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Epiphone Viola Bass VS 

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This veteran from the British invasion is back without the vintage price tag! Mod looks and warm, bass tone come together as a result of its hollow l...Click To Read More About This Product

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OVERVIEW

A vintage British style bass with a short scale and mini humbucking pickups.

This veteran from the British invasion is back without the vintage price tag! Mod looks and warm, bass tone come together as a result of its hollow laminated maple body with a short-scale 30" maple neck, elegant flamed maple top and dual bass mini-humbucking pickups. Other features include a floating rosewood bridge with trapeze tailpiece, 2 volumes, 1 tone, chrome hardware, and vintage sunburst finish.

FEATURES
  • Style: hollowbody viola shape
  • Body: laminated maple
  • Neck: set maple
  • Finish: Vintage sunburst
  • Fingerboard: rosewood
  • Fingerboard inlays: dot
  • Pickups: NYR & NYT mini humbuckers
  • Controls: 2 volumes, 1 tone
  • Bridge: floating rosewood
  • Tailpiece: trapeze
  • Hardware: chrome
  • Scale length: 30.5"
  • Nut Width: 1.65"
Reviews
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Review Snapshot

by PowerReviews
EpiphoneViola Bass VS
 
4.7

(based on 54 reviews)

Ratings Distribution

  • 5 Stars

     

    (47)

  • 4 Stars

     

    (3)

  • 3 Stars

     

    (2)

  • 2 Stars

     

    (1)

  • 1 Stars

     

    (1)

100%

of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

Pros

  • Good feel (24)
  • Fun to play (23)
  • Good tone (21)
  • Solid electronics (17)
  • Good pick up (16)

Cons

No Cons

Best Uses

  • Practicing (21)
  • Jamming (19)
  • Recording (17)
  • Small venues (15)
  • Rock concerts (10)
    • Reviewer Profile:
    • Experienced (14), Novice (5), Professional musician (5)

Most Liked Positive Review

 

Epiphone Fit and Finish...Perfect...

I've looked at and played many hollow and semi-hollow bodied bases in my time, and they all have distinct sound and feel differences. This bass is light, easy to play, looks good and...Read complete review

I've looked at and played many hollow and semi-hollow bodied bases in my time, and they all have distinct sound and feel differences. This bass is light, easy to play, looks good and has a great tonal range. It sounds great when you play early Beatles tunes as well...Maybe that's why Will Lee of the "Fab Faux" uses one with his tribute band.

VS

Most Liked Negative Review

 

Epiphone viola bass

I got this bass without ever playing it or hearing it, but I was still really excited to get it. The first thing I noticed was the amazing finish. The bass looks like...Read complete review

I got this bass without ever playing it or hearing it, but I was still really excited to get it. The first thing I noticed was the amazing finish. The bass looks like a champion. But then I put a strap on it, put it on and plugged it in. The bass is extremely neck heavy. To the point that you have to hold it up as you play. The wooden bridge is weak and the strings pop off if you pluck to hard which causes lots of problems. The bass sounds great. Lots of versatility between the neck and bridge pickups. But I never could fully take advantage of them because I was too busy making sure the strings weren't popping off the bridge. It also has significant amounts of fret buzzing, and overall weird fretwork. the neck is extremely thin and I have big hands so that didn't work out to well. The upper frets are impossible to reach because there is no cutaway and the heavy neck falls down when you take you hand off to head to the higher range. There are no contours to this bass. It feels really awkward against your body. But if this is the bass you like, go ahead have at it. Its just not for me. I sold it a few months ago.

Reviewed by 54 customers

Displaying reviews 1-10

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(12 of 12 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Epiphone Fit and Finish...Perfect...

By Danno

from Frederick, MD

About Me Professional Musician

Pros

  • Beautiful finish
  • Fun To Play
  • Good Feel
  • Light Weight
  • Outstanding Price
  • Solid Electronics
  • Vintage Tone

Cons

    Best Uses

    • Our Beatles Set
    • Practicing
    • Recording
    • Rock Concerts
    • Small Venues

    Comments about Epiphone Viola Bass VS:

    I've looked at and played many hollow and semi-hollow bodied bases in my time, and they all have distinct sound and feel differences. This bass is light, easy to play, looks good and has a great tonal range. It sounds great when you play early Beatles tunes as well...Maybe that's why Will Lee of the "Fab Faux" uses one with his tribute band.

