Plug in, and straight away you get a warm, growling tone that's superbly even in response across the neck. It's a wide, practical sound, and a slight high-mid bias adds a little gloss to your note, improving audibility without any real trade-off. Cranking up the Bass EQ fills an impressive amount of space but also keeps an excellent level of clarity – perfect for thudding away on solid eighth notes and providing enough body for explorations in the higher registers. Dialling in extra Middle also works well: the sound gets a little darker and punchier. It's not a radical tonal change, but it'll definitely help audibility in the mix. More care is required with Treble, as maxing it results in a sound that’s too fast and spiky even for slap bass, and there’s too much extraneous noise in the lower registers. About halfway provides all the spite you'll normally require.
The neck pickup has a pleasingly natural vibe, with a decent rasp and an almost acoustic undertow. Again, a radical increase in Bass EQ fills acres of space, imparting a rubbery thud as it goes, but the real plus is the almost valve-like warmth that accompanies it – perfect for retro rock, blues and soul.
Boosting Middle improves on this still further as while bags of width remain, the sound is tighter and barks more aggressively in low registers without sounding synthetic or inducing fret noise. As well as being punchy and organic, this is also funkily versatile and carefully adding a little Treble freshens things up nicely, enhancing the initial earthy qualities without swamping your sound in clicks and clanks. Full boost fulfils that brief quite comfortably!
In a departure from the norm, there’s more output from the bridge pickup than the neck. This explains the slight bias in twin mode but although thud is lacking, the sound is crisp rather than nasal. Adding Bass EQ gives plenty of fresh, natural-sounding definition. Boosting Middle further tightens this up, but without nasal nastiness; in fact there’s audibly more snarl from the E string and a pleasing rasp elsewhere, a quality than can be further enhanced by adding a little treble. Again, it’s best to be careful with the Treble EQ as anywhere close to full boost is way too lively.