Best Cheap Bass Guitar – Top Choices for Under $300

best cheap bass guitar

A strong rhythm section is essential for providing groove and energy in music. With the best cheap bass guitar, you can fill in that crucial role without spending too much.

Best Cheap Bass Guitar - 2024 (Standard Scale)
Best Cheap Bass Guitar - 2024 (Standard Scale)
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The Best Cheap Bass Guitar – 2024 (Short Scale)
The Best Cheap Bass Guitar – 2024 (Short Scale)
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In the past, budget bass guitars were often poorly made, hard to play, and sounded bad. Fortunately, things have changed.

These days, you can have easier access to the best cheap bass guitars, which sound great, are well-built, and do not come at a premium cost.

These affordable bass guitars are ideal for beginners. But they are also good enough to serve as backups for experienced bassists.

If you’re a first-time buyer or a parent looking for a great bass for beginners, this guide is designed to help you navigate the options and find the best bass guitar under 300.

Multi-instrumentalists seeking an affordable bass will also find this guide invaluable.

Additionally, if you’re looking for an easy-to-play “beater” instrument, we’ve highlighted our top picks among short-scale basses.

All the basses you’ll find here are the top-rated long and short-scale basses that you can readily buy from major US retailers like Amazon, Sweetwater, and Guitar Center.

This means that some basses, like the Harley Benton bass, which are sold exclusively outside of the US won’t be included in this list.

When choosing a bass guitar it is important to consider its scale length. It’s one of the best ways to get a general idea of which bass guitar to pick.

If you’re unsure about which scale length is right for you, check out the playability advice in the Things to Consider section.

Best Cheap Bass Guitar – Standard Scale

Best Cheap Bass Guitar Bundle
Donner DPB-510 4 String Bass Guitar

Donner DPB-510 4-String Bass Guitar

Street Price:
$170.00
Manufacturer:
Gearank Opinion

The Donner DUB-1 is the best cheap bass guitar in the full-scale category. This cheap bass guitar is tailored for beginner bass players. Aside from the bass, it also comes with essential accessories and a functional design, providing a dependable cheap bass guitar option.

GEARANK
Incorporating 970+ ratings and reviews.

Pros:

  • Very affordable.
  • Bundled with essential accessories (gig bag, cable, strap).
  • Solid, lightweight basswood body.
  • Minimal setup needed, easy to adjust.
  • Good tuning stability
Cons:
  • Limited 21-fret range.
  • Basic bridge hardware.

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The Donner DUB-1 4-String Bass Guitar is an ideal entry point for beginner bass players.

It comes bundled with essential accessories like a gig bag, guitar cable, and strap. This offers both convenience and cost-effectiveness by eliminating the need for separate purchases.

The DUB-1 features a solid basswood body with sleek arches and chrome tuner keys. It also comes with brass strings, and a PVC pickguard, emphasizing functionality while delivering a natural, vibrant sound.

However, the DUB-14 is listed at 13.22 lbs. which happens to be the heaviest bass guitar on this list. This is quite unexpected since its body is made of basswood, which is supposed to be lighter than the common guitar wood, maple, or mahogany.

Its components are basic, as expected of the cheapest bass guitar in the full-scale category. But, they’re adequate for learning and can be upgraded in the future.

Feedback from users highlights the DUB-1’s sturdy build and good sound quality. It also requires minimal setup out of the box, usually needing only minor adjustments to be a very good bass.

Although there are minor issues such as noisy pickups and bridge stability, these factors don’t significantly affect its overall reliability and value.

Overall, the Donner DUB-1 best budget bass guitar in the full scale category. It’s a dependable choice as an entry-level bass if you’re just starting or looking for a budget bass option.

Specifications:
  • Body: Solid African Basswood
  • Neck: Canadian Maple (Bolt-on)
  • Neck Profile: C
  • Fingerboard: Purpleheart
  • Scale Length: 34″
  • Nut Width: 1.65″
  • Frets: 21
  • Pickups: P-bass pickups (passive)
  • Controls: Volume 1, Tone 2
  • Bridge: 4-Saddle Vintage Style
  • Weight: 13.22 lbs.

Rating Source Highlight

Website

YouTube

Source

StateofMercury

*Rating Value

96/100

*Displayed values are prior to the Gearank Algorithm’s adjustments it makes when evaluating the source.

