The Best Lightweight Bass Guitar in 2022

Note: Here I’ve curated 9 of the best lightweight bass guitar that I have personally tested. This article contains detailed information along with relevant cons that will help you conveniently compare and select the most suitable model based on your needs.

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I’ll be honest – bass guitars can be quite heavy. I remember practice sessions that have ended with shoulder aches and backaches. That’s why I started the search – a quest rather, for the best lightweight bass guitar and put in long hours into research. My prerequisite for the search was to find something you can play while standing up and don’t feel a thing and also, rest it comfortably on my thigh to avoid my leg from falling asleep (yes, that was a real issue).

After all these demands, I added one more criteria to my checklist. It was that the playability should not be affected by this. I’m sure you might be concerned about the same. Don’t worry, I got you.

Things to know

How to use this guide

In this guide, I’ve put down my top picks for lightweight and compact bass guitars. Along with that, I've also put down how the weight affects the sound, whether are heavy guitars better & which guitar suits you.

Tips for buying

If you’re looking for comfort in playing you should also consider points like size of the guitar, action, fret levels and string type. You can’t go wrong with any popular brands like Traveler, Fender or Ibanez.

Source: Picture of Traveler TB4P SB MP taken while testing the guitar

I tested 9 guitars and decided that this Traveler TB4P SB MP is the best lightweight bass guitar for most uses.

If you are a beginner or you’re buying a guitar for your kid or as a gift, you are responsible to find the perfect lightweight bass guitar. So while creating this list I had a few characteristics jotted down and keeping those in mind, I have hand-picked these certain guitars. And here’s why these light bass guitars are better for you.

  • Much better for your posture than a regular bass
  • It can be less tiring for longer jam sessions
  • Enables you to experiment as it give you a change in how the instrument sound
  • Easy to carry around, much more portable

Us bassists, we put our guitars through a lot. I’m talking plucking, popping, strumming, thumping, slapping, or picking with a pick. And to find your perfect music companion, I have put together a list of 9 underrated and best lightweight bass guitars that’ll surely not disappoint you. These are the most comfortable to play, light, affordable, and stylish bass guitars that you can find in the market. Enough talking, let’s get started!

Top 9 Best Lightweight Bass Guitar

Lightest Bass

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True Music Helper Rating - 4.8/5

The Traveler Guitar TB4P SB MP uses Alder wood for its body and back material. It is a four-string guitar with a Maple neck and fixed Bridge system. The scale length is 32, and the guitar has Nickel and Steel strings. It is the lightest guitar on this list with a weight of 6.8lbs/3.08kgs.

How does it sound?
The Nickel strings increase tone consistency, and the Steel strings produce more volume and power. The Steel strings are also known for providing a crisp and bright tone. The guitar has a built-in headphone amp which is very powerful and produces fantastic sounds.

How does it feel?
Its short-scale Steel-string bass feels comfortable on hands. The guitar has very good action, and its Maple’s neck increases its comfortability and playability. The guitar includes wrenches which makes the adjustments very easy.


  • Crisp and bright tone
  • Great sustain
  • Built-in powerful headphone amp
  • Deluxe Gig Bag included


  • Missing built-in tuner

Premium Choice

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True Music Helper Rating - 4.7/5

The Fender American Professional II Precision Bass uses Basswood as its back material and has an Alder wood body. It is a four-string guitar with one split-coil pickup, and the guitar has a Rosewood fingerboard with a Maple neck. It is a premium guitar that weighs 8lbs/3.6kgs. 

How does it sound?
Its Bass pickup brings out a rich harmonic overtone and enhances the expressive nuances. The guitar has a 4-saddle HiMass Vintage bridge that provides solidity and sustains an authoritative tone. 

How does it feel?
It has a C profile neck which feels smooth and provides you with effortless access to the upper register. Lightweight vintage-style tuners provide fantastic tuning stability and fast string changes.


