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Goldtone M23 acoustic bass with polymeric strings, anybody?


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I recently came across these basses. I am not a fan of acoustic basses generally as to me they seem to be too much of a compromise with their relatively small bodies, they just don't get loud enough without amplification and their sound is not something I like much.

I do like the sound of those small uke-type basses, like the Kala, especially with those silicone strings, but not their small form. 

However this one caught my attention. The 23" scale (they also make it in 25") makes it feel more like a bass guitar, while keeping it still reasonably small. The fretless version in particular with those rubbery strings sounds really cool (there are some other more standard strings one can use for a more typical acoustic bass sound if desired, not for me though).

Has anybody got personal experience/own one?

I would get the fretless one. It would fake that upright type of sound much better than my fretless Precision with nylon tapewounds and it would also 'look' better on those 'acoustic' sessions although that's less of a selling point for me.

Here's the beast in action:

Overview (fretless)


The fretted version on some funky ride:


They seem to cost around £4-500, which is not terrible at all. 

I'm interested in hearing people's experiences with these. What's not so nice about them? What do you dislike about them? What's the build quality? If I decided to go for it, it's very likely I would not be able to try before I buy so I'm trying to get a sense for what to expect.

I used to own an Ashbory years ago, so I'm familiar with the feel of the strings and how long that kind of string takes to settle before the tuning is stable. The built-in tuner would come quite handy on this bass.

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1 hour ago, bloke_zero said:

Look really interesting - my mate got one of the Kala U basses and wouldn't shut up about it, but I, like you, was a bit put off by the tiny element.


Same here. The Kala U-bas sounds nice, and the Ashbory I had was cool too, but I didn't like their size. These, at 23 or 25" scale lengths are a better compromise for my liking.

I think I'll end up getting one soon, probably the 23" version. They make a solid body one too which is very attractive in terms of being less 'fragile' when on the move, and I don't think the acoustic output of the standard ones are sufficient to warrant getting one with an acoustic box... but I can see myself playing it a lot at home unplugged... hmm, decisions.



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