Best for Fast-Playing
GSR200

Ibanez GIO GSR200 4-String Bass Guitar

Street Price:
$230.00
Manufacturer:
Gearank Opinion

The Ibanez GSR200 combines Ibanez’s trademark playability with versatile tones in a cheap bass. Comes in standard-size bass guitar format. This makes it a solid choice for players seeking reliability and performance at a lower price.

GEARANK
Incorporating 3250+ ratings and reviews.

Pros:

  • Affordable with Ibanez’s trademark playability.
  • Flat and wide fingerboard for smooth action.
  • Two single-coil pickups (P/J) for tonal versatility.
  • Phat II EQ knob boosts low frequencies for depth.
Cons:
  • Not for those with smaller hands.

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The GSR200 is a standard-size, cheap bass guitar with Ibanez’s trademark playability and impressive tone versatility.

This bass guitar maintains quality and tone-shaping capabilities while keeping the price accessible. It’s part of Ibanez’s renowned Sound Gear line, known for its mentioned good features.

It features a standard scale length and a slightly wider nut width for better string spacing. It also has a flat 12″ fingerboard radius, which gives it an easier fretting feel and smoother action.

The GSR200 bass is equipped with two single-coil pickups (P/J) for tonal variation. It’s then enhanced by Ibanez’s Phat II EQ knob, which boosts low frequencies for added depth.

Users have noted its impressive quality, with some purchasing it for their kids but ending up “borrowing” it due to its playability.

The GSR200 is also praised for its enduring performance and sound quality. It performs well even after years from when it’s bought.

If you appreciate Ibanez’s flat, fast-action fingerboard and seek a standard scale bass in the sub-$200 range, the GSR200 is a solid choice.

Specifications:
  • Body: Poplar
  • Neck: Maple (Bolt-on)
  • Neck Profile: GSR4
  • Fingerboard: Jatoba
  • Scale Length: 34″
  • Nut Width: 1.614″
  • Fingerboard Radius: 12″
  • Frets: 22 Medium
  • Neck Pickup: Dynamix P neck pickup (Passive)
  • Bridge Pickup: Dynamix J neck pickup (Passive)
  • Controls: Phat II EQ, Master Tone, Neck Volume, and Bridge Volume
  • Bridge: B10
  • Weight: 9 lbs.

Rating Source Highlight

Website

Audiofanzine

Source

MGR/Hoagie

*Rating Value

80/100

*Displayed values are prior to the Gearank Algorithm’s adjustments it makes when evaluating the source.

Best Extended Range
yamaha-trbx174-4-string-bass-guitar

Yamaha TRBX174 4-String Bass Guitar

Street Price:
$250.00
Manufacturer:
Gearank Opinion

The Yamaha TRBX174 is a cheap bass guitar that blends a traditional pickup setup with contemporary aesthetics. It has a streamlined body, an extended fingerboard, and versatile playability suitable for a range of musical styles.

GEARANK
Incorporating 970+ ratings and reviews.

Pros:

  • Sleek double-cutaway mahogany body.
  • Extended range of 24 frets.
  • Classic P/J pickup configuration.
  • Designed to handle heavy hybrid string sets.
Cons:
  • Chunky neck.

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The Yamaha TRBX174 maintains an affordable price and easy playability, making it ideal for beginners. This bass guitar combines a classic P/J pickup configuration with a modern look.

Its double-cutaway mahogany body gives it a sleek and contemporary look. Its cutaway ensures easy access up to the 24th fret, which is essential for capturing a more modern sound.

Its 24-fret fingerboard is a practical feature appreciated by many playing more complex passages. Although it may be extensive to some.

This guitar is designed to handle heavy hybrid string sets used in alternate tunings, ensuring versatility and durability. Credit to its 5-piece maple/mahogany neck, paired with a rosewood fretboard.

It has a C neck, which is quite chunky and is ideal for single-string action and bends than fast-paced playing.

The TRBX174 is equipped with a P/J pickup configuration (Precision Split Coil + Jazz Bass pickups). This bass guitar allows for easy tone changes, catering well to various genres like pop, R&B, and classic rock.

It includes dedicated volume knobs and a single-tone knob, enhancing its functionality and appeal.

