Extra long scale bass?

out of curiosity, anyone have experience with 36" scale basses? was curious what you gain from the extra couple of inches?

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If it’s a 5 or 6 string, the B string would be less flubby. It’s a real thing on a 34" scale, the lack of tension on a B.

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Would also make lower tunings more comfortable.

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This is also why fanned fret multi-scale basses exist.

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I have a few 35” scales in 4 and 5 string. The biggest improvement would be like @Wombat-metal said low string tension although it comes at the price of higher tension high string especially G string it’s pingy. If you do a lot of Prog Rock with fast low riffs I can see the appeal.

I really can’t see the upside of the 36” scale at would outweigh the downside of having more pingy sounds out of your top 2 strings.

I guess that’s where the Multi scale comes in. My Ibanez EHB 1506MS spec at 35-32.5” even stretch the B string to 36” and up the C string to 33.5” it would still sounds pretty good.

Like @Al188 , I only have hands on experience with a 35" scale. My Modulus is a 35" scale, so were the Cirrus 5 strings I played when I worked at the music store.

I absolutely love what the extra scale length does for the 5 string.
On a 4 string, I would say give it a miss unless you prefer lower tunings. But on a 5 string?? I can’t stand playing on a 34" scale B string. They never feel like they have the tension to project and articulate the notes.
I’d be very interested to play a 36" scale bass, but - again - only if I was after those extra low strings.

Heck, I’d be interested to play one that was only 4 strings, but I don’t have the problem with a 34" scale length on 4 strings that I do with 5.

Not to state the obvious, but Dingwall (and others with fanned frets) are trying to achieve exactly that - a longer scale length for the lower strings and a shorter scale length for the higher strings - all on the same neck :smile:

From the Dingwall homepage:


The frets are fanned to allow for a longer scale on the bass side and a shorter scale on the treble side of the instrument. This solves a few problems:

  1. No longer will the B-string sound darker and less distinct compared to the other strings.
  2. The G-string retains warmth and normal tension compared to extending the scale of all strings.
  3. You will no longer have to adjust your attack depending on which string is being played due to the more even tension from string to string.
  4. You will no longer find the tone adjustments for one string interfering with another due to the more even tone across the strings.
  5. You will no longer be unheard and ignored by your audience due to the combination of the longer scale low strings and the even tonality across all the strings.
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I love the wild promises thrown in with this kind of promo stuff


How is that one? I’ve really been GASing (is that a thing?) over getting a new bass, and I’ve falling for the concept of the multi-scale basses. I’ve been bouncing back and forth between the recent Ibanez releases and the new ones that recently came out from Spector. After recently seeing a co-worker’s band and hearing how his Spector sounded, I’m heavily leaning in that direction. My sweetwater cc likely going to be crying in the near future either way.

That being said, I’d love some opinions on the Ibanez, it seems, on paper, to be a solid one. But having darkglass electronics in a bass natively is really appealing to me as well. Dangit. :crazy_face:

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A grown man should know the answer to THAT question.


Well, Multi scale has it pros and cons.

The pros is obvious the string tension and it looks awesome. Depending on the brand it could be subtle or aggressive fanning.

The issue fanning frets would be the upper end where playing chords can be a bit cramp. Also if not done right in this case Ibanez, playing a low C or F can be annoying or even painful because if the nut is not properly design to avoid finger rubbing then your index finger fires and second inside knuckle would rub the sharp top of the nut.

My custom short scale multi scale has no problem, in fact it’s very comfortable as it slope down and when I fret the F note my finger would comfortably lay on top of the smooth polished top of the nut.

Ibanez EHB 1506MS is quite an instrument. It’s pretty good. The finish product is to the satisfactory and most of the features are really great, but they could have benefited from a bit more attention to details. The electronics are pretty good, OEM Nordstrand pickup with Ibanez preamp. It’s very versatile and very punchy with lots of Ibanez signature Nasally mid forward at idle with all center detents.

I love finger ramp, the one included are kinda an after thought, the shape does not match the pickup and there’s no radius just a flat piece of wood. It’s not like Ibanez doesn’t have an in house expert on ramp, Gary Willis signature models have excellent design ramp.

The multi-ply neck is smooth but not very clean looking, you can see the pieces of layers crossing to the next. It’s not something I expect from a $1600 imports. I paid less on my custom neck through Short scale from Lignum and that bass as a full page of the list of parameters plus some more surprise that the luthier put on.

Here’s the making of the Space bass

And me noodling on it

I highly recommend trying the Multi scale bass out, they are fun and you don’t even think about the fan frets and it comes to you quite naturally most production models would have less degree of fanning and you should not miss many notes on your first fo round. My custom Space bass is stretch out for a maximum visual effect and while it takes a few minutes to recalibrate in order to fret the note on the fret it’s still pretty easy to play.

I tried Dingwall, Spector, and Strandberg. Dingwall feels great but I just don’t like the bass although I’d kill for the Super P. I don’t like Spector, it’s just me. I like their other traditional models. Strandberg, well, I love the Boden neck 3 sides and no curve on the back of the neck offers a very unique playing sensation, but not a fan of the ergonomics body design. I’m not a prog player and don’t spend 20 hours a day practicing plus I like the neck to be close to horizontal playing position and the instrument is designed for somewhere much steeper closer to classical guitar position. I love their Guitars I have the NX6 (Strats) mainly because I’m not a guitar player and have no preference so the ergonomic fits me right.

If I’m in the mood for another MS, I’d get a custom made one for sure.

Hope this help.


Bad Al. :stuck_out_tongue: I have wanted an EHB1000S for a bit and this isn’t helping the gas.

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Since it’s an extra long scale topic and Lignum is already mentioned:


@Al1885 thank you so much for the detailed reply. I appreciate your insights. I’ll let you know if I ever pick one up. :slight_smile:

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Unless you are going for the certain aesthetic the cheaper of the 2 models is a good buy. I was going for the silver/grey one of the 6 string but in the middle of covid that model has not been out yet and it was a few more months wait and my GC rep gave me a good deal on this one. I may try to custom make the nut myself to solve the problems.

Yeah please do. You know we love gears.

baby did a bad bad thing

Found a used one at the Chicago Music Exchange so I trust their mint is mint


Oh nice! Yeah that’s going to be a good one.

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Nice, I really like the look of their short scale in the same range in mint? green.

Anyway @Wombat-metal work’s been busy so I’ve definitely lost track of you now :wink:

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Yeah easy to do - moved over to the GAs thread so as not to derail this anymore than I am. I have not counted my basses, but I have sold about as many as I’ve purchased this year so holding steady. Hope to have two or three go out next week