate maple/walnut neck with a neck-thru design and a thin C shape. It’s topped with a rosewood fingerboard with abalone offset dot inlays and 24 X-Jumbo frets. The scale length sits at a full 34 inches and the bass has a comfy 16-inch fingerboard radius. A smooth satin finish accentuates the grain of the top wood beautifully.
The mahogany-bubinga body, paired with the maple-walnut neck, give the Stiletto Studio-4 a thick, yet focused tone with plenty of sustain and resonance. The body also has what Schecter calls “Ultra Access,” or cutaways and contour cuts for fast and easy playing at the upper frets.
The Stiletto Studio-4 bass is fitted with EMG 35Hz pickups at the neck and bridge. A 3-band EQ (mid, treble, bass), when used with the blend knob, provides a wide range of tonal options. There’s a master volume knob too.
- Outstanding design and build
- Well-suited for a variety of music genres
- Vast range of tonal options
- Some fret ends not smooth
- Mahogany body is dense and can feel heavy
Guitars with fanned frets are usually on the higher end of the price scale, which makes the Ibanez Bass Workshop SRFF805 bass a rare treasure.
Fanned frets make a bass easier to play even if it has an extended 35-inch scale. The offset angle of the frets provides a more natural fit for the fingers. The fingers fan out from the palm, similar to how the fret pattern fans out from the center.
The fanned frets on the five-string Ibanez Bass Workshop SRFF805 Multi-Scale bass also yield a longer scale on the bass side and a shorter scale on the treble side. This means that the lowest strings as well as the lowest notes produce a stronger and fuller sound, thanks to the extra length. Meanwhile, the upper strings on the treble side make a brighter and clearer sound because of the shorter string length.
The Ibanez Bass Workshop SRFF805 Multi-Scale bass has an ash body and a 5-piece jatoba/bubinga neck, which is topped with a rosewood fingerboard. Other specs include Bartolini BH1 pickups at the neck and bridge, Ibanez Custom Electronics 3-band EQ with a bypass switch and mid-frequency switch and a Mono-rail V bridge.
The Fender Deluxe Active Jazz Bass is packed with features that bass players of all genres would love. This bass boasts the classic Fender Jazz Bass body shape. It has an ash body and a maple neck and fretboard, which adds a bright and even tone. The neck features a C-shaped profile for optimum comfort and fast play.
One of the highlight features of the Fender Deluxe Active Jazz Bass is the pair of Fender Vintage Noiseless pickups. These pickups deliver a premium, noise-free tone with that vintage Jazz Bass sound: a guttural midrange output and a soaring high end sound.
Another fantastic feature is the four-saddle HiMass bridge. The solid metal bridge ensures there’s no air space between the body and the strings so that all of the string vibration is passed directly to the body, enhancing sustain. It also keeps intonation on point and makes sure tuning is always stable.
The Fender Deluxe Active Jazz Bass is equipped with active electronics, but you can also play it without batteries. A toggle switch allows players to change between active and passive. Other controls are volume, balance and a 3-band EQ with boost and cut for bass, mid and treble.
- Classic Jazz Bass look with modern features
- Active/passive switch increases sonic flexibility
- Stacked, noiseless pickups cancel noise while retaining classic single-coil tone
- Initial setup necessary to correct intonation
If you’re looking for a reliable bass guitar under $1000, consider the Ibanez SR800. The SR line has always provided bass players with instruments that amaze and there’s a model for every budget. We’re eyeing the tastefully done SR800 in Aged Whiskey Burst with a mahogany body and poplar burl top.
With a full scale length of 34 inches, this bass guitar gives you lots of room to play. It has an SR4 five-piece jatoba/bubinga neck and a rosewood fretboard with 24 medium frets. The wood combination makes the neck strong and sturdy even though it has a thin profile. A neck tongue gives players an easier time accessing the higher frets and makes the bass look more unique.
The Ibanez SR800 has a passive pickup configuration, with Bartolini MK1 split-coil pickups at the neck and bridge. The pickups provide a wide frequency range and deliver an enhanced definition and clarity without the noise and hum that usually come with traditional single coils. The pickups are wired to an Ibanez Custom Electronics 3-band EQ with a three-way mid frequency switch so you can select between 250Hz, 450Hz and 700Hz settings.
- Pickup combination gives the bass a lot of range
- Defined and clear tone with plenty of sustain
- Unique look with poplar burl top
- Not completely playable out of the box - initial setup necessary
Spector may not have risen to worldwide acclaim in the same way that Fender did, but the admiration from discerning musicians is certainly there. Spector basses offer the tone, features and overall quality that earned Spector a place in the highly competitive guitar market.
The Spector Legend 4 Classic bass guitar boasts an NS curved body shape, which was conceptualized in 1977 and named after its designer Ned Steinberger. Steinberger took the design of the SB-1 bass and tweaked it, making it more curved and contoured, resulting in a bass body that is extremely comfortable to play.
The Spector Legend 4 Classic has a basswood body and a genuine figured maple top. The bolt-on maple neck is of a three-piece construction and it’s topped with a 24-fret rosewood fingerboard. This bass comes complete with proprietary active electronics as well as professional-grade die-cast hardware.
The Legend 4 Classic bass is equipped with specially designed SSD INC humbuckers that are perfectly paired with TonePump Jr. active tone controls that can give you up to a 12dB boost. Each pickup has its own volume knob.
Part of the Taurus series, the Washburn Taurus T24 is a great bass guitars for players looking to upgrade or find a backup bass. It has a stained mahogany body and a maple/mahogany multi-laminate neck. The neck-thru-body construction offers outstanding stability and a pure tone with lots of sustain. A satin finish gives the bass a comfortable and fast playing feel.
The neck is topped with a rosewood fingerboard with 24 frets and offset dot inlays. Onboard are passive Dual Washburn J style pickups in a J/J configuration. You get two controls for volume and two for tone – pretty basic but everything works smoothly.
If you don’t like active basses and having to carry extra batteries, the Washburn Taurus T24 is the bass guitar for you. For those who do prefer active pickups in their bass, fret not because you can easily modify this guitar and install it with the active pickups of your choice. We assure you that this bass will only get better if you do so.
Other specs include Grover die-cast bass tuners, chrome hardware and a gig bag. If you have a budget of $1000 or less, here’s our tip: shortlist this bass!
- Sturdy neck-thru body construction
- Great for jazz, funk, rock and punk music
- Comfortable neck feel
- Not as versatile as other models - not suitable for metal or hard rock
- Control knobs can feel cheap to some players