Overall, the Yamaha bass guitar is best if you play slow to medium-paced music and want maximum fret access. It offers solid playability, versatile tones, and modern aesthetics at an affordable price.

Specifications:
  • Body: Mahogany
  • Neck: Maple (Bolt-on)
  • Neck Profile: C
  • Fingerboard: Rosewood
  • Scale Length: 34″
  • Nut Width: 1.57″
  • Fingerboard Radius: 10″
  • Frets: 24
  • Neck Pickups: Split Single Coil / Ceramic (passive)
  • Bridge Pickups: Single Coil / Ceramic (passive)
  • Controls: Neck P.U. Volume, Bridge P.U. Volume, Master Tone
  • Bridge: Vintage Style
  • Weight: 11.29 lbs.

Rating Source Highlight

Website

YouTube

Source

Recording Chat

*Rating Value

95/100

*Displayed values are prior to the Gearank Algorithm’s adjustments it makes when evaluating the source.

Best Lightweight Standard Scale
yamaha-bb234-4-string-bass-guitar

Yamaha BB234 4-String Bass Guitar

Street Price:
$300.00
Manufacturer:
Gearank Opinion

The Yamaha BB234 reintroduces the classic Yamaha Broadbass line with modern updates. This cheap bass guitar offers a modified double-cutaway body, a unique pickguard shape, and a neck tailored for modern sound. Complemented by Yamaha’s Custom V3 passive ceramic set, this is a tonally versatile bass guitar at an accessible price point.

GEARANK
Incorporating 80+ ratings and reviews.

Pros:

  • Lightweight with improved balance.
  • Classic vibe.
  • Thin BB neck with enhanced upper fret access.
  • Classic Precision-style tones.
  • Modern player-friendly maple neck design.
Cons:
  • Limited range for a full scale bass.

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The Yamaha BB234 is a re-introduction of the classic Yamaha Broadbass line, which debuted in the 70s. This entry level bass is the cheapest of Yamaha’s BB line of guitars.

It features a modified double-cutaway alder body, which enhances access to the upper frets. Meanwhile, its unique pickguard shape maintains a distinctive appearance.

The BB234 delivers a tone reminiscent of classic Precision-style bass guitars. Thanks to Yamaha’s Custom V3 passive ceramic set.

Its maple neck is designed with a thinner profile tailored for modern players. It is complemented by lighter tuners (as most affordable bass guitars tend to have heavy tuning machines) that enhance its overall balance and playability.

At a mere 8.8 lbs., this bass is the lightest among the best budget bass guitars with a regular scale length. However, it only has 21 frets, which can limit your playable range.

The Yamaha BB234 offers a versatile combination of timeless tone and contemporary features—all at an accessible price point. If you’re looking for a good bass guitar that blends a classic vibe with modern playability, consider the Yamaha BB234.

Specifications:
  • Body: Alder
  • Neck: Maple
  • Neck Profile: Thin BB
  • Fingerboard: Rosewood
  • Scale Length: 34″
  • Nut Width: 1.575″
  • Fingerboard Radius: 10″
  • Frets: 21 Medium
  • Neck Pickup: VSP3n Ceramic Split Single-coil (passive)
  • Bridge Pickup: VSC3b Ceramic Single-coil (passive)
  • Controls: Neck PU Volume, Bridge PU Volume, Master Tone
  • Bridge: Vintage Style
  • Weight: 8.8 lbs.

Rating Source Highlight

Website

Mixdown

Source

Editor

*Rating Value

96/100

*Displayed values are prior to the Gearank Algorithm’s adjustments it makes when evaluating the source.

The Best Cheap Bass Guitar – Short Scale

Short-scale bass guitars have shorter necks than regular basses. Unlike standard basses, which typically measure from 32″ to 38″, these bass guitars only measure from 28″ to 30″. They have less string tension, making them great for children or anyone who wants a bass that requires less force to play. They also produce a warmer, more midrange tone.

Cheapest Micro Bass Guitar
Ibanez GSRM20

Ibanez GSRM20 Mikro Short Scale 4-String Bass Guitar

Gearank Opinion

The Ibanez GSRM20 is the best cheap bass guitar in the short-scale category. It embodies Ibanez’s reputation for ergonomic design. This affordable bass guitar features a smooth short-scale build, lightweight construction, and good tonewoods.

