3 Best Upright Basses in 2021

Jason Loomis
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What I love about bass instruments is how versatile they are.

A great upright bass is a powerful addition to any band. Depending on the band, the sound of a bass might range from a subtle boom to something much fatter.

So, what are the best bass instruments to buy in 2021?

Well, there’s three main options:

NameCategoryProduct
Cecilio CDB Upright Double BassBest OverallCecilio CDB Upright Double Bass

1. Cecilio CDB Upright Double Bass

Our rating: 9 / 10

Cecilio CDB Upright Double Bass

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Pros:

  • Comes with a bow, rosin, and gig bag
  • Mid-range price
  • Steady build
  • Affordable price for beginners

The Cecilio CDB ranks high amongst beginner upright basses, despite its mid-range price.

This classical upright bass is the best bang for your buck throughout most online UB bass reviews, and it’s not hard to see why. When you first pick up this bass, you’ll be surprised by the decent build quality. The spruce top is finished in a beautiful polyurethane film, while the back, sides, and neck are crafted from nato wood.

The sound quality isn’t too shabby, but if you’re planning on playing professionally you’ll likely want to upgrade the electronics for more sound options.

2. Cremona SB-3 Premier Upright Bass

Our rating: 8 / 10

Cremona SB-3 Premier Upright Bass

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Pros:

  • Easy to assemble
  • Solid and durable
  • Comes with a great strap
  • Plays like a full-size bass
  • Lightweight and portable
  • Good sound quality
  • Cheaper than a standard Bass
  • Great for beginners or casual players

Cons:

  • Flimsy shoulder strap
  • Some finish issues
  • Not a great travel bass

I first became acquainted with Cremona when I purchased one of their accordions in the late 1990's. During the purchase process I spoke with a very nice gentleman named Rick, who was very helpful throughout the process.

Based in Elkhart, Indiana Cremona has been making stringed instruments for nearly 20 years. Their mission is to bring to the world instruments "that are as good as any that have ever been made, and available at a price anyone can afford". Reverse osmosis water is used to protect the environmental impact and the use of carbon offsets are used to minimize the impact of greenhouse gases.

3. Palatino VE-500-BK Electric Upright Bass

Our rating: 4 / 10

Palatino VE-500-BK Electric Upright Bass

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Pros:

  • Solid Construction
  • Upgraded Bass Tuners
  • Upgraded Pickups
  • Bench Included
  • Lots Of Color Options
  • Overall, Great Value For Your Money

Cons:

  • No Gig Bag or Case Included
  • Low Quality Control
  • This bass is a bit heavy

Beginning with the construction of this bass, it’s solid. I’m not sure what the wood is, but it’s nice and solid. Even though it’s solid, it’s pretty light. It weighs in at about 8 lbs.

This isn’t a booming bass, but it’s a nice solid sounding bass with a big low end. It sounds like a nice, vintage bass with a lot of growl and a lot of presence. It doesn’t overdrive the amp, but the tone is there.

The pickup system is really cool. It’s a dual system. One of the pickups is directly under the bridge, and the other is at the end of the fingerboard. What this gives you is consistency across the string board.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

What is the best electric upright bass?

If you are looking for the best and most versatile electric upright bass for your money, the Yamaha TRBX304 is the way to go. This bass offers five different voices along with EQ and effects controls. It does cost a little more than some other options but definitely offers high quality.

If you are looking for something a little lower-cost, the Yamaha TRBX226 offers the same 5-voice output as the TRBX304 but at a lower price. If you need an electric upright bass, either of these options will do nicely.

What size upright bass should I get?

The standard size for upright basses is well over 5 foot. An instrument of this length needs to be solidly built for its position as a horizontal axis where the action, tuning pegs, and strings are located. The larger the instrument, the more expensive it will be but if you want to invest a serious amount of time into learning how to play, larger is better. You can get away with a bit more than 4 feet, but many players find a 4 foot instrument to be too short. The problem with smaller basses is that it is difficult to achieve balance when sitting.

How much does a stand up bass cost?

The cost of a stand up bass depends on several factors including the brand, wood, electronics, and delivery fee.

An entire collection of the best upright basses can be found at the end of the article.

Why are double basses so expensive?

The cost of double basses can be very high. This is for a couple reasons due to their size, weight and complexity. A double bass is much longer than a single bass and weighs more due to the extra strings. Double bass bodies are also thicker due to the need to support those extra strings. Another aspect to consider is that double basses are much harder to build and require more expertise because of their size.

Conclusion

Unlike with Fenders, the upright bass is the most fundamental of all the bass guitars. It is also the most sought after. This is because of the fact that it is used in jazz, the most widely used genre of music in the world, and also because it is the oldest. Unlike with the Fender basses, bass guitars are used more in Afro American music and the Caribbean music as opposed to rock and roll; which is what Fenders are commonly used in.

Our Recommendation

NameCategoryProduct
Cecilio CDB Upright Double BassBest OverallCecilio CDB Upright Double Bass