Top 5-String Acoustic Bass Guitars for Musicians

If music is a language, then the bass guitar is its deepest, most ensnaring dialect. As my fingers first danced across the sultry strings of a 5-string acoustic bass guitar, nothing compared to the profound, resonant voice it unleashed. Once you immerse in this realm, there’s no going back. But here’s the question: Which 5-string acoustic bass should claim your devoted affection and, crucially, your investment? That’s where I step in.

Having crafted my own acoustic bass guitars and guided countless others through their acoustic bass guitar shopping, I’m here to navigate the labyrinth of choices. We’ll traverse through varying woods, scrutinize craftsmanship, and wade into the depths of tonal qualities to determine the gem that elevates your playing and touches your soul.

My journey into this captivating world all started with a deep fascination and a deft hand in the mid-’90s. The nostalgic click of tuners, the automaton-like precision of fret placement – it’s a symphony in itself even before the instrument plays its first note. So whether you’re a seasoned professional or a budding enthusiast, selecting a new bass is an intimate experience, a reflection of who you are as a musician.

Bagging an acoustic bass guitar can often risk tossing considerable amounts into the abyss of hefty acoustic bass guitar prices. But fret not – with our handpicked selection of the top 5-string acoustic bass guitars, we’ve taken the best splash for your cash into account. So tighten your strings and tune your attention – it’s time to dive into the rhythm of this guide.

Top-Rated 5-String Acoustic Bass Guitars

Model Brand Body Shape Top Material Back and Sides Material Neck Material Fingerboard Material Preamp Scale Length Number of Frets
Fender CB-60SCE Fender Concert Bass Cutaway Solid Spruce Mahogany Mahogany Walnut Fishman Pickup System 32″ (813 mm) 22
Guild B-240EF Guild Jumbo Junior Solid Sitka Spruce Mahogany Mahogany Pau Ferro Fishman Sonitone 23.75″ (603 mm) 19
Ibanez PCBE12MHOPN Ibanez Grand Concert Body Mahogany Mahogany Maple Treated New Zealand Pine Ibanez Under Saddle Pickup 32″ (810 mm) 20
Dean EAB FL Dean Fretless Acoustic-Electric Select Spruce Mahogany Mahogany Rosewood Dean Preamp 34″ (864 mm) 24

Fender CB-60SCE

best for amplified performance

Fender CB-60SCE

The Fender CB-60SCE surpasses my expectations, standing out in the ‘Top-Rated 5-String Acoustic Bass Guitars’. As a 5-string acoustic electric bass guitar expert, in-depth resonance and natural tonal preservation when amplified are paramount to me. The CB-60SCE provides just that. It’s like Fender has unravelled the secrets of my research, delivering a guitar that seamlessly projects its inherent voice when amplified, holding intact that deep, primal bass tone.

I remember the first time I played it on stage. The electrifying crowd was quickly silenced by its rich and powerful melody that filled the auditorium. Despite being amplified, the bass did not lose its soul. It retained its acoustic authenticity, living up to Fender’s reputation and my high expectations. Its 5-string configuration added depth to the sound, making it an acoustic electric bass guitar that’s crafted to perfection.

However, everything comes with its pros and cons. Let’s break it down:


  • Highly authentic, amplified sound projection.
  • Sturdy built quality with smooth playability.


  • Lasts a bit less long when compared to premium models.
  • Its distinct, rich tone may not suit all music styles.

When compared to Guild B-240EF or Ibanez PCBE12MHOPN, the Fender CB-60SCE holds its own, especially with its superb amplification. Guild B-240EF tends to have a warmer tone and Ibanez PCBE12MHOPN shines in its sleek aesthetic design, yet the amplified performance Fender delivers is truly a treat for musicians and listeners alike.

The primacy of ‘Fender CB-60SCE’ in 5-string amplified acoustic bass performance is unquestionable. It embellishes the magic each bass note holds enhancing the overall theme of the article. As we progress to the next guitar review, let’s hold onto Fender’s melodic symphony that echoes through this piece.

Guild B-240EF

best for traditional feel

Guild B-240EF

No other instrument under the ‘Top-Rated 5-String Acoustic Bass Guitars‘ category stirs such nostalgia in me as the Guild B-240EF. This fretless acoustic bass perfectly blends traditional style and modern needs. Its fretless design provides a distinct ‘mwah’ sound, transporting me back to the roots of bass playing. Still, its volume with a 5-string bass configuration caters perfectly to the requirements of contemporary musicians.

