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Sound Quality

It does Paul Mc Cartney and Jack Bruce very, very well! This is a 60s-sounding bass but the quality of the electronics and the lightweight body makes this sing. Beats out my '69 and '71 Gibson EB-3s without a hitch, and it's inexpensive enough to own a spare to leave at home. I've also used it with a Zoom BFX-708 to fatten up the tone a little and compress the sound a little, but it's not necessary. No noise, no f-holes to feed back (sorry, Hofner fans, this is why I can't handle a Hofner at any price). Speaking of the EB-3s, there is "THAT sound" that I used to think only came from a vintage EB-3 on overdrive (the growl that Bruce gets on the Wheels of Fire live cuts) but I was able to duplicate it onstage using a little compression from the Zoom pedal and a little extra bass tone from an SWR Workingman's 15 combo. Surprises a LOT of bass players, especially the Fender-cats.

Reliability/Durability

DEFINITELY an instrument that sings live! I'd swap the wooden bridge for one that can be fine-tuned, but that might spoil the retro-look and sound. I'm not a fan of Korean guitar hardware but you get your money's worth. I'd change the strap buttons to Schallers or Straploks as insurance - I've dropped too many instruments im my time not to do that. I own a few Epiphones, and although they're not Gibsons they're built to hold up to roadwork and storage. If Gibson built one of these it'd have to sell for $800 up and you'd get some incremental upgrades, but hey, this baby rocks as it out of the box! My gigs are a combination of retro and new tunes, and I'd still bring a slap-bass with roundwounds anyway, but this baby is a pleasure to wear and light on the shoulders - you working stiffs know what I mean.

General Comments

Let's see - 29 years of weekend gigs, about 9-10 working basses and another 30 in storage, a dozen amps of all sizes... if I kept everything I ever bought I'd have my own music store! Despite the obvious limitations and risks in buying a foreign-built instrument, Epiphone has better quality-control than most out there and this is one of their best basses out there.

I own some nice Alembics, Fenders, Gibsons and Pedullas but I work with Ibanez, Yamaha and a '76 P-Bass that's ready for retirement - I don't make enough to hire a roadie and I've had a few pieces of gear "grow feet and run away" if you know what I mean. I'm sold on this one!




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