precision bass or jazz bass, which one to buy???

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precision bass or jazz bass, which one to buy???

Postby multisounds » Sat Mar 28, 2009 2:37 am

Hi Bob and Folks,

Ok, the time has come for me to buy a bass guitar to end all bass guitars!!! ROFL. :D I've made decisions in the past based on your opinions in the past and as an example bought a Fender telecaster be cause of your exceptional insight into musical instruments!!

So here's the deal. I've done some research into bases and a few brands have come up as top of the range, such as "Warwick" and "Tobias". However, when they're are priced at $5000, Aussie dollars it's abit expensive for me budget, but I guess if bases cost that nuch they have to to ultra good. So anyway, I've narrowed my liking of bass to a Fender brand because it's "middle to high" price range and I'll make life easier by just naming two guitars from this company which either I'll get depending on your thoughts, they are:

1/ Fender-American standard precision bass $2500, approx. aussie dollars.
2/ Fender-American standard jazz bass $2800, approx. aussie dollars.

So guys and girls. which bass should I get???? I play all sorts of music from rock to jazz and avante-garde (lol) so I want a bass that does "every concievable" sound ever made in bass sounds produced in this world!! ( wishful thinking maybe). That means adjusting tone sounds for nearly every song!!! To get the right "feel" if you like to put it that way.

But here's some talk through the grapevine, some say precison is "one way ticket", meaning that it is primarily for broad term "pop". But others say precision will do what a jazz bass will do??? Uh??? confused now!. While others say if you get jazz bass it will be the "dream" bass that you'll ever need to own because it has two pick-ups-am I right Bob?? LOL.

So tell me folks, this is big money and any left over change I can get effects pedals!!

So just tell me which one, and with either maple neck or rosewood??? And what's so big deal about those different types of woods on the sound produced???

I thank your opinions dearly once again!

cheers
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Re: precision bass or jazz bass, which one to buy???

Postby oleman » Sat Mar 28, 2009 2:56 am

I own a MIM Fender Jazz bass and I like it a lot but if I had it all to do over again, I would buy a decent Upright bass
and a cheap Chinese slab for when the gig was just to cumbersome for the upright. With your musical versatility, imo
you should get an upright. Upright and fretless is a bit daunting at first but well worth the effort.
Bass guitar players are dime a dozen but doghouse players are in great demand for just about every genre but metal.
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Re: precision bass or jazz bass, which one to buy???

Postby BobHolland » Sat Mar 28, 2009 1:14 pm

I will have to say Fender Precision or Jazz is a personal choice. I have owned & played both. Right now I do play a Jazz. It's only because of my financial condition that I don't also own a Precision & Music Man Stingray & an Upright bass. These were the last ones I had & were sold in that order. I say you should go & play the Jazz & P Bass. Both will do the job & I'm sure one will feel right to you. That's the right bass for you if you can only have ONE.
Good Luck,
BOB
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Re: precision bass or jazz bass, which one to buy???

Postby BobHolland » Sat Mar 28, 2009 3:41 pm

Now on top of that, what kind of fingerboard do you like? Maple or Rosewood? What color?
Don't forget to look at the PJ basses. It has a P Bass pickup & a bridge Jazz Pickup with Jazz Neck and P Bass body. I know, too many choices.
Good hunting.
BOB :wha:
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Re: precision bass or jazz bass, which one to buy???

Postby multisounds » Sat Mar 28, 2009 4:50 pm

[/quote]if I had it all to do over again, I would buy a decent Upright bass
and a cheap Chinese slab for when the gig was just to cumbersome for the upright. With your musical versatility, imo
you should get an upright. Upright and fretless is a bit daunting at first but well worth the effort.
Bass guitar players are dime a dozen but doghouse players are in great demand for just about every genre but metal[/quote].[/quote]

Hi Ole,

Thx, cheers. I do own an upright bass and play it from time to time and love it very much. However, how do you prevent your backbone caving in after trying to stand still for more than 45 minuts?? LOL :D So yeah, I play jazz on that big mother and also rockabilly stuff, but surely some of the Pink Floyd stuff with that dynamic "electric charged" effects upright bass probably wouldn't be used so often?? Am I wrong? And I know some pop/rock bands are imploying upright bass as a gimmick. I usually take electric and upright bass to gigs and arrange a set so that I don't keep having to swap them too many times, so basically 5 songs with upright and 5 songs with electric etc etc.

