I was watching a video with the Kenny Barron & Dave Holland duo and I noticed that Dave's double bass didn't have a full body:

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compared to a regular double bass:

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I, personally, have never seen any bass like that before. Is there any difference in that 3/4-of-the-body-double-bass and the normal double bass? Or is it just for esthetic reasons?

For reference, here is the video:

  • One note, is that a 3/4 size bass has a specific meaning. The pictured bass is not technically a 3/4 bass, it is just 3/4 of a bass!
    – ptd
    Feb 3, 2015 at 0:46

2 Answers 2


Seeing as he's playing live and most likely amplified, I'm gonna guess and say that it may be simple aesthetics and portability. Of course it'll affect tone and depth of the sound though. Similar logic is applied to thin-body guitars, which are more often than not meant to be played amplified.

Take this as a best estimate though, perhaps someone with more expertise could weigh in.

  • Yeah portability was my first thought.. as far as sound my guess would be that a smaller bodied bass will have slightly reduced response in the lower frequencies, as big surfaces are needed to produce the lowest frequencies. Might not be as much of an issue when amplified. I've never played a bass that size though, this is just speculation.
    – charlie
    Nov 1, 2014 at 23:16

It's a David Gage Czech Ease travel bass. Plays and feels just like 3/4 full-body bass but smaller body for portability. A few things are different such as the extended endpin so the bass can be played at normal height. Also, the tailpiece is smaller and fits to the endpin at right-angles to accommodate the shorter body. I've always thought that with these basses, you could reduce the scroll at the top by 2-3 inches and just have a mini-scroll to really maximise the portability.

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