BIG BANG THEORY
At 500 watt, the Big Bang incorporates some of Markbass’ most popular features along with some new additions on the back of customer requests and feedback. Alongside the standard Gain, Low, Mid Low, Mid High, High and Master Controls you get a Line Out level control, headphone out jack with level control and an Aux In jack.
BLACK AND GOLD
500 watts is a great starting point, meaning the Big Bang should be able to cover most gigs. Thanks to its size and weight, it won’t be overkill for smaller shows either, as it’s basically no effort to carry around, easily slipping into a leads/ accessories bag. Moving onto the EQ and you get Markbass’ typically dynamic range with a balancing of the Gain and Master controls, allowing you to keep things clean with plenty of headroom, or really grind it up. The VLE and VPF (Vintage Loudspeaker Emulator and Variable Preshape Filter if you’re not familiar with Markbass’s patented design) are also featured again, and can be bypassed completely or worked to taste in tandem with the EQ section. VLE works with taking out top end for a warmer vintage vibe whilst the VPF is a mid range scoop of sorts. Obviously these can be used sparingly and you’re best bet is to get a solid tone as a base, and then work in these filters as you hear them – perhaps dialling in the VPF for slap or rocky picked tones whilst the VLE can do the rounder old school funk or rock. There’s plenty of scope and dynamic range with the ability to footswitch the VLE and VPF for solo passagesor swapping between slap and fingers. It also has the capacity to play music through a smartphone or mp3 player in case you need to play a along to a backing track, which is a pretty nifty addition.
THE PASS MARK
As mentioned earlier, it’s great to see a company taking customer feedback and suggestions onboard. Especially someone on the forefront of innovation like Markbass. In this case as the upgrades are actually good ideas. Like all of the Markbass gear I’ve played, the Big Bang provides good clean headroom and lots of dynamic range. With the added i/o on this model, and the new footswitchable options they’ve taken that an extra step – good show!