  • Precision Bass split-coil pickup to deliver classic punch and growl
  • Smooth and rolled fingerboard edges
  • Super-Natural Satin finish


  • Can be expensive

Value for Money

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True Music Helper Rating - 4.5/5

The Squier by Fender Bronco Bass uses Ashwood for its back and body material. The guitar has a Maple fretboard with an S pickup configuration, and the strings are made of Alloy and Steel. It is a four-string guitar with a Maple neck and a Saddle Bridge system. It weighs 9.8lbs/4.4kgs.

How does it sound?
It has a specially designed single-coil pickup that produces full and rich sound. Its C-shaped neck profile makes it comfortable and ideal for any playing style.

How does it feel?
The guitar has excellent action and a very comfortable fretboard. It requires no setup and provides superior performance. A one-volume knob and one-tone knob make this bus super accessible for beginners.


  • Extremely affordable
  • Flat-out beautiful finish
  • Beginner-friendly


  • Some pickup hum at high volume (not uncommon for single-coil pickups)

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True Music Helper Rating - 4.3/5

The Sterling by Music Man StingRay Ray4 uses Basswood for both its back and body material. It is a four-string guitar with an H pickup configuration and a Hardtail Bridge system. It has a Maple neck with a Jatoba fretboard. Also, it weighs 9lbs/4.08kgs. 

How does it sound?
It has a 3 + 1 tuning arrangement to provide the most accurately tuned playing experience. It has a Humbucker Pickup with Active Electronics to provide great sound and volume controls. 

How does it feel?
It has a six-bolt neck design for excellent stability. Its Maple neck makes its playability fast and smooth. It has terrific low action with a straight neck, eliminating the fret buzz.


  • Great low action
  • 3 + 1 tuning arrangement for accurate tuning
  • Active Electronics for great volume controls


  • Requires professional setup

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True Music Helper Rating - 3.7/5

The Ibanez GSRM20BS uses Agathis for its back and Poplar wood for its body material. It is a four-string guitar with a 28.6 scale length, and the strings are made of Nickel with a Fixed Bridge system. It has a Maple neck and a Rosewood fretboard. The weight of this guitar is 6.9lbs/3.1kgs. 

How does it sound?
Its small-scale length is best for total sound pickups. The intonation is perfect, and the front ends are very smooth. Its Maple neck makes it ideal for fast playing.  

How does it feel?
It has a shorter 28.6 scale length which makes it perfect for space-restricted studios, people with smaller hands, and beginners. It has a fast and slim Maple neck with a compact and lightweight body.


  • Sunburst finish that gives a premium look
  • Excellent fit and finish
  • Great quality at this price


  • None

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True Music Helper Rating - 4.1/5

The Fender Deluxe Active Precision Bass Special uses Alder wood for its body material. It is a four-string guitar with a Fixed Bridge system, and the guitar has a Maple fingerboard and S pickup configuration. 

How does it sound?
Its PJ pickup configuration Makes you switch between various musical styles, making it a perfect companion on stage and in the studio. It has a 4-saddle HiMass bridge for an increased attack, high sustain, and robust and rich sound. 

How does it feel?
It has a robust design that provides a relaxed tone and smooth playing feel. It has a skinny neck, and its controls give you endless options to produce the desired sound. 


  • Three-band EQ with active/passive switch
  • PJ pickup configuration 
  • Includes Deluxe Gig Bag


  • Does require a professional setup

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True Music Helper Rating - 4.0/5

The Hofner HOF-HI-CB-SB Uses Maple for both its back and body material. It is a four-string guitar with an Individual Adjustable Bridge system. The guitar also has a Custom-removable pickup configuration. It weighs 6.8lbs/3.08kgs. 

How does it sound?
This bass guitar provides a perfect balance between acoustic and electric sound. Its Adjustable Bridge system gives you a great style and feel. It has high-quality spruce to provide you with a classic bass tone. It also has a pair of Hofer Ignition Staple humbuckers which does a fantastic job of bringing its sound to life. 

How does it feel?
Its independent tone and volume controls make it easy to switch between any bass stone and provide you with the best management of each pickup. It is very lightweight, which helps it stay in tune with minor issues. 


