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Sire V10 – Second Generation Review

Review of the Sire V10 – Second Generation

Sire Guitars has just released a new bass model to add to their already impressive line up of bass models.   This new model is called the Sire V10.  It is the new flagship bass for the Sire brand.  The combination of features of the Sire V10 result in a bass that is unmatched on the market, especially for the price.

The Sire V10 has the immediately distinctive feature of a roasted flame maple neck and flame maple fingerboard.  

This gives the V10 a very unique, beautiful fingerboard and headstock coloration.   

Roasting the neck and fingerboard also result in a stronger neck that is lighter in weight.  According to Sire, the neck ends up being less susceptible to humidity variations. Another positive attribute achieved by roasting is that the roasted wood takes on similar feel and sound characteristics (tone density & sustain) of old bass necks.  Visually, the Sire V10 stands out and is easily identifiable.

The V10 joins the Second Generation of Sire basses. 

This means that it also benefits from Sire’s latest pickup design as well as the “rolled” fingerboard.  (Rolled fingerboards, usually only available from custom shops, are have rounded edges that make the neck feel very comfortable, similar to a very old, well played bass).  These two features alone have been a big and highly sought out improvement on Sire’s entire line of basses.

Other spectacular and aesthetically beautiful features of the V10 are the fingerboard inlays and the flamed maple top.  The natural mother-of-pearl block inlays are the most beautiful this reviewer has ever seen. The colors are extremely striking and vibrant, with vivid and complimentary coloration to the rest of the bass.   The body is made of swamp ash with a maple top and flamed maple veneer.  

The combination of these woods along with the finish works extremely well together.

The Sire V10 also features an asymmetrical “C” shaped neck.  

This means that the neck shape is thicker at the low strings and thinner at the high strings.  This shape contributes to the extremely comfortable feel of the V10 neck.  Additionally, the neck has a satin finish, which helps to make the neck a fast feeling neck.

Just as in other Sire models, the Sire V10 also has the Marcus Heritage 3 preamp.  The preamp is laid out as follows: stacked volume/master tone, pickup blend, treble, stacked midrange/midrange sweep, and bass.  The toggle switch is for active or passive selection.   This proprietary preamp is one of the most versatile on the market.

The reviewed instrument had a very well balanced sounds from string to string.  

As with Sire’s other basses, the fit and finish of the Sire V10 was impeccable.   The weight of the bass felt noticeably lighter than the first generation V7 and the second generation Vintage V7 previously reviewed.  However, the bass feels well balanced on a bass strap, or when played in a seated position with the bass supported on the player’s thigh.  The roasted neck and fingerboard may be the reason for the reduction in weight.

Sire Guitars uses a bone nut on the V10, consistent with all previous models.  The Sire V10 also comes in an optional Sire gig bag.  Sire also ships the V10 with an uninstalled clear pickguard and an uninstalled chrome neck pickup cover, giving new V10 owners the option whether to install them or not.  The hardware on the Sire V10 has a chrome finish.  Sire’s tuning machines are accurate and smooth.  The V10 comes in two beautiful finishes, natural and a subtle tobacco sunburst.

How Does It Sound

Although most active/passive basses have a tendency to have a weak passive sound, Sire basses are known for their impressive passive & active sound.  The Sire V10 does not disappoint with its authentic vintage jazz bass sound in passive mode and a fantastic modern jazz bass sound in active mode.  The V10 has a big, full, articulate and authoritative sound.  The mid range is smooth, full and warm.  In active mode, the V10 sounds great with the EQ set flat.

Of course, the EQ is not available in passive mode, it is only available in active mode.  However, the master tone knob offers an incredibly wide variety of tonal choices while the bass is in passive mode.  The Sire V10 would be a great sounding bass even if it were available in passive mode only.  When combining the use of the master tone knob, pickup selection knob, and varied plucking hand placement, the V10 offers a very wide palette of sounds in passive mode.

In active mode, the Sire V10 is very percussive with a clear uncompressed musical sound.  Once active mode is engaged, it becomes a great sounding modern jazz bass.  The master tone control and the EQ offer a huge variety of tonal possibilities. It’s capable of a brilliant and authentic “scooped” modern sound when thumping or slapping.  For those who prefer to generate heart thumping plucked sounds, this bass is for you as well.

Conclusion

The Sire V10 is a fantastic jazz bass that is a very capable workhorse for every style of music.   It is a great bass that competes extremely well with production and custom basses well above its price.   With the V10, Sire manages to hit the trifecta of value, function and aesthetics.   In other words, the Sire V10 is a great value, it plays & sounds great, and it looks fantastic.    Without a doubt, the V10 is the new flagship of an impressive line of Sire bass models.  The “Sire Revolution” rolls on…

Sire V10 Specifications:

Body Material: Swamp Ash + Solid Maple Top + Flamed Veneer
Body Shape: New Marcus Miller Jazz Type
Body Color: Ash Body – NT, TS
Neck Material: 1 Piece Hard Maple(Roasted Maple Neck / Satin Finish)
Neck Shape: C-Shape
Scale: 34”
Neck Joint: 4 Bolt Steel Square Plate
Fingerboard(Rolled Edges): Flame Maple
Fingerboard Radius: 9.5?
Frets: 2.4 medium
String Nut: 4 String – Natural Bone 38mm width / 5 String – Natural Bone 46mm width
Inlay: Abalone Block
Pickups: Marcus Premium-J Revolution Set
Electronics: Marcus Heritage-3 with Sweepable Mid Frequency Control
Controls: Volume / Tone(Dual Pot) | Pickup Blender | Treble | Middle / Middle Frequency(Dual Pot) | Bass, Mini Toggle(Active / Passive)
Knobs: Modern Black Aluminum
Bridge: Marcus Miller Heavy Mass Standard
Tuning Gears: Premium Open Gears
Hardware Finish: Chrome
Pickguard: Transparent Pickguard

More information available online at sire-usa.com

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