My Hofner bass (Paul Mc Cartney Signature)

IMG-20130303-04677This is basically an inexpensive version of the famous Paul McCartney violin bass, made by Hofner. Bought this short scale bass about a year ago. A friend had one I tried and I wanted one too. Also Thomann (in Germany) were doing a great deal which included a hard case and free postage, not bad. I assume it’s made in China. Top is spruce, maple body, rosewood fretboard, 22 frets, hollow body and two staple type humbuckers. The control panel has two volume controls. There are three switches, two on/off for either pickup and rhythm/solo Switch that changes the level, same as the Club Bass; Note: Only the Hofner basses have this switching arrangement. Scale length is 30″. Hardware is nickel plated and looks pretty good and the bridge is the standard floating type. The tuners are Vintage open back type with pearloid knobs, very nice.

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Sound: For what it is it sounds fantastic with great bottom end that is perhaps just a little hollow or resonant sounding at times. The switching arrangement gives big variation via each pickup and is interesting. No pops of crackles and everything works as expected. Classic rock sound and rich bluesy tones available too, nice!

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Action, Fit & Finish: Out of the box setup was pretty good, truss rod needed a slight tweek and nut action was perfect. The paintwork was not absolutely perfect (8/10) but incredible polish and the sunburst finish was well done. In all it looks very classy and I wouldn’t be ashamed to show it to anyone or use it in public. The jack socket did come loose after a little use but this was easily remedied with the carful use of a spanner. The supplied strings weren’t that brilliant but a set of flatwounds sorted that out and improved the tone considerably. The pickguard is a floating arrangement and is rather more decoration than of practical use. This bass is pretty light, very
light in fact and extremely comfortable and great to use if sitting and sits good in the lap.

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Reliability & Durability: Have to say I bought this bass as more of a novelty item than for serious use but having used it often and taken it out several times I think it’s up to the job if handled well. Nothings dropped off, it stays in tune and when it’s round your neck you hardly notice it’s there. Like anything, treat is with repect and it will look after you as I think is the case with this bass. There’s nothing about it that concerns me and it certainly is not a toy.

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Overall Impression: Much better than expected and perfectly playable producing a classic tone that won’t dissappoint at all. It’s a very good bass for the price, although not necessarily everyones cup-of tea. It’s a great bass for noodling at home as it’s so small and I often use mine for this purpose sitting on the couch in front of the TV, perfect, it’s grown on me over time. If I were to accidentaly sit on it I’m not sure if I would rush out and buy another but as it’s my “couch noodling” bass I’m sure I would miss it.

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