Sire Marcus Miller U5 Electric Bass Guitar, 4-String

Looking for a short-scale bass with some attitude? This U5 bass packs a versatile passive P&J pickup configuration and ergonomic rolled fretboard edges.

A passive, short-scale bass for beginners and experienced players looking for extra playing comfort. It produces a warm, rounded, and more articulate sound from the P&J pickup configuration preferred by Marcus Miller. It comes with custom shop features like the rolled fretboard edges and added fun mint finished variant.


- Sire U5's lightweight and short-scale features are built with select wood in both the body and neck with the rolled fretboard edges and ergonomic designs for maximum playing convenience.
- It is set up with hardware and electronics to get the clear jazz tone Marcus Miller prefers.

-Body Material: North American Alder
-Body Shape: Marcus Miller Small J-Style (Slim Carved Body)
-Body Color: NT, TS (Flamed Veneer Top), Mint (Solid Color)
-Neck Wood: Hard Maple
-Neck Shape: C-Shape
-Scale: 30" (Short Scale)
-Fingerboard Material: Hard Maple / Rolled Fretboard Edges
-Fingerboard Radius: 9.5"
-Frets: 2.4mm Medium
-String Nut: Bone Nut, 38mm width
-Binding: None
-Inlay: BK Dot
-Neck Joint: 4-Bolt Steel Square Plate
-Pickup: Marcus Super PJ Revolution Set
-Controls: Passive Volume and Tone Control | Volume (Neck PU), Volume (Bridge PU), Tone (Master)
-Knobs: Modern Black Aluminum
-Bridge: Marcus Miller Vintage-S
-Tuning Gear: Premium Open-Gear
-Hardware Finish: Chrome
-Pickguard: None
Dimensions and Weight in Packaging
Shipping Weight: 10.5 lbs
Shipping Dimensions: 46 x 17 x 4 in
Manufacturer Part Number (MPN): SML-3601
Tobacco Sunburst
Shipping Weight: 9.5 lbs
Shipping Dimensions: 49 x 17 x 4 in
Manufacturer Part Number (MPN): SML-3602

For support or warranty questions, please contact the manufacturer:
Phone: 1-213-210-8976

Reviewers gave this product an overall rating of 4.5 out of 5 stars. (2 ratings)
Submitted March 3, 2023 by Zed 969 in Brookings, SD

"Nothing to see here. Just a near-perfect, vintage-style short-scale bass. Who needs one of those??"

Overall: 4.5 out of 5 stars
(see rating details)
Verified Customer zZounds has verified that this reviewer made a purchase from us.
Sire delivers incredible value with their basses. I've owned a few over the last several years including an earlier U5 in this same finish. They are also consistent with the 'feel's. This one feels vintagey and my blue-finished, maple-FBed M2 (which I modded with 3-way Series / Humbucker / Parallel mini-switches like the M7 & M9) feels modern. From my experience I'd think you'd have a hard time going wrong with any of the Sire Marcus Miller models even if you ordered any random model/wood/color/configuration. Perhaps I'm kinda biased, loving basses across the spectrum of scale-lengths, number of strings, traditional or multi-scale and/or headless, passive or active, etc. Since their introduction, Sire has been 'killing it' with these basses.The U5 was already configured in a way that closely aligns to my preferences to begin with... a 30"-scale Jazz bass with a maple fretboard and split-coil Precision Bass pickup in upper position (it's not really a neck pickup, so I suppose Middle position) pairing with a Jazz pickup in Bridge position, straight-ahead passive with no questionable active tone-strangler EQ circuit. Don't get me wrong, higher-end active EQs with semi-para mid and active/passive mode so you can disengage it are all cool with me. Something like an Aguilar, etc. fine, but i've played too many mid-tier basses in the last couple years that have the most frustratingly tone-sucking, sterile, unnatural cheap-sounding active EQ circuits on-board, as a sad attempt to add read more perceived value, because it has an 'active EQ'. I've just cut them out like cancer and most of the same basses sounded BETTER without the 'Active EQ' installed. Some really opened up and surprised me with how really great-sounding some of the stock pickups were. My point being: these pickups sound just fine to my ears. Not mind-blowing or anything but I don't hate them and uncharacteristically I don't feel compelled to replace them and upgrade the electronics. I've really come to appreciate the 'rolled edges' thing on the Sire basses as well. At first it was an eye-roller of a feature. I just considered it marketing shinola. But after playing basses with that feature, you can tell the difference and I do like the more 'broken-in' feel. Most of the basses I truly love are far beyond 'broken-in'... more into the 'loved-HARD' category, so I think I've just taken this for granted on most instruments I play and really notice the difference the most when compared to new basses.The flame top veneer looks excellent. It's a matter of taste as to how much you like or dislike cosmetics like this but at it is well-done. Both of the 2 U5s I've owned were as close to perfect cosmetically and you can get.The neck is excellent as well. Very good fretwork, close attention to detail. It plays smoothly & effortlessly. You can even detune it a whole step without having the strings get too flubby, I was actually playing at Lord Iommi's Unholy C# earlier without issue on stock strings.Tone is subjective. Your attack, playing style and amp have huge effect on the sound that comes out of the speakers. Having said that, this bass sounds excellent to my ears. It's very comfortable to wear on your shoulder for a couple of hours as it's got a smaller, lighter body. It's like playing bass on the moon! And it's nice to no be so serious and take a load off sometimes. Also great for kids or smaller people who feel like an extended scale 5 or 6-string WAR BASS is intimidating would have a great time with this bass! I have a hard time seeing how anyone would NOT... I know these were back-ordered everywhere last year and had kinda become unobtanium, at least in this finish, so if you're inclined I'd say check it out and don't miss out on one of these sweet little basses. The bang for the buck is very high with this one. About the only things I'd change are idiosyncratic to me. I would (and probably soon will) install a high-quality brass nut and a Hipshot Kickass bridge with brass saddles which is as much of a direct functional replacement for the legendary, but sadly out-of-production, Leo Quan BadAss II (and I don't have one in my parts bin currently). My sensibilities are old-school. While it's apparent to some that 'Penetration is paramount.', solid-coupling is fundamental. A well-cut nut & a high-mass bridge (especially brass at the nut slots & bridge saddles) contribute to notes that ring out clear with a ton of sustain to help you hold down the bottom-end with superior tone! Ultimately, this bass easily falls into the 'Shut up and take my money!' category for me. Once I replace the nut & bridge as mentioned above, it will be a near perfect short-scale bass to me.

Musical Background:
I came out rappin when I was born. Multi-instrumentalist. I study rhythm, harmony, melody, dissonance, noise, etc. dive DEEP!

Musical Style:
BASS! Thunderfunk. Funkadelica. R&B, Soul, Rock, Metal, Electronica, Experimental, Polyrhythmic, Ambient
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