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Active Jazz 5 string

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Nails, Nov 13, 2000.

  1. Nails


    Jun 4, 2000
    Austin, Tejas
    I've decided to finally upgrade to a 5 string after 4 years of playing a MIM Fender P-Bass. I'm leaning toward the Jazz bass since the neck won't be to much wider than what I'm used to with my P. I also want to get active electronics, and that narrows it down to the American Deluxe Jazz or the Deluxe Active Jazz. How is the general perception of these two basses? I haven't gotten to A/B these basses yet, but plan on doing so soon. Also what's the scale on these, is it 34" or 35"? How's the B, is it floppy or tight? How easy is it to get to the battery?

    Even though I know it's all up to what I want, what other brands/models do you suggest I look into? I play rock/pop/with wacky samples type stuff, and have an Eden WT-800 with an Eden D-410XLT, with effects for fun. I want something with clear highs but not lacking bottom end and cutting mids. My dream bass is still an American Spector NS-5, but I've been ready for a 5 string for a while, and want to get my hands on one without having to save for 30 years.

    Thanks in advance for any help you can give me,
  2. embellisher

    embellisher Holy Ghost filled Bass Player Supporting Member

    The American Deluxe Active and the Deluxe Active Jazz are both good basses, quiet electronics and great tone but both have floppy Bs, or at least every example of them that I've been able to play in the Dallas area do.

    The Fender Roscoe Beck does not cost much more than the American Deluxe and has a much better B, and offers much more tonal flexibility as well.

    Also, the 3 American Precision Deluxes I have played have tighter Bs than the Jazzes as well.
  3. Nails


    Jun 4, 2000
    Austin, Tejas
    I'm not set on a brand yet, so what other brands would you suggest?

    Thanks for the advice so far,
  4. cassanova


    Sep 4, 2000
    I like the Jass Bass Deluxe, and the Deluxe Active Jazz bass, Both B strings are loose and floppy though, but that has helped my technique to some extent. The electronics in each are very hot, and quiet as a church mouse. The noiseless pickups in the American Deluxe especially. Each bass has big, deep, rich, warm and very phat bass, nice warm mids, and crisp highs. They are also both 34 inch scale length. The Deluxe active Jazz is made of Poplar, and the Jazz Bass Deluxe is Alder or Ash (ash depending on the finish) both fretboards for each 5 is Pau Ferro, With the Jazz Bass Deluxe giving you the option of a maple fretboard as well. There is also a difference in the amount of frets each has, deluxe active has 20, and the body joins the neck at the middle of the 15th and 16th frets, deluxe jazz has 22 frets with the body and neck joining at the 17th fret. The deluxe jazz also has mother of pearl inlays, the biggest difference other than the jazz bass deluxe having a bit better tone is the price, about $1200-$1300 for the jazz bass deluxe compared to $500-$600 for the deluxe active jazz...either in my opinion is money well spent. Not to mention that my Fender Jazz Deluxe took a pretty hard fall from a guitar stand onto a bare concrete floor and somehow managed to remain unscathed not a chip, nick, or scratch, and managed to stay in tune, they are well constucted and solid.

    [Edited by cassanova on 11-17-2000 at 01:16 AM]
  5. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member In Memoriam

    If money's no object,then the ultimate active 5-string Jazz bass has got to be either a Sadowsky or possibly a Lakland, based on experience and what people have said here. In the UK, I don't think they are actually worth that much more than the Fender Roscoe Beck signature, which is very close in terms of features and sound, but at a considerably lower price. But if you want to that little bit extra, then you probably can't beat either of these.... of course you might be lucky and pick up a good used bargain!
  6. Maybe a Stingray5 would do the trick? According to a couple of members here it has got a tight and focused B. The tone is what you described, lows, cutting mids and highs.
  7. Bernie


    Dec 12, 1999
    Personaly i liked the sound of the old Low noise pups better than the newer Noiseless pups.As such id go with the MIM Active J or a used/leftover ADlx J with those pups.Of course theres the RB-5.Real nice!!!There are others that are nice as well but not at the price of the Active J.Good luck!
  8. Angus

    Angus Supporting Member

    Apr 16, 2000
    Palo Alto, CA
    I like the idea of an RB-5. Man, i dont like Fender, but i want one of those! Definitely if you are looking towards a Jazz check out the RB-5. Its an outstanding bass, especially when compared to a Jazz 5.
  9. trainyourhuman


    Apr 12, 2000
    I have an RB5 that I am trying to sell, but when I play it through an outboard preamp (sadowsky) it sounds absolutely incredible. I would definitely reccommend it over any other fender 5... I really want to keep mine, but I simply can't afford it.

    However, I am also going to mention the new p deluxe 5 as well. Not a bad bass IMO. Not as nice as the RB, but pretty nice.

  10. Nails


    Jun 4, 2000
    Austin, Tejas
    The RB5 and Deluxe P look pretty cool, I'll give them a try next week when I go to try out basses in Austin. I'll narrow it down then, let you know what I like, and to get opinions and advice from you guys. The advice so far has been great, keep it coming.

  11. membranophone


    Mar 19, 2000
    Madison, WI
    IMO, you really shouldn't worry about neck width. If you use proper technique (with your thumb on the center of the back of the neck), you'll find that you can adjust to the differences in neck width pretty easily unless you have very small hands. I play 2 fender basses with A width necks and have recently bought an Elrick 6 string with a neck that is about as wide as they come. I'm having no problem with the new neck, and i have small hands.
  12. jerry

    jerry Doesn't know BDO Gold Supporting Member

    Dec 13, 1999
    I have an American Deluxe V, and I like it a lot! With Fenders you have to try a few to find one made on the right day.[ for a nice neck ] Mine has a decent B string, but not as good as my Modulus or Lull. The electronics sound good,
    and are very versitile, and the action is also very nice.
    All that said, if you have a little extra cash, you can buy
    a really fine fender V by buying a Mike Lull vintage V,great
    B string/tone/everything. Very soon you will hear a lot more
    people talking about the Mike Lulls, they are that good!
  13. I've made the mistake of buying Fender Jazz Am. Std 5 in the past, and it had a clunky neck, and terrible B string, the worst ever. I put every make of B known to man on it, but could'nt improve it, so I dropped it. The RB5 is totally different, still a big neck though. The Stingray has the best neck in the business, IMO, and the B is darn tight, but it's not as versatile as say, a Lakland.
  14. embellisher

    embellisher Holy Ghost filled Bass Player Supporting Member

    IME, as a player with short fingers(and that's all!;)) the width matters not one bit.

    What matters to ME is the profile, or thickness from front to back of the neck.

    Give me a Yamaha TRB with a very wide neck but thin profile, no problem. Give me a P or a Warwick with one of those Louisville Slugger profiles, then I've got a problem, hurts my hand and I can't play it for very long, or as well as I can a thin profile.

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