Lakland Skyline DJ-4 or 44-AJ, Carvin SB4001 or Fender Jazz?
I'm soon to be in the market for a new Jazz style bass and I've whittled it down to several in the same ballpark price range (give or take a few hundred):
Lakland Skyline DJ-4 or 44-AJ
Carvin SB 4000 or 4001
Fender American Special or American Standard Jazz
Anyone care to push me in one direction or another?
Choosing your Ax
Clearly the Carvin shines in this bunch. Been playin since '93 (which doesn't mean much actually when people say that) except for a little experience. Lost everything in 2009 and had to sell all my gear, amongst it my main bass was a Stingray 5. Began rebuilding three years ago... 13 instruments later consisting of US & Jap P's, US & Jap Jazz's, US G & L's, Ibanez Prestiges, EB MM Sting Rays & Sterlings, slick lawsuit era copy's. I have 4 basses: a Carvin SB 5001, a Carvin PB 5, a Stingray 5 and a Super Cool Ibanez TR5 Expressionist. The only additions will ever be Carvins. The craftsmanship is superb, the necks are THE most comfortable - playable - quick Ive ever played and the sound is... Im sure you can guess my comment. They are truly great instruments, sadly my Stingray 5 never gets played. Anything close to Carvin quality is twice the price. The amps are really good also, great sound and reliability. I would include photos but Im too dumb to figure out how to attach them.
I wouldn't push you in any direction from there. I have a 44-60, SB5000, and 1998 American Standard Jazz. All are great.
44-60: Easily the best player of the bunch. Tonally, not so much - at least for me. I pulled the stock pickups in favor of EMG JAX. (If you like a passive tone, you'll love the JAX.) After that, I put Thunderbuckers in it.
SB5000: Great tone, excellent player. It does not have the magic fretwork of the Lakland.
1998 Jazz: A workhorse. I played it with no mods as my main player for several years. It is the bass that made me quit being a P bass guy. Great player, great passive tone.
Fit and finish are very good on all three - I don't see a clear winner in a side by side comparison. Neck profiles are all a little different, but all are great players. I can't rank one ahead of another.
I love the neck on the American Special Jazz basses...the Greasebucket tone pot, not so much. I also like the necks on the Geddy Jazz basses, but I owned one of the black MIJs and and played others and they all sounded thin to my ears. I too am currently a P Bass guy and have a heavily modified American Special, which has the best neck of any P bass I've ever played, by the way. But I find myself jonzin' for a Jazz style bass. I miss that Jazz growl.
Which of the ones I mentioned has the thinnest neck profile. I've heard really good things about the Carvins. I may have a line on a used B40 which just might take care of everything, and at half the price...if I get it.
Tough call, but I would go (and did go) Lakland. I chose between all these different basses as well plus a sadowsky.
How much difference is their between the Lakland US Series and the Skylines, I mean aside from the stacks of extra cash a US a Series will set you back? Are the US basses that far superior to the Skylines? My max is about $1300, and preferably less.
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