I finally gave in and treated myself to this P bass. I saw it in a really small local music shop 2 years ago and have been gassing for it ever since. I asked the guys in the shop at the time why it was priced cheaper in store than it was on their website and they reckoned it was something about their deal with Fender that meant they weren't allowed to advertise it online for the reduced price. So unless somebody looking for a tribute P bass wandered into their little local shop (that specialises in orchestral instruments) it didn't look to me like it was going to sell easily...
Well, they kept marking it down a little more every few months but still nobody bought it. I gave in to my desires and did the deal last week - for about 65% of the online price and I managed to get an official Fender hard case thrown in too rather than the deluxe gig bag they usually sell with.
I could not be happier with this bass. Although I am a huge Iron Maiden and Steve Harris fan I actually play in a Soul and Motown band at the moment. Once the tone is rolled off a little those fat flatwounds (50-110) give me a proper Motown thump and the blue sparkle finish even reminds me of the amp that Jamerson used to use in the studio.
This bass has the biggest fattest neck I have ever seen on a 4 string bass and feels incredible. The 'stiffness' of the fat flat rotosounds means I can get the action really low which I love.
In terms of lowering the strings I went out to buy a new Allen key to adjust the string height on the BadassII bridge after figuring that I needed a .050 and didn't have one. I bought a cheap set of keys that included one and the key that was marked .050 didn't work - it was too small. I ended up going round to my Dad's house (he is a car mechanic) and borrowing his Snap-On set of keys and the .050 key on that set worked perfectly. My fault I guess for buying a really cheap set of something that obviously needs to be precision engineered to work.
I am playing my first two gigs with this bass at the end of November and can't wait. My first ever bass was a P (Korean Squier) and I have always missed that classic P bass sound. I have played a Yamaha BB424 since then and, more recently, a 2012 American Standard Jazz. This bass gives me back that satisfaction. It is everything a bass should be for me.
Basically, I am just very excited and wanted to share it with you guys!
If anybody wants to know more here is the Ed Friedland review that I have memorised having watched it so many times over the last year or so: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A72TYFcqk4E