Best Bass Guitar Under 500 | Affordable High Quality Guitars

Why do I need to spend out $500 on a best bass guitar? What if I tell you that I have a list of best bass guitar under 500 that are not only worth your money but are perfect investment pieces.

Of course, there are many affordable options out there, but if you are looking for something a little more advanced that will last you a while and give you the flexibility and sound, you will need to shell out a little more. Thankfully most of the best bass guitar under 500 on this list will not burn a hole in your pocket. 

So, you may ask what can you get in the mid ranges? First and foremost, you get to choose from different designs, colors, finishes, aesthetics, different woods, exotic textures, and a lot more.

Whether you want one for metal, slapping, rock and roll or fusion, the mid-range market has it all. Although it is no near the premium market, there a lot that the $500 can offer in the bass market.

9 best bass guitar under 500 review

1) Yamaha TRBX504 TBN 4-String Premium Electric Bass Guitar

YAMAHA TRBX504 - Best Bass Guitar Under 500

PRODUCT DETAILS

  • Mahogany body.
  • Rosewood fretboard.
  • Adjustable bridge system.
  • Maple neck.
  • Humbucker pickup configuration.
  • Right-handed orientation

Whether you are new to the world of bass guitars or a seasoned guitarist, you are no stranger to the famous TRBX series that has taken the world of best bass guitar by storm. It has a huge family of different models which are at their core powerful at different price points.

The 504 TBN is one of the most popular models as it comes under the mid-range category and boasts of a flurry of features that are anything but a tactic. 

The reason it sits at the top of this list is due to its versatility, comfort, the craftsmanship that has been built for the road marking its territory among some of the most celebrated artists and stars.

Simply put musicians pick 504 for one reason and one alone, the tone. The active and passive preamp with solid mahogany built gives it the distinct tonal stability even when you need to shape to make it your own.

Pros

  • Pickup balance control.
  • The master volume range is high.
  • Versatility and flexibility.
  • Powerful.
  • Classic design.

Cons

  • Batteries not included.





2) ​Squier by Fender Affinity Series Precision Beginner Electric Bass - PJ - Olympic White

SQUIER BY FENDER - Best Bass Guitar Under 500

PRODUCT DETAILS

  • C-shaped profile.
  • Tonewood body.
  • Maple neck.
  • Dual humbucker pickup configuration.
  • Six saddle bridge.
  • Toggle pickup switch.
  • Die-cast in-built tuner.12’’ fingerboard.

You might be surprised to see a Squier's best bass guitar under 500 being second in line. Still, this model is often underestimated as it is pretty hard to find this rare best bass guitar in the market, which can easily compete with the others in the same range.

Few know that the legendary brand Fender creates these sturdy bass models, which are among the most affordable on this best bass guitar list under 500. The question remains whether it can compete with other bass models more expensive then yes, it easily can, especially with its single active coil and the many features that you choose a fender for.

Speaking of the hardware, it comes in different color options. Unlike a fender model with a tonewood body, this model uses basswood and a rosewood fingerboard for easy transitions and tonal control. The highlight of this model is its separate volume controls for every pickup.

Pros

  • Classic fender tone.
  • Dual pickup.
  • Single coil.
  • Versatile.
  • Affordable.

Cons

  • Fret buzz.





3) Dean Custom Zone Bass, Nuclear Green

DEAN CUSTOM - Best Bass Guitar Under 500

PRODUCT DETAILS

  • Basswood body.
  • Color options.
  • 20 frets.
  • Maple fretboard and neck.
  • Hardtail bridge system.
  • Combination pickup configuration.
  • Right-handed orientation.

Given its striking body, one would assume its fanbase is selective, but this beauty is one of the popular models and remains out of stock due to popular demand and with good reason.

This best bass guitar body comes in many alarming colors to choose. Speaking of hardware, it has a basswood body with a maple color matching fingerboard and neck. It also has a bolt-on construction and a split pickup with in-built die-cast tuners.

