Price paid: C$ 550
Purchased from: Steve's Music Store Ottawa
Sound — 7
I play mostly Beatles songs, so it fits most of it perfectly. I play through a Fender Rumble 15. The controls are not intuitive. Hofners are designed so that everything is on all the time. "Bass on" turns off the bridge pick-up and "treble on" turns off the neck. Turning both to on will shut off both pick-ups. The rhythm/solo switch is set so that in solo the sound is full but in rhythm the sound gets muted. The range of the bass is a bit limited (or maybe its me) and does not have the deep presence of my Squier VM Jaguar Bass, but for what I play it is perfect, having a woody tone.
Overall Impression — 10
For what I needed it is perfect. Meaning a bass guitar to accompany my sons and nephew as they play Beatle tunes. I also record a little with it some songs that I write. It suits some better than the Jaguar, but not all. I have been playing music for 10 years or so, but the bass only for the last year. I would buy one again since it fits the music we play at home, and aesthetically it looks great hanging on the wall. I love the look and the lightness of the bass. I hate (maybe too strong a word since I sit to play) that it is neck heavy. I compared it to the Epiphone Viola Bass and the Hofner Contemporary violin bass. The Epi did not seem to fit into my hand as well, and was heavier. Tonally it may have had a bit more range. The Contemporary was another $300 and had a solid block inside to help with sustain. But it did not sound different enough from my Jaguar Bass to justify a purchase.
Reliability & Durability — 9
I don't gig, but the guitar seems to be well built, but keep in mind it is a hollow body. If I dropped my Squier VM Jaguar I'd worry about damaging the floor. With the Hofner I'd worry about the bass. But nothing has worked loose. The floating bridge stays in place. The bass is still too new to talk about long term wear.
Action, Fit & Finish — 10
Store bought, the set up was spot on. Neck, intonation, and action were great, holds its tuning great. Not a blemish or flaw in the finish to be found. Strings were not the best for the guitar as it comes with round wounds and flat wounds seem to be better.
Features — 8
- Indonesian Made, 2011 HI-BB-SB - 30" Short Scale, 22 Frets - Spruce Top, flame maple side and back, 3 piece neck (maple, beach, maple), rosewood fret board. - Violin shape - Hofner fretted floating bridge, plastic nut - Hofner Ignition Staple pickups at neck and bridge - Single Nickle Tuners, Trapeze Nickle Tail Piece - 2 volume controls, 2 switches to shut off the pick ups individually, and rhythm, solo switch to chnge the tone a bit. - It came with a hardshell case.