  • Lightweight body
  • Beautiful guitar with a flawless finish
  • Great bass at this price


  • No notable con

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True Music Helper Rating - 4.0/5

The Epiphone VIOLA uses Basswood for its back and Maple for its body material. It is a four-string guitar. The guitar has a Rosewood fretboard and H pickup configuration with a 30.5 scale length. It weighs 12lbs/5.4kgs. 

How does it sound?
The guitar has an upright bass sound that characterizes its style. With some minor adjustments, it sounds nice. It is recommended that you buy a flat wound string to increase its potential of generating high-quality sounds. 

How does it feel?
The guitar has a Viola shape, and therefore, you would need to wrap your arm around to play the notes. It has a semi-hollow body which makes its neck a little heavy. However, its strings are of good quality and thus, make its playability comfortable.


  • A great instrument to learn bass
  • Looks beautiful


  • Not the best neck on a bass

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True Music Helper Rating - 4.0/5

The Ibanez Artcore AFB200 Hollowbody Bass uses Basswood for its back material. It is a four-string guitar with a Humbucker pickup configuration. This is a hollow body bass guitar with a Maple top and a Laurel fretboard. It weighs 7lbs/3.2 kgs. 

How does it sound?
The guitar gives you a feel of an electric bus with an acoustic tone because of its hollow body. Its humbucking pickups deliver a punchy bass and provide a warm and full sound. Its Maple top and sides provide a bright and naturally expressive tone. 

How does it feel?
Its neck design and shorter scale length make it extremely comfortable to play. Its fingerboard is easy to reach, and the cutaway body design helps you access the upper fretboard easily.


  • Amazing bass over all
  • High quality at a low price
  • Good humbucker pickup configuration


  • No notable con

How we Pick & Test our Guitars

The problem with a heavy bass arises during long practice sessions, so I spent long hours with these guitars and thoroughly tested the picks. Even a simple search on the internet will give you tonnes of lookalike lists of light bass guitas, many constructed of cheap & non-durable materials. So, my criteria with while creating this list was:

  • Guitars that weigh 6.8 lbs to 12 lbs, not more than that
  • Body shape that gives a playbility and reachabilty advantage
  • Affordable guitars by popular brands
  • Available on renowned marketplaces with good return policy

The testing was simple. I played these guitars as long as I could and noticed the pressure on my thigh and on my shoulders while standing up and playing. These guitars, at no point, felt uncomfortable or strenuous. They passed the test effortlessly.

Small disclaimer: I can bet my money on these guitar feel great but I also recommend going down to a local music shop and testing it out yourself because guitars aren’t one-size-fits-all, you might find out a guitar that fits your body-type perfectly.

How heavy is a bass guitar?

On average, whether it be a lightweight four-string bass, five-string bass, or a lightweight six-string bass, they all weigh between 8.5 to 9.5 lbs or 3.9 to 4.3 kg. However, deluxe models are usually considered more because more pieces of equipments are installed in these guitars. Some of these add-on items which make a guitar heavier are bridge, pickup chrome covers, etc. 

Even if you find the guitar you chose to be heavy. You can check out the tips in this video to make matters easier for you and make the playability better.

How to choose the best lightweight bass?

When choosing a lightweight bass guitar, there are several things you need to consider. Anyone would want a solid, well-built bass guitar that will inspire you to play every day. Therefore, here are a few things which you need to look for to get the best lightweight bass guitar:

