Vigier was founded by Patrice Vigier in 1980 in Gringy, France.
He had a clear idea of the type of instruments he wanted to build and put his name on and took the world by the storm with some unque desings and a very personal approach to design and building.
The two most famous models are the Passion and Arpege basses and the one we have here for you is a cool Passion Series IV in amazing Black Diamond finish.
Series IV means these basses have been completely renewed 4 times and we are glad to say these are in our opinion the best ever.
The Passion model comes with two closely spaced pickups while the Arpege has them in a more standard layout. We love this pickup arrangement because it produces an incredible clear sound that's perfect for just about any style and is not lacking in depth at all.
The body is made from alder and it has a flamed maple top and back. The neck is made from hard maple (90%) and has two graphite reinforcement bars (10%), hence the name 90/10. As always with Vigier, there's no adjustable truss rod. Patrice says that the routing needed to installa a truss rod actually makes the neck weaker. Apart from that (and he explained this in person to us at the Musikmesse in Frankfurt some years ago), he believes that if the neck curvature is well done, there's no need for an adjustable rod just as it happens with double basses. Truth is, when you play a Vigier bass you realize this is true because these basses play like butter and there are no buzzes. Great! Also this makes adjustments much easier.
The fingeboard is made from phenowood, a hard synthetic material that's just perfect for this purpose. 24 perfectly crowned frets are installed on it and again this make it an incredibly easy bass to play. Comfort is a word we would use all the time to describe this model. It is lightweight but it doesn't suffer from head diving at all. Also the neck is placed just where you expect unlike some other "modern" basses where you need to stretch out your left arm to reach the first frets. Scale is just a hair below the traditional 34" as Vigier feels that the proper one for standard tuning is 33.8". Sure, it's a small difference, but every bit counts here.
We love the zero fret as it improves the sound of open strings and it also allows for perfect intonation in the first positions, a typical problem from basses with less than perfectly nuts.
Hardware is top notch too. 4 individual bridges are perfect to transmit the strings vibrations to the body while reducing crosstalk. German made Schaller tuners are used for the smoothest tuning possible.
We love the Black Diamond (trans black) finish and chrome hardware and logo. Really classy.
Vigier always used their own pickups and electronics but in recent series they used some third party ones. We are glad to see that this bass comes with in house pickups and electronics again. Perfect sound, zero noise and clean and strong output.
Pickups are active and we have a Single Coil and a Twin Coil. Sound is clean and full and frequency response is broader than we are used to. This means that no matter what you play, everything will come out clear and with lots of definition, be it single lines, complex slapping or tapping or heavy chord use (even in the low register). The simple 3 band EQ is more than enough to tame the beast and you can get a more traditional type of sound just by cutting the Treble. There are many other possibilities on tap here but all of them sound superb. There are two 9 volt Batteries for improved headroom. And we love the locking Neutrik jack.
This bass also lacks any dead spots and that's really remarkable. You can play really long notes (just any note) in the G string and it will ring true and full forever. As you know, dead spots are a plague among many basses, especially classic design ones (vintage or modern) and in those basses you just can't play whole notes in certain areas and you are forced to play them on the second string. Not the case here at all. Also we love how incredibly consistent volume and tone are from one string to the next. Simply perfect.
To sum up: a lightweight that is incredibly comfortable, sounds like a dream, doesn't have dead spots, and really invites you to play any technique. Oh yes, and it looks gorgeous too. What's not to like? We really think that the price is incredibly good when you sum all this.
Vigier Passion IV Black Diamond