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Adam Black B-10 Acoustic Bass


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Adam Black are a relatively new and somewhat unknown manufacturer, they are distributed by Rosetti and they had a modest display at MusicLive. I must admit I didn’t really pay them much attention due to not knowing about them.

The B10 is a pretty typical acoustic bass. It has a large and deep body with a standard round sound hole. No revelations in the design at all really - it's looks however aren't to be snubbed. It has a stunning flamed maple sides and back with the smoothest finish i've ever touched. I literally spent a few minutes just rubbing my hand over the back because it felt so nice, it was quite perverse (Note: I'm not in the habit of groping musical instruments).

The spruce top is solid and the sound hole detailing very pleasant and well done with mother of pearl. The bridge is made of a rosewood base with what appears to be a synthetic saddle, it's pretty solid and does what it's supposed to. Peering into the soundhole reveals the construction of the instrument, something not so apparent on an electric bass. The body is well braced and has scalloped bracing around its edge, it is very tidy and doesn't look rushed in the slightest. The maple neck features a binded rosewood fretboard and offset position dots, which make a nice little difference from the norm. Fretwork is tidy with no sharp edges - i've found nothing to complain about yet have I ? Hmm, this is strange. Ok - the only thing I could find to add a negative thing to is a little scuffing around the binding near the higher frets, I can forgive that.

Time to play it I suppose ! I tuned the bass using the very handy onboard tuner in the Fishman EQ, it's got lots of lights and looks very cool, as well as being very sensitive and accurate. I'm surprised some electric basses don't have such a feature - i'd imagine it's not too hard to implement.

First impressions of the sound of this bass are that it sounds absolutely huge. It has the high end articulation and snappiness that you expect of any acoustic instrument, almost sounding guitar like. A quirk I noticed is a hollowness to the tone when playing a C (5th fret G or 10th fret D), this must be down to the resonant frequency of the bass. It's not a bad sound, just slightly different to the rest of the notes. The phosphor bronze strings are extremely bright and rich in their sound, harmonics are bell like and sustain extremely well. I found that for me, this bass responds better tonally to a pick rather than finger playing.

Plugged in via the bottom strap button with the EQ flat, it sounds like a louder version of the bass unplugged, result ! The EQ is not colouring the sound at all when flat. There are 5 controls on the EQ, those being Volume, Bass, Mids, Treble and Resonance. They're all well centered and I struggled to make the bass sound bad. I found my favourite setting with a slight bass and treble boost with the resonance on full.

[b]Sound sample:[/b] [url="http://www.machinesofhate.pwp.blueyonder.co.uk/AdamBlackB10/AdamBlackB10.mp3"]Adam Black B-10 (Flat)[/url]

This is a sub £300 instrument, and is very well made. There are however a fair few similar acoustic basses in this price range, those being:

[*]Crafter BA-400EQ Electro Bass
[*]Fender BG32
[*]Ibanez EWB20
[*]Takamine EG512
[*]Vintage VCB430
There's a couple of big names in there - and i'd love to try the Adam Black against them to see which really is deserving of one's attention. The fact is that this bass is fantastic, and there's no reason I can see to not consider it if you're looking for an acoustic bass. It does everything i'd want it to do and surprised me in a few aspects.

The best part about this review is that I get to give it away to a lucky chatter afterwards ! Many thanks to Bjorn at Rosetti for being very helpful and for supplying the bass for review and competition.

To be in with a chance of winning this bass you need to simply email [[email protected]][email protected] [/email]including your forum username in the email.

[s]It would be preferable if the winner collected the bass from me (Birmingham) so as to avoid posting it, I wouldn't want it damaged. If it is not feasible then the winner is to provide postage costs of around £20, but you can't complain at a free bass can you ?![/s]

The bass will now couriered to the winner by Rosetti ! Unless of the course the lucky winner wants to meet me anyway :).

The competition will close on Sunday 9th March 2008 and the winner will be picked at random from a metaphorical hat.

Good luck !

[i][b][size=1](Note: the competition is not open to any BassChat moderators or Rosetti staff)[/size][/b][/i]

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Great review M/c, and what appears to be a superb bass. All I need to do now is win it!
OK, send off the entry email and
[quote name='Machines' post='148049' date='Feb 27 2008, 07:28 PM'][i][b][size=1]Note: the competition is not open to any BassChat moderators[/size][/b][/i][/quote][size=1]oh bum.[/size] :)

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[quote name='Machines' post='150245' date='Mar 3 2008, 11:54 AM']I hated Physics at school.

Your entry has now been disqualified.[/quote]
That's because you didn't have me as your teacher!

The other day I watched an experienced teacher explode a conical glass beaker with 30 kids crammed round his table, none of whom were wearing goggles. You can bet they will remember that lesson for years.

All of which shows why I should win the bass ........ :)

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[quote name='Machines' post='150252' date='Mar 3 2008, 12:04 PM']Physics has a lot of maths in it - so you should be familiar with the laws of probability.. :huh:.[/quote]
Yes, the law of probability states that I have never won a competition in my life. :)

Thanks for the review too, I would be interested to know/see how these compare to the others mentioned because I would like to dip my toe into the acoustic bass pond at some point.

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[quote name='Machines' post='151339' date='Mar 4 2008, 09:08 PM']Come on people ! Considering there's over 2500 people registered on here only 96 want a free bass ?![/quote]
Hi Machines,

Nice review and a very tempting bass... so I'm in! Email sent..

Could be fun.. if I won! Good luck to all the entrants. :)


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i like this forum. Im never going to win but it may happen.
Like the day I find someone selling a cheap neck. I keep checking but it's not happend yet.....
one day we will all be lucky.....

man im tired im talking crepe. 11 hours working does that to you

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[quote name='thedonutman' post='152744' date='Mar 6 2008, 10:13 PM']Entered. I dunno how many people have entered this competition, but I'm guessing it can't be that many. If we keep having them, probability will be on our side :)[/quote]

116 people so far !

Competition closes this Sunday so get those emails in, any sent after Sunday will be deleted.

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