Maton Mastersound MS500 Electric Guitar Review
This is the Maton Mastersound MS500 electric guitar. It’s made in Melbourne, Australia and features a really unique look, design, and tonal options.
The Maton Mastersound MS500 features two pickups. The neck pick is actually a single coil pickup even though it looks like the size of a regular humbucker. This neck pickup is a vintage voiced single coil so it’s not a hot pickup. It’s kind of similar to how a 52 telecaster neck pickup would be wound. It’s clean, warm, and doesn’t have a lot of guts or extended high end. While it still does have top end, it’s not the brightest pickup I have ever heard. Adjusting the height of the pickup has helped the top end since filming this video.
The bridge pickup is where the magic is at. The bridge pickup features a split coil system so you can run it in either single coil or humbucker mode. Humbucker mode is by far my favorite mode on this guitar but overall it just rocks. If you are on both pickups using single coil mode it’s actually a buzz-free option which is great.
The Maton Mastersound MS500 has a magical neck! I love how the neck feels in my hand. It’s around the same depth as my 52 reissue telecaster which I love but it feels unique as well. The body of the guitar reminds me of a Les Paul but it’s not quite as thick. The overall finish on the body also looks great. Overall I am very impressed with this Australian made guitar. It won’t replace anything in my collection but it stands on its own feet as something unique and interesting.
Fo Maton needs someone to walk into their factory and say “fix the frets”. Maton has had a long career building acoustic guitars and their frets are so small. I wish they started using better frets on their guitars. It looks as if they just bolted an acoustic guitar neck on an electric. There’s a certain sort of unfinished vibe it has going on so you’ll either dig that or you will not.
The Body Finish
The finish on the body is quite nice and it’s one of the best Maton guitars I’ve had a chance to see
Pickup selector switch
When I first purchased the guitar I loved the unique pickup selector switch. Using it live a few time I became less impressed with it. It was harder to work out which pickup you were actually visually and had to keep checking with my hand. I felt like the bridge pickup tone was the only obvious one. Having the plastic side to side switch to change modes on the bridge pickup was also another feature the guitar doesn’t need. The single coil/split coil tones aren’t the best on this guitar.
Why I sold it:
If Maton had of put two of their bridge pickups in this guitar I probably would have kept it. The bridge pickup was so good but the neck pickup was useless. Whoever designs these guitars at Maton needs to realise there should be a clear cut difference between acoustic and electric necks and frets. I wish they revamped their electric guitars with some modern attributes. Even some of their higher end electric guitars feel like they are unfinished.
I couldn’t find my voice with this guitar. While the bridge pickup rocked, the neck pickup had too much buzz and not enough tone so it was not meant to be. I highly suggest playing one of these before buying one. Once the honeymoon period ended I had zero inclination to pick this up over any of my guitars.