MARLEAUX M-Bass Custom 5 string
The mBass has always been our favourite Marleaux model. Loosly based on the trendy Singlecut shape that so many builders and players favour, the mBass stays away from some other bulky designs, making for a compact bass with a dinstict elegant look
The previous version of the mBass had a somewhat dark sound to it that made it nice for some styles but not really suitable for others. That was of course until Gerald recently decided to use different pickups and electronics. The specially wound MM type pickups by Delano are clear, detailed, and aggressive when needed.
In passive mode you get Volume and Tone. Coupled with the two mini switches, one per pickup, this proves to be more than enough to get lots of phenomenal tones out of this bass. Actually Marleaux desings this bass to offer its best in passive tone, so the down position in the Push-Pull Volume pot is actually Passive mode. Pull it up and you’ll enter Active mode, enabling you to use the stacked Bass and Treble controls if so you need. You may actually use Passive and Active as two completely different tones that you can switch between at the flick of a switch. Neat!
The two 3 position miniswitches allow each pickup to be used as Single Coil, Humbucker in Parallel or Humbucker in Series.
Sure, you’ll spend a couple of days trying all the different possibilities, and there are plenty on tap, but once you set on your 3 or 4 favourite sounds, it is very easy to dial them in.
As usual in Marleaux 5 string basses, the low B is just loud and clear, and remember this is a 34″ scale bass. This means you don’t have to stretch as much as in 35″ scale basses, but still get a full and defined low B
This is probably one of the few basses that you can play seated without a strap and absolutely no neck diving!
The beautiful binding on the bird’s eye fingerboard is a nice extra. The macassar ebony top and matching headstock add a little weight to the instrument, but it is not excesively heavy. As we said before, if you play seatedyou don’t need a strap, and if you play standing all you need is a nice strap. We are offering a free Comfort Strap with this bass.
Marleaux booth at the Frankfurt Musikmesse 09 (click to freeze the image, then click again to restart the slide show)