Sound — 9
When I first got this bass, I didn't have a clue about EQing or anything like that. Now that I know a bit about it, I can actually appreciate how good this is for a beginner bass. True, it's not up there with Warwick, MusicMan, Rickenbacker and all the other elitist brands, but for a starter bass, this is as good as it gets. For a beginner instrument, the tones you can produce are quite varied. The neck pickup is warm and the bridge has a bit more bite to it.
Overall Impression — 8
This bass is suitable for most styles, being a starter bass and made for the starting bassist, before they have made a choice as to which genre they would most like to play. Since getting this bass, I have aquired an Ibanez SRX305 and a Fender Standard Fretless Jazz Bass, which I both love. If it got lost or stolen, I wouldn't bother replacing it as I have two other lovely basses in my possession. Saying that, I would be pretty annoyed if got stolen. On the whole, it is a very good starter bass, and for the price I payed, a complete and utter bargain!
Reliability & Durability — 7
I have used this for various small performances, like at a motor show and my dads 40th birthday party, when I was younger and it did surprisingly well. I used it without a backup, as that was my only bass, but I would have used one if I had had one. The hardware and strap buttons seem pretty solid, but I doubt it will last forever. The finish seems a bit thin and my bass has many chips and knocks out of it.
Action, Fit & Finish — 8
Surprisingly, this bass was quite well set up. The previous owner (my dads friend) must have looked after this bass well. He sold me this to pay for a more expensive bass, but I haven't seen him to ask him what. When I got it, there were no marks on it, but now there's a nasty chunk out of the body above the pickguard when my dog knocked it off the stand. Other than that, it is very playable and I find that the chunk adds to it's character. The previous owner never changed any of the hardware, or even the strings! I think he had the James Jamerson outlook, but when I got it, they were as dead as a dodo, but this produced a very dull, thumping tone, which I rather liked. So I changed the grotty strings for Fender Flatwounds, which still give me the dead tone, without the horrible, grimy strings.
Features — 8
I got this bass very cheap, second hand when I just started out playing bass. It features a very light body and fast maple neck, completed by a rosewood fretboard and 20 very accessable frets. Mine has a very fetchin blue finish and is completed by a P Bass style pickguard (though I never use one) and two J style pickups. As a starter, I feel that I got a great deal and got my playing career off to a good start. The previous owner threw in a MAX 126 bass amp, strap, lead and gigbag.