    (10 of 10 customers found this review helpful)

     
    5.0

    Great little bass

    By Jerry-R48oT

    from Raleigh, NC

    Comments about Epiphone Viola Bass VS:

    I just received mine today - used from this website and rated 2. Without having gone over it with a magnifying glass, I can't find a scratch - still had packing material under the bridge and plastic on the pickups and came in Epi box with cord, manual etc. Have played it for about an hour, and although i intend to put some flat-wound or half-wound strings on it, it sounds quite good with the strings it came with. Setup was pretty good. Had to tweak the truss rod just a bit. I wasn't sure I would like the lack of pickup switches, but after playing with it a bit, I think I am quite satisfied with it. I am not a slap bass kind of guy - more of a Motown sound type of guy and a big Beatles fan. This baby is sweet playing and sweet sounding, even with the stock roundwound strings. No evidence of pickup hum - dead quiet. Finish is nice and neck is easy on my short fingers. I am quite pleased with my purchase and recommend it to anyone who is looking for something similar (I was looking for a short scale and had thought about a hofner icon or rogue for some time. I'm glad I picked this one.). Only wish I had picked up an epi case with it, but couldn't locate one at the time of purchase. I'll find one locally or special order.

    (10 of 10 customers found this review helpful)

     
    5.0

    Fantastic

    By PS5188

    from Undisclosed

    See all my reviews

    Comments about Epiphone Viola Bass VS:

    When I first saw this bass, I thought it had to be about $800 or higher. Turns out it was 3. It is a stunning instrument--the picture doesn't do it justice. The finish resembles that of $3000 Gibson Les Pauls. On top of that it sounds excellent, has a nice feel to it, and has solid pickups. The other bonus is this: because the body is fairly hollow, playing without an amp is better than with a normal electric bass--you almost get an acoustic bass and an electric in one package. Overall, no complaints whatsoever. It's a great bass, great deal, and a lot of fun.

    (9 of 9 customers found this review helpful)

     
    5.0

    Awesome Bass!

    By PS5188

    from Undisclosed

    See all my reviews

    Comments about Epiphone Viola Bass VS:

    Great bass. I definitely recommend it. I tried the Hofners and this Epiphone and liked the Epi much better. It feels substantial and is a dream to play. There is a slight neck dive but it's not anything that should keep anyone from buying this instrument.
    Great tone, look, playability, and value. This instrument is beautiful to see and hear and plays like a dream.
    I give quality a 9 because I didn't find any problems with mine except that the strap buttons were loose. It was a quick fix though.
    Great value for a bass that looks and plays like it should be in the more expensive price range.

    (8 of 8 customers found this review helpful)

     
    5.0

    A Unique Take on a Classic Design

    By Ultimate Warrior

    from Parts Unknown

    About Me Experienced

    See all my reviews

    Pros

    • Fun To Play
    • Good Feel
    • Good Tone
    • Solid Electronics

    Cons

    • Fret Buzz

    Best Uses

    • Jamming
    • Practicing
    • Recording
    • Small Venues

    Comments about Epiphone Viola Bass VS:

    This is a very nice bass for the price. Epiphone seems to build very good instruments for reasonable prices. They and Musician's Friend could (and should) update the stock photos for this instrument, as the actual guitar is nothing in color like the one in the pictures. It's very beautiful in person, much more like traditional vintage sunburst, and very glossy. You won't be dissapointed if you have any good taste in asethetics.

    That being said, this is such a fun bass to play. It's like the perfect bridge between a guitar and a full scale bass, not only in length (obviously), but also in the size of the neck. Personally, I really like the neck, which is not tiny or flimsy feeling, but is solid and thick. It's not too wide, and the strings are spaced very nicely. The neck is a bit heavy, but nothing you should worry about too much unless you're an incredibly frail person. Mine arrived set up almost perfectly with a little fret buzz that honestly wouldn't be all that noticable if it weren't semihollow.

    One can get a fine array of tones out of the Viola with the two volume and master tone controls. That was the selling point for me as a matter of personal preference over the Hofner, which has the traditional volume knobs with tone control switches--that's just too busy for me.

    A very nice bass all-in-all. If you like the resonance of a semi-hollow bass with the thump of a short scale, and like a vintage tone, but also versatility, you might enjoy the Epi Viola.

    (8 of 8 customers found this review helpful)

     
    5.0

    Light Weight and Fun to Play

    By Very Happy

    from Michigan

    About Me Experienced

    See all my reviews

    Pros

    • Fun To Play
    • Good Feel
    • Good Pick Up
    • Good Tone
    • Solid Electronics

    Cons

      Best Uses

      • Jamming
      • Practicing
      • Small Venues

      Comments about Epiphone Viola Bass VS:

      Love this bass. The band I play in is an acoustic group and this bass fits the groups look and sounds. I changed the strings to flatwounds which makes it sound much better. Note: It's a short scale bass but you'll need medium scale strings because of the tail piece.