GEARANK
Incorporating 1690+ ratings and reviews.

Pros:

  • Smooth and fast playability.
  • Reduced string tension.
  • Flat 12″ fingerboard radius with low action setup.
  • Lightweight and ergonomic design.
Cons:
  • Not a traditional bass guitar.

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Ibanez has a strong reputation for creating instruments designed with fast and comfortable playability in mind. The Ibanez GSRM20 falls into this same classification.

This short scale bass is known for its smooth playability, featuring a flat 12″ fingerboard radius and a low action setup.

It’s one of the best bass guitars for beginners available on the market. Thanks to its short-scale design, lightweight body, and contoured edges.

Many users consistently praised its surprising quality. Given that it was the cheapest bass guitar in the short-scale category.

Ibanez also maintained high standards in tonewood, an aspect that is particularly appreciated by owners. The combination of mahogany, maple, and rosewood is highly regarded for its balanced tone, durability, and playability.

These wood combinations contribute unique qualities that create a versatile and well-rounded instrument. The same materials are also present in the Yamaha TRBX174.

If you’re seeking a budget-friendly short scale bass the Ibanez GSRM20 deserves your consideration. It offers ease of play and good sound quality.

Specifications:
  • Body: Mahogany
  • Neck: Maple (Bolt-on)
  • Neck Profile: Slim
  • Fingerboard: Rosewood
  • Scale Length: 28.6″
  • Nut Width: 1.614″
  • Fingerboard Radius: 12″
  • Frets: 22 Medium
  • Middle Pickup: PSND P Single-Coil
  • Bridge Pickup: PSND Single-Coil
  • Controls: Volume 1, Volume 2, EQ, Tone
  • Bridge: B10
  • Weight: 8.4 lbs.

Rating Source Highlight

Source

Editor

*Rating Value

90/100

*Displayed values are prior to the Gearank Algorithm’s adjustments it makes when evaluating the source.

Best Offset Bass Guitar Design
ibanez-tmb30-bass-guitar

Ibanez TMB30 4 String Bass Guitar

Street Price:
$230.00
Manufacturer:
Gearank Opinion

The Ibanez TMB30 is a cheap bass guitar featuring the iconic Ibanez Talman shape. It has an offset body and a short 30″ scale length fingerboard. It comes equipped with a P/J pickup configuration, which makes it a good choice for players looking for a stylish and tonally versatile bass guitar.

GEARANK
Incorporating 450+ ratings and reviews.

Pros:

  • Stylish and lightweight offset body design.
  • Good upper fret access.
  • Reduced string tension.
  • Versatile P/J pickups.
  • Unique 9.4″ fingerboard radius.
Cons:
  • Rounder neck profile.

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The TMB30 is an offset body bass guitar that features the Ibanez Talman shape. It has a stylish and lightweight design with good cutaway access for the upper frets.

Its offset body and short 30″ scale length fingerboard not only enhance its appearance but also reduce string tension. This provides a different playing feel compared to full scale bass guitars.

Ibanez has equipped the TMB30 with a versatile P/J pickup configuration. It features a single-coil Jazz bass style pickup at the bridge and a split single-coil Precision style pickup in the middle position.

This setup offers a wider range of tonal options, a departure from the typical single pickup seen in this price range.

It’s important to note that the TMB30 deviates from Ibanez’s usual flat radius profile. Instead, it opts for a rounder 9.4″ radius fingerboard. This choice contributes to its unique feel and playability.

Overall, if you appreciate cool bass guitars that combine playability with visual flair, the Ibanez TMB30 is a solid option.

It is among the best beginner bass guitars, but it can also serve as your secondary bass option.

Specifications:
  • Body: Poplar
  • Neck: Maple (Bolt-on)
  • Neck Profile: TMB4
  • Fingerboard: Jatoba
  • Scale Length: 30″
  • Nut Width: 1.614″
  • Fingerboard Radius: 9.45″
  • Frets: 20 Medium
  • Bridge Pickup: Precision Split Single-Coil Neck, Jazz Bass Single-Coil Bridge.
  • Controls: 2 x Volume 1, Tone
  • Bridge: Standard Bridge
  • Weight: 7.93 lbs.

