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Sparky Mark

Hofner Ignition Violins

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Posted (edited)

In my old age I'm getting to know some of the iconic basses that have passed me by over the last 45 years. First off was the Rickenbacker 4003 which I have tried a couple of times but never rated until I persevered with the 4003S.

Now it's the Hofner 500/1 violin. I love the craftsmanship involved in their manufacture but reluctant to throw £1,500 at one before knowing if we'd ever gel. Following some homework I decided the hollow bodied Ignition was the way to go for me to try the ergonomics and tone. The next question was whether I'd prefer the 61 or 62 pickup positions. The truth is I like both 61 and 62 versions so much for their differences I can see me keeping both.

20200313_162958.thumb.jpg.00ad1639ea69c82897ec59ab90db63f6.jpg

Edited by Sparky Mark
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Posted (edited)

They're pretty much as you'd expect. The neck pickup on both is the roundest and the same, the 62 bridge pickup is the thinnest and the 61 centre pickup nice and round but with more definition than the neck. With the 61 I tend to prefer the centre pickup solo, whilst on the 62 I like both pickups full up then the neck pickup backed off a little until the mids come through.

Edited by Sparky Mark

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Having recently bought too, was the nut ok on yours, I had to change it, it was miss cut. Did yours come with tea cup knobs? 

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4 hours ago, Grahambythesea said:

Having recently bought too, was the nut ok on yours, I had to change it, it was miss cut. Did yours come with tea cup knobs? 

Both nuts seem okay at the moment; I assumed they were moulded so no opportunity to mis-cut them. I added the tea cup knobs, German truss rod covers, blackened the pup surround fixing screws and removed the cheapo scratchplates which improves their appearance greatly IMO.

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Interesting, mine had a cut nut, which surprised me, and unfortunately someone in China can’t measure! Alright now though. I saw a YouTube video wear the guy sanded the B Bass logo off the truss rod cover. Might try that.

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Posted (edited)
6 hours ago, Grahambythesea said:

 I saw a YouTube video wear the guy sanded the B Bass logo off the truss rod cover. Might try that. 

You'd be better to try a T-Cut type polish as sanding could make it more difficult to get back to a gloss finish. The genuine Hofner covers were only £3 each from Thomann. 

Edited by Sparky Mark

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So looking for string advise. I’d like to get flatwounds but I’ve read that some short scale strings are too short for the Hofner because of the extra distance between the bridge and the tailpiece. It said in some makes you need medium scale but didn’t say which! Presumably Hofner strings fit but any others that anyone can recommend?

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Posted (edited)
26 minutes ago, Grahambythesea said:

So looking for string advise. I’d like to get flatwounds but I’ve read that some short scale strings are too short for the Hofner because of the extra distance between the bridge and the tailpiece. It said in some makes you need medium scale but didn’t say which! Presumably Hofner strings fit but any others that anyone can recommend?

La Bella Deep Talkin' Bass for Beatle Bass sound great, if you want thumpy.  I've had my set on for 4 years, and they still sound great.

 

You can even here them here:

https://open.spotify.com/track/5cHjmjA5cY22kswjwuZOcy?si=yjQguQXKQdO9FLmglJxnMA

 

 

Edited by James Nada
.

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Posted (edited)

I am amazed at the number of violin basses shown here. It must rival the number of P bass copies.

http://www.violinbasses.com/gallery.htm

I've previously owned an Epiphone - good.

A Tokai - disappointed given that my SG bass is excellent quality build-wise.

An Alden - OK.

A Hofner Ignition - surprisingly good quality and fun to play though a 1 trick pony.

My keeper is my Hofner HCT which with Labella flats and a decent setup is a joy to play.

Edited by grandad
Additional information.

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On 28/03/2020 at 16:05, Grahambythesea said:

So looking for string advise. I’d like to get flatwounds but I’ve read that some short scale strings are too short for the Hofner because of the extra distance between the bridge and the tailpiece. It said in some makes you need medium scale but didn’t say which! Presumably Hofner strings fit but any others that anyone can recommend?

I've got Pyramid Gold SS flats on mine and they are great sounding - got mine from Bass Direct.

I think they come as standard on the German-made models

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13 minutes ago, rasher80 said:

I've got Pyramid Gold SS flats on mine and they are great sounding - got mine from Bass Direct.

I think they come as standard on the German-made models

Although a short-scale bass, due to the tailpiece you need medium scale strings for a violin bass unless the strings are specifically labelled as Beatle bass strings.

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2 hours ago, grandad said:

Although a short-scale bass, due to the tailpiece you need medium scale strings for a violin bass unless the strings are specifically labelled as Beatle bass 

 

9429883_800.jpg

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On 15/03/2020 at 23:27, Sparky Mark said:

You'd be better to try a T-Cut type polish as sanding could make it more difficult to get back to a gloss finish. The genuine Hofner covers were only £3 each from Thomann. 

Thanks for the T-cut tip. It worked a treat.

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I can’t believe that gallery of violin shaped basses! So many, but I wonder how many of them are the same bass just badged differently?

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1 hour ago, rasher80 said:

 

9429883_800.jpg

The Thomann website does state that these are suitable for the Hofner Beatle bass. I stand corrected.

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Not one for me, for a few reasons but I appreciate people like yourself enjoy them and have a passion for their craft! 😁

Would the Neck/Bridge pickup (61?) Have more tonal options than the Neck/Middle (62?)? I can imagine the latter to sound more like an EB0 style bass but smaller in size. 

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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, bigsmokebass said:

Not one for me, for a few reasons but I appreciate people like yourself enjoy them and have a passion for their craft! 😁

Would the Neck/Bridge pickup (61?) Have more tonal options than the Neck/Middle (62?)? I can imagine the latter to sound more like an EB0 style bass but smaller in size. 

I think you've got your years mixed up. The 61 is the cavern style with neck and middle, 62 has neck and bridge. I've already attempted to describe the tonal differences between the two versions a few posts earlier in this thread. Yes the 62 can produce a thinner more upper mid present sound but doesn't have the middle pickup capable of a really nice tone on its own. It's similar to the difference between jazz and precision tones. 

Edited by Sparky Mark

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43 minutes ago, Sparky Mark said:

I think you've got your years mixed up. The 61 is the cavern style with neck and middle, 62 has neck and bridge. I've already attempted to describe the tonal differences between the two versions a few posts earlier in this thread. Yes the 62 can produce a thinner more upper mid present sound but doesn't have the middle pickup capable of a really nice tone on its own. It's similar to the difference between jazz and precision tones. 

Sorry bud, I see it now and had a thought I didn't have the right years but I've never really looked into Hofner models🤦🏼‍♂️ personally, I'd probably shoot for the 61 if the 62 is very mid driven and thin as myself and other bassists try and keep to the bass frequencies in our bands.

What do you make of the Club series or is the Violin style, your style? 

It'd be great to see pics and hear your opinion when you get one 😁

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Posted (edited)
17 hours ago, bigsmokebass said:

It'd be great to see pics and hear your opinion when you get one 😁

If you look at the first post in this thread you will see pics of my two violins and why I bought both pickup configurations. I'm sure Club are brilliant basses but they're not an iconic design like the violin in my opinion. They probably sound the same or very similar to violins. 

Edited by Sparky Mark

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