Phoenix Custom 4 review by Traben

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  • Sound: 9
  • Overall Impression: 10
  • Reliability & Durability: 10
  • Action, Fit & Finish: 10
  • Features: 10
  • Reviewer's score: 9.8 Superb
  • Users' score: 8.5 (16 votes)
Traben: Phoenix Custom 4

Sound — 9
When you first look at this bass, it screams "metal" but I use it for everything from classic '80s pop to hard rock, and it does the job beautifully. It has a really deep rich sound which doesn't peter out, the natural sustain on an open string is incredible. The bottom end is deep and booming while the top end is still clean without being "tinny". There is no string or pickup hum when not being played, and you can hear each not clearly, instead if a big muddy mess.

Overall Impression — 10
This bass suits me perfectly, it's a bit querky but solid perfomer. Once you get past the fact slot of people think it's a "metal" bass, it sound great playing just about any style of music. I've been playing now for 16 years, and it it now the bass I reach for first, even before my ESP, which I just love, so it says something about this bass. It feels great to play live, an amazingly solid bass, yet I was surprised at how lightweight it was. It's well contoured, it feel great just to hold and play. If it was stolen, I would hunt down the person Who stole it and do very very painful things to them, if it was lost, I would replace it in a second. My only complaint about it was Ihad to wait 7 months for it, and I could only get it in black finish (and I really really wanted the red one). Overall, a fantastic value for money, amzingly cheap for the high end value, bass.

Reliability & Durability — 10
I haven't had this bass long, but in the 2 months I have, I have flogged the guts out of it, and it has passed with flying colours. The hardware hasn't missed a beat, I still haven't had to change the battery yet either. I can so count on this bass I don't need to worry about a back-up. I can get it out of the case and play it straight off. After two months of heavy work out it still looks as good as new, although I vam getting tired of having to polish all the chrome.

Action, Fit & Finish — 10
The action is fast, fast, fast. The neck is amazingly well designed, not to large or thick so you can move up and down the neck and across the frets beautifully. Out of the shop the setup was crap (admittedly it has just travelled from the US to Australia) but was easly adjusted to suit. I cannot stress that this bass is flawless, no dings, scratches or anything out of place.

Features — 10
This bass was made in July of 2007, in the good ol USA. It's a 34" scale 4 string. The neck is a beautful double laminated with rosewood finish. The most striking thing about the neck is the mother-of-oealr flames that are inlayed all the way along the lenght of the neck. It has a basswood body, with a semi-translucent finish. The body shape is a very funky variation of the standard strat. The bridge is massive. It is a Traben Phoenix Flame bigger bridge, which covers a large percentage of the body with it's totally cool chromeness. It has two Seymour Duncan bassline soapbar pickups, with a Seymour Duncan stc3a active pre-amp. It comes with a three-band eq with volume and blend controls.

9 comments sorted by best / new / date

    do the company make electric as well that a nice bass loving the bridge, good review
    They only do basses. Awesome review, I've had my sights set on this Traben for six months now, this review just sold me to this bass!
    I wish Traben were available in the U.K, I love the idea and the look of them.
    These basses have an amazing tone. I have my eyes set on the 5-string Neo Limited, *drool.* Also yes, great price! The look of the basses is just Icing on the cake compared to the tone quality and the range of different sounds that you can get from one of these basses. Simply amazing!
    I wish Traben were available in the U.K, I love the idea and the look of them.
    Trabens are available in th UK, I picked up a Chaos Obsession about 2 weeks ago, fantastic bass
    I bought one of these basses from Reidys in Blackburn in the UK. I play it every day and love it. I have it 3 months now and haven't need to tune it or adjust the action. Still the same battery. I can't recommend this highly enough. I see the price is going up so grab a bargain while you can. I paid 320 and it's gone up to 380 now. GET IN THERE.