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Been looking for a P bass sound, and.....

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by jbybj, May 2, 2010.


  1. jbybj

    jbybj Supporting Member

    Jun 11, 2008
    Los Angeles
    It seems I've found one. I've been hunting around for about a year to add a P bass pickup to my collection. Loved the Steve Harris I played a few months ago, looking out for a good deal on a used one.

    But in the mean time, I found this today on Craigslist, so far I'm quite impressed.

    De Armond Jet Star Special
    DSCF4389.
    DSCF4390.
    DSCF4392.
    DSCF4393.

    It was taken very good care of by it's original owner, had a pretty nice set up with flats, and a Seymour Duncan replacement pup. It has that unmistakeable P bass tone I've been seeking, and it plays very easily.

    The only information I can gather refers to Jet Stars that are short scale, with two jazz pups, some set neck, some bolt on. This one is 34" scale, bolt on, and obviously, a single P pup. It was made in beautiful Indonesia.

    Does anybody have any info on this particular bass? I'm mostly curious as to what they went for new. I got it with a hard case, and two new sets of strings for $200. I didn't even try to talk him down, I just went for it. No regrets but I am curious..........

    Thanks, James
     
    lowdownthump likes this.
  2. darkstorm

    darkstorm

    Oct 13, 2009
    Kinda kewl looking in a funky odd but nice way. Congrats on your new P bass.
     
  3. jbybj

    jbybj Supporting Member

    Jun 11, 2008
    Los Angeles
    The guy who sold it to me said they are sometimes referred to as a "Gumby" or "Dali" bass. It's very comfy hanging on a strap.
     
  4. Dark Horse

    Dark Horse

    Jul 31, 2008
    Austin, TX
    I've got its' brother !

    Not sure what they cost "new", but I've seen used ones anywhere from about $125 to $300, depending on color and condition. They also did a "deluxe" version with pickps that were closer to a Jazz style.

    These sound pretty good stock - punchy, but with a pretty tight bottom end. I'll probably replace the pickup though - just not sure with what yet. Should take it from "pretty good" to a real gig-worthy bass. Nice necks on these too.



    JS2.
     
  5. jbybj

    jbybj Supporting Member

    Jun 11, 2008
    Los Angeles
    That green is a great color. I had to file one fret that had popped through the finish on the E side, but that was it. The neck is very comfortable for me too.

    Got a jam next Saturday, it will join me with my Alembic for a day out.
     
  6. these look so cool!
     
  7. JIO

    JIO Gold Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jun 30, 2010
    Oceana (Pacifica) CA
    musician/artist/owner - Gildaxe
    I could have posted a NBD but I found this old thread which has many pics clearly showing the bass I just acquired. (not the exact one, one just like it) I wanted a cheap bass to leave at the home studio space where I'm working with a new song development/recording project and this fits the bill. I remember when they were new - they came in a couple versions (JJ) and this P version. 34" scale, alder body, bolt on maple neck w/a nice light chestnut brown fb (pretty), 7.5lbs, V/T - basic P set-up. It is like new condition - it even still had plastic wrap on the control cover and over the "D" knobs... which I removed. It still baffles me why people leave it on their bass. I think the strings were original (red silks on both ends) and I restrung it with some strings I had that were still good that I just pulled off another bass. It wasn't in-tuned either (probably as from the factory) so I did that and got the action nice and low. The neck is a P-width with no buzzing - these were inexpensive CII basses but the overall build quality is good. It sounds just ok and so I'm considering putting in a Geezer Butler EMG set-up as I've heard many good things about them.
     
  8. Cool bass. Guild made guitars and basses called "JetStar" under the "Guild" moniker for higher end and "DeArmond" moniker for overseas production models. A quick Google image search of Guild JetStar shows a lot of sweet config's. Good purchase!
     
    JIO likes this.
  9. stonewall

    stonewall

    Jun 14, 2010
    ontario,Canada
    I like it looks cool in black
     
    JIO likes this.
  10. JIO

    JIO Gold Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jun 30, 2010
    Oceana (Pacifica) CA
    musician/artist/owner - Gildaxe
    Yah, black is beautiful. I like the neck being black too - it really makes the fb wood stand out. I recall them being referred to as the "Casper the friendly ghost" body-shape. I've always liked it being different and a bonus to the design is it being able to stand upright leaned against an amp. The late 60's Guild Thunderbird guitars w/that body shape even had a built-in retractable stand on the back - but the angle was so steep they were known to topple over. (classic example of a half-baked design)
     
  11. SpazzTheBassist

    SpazzTheBassist

    Jun 20, 2006
    grats!

    ....i guess the guy at Dearmond cutting the SG-style bodies was tripping on mushrooms again..............
     
  12. JIO

    JIO Gold Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jun 30, 2010
    Oceana (Pacifica) CA
    musician/artist/owner - Gildaxe
    I always appreciate when guitar designers think outside the box. (even Fender with the Performer and Jaguar bass) I'm a T-bird fan from way back but these interesting-shaped Guild inspired De Armonds actually work*. (as compared to T-birds tendency to neck-dive due to no upper horn and restricted access at the higher frets) And try putting a T-bird in a standard stand…

    *Well, actually… the Jet-Star does neck-dive a bit unless you have a nice wide non-smooth strap, mostly because the body is so light coupled w/a 34" scale neck. You can do the 'T-bird seat-belt/strap over-lower body' trick which helps stabilize it.

    I just ordered the EMG GZP pu/harness from BBG for a nice price and once installed it should sound as good as it looks!
     
    Last edited: Mar 11, 2016
  13. Hmmmm.... if I wanted a P bass sound , I would probably buy a mmmm.....uuhhhhhhh......hhhmmmmm....oh yeah.....a P Bass.
     
  14. lowdownthump

    lowdownthump Supporting Member

    Jul 17, 2004
    Contrary to popular talkbass forum belief, this isn't always true. There are other basses with p pickups in the right spot that do just as good of a job and better than a fender precision bass. The body doesn't have to be shaped like a fender precision bass to give you that pbass tone.
     
    JIO likes this.
  15. lowdownthump

    lowdownthump Supporting Member

    Jul 17, 2004
    Dare to be different. Cool looking bass.
     
  16. JIO

    JIO Gold Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jun 30, 2010
    Oceana (Pacifica) CA
    musician/artist/owner - Gildaxe
    I agree. The shape of any bass is at the bottom of the list if considering factors related to "a P-bass tone/sound". Position a P pu close to where it sits on a standard Fender P-bass and it will sound like a P-bass. Before I ordered the EMG's, I watched the EMG vid with Geezer Butler talking about his signature pu's, Lakland bass, and Hartke rig. He could have had any design he wished, but chose to have it looking exactly like a Fender P bass body - but only because he felt comfortable with that shape. (as in, nothing to do with sound) The EMG pu on the other hand, he wanted very much to sound like his early-70's P-bass. Sounds like they nailed it.
     
    Last edited: Mar 11, 2016
    NealBass and lowdownthump like this.

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