By the way, what's a "chinese slab", does it prevent your backbone getting hurt?? If so, tell me what it looks like and i'll get one!

cheers
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Re: precision bass or jazz bass, which one to buy???

Postby multisounds » Sat Mar 28, 2009 5:05 pm

[quote="BobHolland"]Now on top of that, what kind of fingerboard do you like? Maple or Rosewood? What color?[quote]

Hi Bod,

Thx again, you haven't said one or the other LOL but I know what you mean about the choices. Ok, since I play alot of jazz and my repertroire is not mainly 'one style" of music I'm gonna get jazz bass because as you said earlier it can also rock as well. So, just tell me this. what fingerboard wood?? Maple or Rose? The local shop has both and I played on it the other day and couldn't really tell them apart-perhaps you might know.

As for colour-it's either white or light blue! :wink:

cheers
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Re: precision bass or jazz bass, which one to buy???

Postby BobHolland » Sat Mar 28, 2009 8:45 pm

In my experience the bass, either jazz or precision, maple seems to me to be brighter sound & the rosewood seems to me to be darker. Now with EQ you can change either to be what you want.
Now I'll say what I like. My Jazz has a rosewood fingerboard & the precision & stingray had maple fingerboards & my Kay (1950) Upright had maple but stained to look like rosewood. That's just what I like. I like my Jazz bass (Fender 1996 Custom Shop Relic). But I have the itch to get a precision bass with a maple fingerboard. I'm also kind of liking the red 50's P Bass. The Mexican P basses are a good looking & good sounding bass. Prices are not too bad & maybe you can find one used. I like a bass that has been played. Scratches & dings don't bother me at all. I think it adds personality.
BOB
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Re: precision bass or jazz bass, which one to buy???

Postby lpdeluxe » Tue Mar 31, 2009 2:02 pm

I have owned and played Jazz and Precision basses, but I have now concentrated on Precisions. I own three: a '51 reissue, a Classic '50s, and a Standard with a fretless Warmoth neck.

As it happens, I attended two gigs last weekend where Jazz basses were being played: one was a duo, and the bassist was using the "typical" trebly [bridge pickup] sound most of the evening. When he switched to guitar, the guitarist started playing bass lines on his bottom strings, and that didn't sound much different from the Jazz. The second gig was at a local honky tonk where the remnants of a band I had been in for a long time had re-formed around a bass player who sings. He was using mostly the neck pickup, and it was deep.

BUT it wasn't as punchy as my Precision (playing with the same drummer and guitarist).

I started out in that band with a Carvin bass (electronically similar to the Jazz), then moved on to a G&L L2000, and finally to the Classic '50s P. Everybody was sort of happy with the first two, but when I showed up at rehearsal with the P, after the first few bars of our first song, everyone turned around and said, "THAT'S IT!" At a gig a year or so later, after I had acquired a fretless Jazz, I pulled it out at sound check and played it -- and the rest of the band sent me home to get the P.

As it happens, I had run into the drummer a couple of weeks ago at a local diner where he and his wife and I met by accident going in the door, and then sat down to breakfast together. He asked me if I still had "that orange bass" (meaning the fiesta red Classic '50s) and I assured him that I did. He said "I'm a drummer, and I usually can't tell one bass from the other. But when you played that orange one, it really made the place rock."

So that does it for me. The Precision necks are chunkier (but I like that -- Jazz necks are TOO skinny for me) and there are other minor, ergonomic differences, but the P's the one. I particularly like the "vintage" frets on the two fretted ones I have,which allows nice slides into notes, almost like the fretless (but without that expressive mwah).

To me, a Jazz is versatile, but generic. The Precision sounds like me, and I can make it work on any of the material I play these days. The only qualification is that I'd love to get my hands on a Music Man Stingray fretless 5, but that's another story.
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Re: precision bass or jazz bass, which one to buy???

