Of course this Jazz bass comes with two single-coil vintage J bass
pickups. Controls are volume/volume/tone.
One thing i have always disliked about the Jazz (and Precision) bass
is that the jack comes straight out of the front of the guitar.
It's annoying to play and then you have to unplug it when you're putting
it on the guitar stand most of the time. Whenever i know i'm gonna
be recording i have to start looking for my right angle cables - hehe.
A popular J bass mod with studio musicians is to replace the
single-coil pickups with stacked double-coil and then add switches for
splitting and phase inversion. This does sound really good,
and gives the player a ton of options before even considering what
he/she can do at the amp.
How does it play?
I'm a guitar player; not a bass player.
I use medium gauge strings and i set the action about the same height as
other bass players i know. I'm a pretty simple player: I don't use
a pick; i don't slap/pop (beyond just goofin around); i don't play
anything difficult; i don't play much up beyond the 7th fret.
Having said all of that; for me personally this bass is great - i
How does it sound?
I don't care who is playing it or what kindof music: by now everybody
should know what the J bass can sound like. There's a
reason it has barely changed in over thirty years!
For the pop/rock material i use it on, it cuts through just like you'd
Although; in the hands of an incapable hack such as myself, a
standard Jazz bass has kindof a limited range of tone. I
personally don't like that scooped sound, and when i use both pickups
they've always gotta be at the same level. What i
should really do is just get rid of one volume pot and throw a 3-way
switch in there.
When i got mine about three years ago, the Fender Geddy Lee Jazz Bass
was going for around $700. I'm not absolutely positive on that -
it was maybe closer to $750. If the GL would've been closer
to $800 i would've had a harder time deciding between it and the
Mexican-made '70s J bass.
Right now (2009) the Geddy Lee J is on sale for $1,000 at the Guitar
Center, while Musician's Friend has it going for $1,220. That's
more than a 25% price increase over three years.
I know there are some really good Japanese-made Fenders out there,
With its reputation for neck/fret issues, $1,200 is more than i'd be
willing to spend on the Geddy Lee signature model. If i were looking right
now, i'd definitely get the '70s Jazz ($700) or the Jaguar ($750).
That $450 i'd be saving is way more than enough to upgrade pickups and
saddle (plus get a case and strings!).