Rating Source Highlight

Website

Talk Bass Forum

Source

Maxdusty

*Rating Value

94/100

*Displayed values are prior to the Gearank Algorithm’s adjustments it makes when evaluating the source.

Best Guitarist Friendly Bass Guitar
Gretsch G2220 II Junior Jet

Gretsch G2220 II Junior Jet 4-String Bass Guitar

Gearank Opinion

The Gretsch G2220 Junior Jet Bass II is a budget bass crafted for ease of play and versatility. It features Gretsch’s renowned craftsmanship and vintage-style tones from its dual single-coil pickups. With its electric guitar-like format, the G2220 Junior Jet Bass II appeals to a wide range of musicians looking for a smaller, accessible bass option.

GEARANK
Incorporating 320+ ratings and reviews.

Pros:

  • Guitarist-friendly design.
  • Flat fingerboard providing great playability.
  • Vintage-style tones from dual single-coil pickups.
  • User-friendly controls.
  • Gretsch craftsmanship.
Cons:
  • Not for fans of the traditional bass form factor.

We’re reader-supported. When you click product links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission at no extra cost to you.

The Gretsch G2220 Junior Jet Bass II is a short-scale bass guitar with a 30.3″ scale length. This cheap bass is ideal for younger students of the instrument and for those who want a small bass that’s easier to play.

Despite it being a cheap bass guitar, the Gretsch Junior Jet Bass II doesn’t compromise on quality. It boasts Gretsch’s expected craftsmanship.

Its maple neck and 12″ radius rosewood fingerboard provide a flat, beginner-friendly feel.

This is also a decent bass guitar for guitar players. The G2220 Junior’s guitar-shaped single-cutaway “Jet” profile body makes it look and feel closer to a regular electric guitar.

This can be a favorite among guitarists who occasionally switch to bass, requiring minimal adjustments between instruments.

The Gretsch G2220 is equipped with two single-coil pickups. They resemble more of a humbucker pickup than the conventional single-coil pickup.

These pickups deliver vintage-style tones that complement their mellow nickel plated steel strings.

The hardware and controls are more straightforward. It includes volume, tone control, and pickup selectors—all of which contribute to its sleek design and user-friendly appeal.

Overall, the Gretsch Junior Jet Bass II stands out as versatile and attractive for short-scale bass guitars.

Whether you’re expanding your tonal options, adding to your collection, or a guitarist, needing to record a bass track yourself, this can be the bass for you.

Specifications:
  • Body: Basswood
  • Neck: Maple
  • Fingerboard: Rosewood
  • Scale Length: 30.3″
  • Nut Width: 1.563″
  • Fingerboard Radius: 12″
  • Frets: 20 Medium Jumbo
  • Middle Pickup: Mini-Humbucker
  • Bridge Pickup: Mini-Humbucker
  • Controls: Master Tone, Master Volume, Pickup Selector
  • Bridge: Standard 4-saddle Bridge
  • Tuners: Chrome Die-cast Tuning Machines
  • Weight: 8.375 lbs.

Rating Source Highlight

Website

Music Radar

Source

Mike Brooks

*Rating Value

90/100

*Displayed values are prior to the Gearank Algorithm’s adjustments it makes when evaluating the source.

Things to Consider When Buying The Best Cheap Bass Guitar

Body Shape, Finish, and Weight

First off, bass guitars are notorious for being hefty and heavy, so it is important to set your expectations, especially if you’re getting one for a child. Even cheap basses tend to be on the heavy side. This is where body profile, size, and curvature help; the general idea is to get one that will be reasonably comfortable.

But it’s not just about being comfortable; having a bass guitar that appeals to the eyes can spell the difference between forced and inspired practice. So it is important to get the look that you, or your child, prefer right from the start. If you’re not sure which style to go for, the safest route is to get one that looks like the bass guitar of you or your student’s favorite bassists.

Playability

There are multiple factors that dictate playability for bass guitars, one of which is Scale Length. It is basically the distance that your strings are stretched out, and as such it indicates the tension of the strings. The most common scale length for bass is 34″, because it has just the right balance of tension and tone. Other basses can have a scale length that is as short as 30″ or a little less, which significantly reduces string tension, ideal for young players or for those who want a musical instrument that’s smaller and easier to play.

