The world of affordable bass guitars is rife with instruments that try their best to stand out and fail miserably. Whether they try to do so through their looks or through the way they sound, the success rate is low. That is because designing a cheap guitar requires a lot of saving on the fun things. Thankfully, there are accidents, happy as they get, that result in instruments which look good, sound good and are affordable. Let us take a look at Dean ML Metalman Bass and see whether it is one of them.
The thing about this guitar is that it stands out from most in the crowd. The look of the instrument, which is probably my favorite aspect of this instrument, is created to exude personality and enchant the eye of the beginner. The style that was invented long ago has found its way into the modern spotlight once again, and I could not be happier about it. The full black coloring of the guitar gives it an even more expressed character, related highly to the genre of metal.
The body of the guitar is built out of basswood, as it often happens with affordable bass guitars. The basswood is actually a pretty nice choice, considering that it keeps the guitar cheap and yet fully functional. It provides the instrument with a nice resonance with the bass tones, making them feel thicker and fuller. The light weight of the tonewood also allows the musician to feel comfortable while playing the instrument at all times. The single problem of the softness of the wood might be the downfall of this instrument though, as the protracted parts of the body might be dangerously prone to be easily damaged.
The neck of the guitar is made out of maple, which is a traditional choice among most guitars, affordable or not. It provides the instrument with the much-needed neck stability, allowing for a long lifespan through added durability, warp resistance and neck stability. The neck of the guitar is bolted onto the body, which is not always the best choice but works well in this case. The fretboard of the guitar is made out of rosewood.
The bass guitar comes with a simple fixed saddle system. This gives the instrument a nice level of action and string stability, enjoyable for most players.
The nut of the guitar is made out of cheapish synthetic material, which is always unfortunate, but easily fixable if so desired.
The tuning machines work decently, as well. Judging from that, it’s not surprising that the tuning stability is not too bad. This feature is rare at this price level, which is why we should appreciate it even more.
The guitar comes with a single humbucking pickup, which works decently for the instrument. The limiting size of the bass guitar’s body feels like it does not provide too much space for a second pickup. The single pickup does provide the guitar with enough output, sound and power to make the guitar’s sound interesting and viable. However, the pickup isn’t good enough to handle various techniques. It lacks the sensitivity that is required to achieve great results with hammer-ons, tapping or vibrato.
The guitar comes with two knobs, one for sound control and the other for tone control, each one of them both master and individual in nature, since you only have one pickup.
Dean ML Bass Sound
The guitar does have a thick and full sound thanks to the combination of a basswood body and a humbucking pickup. The fullness of sound is highly appreciated, as the tone of the guitar feels powerful and highly effective. As mentioned, the quality of the included pickup isn’t the best in the world, which results in less diversity when it comes to your playing options. But you should never forget that ML Metalman is an affordable bass guitar and we can’t really ask too much from it. After all, it still sounds better than the majority of the models in its price range.
This is a decent bass guitar, especially for the price it is sold at. You get nice design and an adequate sound, so recommended if you are looking for a cheap option.
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