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1998 Fender American P Bass

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by superfly, Jun 12, 2005.

  1. superfly


    Aug 4, 2004
    I just picked up a NOS Fender American P bass dated to 1998 by the serial number, sunburst with a white pg. I paid $699 at a local small shop with a Fender gig bag. Aside from a few years of dust, it looks like new. They were asking $825, but I got them to drop the price just by asking. It makes one wonder why a bass like this sits around unsold for so many years? I don't see anything wrong with it. I sold my Sterling because I figured out I like passive basses better.

    I was curious if anyone has any comments on this era(1998) of Fender American P basses? It seems to be of better overall quality than the current. Overall it just looks nicer than the current batch. The pickup seems alittle punchier than the current. Are the pickups and stuff the same as the current models?
  2. pyrohr


    Aug 28, 2001
    Pakistani compound
    Wow, a nos bass that old! Some basses do sit around in basements, buried in the back and forgotten about for years. I bought a nos natural bodied/maple necked jazz that was two years old and had never been taken out of the case! It was still perfect! I payed $750 w/case and goodies. I think your bass started life in a case and someone swiped the case. I think you got a decent deal and should not have a problem with your new bass. Enjoy! :)
  3. Jeb


    Jul 22, 2001
    I got a deal a few years back on a NOS AStd Precision for 499 through one of those Musician's Friends email offers. Serial no. indicated 1998. Great bass, perfect fit/finish/frets and all that. I played it for a couple of years and then strolled into a GC while on vacation in Vegas hoping for a Tshirt. No Tshirt, but a perfect NOS early ASe Jazz went home with me for 530. The best time to buy a bass is when you don't need one. Plain black/rosewood, but a perfect player and flawless construction. Its now my main player and the AStd Precision went for 650 on ebay.
  4. mindflow


    Oct 31, 2004
    i just bought a 98 jazz bass on ebay and hopefully it will live up to its hype. ive heard 98 was a good year for some reason
  5. JimmyM


    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    I bought my 98 Am Std Jazz Bass off Ebay last year. It had a bit of a ski jump at first, but a quick trip to the repair shop took care of that, and now I put that bass up against any bass ever made. Too bad it's this garish sage green metallic color, but I got a really good deal and it sounds and feels amazing.

    Having said that, the only thing I don't like about current Fender USA models is the S1 switch. It's unnecessary and doesn't add anything. Most of them play pretty good, though. I've played a couple bad ones but I've played a few really good ones, too.
  6. shaolinwhat


    Jun 5, 2005
    what does nos mean? :meh:
  7. superfly


    Aug 4, 2004
    Boy, these pickups have some serious thump to them!
    I bought some Labella flats to put on the bass when I clean it up, but even without them on theres some serious tone and roundness.
  8. superfly


    Aug 4, 2004
    NOS = New Old Stock

    Meaning its a new bass, but from an earlier year than the present.
  9. rllefebv


    Oct 17, 2000
    Newberg, Oregon
    I have a '96 MIA P that I bought brand new in '98 after it sat on the wall for nearly two years... The shop was anxious to move it to make room for new stuff coming in... Definitely my current main player, (though they rotate dome depending on my whim... Lately, I'm in a 'P' mood it seems!)... It definitely holds up against the current basses, though they are very nice lately.

    I do agree with your take on the pickups... I've said many times that the stock pickup is the best sounding passive P that I've ever heard! It just fits...

    Congrats on a nice bass! Now... where's the pix???

  10. pyrohr


    Aug 28, 2001
    Pakistani compound
    When I got my nos jazz it wasn't on display but I tried one like it that was on the wall. They gave me a price based on the bass on display (inca silver in color) but told me they might have a new one (in the box) in the back. I told my rep to go and check, He came back with a box opened it and pulled out the new bass in it's case. I opened the case for the first time and fell in love, it looked better than the one on the shelf! It also came with a cord, strap, wrenches and all hang tags! I looked at the serial# and it was 2 years old! Let me tell you I could care less, I just got a bass that has been discontinued (natural body/maple neck) and as far as I could tell was a "MIA series" bass. :D Sometimes you get lucky.
  11. superfly


    Aug 4, 2004
    It turns out this bass is an awesome beast! These have to be the hottest ,punchiest stock P bass pickups around. Not even a 2nd thought of putting in after market pups.

    I cleaned it up and the thing is perfect. Well ,it is NOS.
    I put some LaBella flats and did a setup and wow!
    The thing intonated perfectly! I don't think I ever had a bass that did that. All up and down the neck the notes are on.
    I haven't weighed it yet, but it is very light.
    I'll post a pic Monday after I get the black pickguard.
  12. lefty007


    Jan 19, 2004
    Miami, FL
    I have had many '96 - '99 P-Basses, many of them NOS also, and the quality was random, but there were really good ones. Also the neck shapes were so different from each other, as was the weight of the bodies -- in other words: typical Fender randomness.

    But all in all I find them to be pretty good, with greats ones to be found -- just like you did.

  13. :cool: I picked up an NOS '97 P in late 2000 for $399 at a year end clearance sale. It had been hanging on the wall for over three years. The shop owner said that he couldn't recall ever seeing anyone take it down to even look at it. I had to pay extra for a gigbag as it had no case. I'm still playing that bass and probably will until I get to old to play.

    It was Inca Silver, white pickguard, and maple neck/fretboard. It was kinda' plain, but I spruced it up with a Green Pearl pickguard from Warmoth and pickup and bridge covers. It really looks nice now. As for the sound, it's one of the best sounding basses I've ever owned. Fit and finish, absolutely superb. It stays in tune, and the neck never wanders. Oh, it has an American Deluxe bridge on it, original equipment.

    The neck is nicer than an AmDlx P-Bass that I recently sold, and it was great. This neck has the high-gloss finish that I prefer, not the satin finish found on current AmSer basses. The fretwork matches the finished fretwork on my old AmDlx.

    If you look around you can always prove the old statement, "one man's poison, another man's fruit". Shop carefully and you'll find that jewel you're looking for and you won't have to hock the farm to get it.

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