Fingerboard Radius, which indicates the curvature or flatness of the fingerboard, is an important playability specification that you should look at. Although the fretboard may look basically flat at first glance, most of them are actually curved outward. Higher radius fingerboards are closer to being flat. Ibanez is known for their 12″ fingerboard radius, which is one of the flattest, while traditional bases have a lower radius that results in more curve. Flatter 12” and up fingerboards are ideal for beginners and younger players. The Nut Width tells you how far apart the strings are spaced, the narrower the nut width is, the easier it is for smaller hands to reach each string. The Neck Profile describes the shape of the back of the neck, the thinner and flatter, the easier it is to play, but there are some who prefer fatter necks for better grip. A bass guitar with a good cutaway at the neck joint allows for easier access to the upper frets.

String Action refers to the height of strings above the fretboard. It’s a specification that’s not always directly given by the manufacturer because it can vary for each instrument. Beginners will want those with low action but not too low to avoid “fret buzz,”  which means that the vibration of your string is hitting the frets. Some buyers report “fret buzz” in new bass guitars, and although this can be annoying, it can be fixed by raising the action (adjusting the strings to be higher off the fretboard). There are those who prefer a slightly raised action for better intonation control of each note as you press the strings, and better overall string resonance as well. Whichever string action you prefer, you have to know how to tune a bass guitar. Another important factor for string action is Bass String Gauges.

Bass Pickups

Being an electric instrument, bass pickups dictate most of the instrument’s resulting sound. As expected in the bass guitar price in this range, what you’re getting are affordable reproductions of pickups found in the best bass guitars. Single Coil pickups are the most common because of their crisp and detailed sound, which reproduces classic bass tones as heard on countless tracks from the past. Split-single coil pickups are often labeled as “P” style pickups since they were first used in the Fender Precision bass. The other popular pickup type is called the “J” style, which follows the Fender Jazz Bass pickup design. They have two magnetic poles assigned per string. Humbuckers generally sound warmer and fatter and are widely used in modern rock and metal. If you don’t have experience or a particular preference yet, then again, just go for the pickup configuration used by your favorite bassists.

Most of the basses in this price range have Passive pickups and electronics, which means they do not require a battery and have limited tone shaping options. Active basses with Active pickups and electronics allow for more tone shaping but require a 9V battery to properly function.

Bass Amps, Cables, and Other Gear

The bass guitars we feature here do not stand alone; they require at least a 1/4″ cable and a bass amp to get their sound out, so if you want to be able to use your bass, you’ll need to have at least these two items ready. There is also other gear that you can plug your bass guitar into, gear that can apply effects, improve your sound, and amplify your sound. These include bass pedals, bass preamps, PA Systems, audio interfaces, and more.

The Best Cheap Bass Guitar Selection Methodology

The first Edition was published in 2016. The current edition was published on July 15, 2024

We looked at highly rated bass guitars in the sub $300 range that meet these criteria: have a standard 4-string setup, have fretted fingerboards, come with magnetic pickups, and are readily available at major gear retailers in the USA.

Because of the price restriction, some budget basses that are priced above $300 are filtered out, including the Squier Classic Vibe 60’s Precision Bass, Sterling by Music Man Stringray, and others.

18 bass guitars met our criteria and were placed on our shortlist for closer examination.

We gathered the most recent reviews, ratings, recommendations, and discussions about the basses that met our criteria. The data we gathered came from over 10,400 sources, all of which were then processed using our Gearank Algorithm to produce a rating score out of 100 for each one. We then used these scores to select the highest rated ones to recommend. For more information about our methods, please read How Gearank Works.

About the Author and Contributors

Here are the key people and sources involved in this guide’s production – click on linked names for information about their music industry backgrounds.

Lead Author & Researcher

I have been writing about and researching music gear for many years, all while serving as a music director at my local church. I engage in guitar playing and singer-songwriter stints, in addition to mentoring young musicians and teaching guitar and bass.

As a music director, I have to know and teach the bass parts to our team of musicians. And while I mainly play guitar, I’ve enjoyed playing bass on many occasions. My favorite bass is a decades-old P-bass clone from the ’70s, the Yamaha Pulser PB-400. It has been used by generations of musicians still plays like a dream, and sounds great. I also enjoy playing my brother’s 5-string Yamaha TRBX 305, which is a big departure from a traditional 4-string P-bass.