Leaning towards more of rock bass, it has a polyester fretboard that many brands shy from as it is tricky to get right but this fretboard feels comfortable without compromising on the sound.

Pros

  • Looks luxurious.
  • Striking color.
  • Slap tone.
  • Tone knob.
  • Comfortable.
  • Lightweight.
  • Perfect for beginners.

Cons

  • ​Does not come with a guitar case.
  • Very low acoustic sound.






4) ​Sterling by Music Man StingRay Ray4 Bass Guitar in Vintage Sunburst Satin

STERLING BY MUSIC - Best Bass Guitar Under 500

PRODUCT DETAILS

  • 9 V active preamp.
  • Basswood/mahogany body.
  • Hard maple neck.
  • Hardtail bridge system.
  • Humbucker pickup configuration.
  • Teardrop pickguard.
  • Finish options.
  • Hi/ low cut boost control.

Do you want to follow in the footsteps of the great bassists of the '70s? You have heard of the iconic Ernie ball music man, but did you know they have come out with an affordable line of high-quality best bass guitars called Sterling?

This versatile series is built for the beginner as well the performers and designed after the famous stingray series made of striking maple; this eye-catching bass guitar in the solid body in a control layout with a variety of different finishes you can choose from. 

This surprisingly noise-free- buzz-free model has an active preamp, boost controls and an individual volume mounted to the control plate. The highlight of this model is the tuning process – 3+1 tuning arrangement that tunes the guitar instantly; if need be, you can also follow the straight string pull process.

Pros

  • Portable.
  • Sonic flexibility.
  • Volume.
  • Beginner-friendly.

Cons

  • Higher notes may be tight.




5) Ibanez 4 String Bass Guitar, Right Handed, Gray (GSR200SMNGT)

IBANEZ 4 - Best Bass Guitar Under 500

PRODUCT DETAILS

  • Mahogany body.
  • Black hardware.
  • Maple neck.
  • Rosewood fretboard.
  • Hardtail bridge system.
  • Combination pickup configuration.
  • Right-handed configuration.

Ibanez has a long well-known history for best bass guitar under 500, so you will not regret shelling out that extra cash you have saved up to graduate from a beginner guitar. Speaking of its hardware, it comes in the classic Ibanez cutaway design which is pretty common if you are looking for mid-range bass. 

Unlike the cheaper models of best bass guitar under 500, this will feel heavier a bit more advanced in a good way. It has 24 rosewood frets; you do not have to worry about the smoothness and transitions with dot inlay.

With black hardware and spalted maple design, it is classy and doesn’t look cheap. It also comes with a range of controls including a master volume and a balance knob that gives you full control over the sound.

Pros

  • Clean tone.
  • Flexible.
  • Beautiful spalted maple.
  • Pickup for neck and bridge.
  • Ibanez guarantee.

Cons

  • Not for beginners.
  • Guitar case not included.

                                                                                                                                                                                    

6) ESP LTD B-204SM Spalted Maple Bass Guitar, Natural Satin

ESP LTD

PRODUCT DETAILS

  • Natural satin color.
  • Spalted maple with grain.
  • Fretless with indicators.
  • Five-piece neck.
  • Ash body.
  • String through bridge.
  • Humbucker pickup configuration.
  • Right-handed orientation.
  • Jazz, funk, and fusion.

One might argue that the ESP is one of the most aesthetic of them all. The maple grain gives it a vintage vibe that is visually stunning to look at and a great bargain for best bass guitar under $500.

Now getting to the technical hardware, this one is a fretless bass, this will not only completely change your playing style, but it will also change the sound and tone produced.

If you are a beginner, you do have 24 fret markers on the bolt-on maple neck so a fretless bass is not all that intimidating. As for the change in sound, it has more of a deep and dark sound with a lot of punch.

There is enough flexibility for you to not only customize, but shape your tone the way you want it, so in conclusion, this is the perfect tool to push your creative boundaries to the whole other level for best bass guitar.

