- Criteria for Choosing Your Bass Strap
- The Best Straps for Your Bass
- KLIQ AirCell Guitar Strap for Bass & Electric Guitar
- So There Padded Leather Guitar Strap – Best Leather Bass Guitar Strap
- Ernie Ball Black Polypro Guitar Strap – Budget Bass Strap
- Rock You Neoprene SBR Memory Foam Bass Strap – Wide Bass Strap with Memory Foam
- Fender Black/Yellow/Brown Monogrammed Strap – Best Design
- The Price of Bass Straps
- Bass Strap Materials
- Setting Up Your Strap
- Frequently Asked Questions
Bass guitar is one of the most underrated instruments. It is the core of the rhythm section of a band and an instrument many of us love.
As an instrument to play, bass guitar is pretty popular, and those playing it are often looking for the best accessories to ensure the nicest sound and utmost comfort. For that, choosing the best bass guitar straps is essential.
If you’ve ever been unfortunate enough to go through hours of practice or gigs with a strap that cuts into your shoulder then you will understand why people are looking for quality, comfortable straps.
Criteria for Choosing Your Bass Strap
Bass straps aren’t necessarily their own ‘category’ of product. A lot of straps are designed for either electric guitar, acoustic guitar, or bass guitar. Adjustable lengths make them suitable for the larger size of the bass guitar.
Truthfully, only some straps are suitable for bass. Even though you will see loads of straps that claim they are good for bass, not many can take the weight. The bass is not only normally larger but much heavier than electric guitars, so the strap you choose needs to be up to scratch. The main considerations are:
- Comfort. The extra weight can be a strain on your shoulders. As you can imagine, a thin, poor quality strap can dig into your skin and leave nasty marks as well as distract you from playing.
- Stability. Of course, you need a stable strap that keeps your instrument in place correctly while gigging or practicing.
- Adjustability. The ability to adjust your strap to your own specific preference and body height and shape, as well as the length of your bass. Different lengths work for different people, and you certainly need a strap that comes in different sizes, if not one that is totally adjustable.
The Best Straps for Your Bass
KLIQ AirCell Guitar Strap for Bass & Electric Guitar
Every time we’ve talked about Guitar straps here on Subreel we’ve found ourselves recommending the KLIQ AirCell. A quick look at some consumer reviews will most likely show you why.
This is possibly the most intelligently designed strap we’ve seen for instruments. The brand has seen some problems with bass guitar playing and has truly solved them.
The air cells on this strap are designed to contain air and provide cushioning on your shoulder while you play, and they do exactly that, making your bass feel almost lighter in the process. As well as this, the neoprene fabric of the strap is three inches wide, this helps to evenly spread the weight of your guitar or bass and take some of the strain off of your back.
As well as helping with the weight of your instrument and the comfort factor, the manufacturers have cleverly included ‘moisture-wicking’. This means that the material is designed to wick away any moisture provided by sweat, something that is especially likely if you are gigging.
The build quality is exceptional, and it is available in different sizes as well as being adjustable. You can alter the length to suit your body whether you are the shortest or tallest bass player! You don’t have to take our word for it on the Kliq AirCell as so many of the reviews online are hugely positive, with people noting how much more comfortable it is, and the simplicity it can add to your playing.
So There Padded Leather Guitar Strap – Best Leather Bass Guitar Strap
Many people swear by leather straps for guitar and bass. This product is advertised as being suitable for both bass and electric/acoustic guitar, and this is because it is incredibly adjustable, meaning that it can be fitted to instruments of all different sizes, be it short-scale guitars or full-sized bass guitars.
A strong and supportive strap no matter what size you have it at. We have chosen this as one of the best leather straps for a few reasons. Firstly, it is very well-made, constructed in North America out of great quality, full-grain, and genuine leather. It has also been designed with no metallic bits, meaning it won’t scratch your instrument. This is great for those of us who have spent a lot of money on our bass!
This is adjustable from 33 inches all the way up to 55 inches, great no matter what height you are and whether you play sitting or standing up. On top of that, the thick leather design distributes the weight evenly for comfortable playing. It might not be quite as easy on the shoulders as the AirCell model, but it certainly isn’t painful, and the class of the leather makes this a popular bass strap.
Ernie Ball Black Polypro Guitar Strap – Budget Bass Strap
Ernie Ball is a brand name that most guitar players will come across at some point in their life. They manufacture everything from strings to picks and of course, straps.
We wanted to include a strap option for beginners or those who are looking for a cheap bass strap, and the Polypro model from Ernie Ball may fit the bill.
In spite of its affordability, this does have some decent features. It is adjustable from 34 all the way up to 68 inches, which is a very impressive range of lengths. It has genuine leather ends, and polyprene webbing for the rest of the material.
