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Review

Genzler Magellan MG350 Array 10-2 Combo

Issue #56

The Magellan 350 head alone is super lightweight, small and incredibly well finished. It’s quality looking piece of kit. Even the controls have a positive feel to them rather than being loose and flappy!
Dan Veall

 PROS


Premium audio quality

Clever driver arrangement

Lightweight


Cons


Expect to have to help your bandmates carry theirs now you don’t need a massive bass rig of your own.


SPECS


Dual-Curve Variable Contour Circuitry

Active 3 Band EQ w/Parametric Mid Control

Signal Mute Switch

Guitar Interactive star rating:  4.5 stars

Genzler Magellan MG350 Array 10-2 Combo

MSRP £995 (UK)  $989 (US)


Genzler Magellan MG350 Array 10-2 Combo

Still fresh from issue 54—in which Dan Veall reviewed the very impressive, Genzler Magellan 800 amplifier—the Genzler Magellan MG350 Array 10-2 Combo now makes its arrival down to Guitar Interactive's 'Bassment'!

Here we are today with the small, compact but rather nice sounding MG350 combo. Now, I say combo, but as you will see in my video review, we do actually have a separate head and cabinet. You can mix and match with different Genzler cabinets with the Magellan's heads. However, in the box, a clever little clamp that fits on to the cabinet allows the two items we have here to be coupled together. How great is that? - One less journey from the band van, but also, having the head fixed to the cabinet, we can now place the cabinet at “kickback” angles like a floor monitor without the fear of losing the valuable amplifier on top! Genzler hasn’t forgotten about hooking up either, so there’s a short Speakon lead supplied too!

For this review, I treated them separately and as usual, I walked through the front and rear panels in detail before talking about the cabinet.

At this point, as I said in the video, please do go and read the review of the Magellan 800 in issue 54 for a bit of extra detail and background.

The Magellan 350 head alone is super lightweight, small and incredibly well finished. It’s quality looking piece of kit. Even the controls have a positive feel to them rather than being loose and flappy!

The three band EQ with semi-parametric midrange control has lots of boost and cut available. The midrange frequency knob allows for selecting what area of the audio spectrum you wish to treat. I was pleased to see it could make a sweep down to 150hz. Something with my own bass I felt I actually needed.

To the left of the equaliser is a dual function contour control. I really like this. Selecting contour A via push button, a sweep of the contour knob progressively deepens the bass sound, great for slap bass. Or, flipping to contour B, the advancing on the knob I guess does the opposite. More midrange is applied with a rounding off of the treble frequencies. I think this would be very useful for those using bass distortion pedals. We sometimes struggle with wanting to have a tweeter in our cabinets for clean clarity, but distortion pedals can sometimes sound harsh and brittle. Contour B I think will give us the best of both worlds.

There’s plenty of volume available on the 350’s dial for most, though I will say that the cabinet was new out of the box and I felt that the 10” speaker would have liked a bit of play time to break in. Yes, it was loud in the studio; I feel after a few hours gigging it would give us a bit more. The tone though! Wow, what a great sounding unit. We’ll dig into that shortly.

I want to hear this amp with two of these cabinets and most certainly the 800 with a pair of the 410 array speakers also available in the range. The latter configuration I bet would be an 8x10 ‘fridge’ killer!

Round the back of the amplifier, we have an auxiliary input and headphone output which are handy for quiet practice or additional monitoring of audio signals. There is no space for an effects loop on this amp should you want one. If I am honest with you, given the type of amplifier I tend to go for these days, I haven’t used an effects loop for quite some time. Not really missed.

Right, let's get on to the cabinet. What makes this different from other designs we have reviewed thus far? - Well, first of all, Genzler, much like Bergantino, for example, are very much a premium brand. I would say that we are looking at equipment that isn’t built to a price point but rather a quality point. With this in mind, we are therefore looking at a well braced and very well made cabinet with premium components on board such as a custom Eminence neodymium 10” bass driver as well as a vertical row of midrange/treble drivers down the middle of the cabinet. As I explained in the video, I won’t pretend I can explain the absolute in’s and out’s of line array technology, as well as the experts, can, but I do know that arranging selected drivers in this manner in ‘front of house PA systems’ can help with getting a nice clear sound out to you, no matter where you stand in the audience. Genzler has no doubt realised that bassists get frustrated with “their sound” disappearing as they move around the stage, or even worse disappearing before it reaches the audience. Take this PA line array tech’ and apply it to a bass speaker cabinet and in theory, the same will apply right? Well, I have to say, in a very unscientific test, I feel I could move further to the side of this cabinet and still hear a clear top end. I also like the quality of sound from these small transducers too. I am very fussy; had they have sounded harsh or brittle like some mid drivers, I’d have probably made much less of a commentary regarding them and moved on swiftly.  Maybe next time I’ll try the acid test, running full range music through them too.

The cabinet we have is an angled model. It isn’t a standard cubed box. The angle allows the drivers to be slightly directed upwards making the output easier to hear. I guess that the box shape helps to cut down on the effects of standing waves inside the cabinet too? I am sure I will be corrected by my fellow bassists with expertise in cabinet design!

All of this, however technical makes for a convenient and superb sounding rig. I’m impressed with the quality of audio coming from this reasonably small set up, and I would like to hear the ‘big brothers’ in the range to see how they fare.

FOR MORE INFORMATION, PLEASE VISIT:

Bass Direct

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Jimi Hendrix

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