D’Addario Planet Waves have a huge range of guitar straps for all purposes. Today we’re looking at their padded 3″ Bass Guitar Strap, which is designed for use with heavy instruments. It’s pretty affordable at $17 USD ($35.99 AUD, €21.90 £19.09). If you like the D’Addario, be sure to check out the other guitar planet lock strap I have reviewed.
First up, it should be noted that D’Addario / Planet Waves list this as a bass guitar strap, but some retailers list it as a guitar strap. Regardless, it works perfectly fine for either instrument. The internal padding and 3″ width make it a natural choice for heavy instruments. The strap is adjustable from 43″ to 58″ via two hard plastic buckles.
Comfortable if the sizing is right
The bass guitar strap is pretty comfortable overall. The width makes a big difference in distributing the weight and the padding helps as well. There is a major design flaw that effects the comfort however. If you’re 5’8″ or above it probably won’t be an issue, but shorter players may find that the buckle sits directly over your shoulder or collarbone. The comfort goes completely out the window when this happens as the weight will seem to fall heavily on that single spot. The issue occurs as the padding prevents the buckles from being moved freely across the width of the strap. Therefore if you want to shorten it past a certain point, you can’t avoid the buckle sitting over your shoulder.
Tough build from D’Addario Planet Waves
The guitar strap is made of woven polypropylene with leather ends. Polypropylene is a synthetic plastic that’s tough and easy to wear. It doesn’t pull your shirt around too much either. The durability overall is quite good and you can’t really ask for much more at this price range, at least for US buyers. The bass guitar strap seems to be a lot more expensive for Australian buyers for some reason, even taking into account exchange rates.
Design flaws present
I’ve brought up the biggest disadvantage already – the strap buckle issue. There’s two other notable cons I can see. The leather strap ends seems like a real waste. It’s difficult to get high quality non-leather guitar straps at a reasonable price. This strap is mostly synthetic already, so it’s a shame they couldn’t avoid leather for the strap ends as well. The other disadvantage is that the strap end holes are not as tight as I’d like. I wouldn’t gig with this strap without using strap locks, as I’m not confident it would securely hold the instrument in place.
The D’Addario Planet Waves 3″ Bass Guitar Strap verdict
The 3″ Bass Guitar Strap is built tough and comfortable. It’s a great strap if you’re the right size for it, are in US or Europe and already have strap locks. Gigging guitarists will really need to use strap locks with it as I wouldn’t trust it to hold during a hectic show. If you’re on the shorter side, I would steer clear of it due to the buckle positioning. It’s also hard to recommend the strap to Aussie buyers, as there seems to be a price mark-up in that country.