On top of these features, the Ernie Ball strap is available in loads of different designs, so you can choose something to suit your own preferences.
Realistically, if you struggle a lot with weight-bearing and pain when playing your guitar or bass, it may be worth spending a little more to get something more comfortable. If this isn’t an issue for you, this can do a decent job for gigging and practice whether you play a budget bass guitar or a more expensive model.
As an aside, you can read the fascinating story of music entrepreneur Ernie Ball here.
Rock You Neoprene SBR Memory Foam Bass Strap – Wide Bass Strap with Memory Foam
If you are looking for a comfortable bass strap then width could be important. It helps to distribute the weight of your guitar. If you had a really thin strap, it would feel like it was digging into your shoulder.
This model is the opposite. Not only does it do a very good job of weight distribution, it has memory foam. This is able to mold to the shape of your own shoulder and reduce friction as a result.
As well as these comfortable materials, it also has two leather ends that help with support and keeping your instrument firmly in position so it doesn’t fall to its death on stage!
It’s adjustable, as you would expect. 110cm/43 Inches to 135cm/53 Inches is the range, so it is great for pretty much all bass guitars and all heights. As a bonus, there are some free picks included, which sit in the handy pick container on the strap (great for playing live if you are the sort of bassist who uses a plectrum).
Fender Black/Yellow/Brown Monogrammed Strap – Best Design
It’s hard to create a list of best bass straps (or anything related to bass or guitar) without mentioning Fender. The brand is iconic, and they have a couple of straps that are great for use with a bass guitar.
The monogrammed strap is great due to its reinforcement. It can handle the weight of your bass guitar. On top of this, it looks great. There’s nothing wrong with wanting to show a bit of style on stage.
It’s made from padded polyester and has the iconic Fender logo and headstock woven into the design. Everyone will know you’re a fan of this brand straight away.
It has a 2-inch width. This is fine for most users, though you might want a wider strap for your bass guitar if you play a particularly heavy instrument. The padding on the strap makes it a pretty comfortable model, too.
As you would also expect, it is very versatile, and can be extended to an impressive 52.5″. This is great for almost any bass and bass player.
We had to include one of the amazing Fender options. This brand virtually guarantees loads of quality.
The Price of Bass Straps
This is one of the products in the world of music which has a huge amount of variation in terms of the price point. You can pick up a decent enough strap for under $10 if you simply want a basic model, but if you’re looking for more in terms of comfort and style, they can cost up to $50 and even more.
Leather straps are certainly not cheap, especially if you want high-grade leather, and some of the more hi-tech models with advanced features such as cushioning can cost a fair amount too. There’s an old saying that goes “buy cheap, buy twice”. This is true of guitar straps and bass straps. If you buy a cheap model then it is likely that you’ll end up having to replace it pretty soon.
Fortunately, there is something to suit every budget, and every bass, whether you are doing things cheaply and playing a budget Squier bass, or you’ve gone all out and bought an expensive Rickenbacker!
Bass Strap Materials
There are a few materials that are most popular in terms of bass straps, and other guitar straps. Leather straps are perhaps the ‘traditional’ way of doing things. Some people aren’t keen on leather straps for ethical reasons. There are other options out there, and more materials have been growing in popularity including canvas and neoprene. These are often more affordable than leather.
The material is important not just for build quality, but for looks. The look and feel of your strap can be a big deal, and buying the right strap to suit your style is key. If you are in a death metal band, a pink fluffy strap might not suit the image you’re trying to portray. There are many different designs out there for guitar straps whether you play bass, acoustic or electric.
Setting Up Your Strap
There is even a specific art to setting up a bass guitar or electric guitar strap! Check out this video from Justin guitar, which will walk you through the optimum strap positions for playing your instrument.
Frequently Asked Questions
How long should a bass strap be?
40-55 inches. This is the ideal length range for a bass guitar strap. The length you adjust it to will be different for everyone. There’s no single length that is best for a bass, and your height comes into consideration. The best thing to do is to buy a strap that has an adjustable design, and you can adjust it to suit you.
Can a guitar strap be used on a bass guitar?
Yes. There’s no reason to stop you from using a guitar strap on a bass guitar. However, make sure that it is strong enough to cope with the extra weight (bass guitars tend to be much heavier).
The bass straps mentioned in this article cover a variety of different materials, prices, and features. There is something to suit every style and budget here. At a glance, bass guitar straps might seem like a relatively simple thing, but the more we play the more we realize that everyone has their own needs and preference.
If you have anything to add or experience with other guitar straps, feel free to leave your two cents below in our comments section!