Not in Stock
The Headless Solo Bridges have been unavailable on Hipshot’s website for some time now. Hipshot have said that the bridge has been discontinued but it turns out that they are actually being redesigned.
Unfortunately there’s no details on what changes will be made. I suspect that it will likely be small alterations rather than a complete revamp.
The only issue I have with the current model is the Split Level design. Although the design offers a low-profile against the guitar top, it does require routing to fit:
“Our proprietary Split Level™ design conceals the tuning assembly beneath the bridge plate for a sleek and compact look while providing additional down pressure at the saddle.”
Saddles, function, material – Everything else about the Solo bridge is very similar to Hipshot’s other headless hardware and so choosing them over something else would purely down to personal preference. I’ve never had the Headless Solo bridges in my hands so I can’t comment on their quality. I don’t believe that Hipshot would be redesigning these because of quality issues.
I can see the redesign coming about, in part, from the increase in competition. ABM’s 3801 Headless Single Bridges seem to be the brand/part of choice, especially for multi-scale builds. Made entirely from brass, the 3801 is slightly cheaper than their stainless steel counterpart and is far easier to install. The introduction of the Agile Headless Single Bridges, albeit a cheaper, less impressive alternative, suggests that the market for headless gear is growing.
Whatever the reason, I’m excited to find out what changes Hipshot do make. Perhaps they will completely throw out the old design? I don’t necessarily see that happening; the Solo bridge is still available and clearly works, but who knows? It will be interesting to see what effect, if at all, those changes have on the pricing, function and installation.