Low manufactured in the United States, Salem Oregon. It is equipped with Gotoh hardware, a maple neck made by Warmoth rather typical vintage with a standard pitch of 21 boxes and two microphones signed Norstrand (MM 4.2) faithfully reproducing those who equipped the first Music Man Stingray. Everything is controlled by an electronic classic: a general tone, a microphone and a volume knob to use either the neck pickup or the bridge side, or both. Nothing esoteric.
The outstanding feature of this bass, besides the fact that it is semi-hollow, it is the materials used: aluminum, not any apparently since Jim Normandy boasts the qualities of his choice of alloy normally intended aerospace applications. It requires strength, lightness and to pass the sound barrier. The fabriquation the bass is inspired by this model, two internal beams (but light, eh) following the handle on both sides and to the bottom and set the table with rivets (visible for a unique look ) sides are then welded in an extremely professional and neat. Understand: it can not be seen or even someone who knows (not me anyway) is extasierait this work of art.
Good and solid job after all.
The neck suits me well and being bassist, I rather appreciate the relatively thick sleeves. It remains within the usual and rather comfortable. The only reservation on this point, for me, finishing as to stay in the vintage spirit, the handle is painted (black) as is done in many Gibson for example. For my part, I prefer raw finishes because I find the paint and varnish tend to hang thumb when Demanche. Matter of personal preference. Nothing prohibitive.
Ergonomics issue, again we are in the vintage that is rustic. No bevels which conform to the shape of the arm or abdomen. Similarly, access aus treble is not facilitated by the shape of the body but the look is there and defends this low in more conventional role without answering the lure of bass hero. An excellent bass for the scene with reservations on daily use in a variety of contexts, for example a studio musician. For a person limiting its use styles such as rock, pop, blues, soul see the hard rock or funk swifter, this bass is perfect. We do not specifically slapera above but the combination of aluminum and microphones offer a sound both warm and accurate to suit a variety of situations from vintage to modern without falling into modernism.
Sound, precisely, is quite open. I can not determine if it comes from the materials used or the semi-hollow but it is clear that all works well and that breathing low. The main feature I think is the sustain and resonance offering a rich and complex harmonic spectrum. What a beautiful sound. on the other hand it is passive, so no sparkling high or low from beyond the grave. It is correct to the amp if desired, there are pedals and preamps for bass but it will not do alone. I used to share with my Acoustic Image head in Markbass cabinets (2x2x10). It is powerful and accurate, but mostly neutral which may explain the sensations obtained but being used to the bass, I can say that the lower Normandy has beautiful archtop acoustic qualities. Besides, she already sounds without being plugged in, which is an excellent indicator of the quality of workmanship.
I just have a reservation on electronics. The tone and volume are not very effective and the difference between the microphones, although Audible does not seem quite noticeable. This bass would have won his microphone placed closer to the handle. We could not slapper but it would not have been a great loss.
For me it is all open neck pickup position that low fared best. Fingers or a pick, it's perfect, especially with flat fillet string. I think it also goes very well effects. Overdrive, distortion, modulation, and it collects all larsens are controllable.
This is a low for those who prefer the sound compared to the Teche MIDI.
I bought a month ago (December 2012) because I was looking for a reliable low to try the adventure of professionalization. Is it filled his contract? yes because it is versatile. Not because it is quite typical in its (many mediums) and less ergonomic than the lower of modern design. At the same time it is a semi-hollow. Not design the most off-road. Why there was a jazz bass and Normandy has at least the merit to stand out by offering excellent sound without the fuss. This is a low that you can play without fear of damage, super strong and stable and accept the abuse of all kinds, aluminum requires
I was lucky to have a good price. She was slightly damaged since the button was pressed strap attachment at the bottom of the box (a design weakness I think). It has no impact on the sound, an aesthetic effect imperceptible and final offer me a reduction of about 50% that counting import duties and setting in a good luthier (Guitar n 'Ko Rennes) spot just below the low of the bar thousand euros. This instrument is almost impossible to find in France negotiating the price of a Gibson or Fender American quality is the appointment without being paid the brand. Jim Normandy has put in the miles, I would buy a second no doubt but I still maintain that the Mont St Michel in Brittany.