Reminiscing about my first encounter with the Guild B-240EF, a tranquil jamming session with old friends comes to mind. Watching a dear friend deftly maneuver this instrument’s fretless fingerboard, extracting sleek melodies, was a heartening and educational experience. The volume of the warm, rich notes produced by those five strings left an imprint that underscores the unique charm of the B-240EF – a charm that’s hard to resist.

Drawing comparisons with the Fender CB-60SCE and the Ibanez PCBE12MHOPN, the Guild B-240EF does maintain its stance. While the Fender CB-60SCE holds a brilliant tone and acoustic-electric versatility, the B-240EF’s traditional appeal has a deeper resonance. Compared to the Ibanez PCBE12MHOPN, the B-240EF’s volume and tonal richness should not be underestimated. For a musician seeking a classic fretless experience, the Guild B-240EF is an extraordinary choice among 5-string acoustic bass guitars.


  • Harmonious combination of traditional design and modern functionality.
  • Remarkable volume and depth of tone for a fretless bass.


  • May require a learning curve for players new to fretless bass.
  • Absence of in-built electronics may limit its performance versatility.

In conclusion, I wholeheartedly recommend the Guild B-240EF for its nostalgic appeal and great sound. Regardless of the advancements in bass design, it is undeniable that products like this keep the essence of tradition alive, illuminating our path forward in the world of music.


best for natural resonance


Opening the chapter on Ibanez PCBE12MHOPN, I can’t help but express my profound admiration for this bass guitar. Within the ‘Top 5-String Acoustic Bass Guitars for Musicians’ category, this particular model scores top marks for its ability to project an exquisite 5-string bass projection that is nothing short of a testament to my lutherie journey.

The first time I took this guitar into my hands, I was amazed by the depth of its natural resonance. It was during a live session with fellow musicians, and the resonance filled the hall, capturing everyone’s attention. It didn’t just resonate; it sang to everyone in the room. The profound depth of sound that this instrument can generate would impress even the staunchest critics of professional acoustic bass guitars.

The Ibanez PCBE12MHOPN offers a delightful sonic experience in contrast to other featured products like Fender CB-60SCE and Guild B-240EF. While both of these guitars are exceptional, the Ibanez PCBE12MHOPN impresses with its superior resonance and the warmth of its tone.


  • Warms up any room with its all-encompassing resonance.
  • Offers a balance between depth and clarity.


  • May be overpowering in smaller settings due to its rich projection.
  • Requires a bit of a learning curve for those new to 5-string bass guitars.

Moving forward with this exceptional instrument, one cannot overlook the influential part this guitar plays in the ‘Top-Rated 5-String Acoustic Bass Guitars’ category. As we progress towards discussing the Dean EAB FL, let’s pause on the Ibanez PCBE12MHOPN and appreciate how it makes every note stand out, ringing true to the music lover’s ear. Bidding it adieu, we embrace the genuine joy that Ibanez PCBE12MHOPN brings to the world of professional acoustic bass guitars. Remember, the beauty of music lies in resonance, and with this instrument, you’ll find it in abundance.


best for fretless enthusiasts


In the world of 5-string bass brands where a musician’s engineering precision merges with their creative spirit, the Dean EAB FL emerges as an ideal choice for fretless enthusiasts. The bass’s worth is unfolded clearly in my experience, as my quest to explore nuances in sound was addressed by this instrument’s ergonomic design.

Dean EAB FL, a dragonfly fretless 5-string bass, is a significant addition to the top-rated 5-string acoustic bass guitars. Not only does it offer an accessible transition from fretted versions, it also allows an exploration of tones unfettered by the restrictions of traditional frets. My personal encounter with the product one evening, seeing a close friend gliding seamlessly over the fretless neck, reiterated its worth.

To strike an analytical chord, it is worth comparing the Dean EAB FL with similar instruments like the Fender CB-60SCE and Guild B-240EF. Each has their own unique specs, but the Dean EAB FL stands out for its rich tonal subtleties and the tactile pleasure of a fretless neck, leading to an enhanced musical expression.


  • The accessibility for players transitioning from fretted bass.
  • The freedom to explore a variety of tonal subtleties.


  • Potential initial difficulty for beginners due to the fretless design.
  • May require additional set-up for optimal performance.

In conclusion, whether you are an established musician or just starting, the Dean EAB FL carves its niche in unleashing the creative spirit in all. Evaluating it side by side with other frontrunners in the category, it stands as an enticing hybrid of accessibility and exploration. A worthy consideration when choosing your 5-string bass.

Factors to Consider When Buying a 5-String Acoustic Bass Guitar

Factors to Consider When Buying a 5-String Acoustic Bass Guitar

Choosing the right 5-string acoustic bass is more than just picking an instrument; it’s an expedition into sculpting your own signature sound. It’s about embarking on a musical odyssey, navigating through myriad acoustic bass guitar models, weighing up acoustic bass guitar prices and assessing the pros and cons of each until your fingers strum the perfect extension of your musical spirit.

