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1999 Michael Tobias Design MTD TN535 5-String Neck Through Bass, Near-Mint w/ Case, Tags


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Up for sale, a 1999 Michael Tobias Design MTD TN535 in near-mint, 100% original condition and in perfect working order, complete with the original hardshell case and factory paperwork. Long considered one of the finest boutique bass luthiers working, Michael Tobias’ basses are handcrafted at his shop in Woodstock, New York to exacting standards with premium tonewoods and custom componentry. This TN535 five-string is loaded with custom active Bartolini pickups/electronics, with a huge range of tones on tap.

This bass features three-piece hard rock maple neck-through construction, with domestic tulipwood (Eastern yellow poplar) body wings, birdseye maple top, and a 24-fret wenge fingerboard. The custom Bartolini active pickups yield everything from Jazz Bass-style burp and grind to cavernous booming thump, with independent active EQ controls. Boosting all three EQ knobs delivers tones very similarly to early Bartolini TCTs, with a percussive kick in the midrange perfect for slap playing or punching through a mix. This TN535 weighs 9lbs 3oz, professionally setup here at Mike & Mike’s Guitar Bar with 45-130 roundwound strings, easy-playing action, and spot-on intonation.

Neck Specs:

-Wood: Hard rock maple (three-piece)
-Shape: Slender C, full shoulders, measuring .805” 1st fret, .900” 12th fret
-Fretboard: Wenge, 24 fret, 9 1/2“-12” compound radius
-Frets: Medium jumbo, virtually no wear
-Scale Length: 35”
-Nut: 1 13/16”, zero fret
-Tuners: Hipshot Ultralite
-Serialization: Handwritten on back of peghead with luthier’s signature and “Kingston, NY, USA”

Body Specs:

-Wood: Domestic tulipwood (Easter yellow poplar), birdseye maple
-Pickups: Bartolini Custom active x2
-Controls: Volume; Pickup Blend/Pan (center detent); center detent Treble, Mid, Bass Cut/Boost EQ; three-way Mid Range Cut/Boost Point (lower mids [250], middle [500], upper mids [1000])
-Hardware: Toploader bridge (matte black)
-Plastics: Soft-touch rubber knobs

The satin finish is a subtle sunburst, framing the three-dimensional birdseye figuring in the maple top. There's barely a scratch on the body, and the satin finish on the neck profile is similarly immaculate, comprising an epoxy base coat, oil, and urethane topcoat.

The original hardshell case is included, along with the factory documentation (signed by Michael Tobias, dated 12/20/99) and a premium leather strap.