Most of the time, when someone looks at a short scale bass, there is that inherent trade-off that kicks in. Sure, it will be more comfortable to play, due to the shorter scale length. But, it usually comes at the cost of the tone; many short scale basses have the notoriety of being thick, muddy and thumpy. And that’s WITH round wound strings on it, so they can become completely undefined and lost in the mix if flatwounds are put on them. Scott Whitley, a longtime bassist in the UK, is a big fan of short scale basses (you can check out his online site and valuable resource, www.shortscalebass.co.uk to see for yourself) and is familiar with the specific needs and hurdles with a shorter scale instrument. With this knowledge and experience, Scott has created the SWB-1 Standard, a short scale bass that will be available on January 20, 2016.
As per the website, the SWB-1 Standard “is a professional, modern-sounding short scale bass affordable to everyone.” The bass was designed with versatility in mind. Whether you go for the passive version or opt for the active version (with EMG preamp). The neck is slim, yet substantial to allow for comfort, as well as the 18mm string spacing. Combine that with a nicely shaped body (in either ash or mahogany) that weighs in at 7lbs, and you’ve got a serious instrument, ready to play at studio sessions, or 4-hour Top 40 gigs.
The biggest factor is the price. While there are custom versions that you can get, the SWB-1 Standard short-scale bass guitar will retail for $519.94 USD for the passive model and $846.21 USD for the active model. Shipping on January 20, be on the lookout as this bass looks to reinvent what we think of – and expect from – a “standard short-scale bass.”