Pros

  • Fine sold ash.
  • Retro design.
  • Punchy dark sound.
  • Tuning stability.
  • Clear note distinction.
  • High clarity.
  • Versatile.

Cons

  • Heavy.
  • Low range pickup.






7) Fender FA-450CE Acoustic Bass Guitar - 3-Color Sunburst - Laurel Fingerboard

fender

PRODUCT DETAILS

  • Mahogany back, neck, sides.
  • 2X2 headstock.
  • Viking Bridge.
  • Nato neck.
  • Laminated construction.
  • Fishman preamp.
  • Sunburst color.
  • 9.5-inch fingerboard.
  • C-shaped neck.

You may be surprised, but Fender does produce an impressive number of models for the mid-range market without compromising on that fender sound or the craftsmanship. Now do not get fooled by its design.

This best bass guitar is powerful, well-built and runs on the Fishman preamp system with superior bass, treble and volume control that help you with stability and tonal shaping. 

Coming to the hardware, the laminated eye-catching flame maple top design with the black mahogany back and sides helps with achieving that full-bodied, warm sound.

The versatile 9.5-inch fingerboard accommodates any playing styles easily while the Viking bridge and keystone rosette tie look perfectly.

Pros

  • ​Elegant classic aesthetic.
  • Fender sound.
  • Versatile.
  • Affordable.
  • Cream binding.

Cons

  • The guitar case is not included.
  • Strings may need replacing.



8) Schecter Electric Bass Guitar - Omen Extreme 4-string Vintage Sunburst

schecter

PRODUCT DETAILS

  • Active EQ.
  • 2 Band bass and treble.
  • Thin C profile.
  • Ceramic magnet.
  • Diamond bass bridge system.
  • Rosewood fretboard.
  • Diamond active pickup configuration.
  • Mahogany body and maple neck.

Schecter is the brand you turn to no matter what your budget may be. Their versatile range of models cater best to metal and best bass guitar, so this model is in the right place. That being said, this mid-range model can also come in an affordable beginner range due to its price point.

Speaking of the hardware, it is very similarly shaped to a Yamaha or an Ibanez with its C-shaped maple design in black chrome with a diamond bridge.

Among the many tones offered, you can flit between neck and bridge pickup using the blend knob easily. Speaking of sound, it is brilliant in harmonics especially at the extremes i.e. high and deep while retaining clarity and stability. Simply put if you are looking for an affordable device for slap or metal, then this is your answer.

Pros

  • Blend knob.
  • Intonation adjustment.
  • Epoxy casing.
  • Bridge and neck pickup.
  • Versatile.
  • Convenient playability.

Cons

  • You will need to set up yourself.
  • Guitar case not included.





9) Orange O-Bass 4-String Electric Bass Guitar with Bag, Black

ORANGE O-BASS

PRODUCT DETAILS

  • Basswood body.
  • Hard tail bridge system.
  • Magnetic single-coil pickup configuration.
  • Rosewood fret board.
  • Vintage maple neck.
  • Okoume body.
  • Split coil.
  • Master tone and volume control.

The makers of this best bass guitar under 500 are self-confessed lovers of the retro sound and design which is obvious when you see this captivating instrument. You first notice the vintage aesthetics but then the sound not only will feel familiar but packs a punch and stands out. 

This mid-range bass has a single split-coil humbucker pickup with many deep overtones and a lightweight Okoume body for convenience without compromising on tone.

Although it comes in only right-handed orientation, it comes with a premium gig bag that is padded and perfect for in-between gigs. Simply put you will not go wrong with this powerful resonant tool as you begin or continue your bass journey.

Pros

  • Resonant body.
  • Retro design and tone.
  • 8K output.
  • Powerful.
  • Balanced.
  • Comes with case.

Cons

  • May need setup.

                                                                                                                                                                                   


CONCLUSION

The models you saw above are just the best out of a fraction of what you can get in the mid-range market. The best bass guitar under 500 market is a glorious place for any bass guitarists whether seasoned or a beginner as many options are catering to styles, genres, and brands that have their synonymous sounds for you to choose from.

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