Postby multisounds » Tue Apr 07, 2009 1:42 am

Hi lp,

Been away and just got back today. I can see people have different likings for certain bass sounds and "feel" of the instrument. The shop down in our town has both P and J bass, but you know what, I don't like their colours!! :D So I'm gonna order the colour I like which is pale blue. As for the bass, well from weighing things up, I will get a jazz bass because from what I've read here and from brochures, the two pick-ups can be switched to produce a "P bass sound" (quoting the shop features). Unless it's gimmick or I'm a believer in anything people say, I gather why not get the sound of both instruments with one price!.

Cheers
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Re: precision bass or jazz bass, which one to buy???

Postby lpdeluxe » Tue Apr 07, 2009 2:07 pm

Enjoy your new bass...but don't expect it to sound like a Precision. If that were the case, a lot of people would own Jazz basses instead of Ps.. I think once you become familiar with the sound of your J, and then compare it with a P, you'll hear what I mean. My band certainly had no problem distinguishing between the two -- and they didn't know which one was which, they just knew that one had a killer tone, and the other didn't. You might want to save up for a second bass
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Re: precision bass or jazz bass, which one to buy???

Postby multisounds » Wed Apr 08, 2009 3:29 am

Hi lp.

Perhaps you're right. But here's the exact words used from a shop brochure about J bass. "the innovative S-1 switching system, which gives you great jazz bass and Precision bass tones from one instrument"


Also, "pushing the S-1 switch reconfigures the pickup wiring from parallel to series, resulting in a fatter, almost humbucking sound similar to that of a precision".

Surely they're not lying??

But I understand words and knowledge of sound are a different kettle of fish. But they're saying J bass can drive hard when need be. That's just my interpretation of it. But I know your experience has more weight than brochures.

Cheers
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Re: precision bass or jazz bass, which one to buy???

Postby lpdeluxe » Wed Apr 08, 2009 1:30 pm

It's not a matter of lying, it's marketing. I've never tried a bass with S1 switching, although I know that it was roundly disliked when it appeared on P basses, which of course is an entirely different thing from a J.

If it works for you, that's fine, but I generally disregard advertising claims when buying a bass. Have you read reviews at Harmony Central? I find that they are a good resource, especially those written by more experienced players.
http://reviews.harmony-central.com/revi ... and/Fender

In any case, enjoy your bass. That's what it's all about.
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Re: precision bass or jazz bass, which one to buy???

Postby multisounds » Fri Apr 10, 2009 4:51 am

lp,

Thx mate, I'll reconsider p bass and play both of them loud and furious at this local music shop and toss the coin- :D

cheers
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Re: precision bass or jazz bass, which one to buy???

Postby bigdaddy » Mon Apr 13, 2009 11:22 pm

P-Basses rule. For me any ways. I love the deep full sound a P-Bass puts out. It's as solid as a tank. In fact I had a fan charge at me from about twenty feet away (long story) and as soon as he got close enough I was going to take his teeth out with the bottom edge of my Precision. His friends and girl friend grabbed him thus saving me I guess. I really dig the deep clrarilty my P-Bass puts out. To each their own.
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Re: precision bass or jazz bass, which one to buy???

Postby lpdeluxe » Mon Apr 13, 2009 11:38 pm

At another forum, the issue of the Fender Classic '50s Precision came up and there was speculation among us as to why that model sounds better than others. Some said it was the pickup (the same as the "62 Precision reissue, as I remember) but someone else did some digging and discovered that, unlike the other models of Precision (with the exception of the single-coil '51 reissue) the Classic '50s has a .1 micro Farad cap compared to .05. I thereupon drove to the local Radio Shack, where I found a .1 cap, took it home, and installed it in place of the standard cap [value unknown -- probably .047) in my fretless P, which has the same pickup and strings as the Classic '50s.

That's a pretty inexpensive mod (the cap cost $1.49 + tax, and maybe half an hour of my time) for a better sounding Precision.

I can't give a definitive answer as to how close to the other it sounds until my friend returns the Classic '50s from his home in the next town. :mrgreen:

I'll report back after I do a direct comparison.
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