  • Size: The scale or the length of the string determines the size of the bass guitar. Basses come in both long scale and short scale. Therefore, it is essential to match the size of the bus with the size of the bassist.
  • Tuning: Tuning issues are a little rare with basses compared to other guitars because of the large strings, which are more stable. But, it is still advisable to play and check if it is challenging. If your bass guitar is in tune, it will make your learning much easier and more fun.
  • Action: The action of a bass guitar refers to how high the strings are concerning the neck’s fretboard. The increased activity of a guitar makes its playability more complex, and if the action is too low, the strings will make an unpleasant buzzing sound. Therefore, you would want a bass guitar with a proper motion to press the strings up and down with ease. Also, if you are a younger player, having a narrower neck will ease your navigation and reduce the difficulty faced by wide-neck guitars.
  • Condition of electronics: For a lightweight bass guitar, you have to make sure that you test the bass with an amplifier. Its volume and tone controls should be properly working to adjust the sound. Any crackling sounds may indicate some faulty electronics or lose internal wiring.
  • Frets level: Make sure that the frets are leveled, and the notes sound good as you play the string up and down the neck. Run your hands up and down the neck; the frets should feel even and smooth.

Is the sound affected by the weight of the bass guitar?

It is argued that good sounding instruments are supposed to be heavy. The more the instrument weighs the better the craftsmanship. Is this a fact or just an urban legend? To answer that question, let’s first understand how the bass actually creates the sound.

  • Activating the string:
    The first step of making any sound on an electromagnetic instrument is to move over a fixed coil. The string can be carried in various ways like plucking, picking, slapping, or tapping the string. Each of these strings produces a different type of magnetic flux with an electric signal.
  • The electric signal is converted into a sound wave: In a bass guitar, the string moves the air around it, creating a sound wave. This sound wave is then amplified with the help of materials present in the instrument like wood, brass, etc. When the magnetized ring moves over the coil, an electric current is produced, which is sent to the amplifier to boost the weak electric signals and convert them into sound waves with the help of a speaker.
  • Active and passive basses: The sound wave, which has been converted into an electric signal, can now be altered in different ways before it gets converted into a sound that reaches our ears through the speaker with the help of an amplifier. A bass guitar with passive pickups will reduce the flow of the signal to shape the tone. On the other hand, an active bass will let the signal increase in different frequencies of the original signal, which are then boosted to create new tone shapes.
  • Effects: Many bass players use effects to shape their tone further. The results produce a tone with different intensity levels like overdrive, distortion, fuzz, etc., and also help to modulate the style, for example, coras, flanger, and phaser.
  • Amplification: This is the last stage where an electric signal is boosted, changed, and shaped into two sound waves. When the signal enters the amp, it is encouraged to add greater signal strength. An EQ is present in the amplifier to increase or reduce the individual frequencies.

These are the factors that come in play to create the sound of a bass. If the manufacturer has figured out to deliver all of these components while keeping the weight in mind, it is entirely possible to have a light bass that doesn’t make sacrifices in the sound department. Good amplification, effect pedals and strings make a huge difference too!

Which One Is Better: Heavy Or Lightweight Bass Guitar?

There is always a question: does heavier guitar sound better than lightweight bass guitar? The answer is that heavier bass guitars do not sound better than lighter guitars. Usually, the type of wood used in the guitar’s body determines its weight.

Heavy guitar generally has better sustain and resonance than a lightweight bass, and this is because thicker guitar bodies produce fuller, warmer, and louder tones. On the other hand, a light bass guitar produces a more acoustic-sounding tone, and it has less sustain but sounds warmer and emphasizes the bass more than heavy bass guitars.

Nowadays, the tone production for a bass guitar is through its pickup and amplification systems. Therefore, the type of wood used will have minimal to no effect on the sound of an amplified bass guitar.

In conclusion

A bass guitar is a beautiful instrument that produces high-quality sounds. You know how the bass works, how heavy it is, how to choose the best bass guitar, and you are now clear about the performances of both heavy and lightweight bass. All you need to do is go thoroughly with every light bass guitar mentioned in the article and choose the best one for you. 

The guitar you choose should be comfortable, serve your purpose, and be within your budget. Having a bass guitar with the best features will help you get the desired performance and inspire you to play it every day. 

Sarah Jones

Sarah Jones

Hello! I am Sarah and I've been a bass player for as long as I remember. I picked up my first bass at age 7 and have never let go of it ever since. I've been a part of 3 bands and currently play for a band called ‘Neptune Nerds’. I love to talk about bass and share my experience with these instruments!

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