      (8 of 8 customers found this review helpful)

       
      5.0

      It's an Epi! … no feather weight

      By BlueBag7

      from Tucson, Az.

      See all my reviews

      Ask me a question

      Pros

      • Fun To Play
      • Good Feel
      • Good Pick Up
      • Good Tone
      • Solid Electronics

      Cons

        Best Uses

          Comments about Epiphone Viola Bass VS:

          A tough call, Epi vs other violin basses . so many reviews, pros & cons . I decided on the Epi .

          Out of box . was in tune and set up fairly well . slightly heavier than a Hoff . maple top (like a 335) vs spruce on the Hoff is partly reason . not as heavy as the Epi Zenith semi hollow, which is so solid could be used as a tail rudder on a tug boat . hahh! . But the Viola does have a "not gonna shatter" if it falls over, secure appeal . well constructed (I owned a Hoff Club in the 60's, t'was light as a feather and did exactly that when knocked over . neck broke off ) .

          I had a specific use in mind for this bass . I replaced the strings with D'Addario Piccolo's and set it up accordingly . was able to get a very low action, no buzz and a very sweet warm cello effect . zero fret (unique to the Epi) is a plus, allowing for some nice open tuning and chords that sound nice and evenly sustained across the board. and the shorter scale using higher pitched strings works perfectly for intonation. finish is flawless, and beautiful . I like the No pick guard, because I play with fingers, senseless to have one . and it looks better .

          Otherwise it's new, so I can't say how well it will hold up, but I've never had a problem with an Epi . and these are made in Korea . not China . IMHO is also a plus . good luck shopping .

          (8 of 9 customers found this review helpful)

           
          5.0

          The Liverpool experience

          By Eaomer

          from Ashburn VA

          About Me Experienced

          See all my reviews

          Ask me a question

          Verified Buyer

          Pros

          • Fun To Play
          • Good Feel
          • Good Pick Up
          • Good Tone
          • Solid Electronics

          Cons

            Best Uses

            • Jamming
            • Practicing
            • Recording
            • School Bands
            • Small Venues

            Comments about Epiphone Viola Bass VS:

            A very good bass straight from the box, action a little high for my taste but nothing a good tweak won't cure in minutes, the sound is pure 60's Liverpool, ie: you can hear the wood,I am impressed.

            (7 of 8 customers found this review helpful)

             
            5.0

            Yeah. It is really that good.

            By CzYfOx

            from Perry Ga

            About Me Professional Musician

            Pros

            • Fun To Play
            • Good Feel
            • Good Pick Up
            • Good Tone
            • Solid Electronics

            Cons

              Best Uses

              • Jamming
              • Practicing
              • Recording
              • School Bands
              • Small Venues

              Comments about Epiphone Viola Bass VS:

              I got this Bass as a gift. I wanted one to play around on. I couldn't be more pleased. Everything is perfect, even the intonation was on. There is a small scuff mark where the tail piece sits on the body and even that is perfect. It is right where it needs to go. I am retired from "The music scene" but I still play around with some local guys doing Country Blue Grass and I do some home recording. Again, this bass is perfect for what I do. I can rave all day but if you want to hear it I did some quick tracks here https://soundcloud.com/lancecarter/beetle-bass

              (7 of 7 customers found this review helpful)

               
              5.0

              Great

              By 74 Bassman

              from Undisclosed

              See all my reviews

              Comments about Epiphone Viola Bass VS:

              This has very little to do with the Gibson Violin bass. Other than it is violin shaped and made by Epiphone. This is, and is meant to be, a more modern take on a Hofner.I have always shied away from this because I'm a vintage "snob" and it didn't look enought like the hofner for my liking. But my old man picked this up for me as a gift and its fantastic. The flame is beautiful and it does the Hofner thinkg very well. This is decidely vintage style unit other than the simplified controls and flamed maple top - the only thing you'll be slapping with this baby is other bass players' hands. But for the kind of music it's meant for - older rock, country, blues - wow! Really great for melodic bass type stuff. Incidentally you don't need flatwounds on this, the short scale and hollow body make the body boomy enough as-is. Plus these and a modern amp make this much more than a retro bass it can do pretty much anything you'd play in a bar or a legion. It would also do a great palm-muted bill-black click bass for older elvis stuff (or tik-tak bass for older country, yummy).

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