It's a guitar? It's a bass? It's neither? NBVID!

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Thread: It's a guitar? It's a bass? It's neither? NBVID!

  1. #1

    Join Date: Oct 2008
    Location: Manhattan
    ME: Warmoth Warhead
    MA: Blueridge BR-40
    MB: Dingwall ABI, Kubicki
    Rig: Budda SD30

    iTrader: 12 (100%)

    It's a guitar? It's a bass? It's neither? NBVID!

    So, I've been wanting to try one of these for a while. 30" scale, six strings, tuned E-E an octave down from a guitar (same low E as a normal bass.) Found this one on Craigslist for a reasonable price, cleaned and oiled the hell out of it (thing reeked of cigarettes), tossed a fresh set of GHS .025-.095 Bass VI strings on it, and commenced setup.

    It's an OLP MM5.

    Not a bad little axe overall. Pickups aren't great, but are way better than I expected, especially with the new strings. I can barely get it to intonate with the GHS string set, and the action is comfortable, with only one high fret. Beautiful neck carve... narrow and rounded. My only complaints aside from the single high fret are that the tuners are kind of crappy and the tone control is all wrong, as it basically just acts as a mid scoop instead of a variable LPF like it should.

    Super comfy little neck, and really fast-playing. Lots of fun. Forgive the flash in this pic:

    Here's a shot of the .025-.095 bridge cables it's strung with:

    Tension is pretty good actually, playable and clear. The low E is a little thumpy but not nearly as bad as I expected (or as it was with the Ernie Ball .020-.090 set that was on it when I got it)

    Despite it's 30" scale, it's not very big.

    Here it is next to a 25.5" scale Jackson SLSMG...

    ...and a 35" scale Ibanez ATK305.

    Really cool-sounding instrument. Played clean through a bass amp, especially favoring the neck pickup, it sounds like a bass. Played distorted through a guitar amp on the bridge, it sounds like a beastly downtuned guitar. I'm going to bring it to band practice next weekend and see how it sits in a mix through the Ampeg in the practice space instead of a standard bass, as in the three-piece I'm in currently it would be nice to be able to double up on chords more effectively at times.

    I'm considering swapping out the pickups for some clearer units. I'm looking for a vintagey wide-band sound, and I'm probably going to go (GASP) GuitarFetish since I don't really want to drop $150 on pickups for a cheap little axe I'm only going to use occasionally. I'm tempted by their Memphis, Liverpool, and DeArmond-style Retrotron pickups... anyone have any experience with them? (Besides RockQ, apparently)
    Too much focus leads to tunnel vision
    Too much faith leads to religion
    Too much knowledge leads to confusion
    Too many guitar lessons lead to jazz-fusion

  2. #2

    Join Date: Oct 2008
    Location: Scottsdale, AZ
    ME: Ibanez M80M
    MA: ukulele
    MB: Ibanez Terra Firma BTB686
    Rig: Custom Built PC

    iTrader: 0

    Add two more strings to that thing and I'm in.

  3. #3

    Join Date: Sep 2008
    Location: Virginia Beach, USA
    ME: ESP Sexy Finger
    MB: ESP Horizon 5
    Rig: Randall V2

    iTrader: 5 (100%)

    so this is the famous Josh's SLSMG eh? nice looking baribass

  4. #4

    Join Date: Jun 2009
    Location: New Orleans
    ME: Elysian Custom
    Rig: Bias Desktop

    iTrader: 3 (100%)

    I"ve always wanted to try one of these

  5. #5

    Join Date: Jan 2009
    Location: London, Ontario, Canada
    ME: WarmothTele/SE245
    MA: Seagull S12+
    MB: Fender Jazz Bass V
    Rig: Egnater Renegade 65

    iTrader: 2 (100%)

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    Nice, I'd love to have a bass-vi to play around with.

  6. #6

    Join Date: Dec 2008
    Location: Florida
    ME: Epi MKH LP7
    MA: Hyostar SJ-971
    MB: LTD B-206SM
    Rig: Blackstar HTMetal 100>2x1

    iTrader: 0


    I wouldn't mind one of those either. I bet it would be pretty hard to find another one though.

  7. #7

    Join Date: Sep 2008
    Location: Texas
    ME: KxK Sii-7
    MA: Martin OMC-1E
    MB: Dingwall Combustion
    Rig: Line 6

    iTrader: 0

    Very cool. I was hoping to find one of these when I got my 30" Bich a few years ago. I still wouldn't mind giving one a go.

  8. #8

    Join Date: Sep 2008
    Location: West Seattle, WA
    ME: PRS / Gibson
    MA: Yamaha
    MB: Jazz 6-string
    Rig: EVH 5150iii 50w

    iTrader: 5 (100%)

    Dude, congrats! Those MM5s are hard to beat. I had one of those & the Gretsch Jet Baritone as well. I remember the MM5s sounding really nice & the Gretsch sounded huge with both pups on. If you ever wanna offload that, I got dibs! No, really!

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