This luthier has built a video game-inspired pixelated ‘8-bit bass’

8-bit bass
(Image credit: Tone Mason Guitar Repairs / Instagram)

An Australian luthier has channeled Minecraft-style video game visuals into an ‘8-Bit’ take on the Fender P-Bass.

Designed and built by James Watson at Tone Masons Guitar Repairs in Brisbane, Australia, the pixelated P-Bass features Kinsman pickups, an American alder body and a maple neck with a rosewood fingerboard. 

Those materials are very traditional, but the design certainly is not – creating an old-school digital aesthetic using some clever grid work. The result is a squared-off body shape, with the traditional blended sunburst finish separated into three separate pixelated tones.

The video game look is further emphasised by the sharp corners of the headstock and scratch plate, cut to match the body’s 90 degree angles – and we particularly love the square inlays on the fretboard. 

The 10-minute clip shows the luthier producing the body from scratch, cutting it from a solid wood block, before crafting the custom headstock and scratchplate components and even a custom heel plate. 

Indeed, the only curves on the design appear to be the neck shape and a cleverly concealed bit of ergonomic shaping on the rear of the body. 

The 8-bit Bass is – at least, visually – a brilliantly executed build, and we’re excited to see what comes next, particularly as Watson is teasing it will be an avocado guitar

Head to the Tone Masons Guitar Repairs YouTube channel for more. 

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Matt Parker

Matt is a staff writer for GuitarWorld.com. Before that he spent 10 years as a freelance music journalist, interviewing artists for the likes of Total Guitar, Guitarist, Guitar World, MusicRadar, NME.com, DJ Mag and Electronic Sound. In 2020, he launched CreativeMoney.co.uk, which aims to share the ideas that make creative lifestyles more sustainable. He plays guitar, but should not be allowed near your delay pedals.