Contributors

Jerome Arcon: Supplemental Writing and Research
Jason Horton: Editing and Illustrating.

Media / Image Credit

Main/Top Image: Produced by Gearank.com using a photograph by Roman Voloshyn / Shutterstock.

The videos have been embedded in accordance with YouTube’s Terms of Service.

The individual product images were sourced from websites, promotional materials or supporting documentation provided by their respective manufacturers.

Comments:

11 responses

  1. Avatar
    Jason Horton

    The following basses were removed from the recommended list above when we published our May 2022 Edition because they’re no longer available or have been out-ranked by other options above:

  2. Avatar
    Jason Horton

    We’ve had to remove the Yamaha BB234 from the recommended list above due to a price increase.

  3. Avatar
    Jason Horton

    Publication of our June 2021 Edition resulted in the following basses coming off the recommended list above, but you can still see our analysis of them:

  4. Avatar
    Jason Horton

    The following bass guitar came off our recommended list today due to a lack of availability, but you can still read our analysis of it: Squier Vintage Modified Precision Bass PJ.

  5. Avatar
    Jason Horton

    As a result of the February 2019 update the following basses were removed from our recommended list above – but you can still read our analysis of them:

  6. Avatar
    Jason Horton

    The following bass has been removed from our recommended list due to a lack of availability: Sterling by Music Man S.U.B. Ray4.

  7. Avatar
    Marc

    So the editor’s pick of the best sub<$300 bass is the bass listed for $400. Fantastic journalistic practices. That's one way to completely ruin an otherwise very good and highly useful comparison review.

    1. Avatar
      Jason Horton

      The “Editor’s Pick” is an item which we described as “This is where we sometimes present additional options which didn’t quite fit into our list above but which you may also find interesting and useful.”

      But I can see how people would be confused if they didn’t read that, so I’ve changed the title of the section to “Additional Option”.

  8. Avatar
    Jim Brewster

    Your demo video on the Toby is almost useless, I play bass, not guitar, and your demonstrater seems more interested in pretending he’s playing a guitar. That doesn’t help me, if I want to sound like a guitarist, I’ll plug in a Les Paul.

    1. Avatar
      Garegh62

      Watch the entire video… Geezuz

    2. Avatar
      Jason Horton

      If you watch the video all the way through you’ll see that he demonstrates traditional styles as well as the style of play you didn’t like – the main thing is that it does demonstrate the different tones you can get from the Epiphone Toby Deluxe IV.

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About the Author and Contributors

Here are the key people and sources involved in this guide's production - click on linked names for information about their music industry backgrounds.

Lead Author & Researcher

As a music director, I have to learn, play and teach bass parts to our team of musicians. And while I mainly play guitar, I've enjoyed playing bass on many occasions, usually to sub when the bass guitarist is absent. My favorite bass is a decades old P-bass clone from the '70s, called the Yamaha Pulser PB-400. It has been used by generations of musicians at our church and it still plays and sound great. I also enjoy playing my brother's 5-string Yamaha TRBX 305, which is a big departure to a traditional 4-string P-bass.

Contributors

Jason Horton: Editing and Illustrating.

Media

Main/Top Image: Produced by Gearank.com using a photograph by Roman Voloshyn / Shutterstock.

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The individual product images were sourced from websites, promotional materials or supporting documentation provided by their respective manufacturers.

11 thoughts on “Best Cheap Bass Guitar – Top Choices for Under $300”

  1. So the editor’s pick of the best sub<$300 bass is the bass listed for $400. Fantastic journalistic practices. That's one way to completely ruin an otherwise very good and highly useful comparison review.

    1. The “Editor’s Pick” is an item which we described as “This is where we sometimes present additional options which didn’t quite fit into our list above but which you may also find interesting and useful.”

      But I can see how people would be confused if they didn’t read that, so I’ve changed the title of the section to “Additional Option”.

  2. Your demo video on the Toby is almost useless, I play bass, not guitar, and your demonstrater seems more interested in pretending he’s playing a guitar. That doesn’t help me, if I want to sound like a guitarist, I’ll plug in a Les Paul.

    1. If you watch the video all the way through you’ll see that he demonstrates traditional styles as well as the style of play you didn’t like – the main thing is that it does demonstrate the different tones you can get from the Epiphone Toby Deluxe IV.

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