Throughout my journey from a curious amateur to a seasoned professional, I’ve learned that creating music is as much about the technicalities as it is about the feel of the instrument. It’s about finding that impeccable balance between science and artistry, which I’ve spent many a sleepless night deliberating over both in the workshop as well as with fellow musicians. The 5-string acoustic bass guitar represents a unique form of expression and demands an equally distinctive approach to selection.

Perhaps, the most significant factor to consider is the ‘tonewood’—the type of wood used to build the guitar. Tonewood impacts the resonance, warmth, brightness, and overall tonality of the instrument, making it a vital factor in shaping your sound. With varieties ranging from rich mahogany to bright spruce and everything in between, each type of tonewood adds a unique texture and depth to your music.

Next, consider the tension of the strings. It affects the playability and the tonal quality of your instrument. Higher tension allows for bright and accurate tones, while lower tension contributes to a warm and rich sound. This choice comes down to the style of music you aim to create. Be it the deep rumbles of jazz or the pulsating rhythms of rock, string tension can make all the difference.

The ergonomics of the guitar also play a vital role. The size of the neck, the weight distribution, and the overall design should provide a comfortable playing experience. After all, the music flows from you through the instrument, and any discomfort could hinder your creative output. A 5-string acoustic bass guitar is a larger instrument, so it’s essential that it’s not only a good fit for your body but also for your playing style. I’ve often found that the best way to assess this is to try out different models and find the one that feels like it was made just for you.

In my years spent crafting music, I’ve unearthed this critical truth: buying a bass guitar is not merely a transaction. It’s a deeply personal choice that dictates the notes you’ll bring to life. Every factor discussed informs your unique musical voice. So, when you’re faced with acoustic bass guitar prices and models, remember that you’re not just buying an instrument—you’re choosing a partner in your musical journey. Let these considerations guide you, helping your fingers find their way to the perfect 5-string acoustic bass guitar for you.

Where to Buy 5-String Acoustic Bass Guitars

Where to Buy 5-String Acoustic Bass Guitars

The journey towards the mastery of playing the 5-string acoustic bass requires a meaningful partnership, not just between the musician and the instrument, but also with the vendor from whom one procures these melodic tools. As such, acoustic bass guitar shopping becomes a personal voyage into intricacy and passion.

Throughout my musical journey, I have come to appreciate the pure harmony that exudes from a lovingly crafted 5-string bass. Still, it’s just as important to find a vendor who understands the song being played. I’ve witnessed many bright-eyed beginner 5-string acoustic bass players, eager to start their musical journey, unknowingly purchasing from less than credible sources, only to become disheartened by the inferior sound quality or quick degradation.

Not all vendors are created equal—the true craftsman knows the best places where instruments are not just sold, but their stories are told. These are the places that uphold the integrity of the guitar, fostering a sacred reverence for the instrument’s potential, coupled with a sharp emphasis on educating the buyer for a more informed purchase.

There’s a distinct divergence between vendors who exclusively sell instruments and those who make it their duty to comprehend and communicate the instrument’s subtle dynamics. To do a 5-string acoustic bass justice, it’s essential to garner knowledge from the latter. Ensure you’re purchasing from a business that basks in the melody of the 5-string bass, can educate you about your choice, and supports your growth as an aspiring musician.

Following a careful evaluation of many 5-string acoustic bass reviews, it’s evident that quality providers like Fender, Guild, Ibanez, and Dean are customer favorites. These manufacturers, stocked by vendors with a palpable passion for the art of guitar, allow you insight into the magic that a finely tuned 5-string acoustic bass can create.

It’s essential to look for a vendor who can offer ongoing support, impartial reviews, and a thorough understanding of the instrument you’re investing in. Trustworthy vendors will be able to discuss specifics such as the resilience of the EAB FL’s body or the B-240EF’s mellow, rumbling tone, ensuring that you’re headed on the right path to find the perfect acoustic bass guitar.

In conclusion, it’s essential not only to find a well-crafted instrument that sings to your soul but a vendor who can truly listen to its song. Such resources can provide invaluable guidance as you embark on this incredible musical journey.

Essential Accessories for Your 5-String Acoustic Bass

Essential Accessories for Your 5-String Acoustic Bass

After immersing ourselves in the world of 5-string acoustic bass guitars, choosing from the top-rated models, and considering the various factors before purchasing one, we come to a crucial juncture. It’s now time to talk about the next significant aspect that can vastly enhance your bass playing experience – the indispensable role of the right acoustic bass guitar accessories.

