Dingwall Bass Guitars:: Prima Artist, 4/5/6 string :: Custom hand made basses, Fan Frets at Bassdirect



Z Series | >PRIMA ARTIST | D Bird

In Stock | On Order | Sold

Bass Direct are proud to be one of only three Dingwall dealers in the world who have been chosen to sell these exquisite instruments. The Prima artist is the ultimate expression of the bass builders art, each bass is built with the ultimate in care and attention. Please contact us if you would like more information.

Price from £7500


The Prima Artist is designed without compromise. Created with our desire to build the best bass guitar in the world, it takes bass building art and engineering to a whole new level. The Prima Artist exudes quality craftsmanship, tone and aesthetic appeal for the ultimate ownership experience.


Walnut on the bass side adds great sustain, clarity and punch to the B and E strings. Alder on the treble side keeps the G and D strings nice and warm sounding.

More info

The traditional way of combining body woods to control tone is to laminate horizontally. For example laminate a thick maple top on a mahogany core to increase the brightness of the mahogany. This system works well to alter the tone response of all the strings as a group. However, our experience with the Novax Fanned-Fret ® system has opened up a whole new way of thinking about an instrument. What if we could take this concept one step further by focusing on the needs of the bass and treble strings separately? In effect creating a body that naturally balances tone between the bass and treble strings. At the time this had never been done before.

To achieve this naturally equalizing body we turned traditional thinking on its side by laminating across the width of the body. This allows us to use a higher density wood such as Walnut for the bass side to accentuate the highs and give power to the lows without affecting the treble strings. We then use a lower density wood (Alder) for the treble side to bring out the resonance and warm up the treble strings without making the bass strings sound muddy. For such a simple idea the results are pretty dramatic – warm, punchy treble strings with solid snappy bass strings.


The contrasting layers used on a Prima Artist are almost as nice as the top.  We just choose the grain to look best on the edge instead of the face.


We use a special polyester that’s been formulated for electric guitars. It not only looks great, but it sounds great too.  The bodies almost look like they’ve been dipped in glass, yet the finish is extremely thin allowing it to be acoustically transparent.


Prima Artist necks are laminated from 5-7 pieces of exotic wood.  We choose the woods for strength and tone first, then try to come up with a combination that either blends or contrasts nicely with the top and back woods.

An example of a Maple, Purpleheart, Wenge, Figured Bubinga Prima Artist neck.


Ziracote (Zeer-ah-coh-tay) on Prima Artist
Similar to Ebony in tone, but with a very striking grain pattern. The colour is typically slightly darker than milk chocolate with black grain swirling throughout. When available it can be ordered with a mix of sap wood, which adds a cream coloured contrasting stripe along the edge.


Banjo size Standard
We use 18% hard nickel silver fretwire.  Lee Sklar turned us onto the benefits of small frets. The advantages are a more woody, less metallic tone, smoother glissandos and a faster feel.  Our standard size is “banjo” size.  This is the same size as you’d find on most guitars from the 50’s and 60’s. Although its size is smaller than standard bass fretwire, its service life is about the same.

Mando size Optional
We install Mando size fretwire in the Lee Sklar model.  These are Leland’s personal favorite size frets.  They have an amazing feel – almost fretless like.  They are the most woody and smooth sounding frets available.  Their service life is very good.  Depending on playing style, you can expect 5-10 years of use per set.


Tel: 01926 886433

Nine months interest free credit on up to £2000 on Instrument purchases! For UK residents aged between 16 and 25.