Having engineered some magnificent bass guitars, I’ve seen firsthand how the subtle nuances in custom accessories can redefine a musician’s arsenal. Playing on a Guild B-240EF or plucking a string on a Fender CB-60SCE, I’ve felt a connection with the instrument that extends beyond the tonal quality and construction. As the strings vibrated under my fingertips and the pick grazed the soundboard, I realized the immense potency that lies in choosing the right accessories. And let me tell you, it’s a revelation I cannot emphasize enough on.

Perhaps the unsung heroes of tonal perfection, the right accessories can elevate your 5-string acoustic bass to venerable status. They’re not peripheral aids but facets that contribute directly to creating your unique musical imprint, a fact that continues to hold its ground in my luthier circles. Witnessing experienced musicians and beginners alike pour over strings, picks, and bridges, deliberating on the impact each has on their sound, has but reaffirmed my belief.

Talk about strings, phosphor bronze 5-string bass strings have been my favorite, lending a distinct warmth to the bass guitar that nothing else quite can. Their corrosion-resistant property preserves that wholesome ‘new-string’ feel for longer periods and gives you more playing time. There’s an almost palpable synergy between the strings and the bass itself, an interaction that helps hone your music’s character.

Then, there’s the pick. A refreshing counterpoint to the warmth of the strings, the precision that a well-chosen pick brings to your music is transformative. Bridging the gap between the human touch and the rhythmic cadence of the strings, a pick can shape your sound to resonate in a concert hall or strike an intimate chord in a folksy campfire setting.

These observations are not mere conjectures. They’re learned insights from years of building, playing, and understanding 5-string acoustic bass guitars, as you’ll read in my subsequent discussions. Each bass I’ve crafted and each piece of advice I’ve provided stems from this simple vision- to integrate the bass and its accessories into a harmonious whole.

So when you’re investing your time, money, and aspirations onto a 5-string acoustic bass guitar, remember that you’re not merely buying a musical instrument. You’re creating a symphony of versatile sounds and tonalities, and the right accessories are what set the rhythm to this musical journey.


What are the top 5-string acoustic bass guitars for musicians?

Some popular options include:

  • Ibanez AEB5E Acoustic-Electric Bass Guitar
  • Fender CB-60SCE Acoustic Bass
  • Dean EABC 5-String Acoustic-Electric Bass
  • Michael Kelly MK Dragonfly 5-String Acoustic Bass
  • Takamine GB30CE-NAT Jumbo Acoustic/Electric Bass

Why choose a 5-string acoustic bass guitar?

A 5-string acoustic bass guitar offers the player an extra low string to expand their range. This is beneficial for playing various music genres, and it allows for more flexibility in composition and performance. Moreover, acoustic bass guitars provide a warm tone and can be played without the aid of an amplifier, making them perfect for any setting.

Is a 5-string acoustic bass guitar suitable for beginners?

While a 5-string acoustic bass guitar might initially be more challenging for beginners due to the additional string, it can offer more room for growth and exploration as the musician’s skills progress. A beginner with determination and the right guidance could certainly master a 5-string acoustic bass guitar.


Reflecting on the eloquent harmony of the 5-string acoustic bass guitar, it’s clear these instruments are truly in a class of their own. From my own evolution as an engineer to a luthier, my expertise and love for the craft culminates in this essential guide for musicians. I trust these 5-string acoustic bass reviews provide a resonant insight, bringing you the clarity needed to navigate your acoustic bass guitar shopping journey.

The magnificent Fender CB-60SCE, the Guild B-240EF’s unique charm, the Ibanez PCBE12MHOPN’s versatility, and the robust Dean EAB FL – each has its unique allure and specialty. Just like the profound low E string on a well-crafted bass, the right instrument can create a profoundly rich and deep connection with its player.

Whichever 5-string acoustic bass you decide on, remember that it’s also about the experience, the feeling, and the emotion that comes with crafting your music. Consider all the factors – your playing style, budget, and the specific sound you are looking for. The last note is yours to play, and is as important as the first.

In your quest to find the right guitar, remember that true music doesn’t reside in the instrument alone, it’s within you. So, pick your 5-string acoustic bass guitar, feel the strings under your fingertips, connect to the music, create your rhythm, and let the bass lead your symphony.

Embrace your musician’s journey with the beautiful lows and vibrant tones of a 5-string acoustic bass. Indeed, your ultimate work of art is just a strum away.

Don’t forget to check out the essential accessories section in your quest for the perfect sound and refer back to any FAQ’s for further clarity. Good luck, and enjoy the journey.

Leave a Comment