Did you hate P necks but change your mind?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by neo 7, Mar 21, 2014.

  1. neo 7

    neo 7 The bass player doesn't get a sandwich

    Aug 22, 2011
    Erie, PA
    My first bass was a MIM Fender P. I hated the big chunky neck on it so I swapped it out with a Jazz neck. Shortly afterwards I discovered short scales, and have mostly been playing short and medium scales since.

    I was at a jam a couple weeks ago and decided to bring the Frankenbass and after a few minutes it felt pretty good. I've been playing it a lot lately, but I'm starting to wish the neck was thicker. I'm pretty surprised by this because I've been avoiding P necks like the plague, and have declared my hate for them several times here on TB. I guess I'm ready to try a P neck again.

    Has anyone had a similar experience, and how did it work out for you?
  2. SanDiegoHarry

    SanDiegoHarry Inactive Supporting Member

    Aug 11, 2008
    San Diego, CA
    Specify year: The original P necks were *wide* - 1.75, the same width as many 5 stings. Is THAT the neck profile you are referring to?

    As for more modern Fender P neck profiles, they seem very nice. 1 & 5/8, I believe. A perfect compromise, I think. My Lakland 4-94 neck is 1.6 inches at the nut and it seems just about perfect for all styles of playing, but a J, at 1.5 seems a bit too snug.
  3. neo 7

    neo 7 The bass player doesn't get a sandwich

    Aug 22, 2011
    Erie, PA
    It was a 2001 MIM, I believe the nut width was 1 5/8"
  4. I started playing on a borrowed Fender P in the late 60s, but soon switched to a Fender J, which I bought from my brother. I've played the Fender J exclusively, until about a year ago, when I bought my first Fender P. I always enjoyed the super thin neck on my J, but now that I am older and have arthritic symptoms, I find that the P is easier on my hands.
  5. Andii Syckz

    Andii Syckz

    Jan 2, 2011
    I've always loved pbass necks. Just a good chunky piece of wood that for me was fast to play. I disliked jazz necks cause they were slim, but i fell in love with them afterwards. My friend's 1994 70's RI JAzz bass has a nice slim neck that feels great all round to play.
  6. Jim Carr

    Jim Carr Dr. Jim

    Jan 21, 2006
    Denton, TX or Kailua, HI
    fEARful Kool-Aid dispensing liberal academic card-carrying union member Musicians Local 72-147
    Hated the first Fender P I played back in 1964. By 1967, I had adapted because I wanted the tone, and had started upright so ANY electric felt tiny.
  7. inthevelvet

    inthevelvet Supporting Member

    Jul 2, 2012
    Washington DC
    I keep trying to like P necks, but just can't seem to. I think it's the string spacing more than anything.
  8. SteveC

    SteveC Moderator Staff Member

    Nov 12, 2004
    NE ND
    I used to avoid Precision basses because of the neck. I kind of like them now. I play a 5 and 6 string right now so a "fat" 4 string neck is pretty manageable.
  9. jasonbraatz

    jasonbraatz Supporting Member

    Oct 18, 2000
    Milwaukee, WI
    Most of my P-bass experience was with the big 1.75" nut width, which I wasn't a fan of, but the newer modern 1.625" necks are great. I think that little extra girth makes it feel "right" as a P-bass and distinct from a Jazz.
  10. I hated P Bass necks when I first played one, and still do....maybe I need another 40 years to learn to like them.
  11. Pandastylebass

    Pandastylebass The Moon Machine

    May 6, 2013
    Brooklyn, NY
    I used to not be a big fan until I played a fretless one, now I'm hooked!
  12. GregC

    GregC Questlove, Black Thought, Hamilton Gold Supporting Member

    Jan 19, 2007
    Most P necks have been 1 and 5/8" since...the late '60s, I think? I've never understood why that feels like such a big difference from 1.5" for some players, but different strokes and all.
  13. Yeah definitely. Started off playing Ibanez SR's and Fender Jazz's because I couldn't stand thick necks. My curiosity got the better of me over time and I started dabbling in Stingrays and P-basses. While I don't own a P-bass, I do own a Stingray which has one of the chunkiest necks out there. Will be getting a VM P-bass in time and offloading the Jazz.
  14. garak7

    garak7 Irritating the Neighbors Since 1964

    Aug 20, 2010
    Bend, Oregon
    I got lucky. I grew up liking either P or J of any width. 5ers feel comfortable as well. Not sure about those 11 string monsters, though. I suppose if I had one in my possession long enough....
  15. slipitin

    slipitin Guest

    Jul 26, 2002
    1.625 c shape with a 9.5 radius fretboard is perfect for me...I just bought a fretlless jazz because I couldn't afford the ridiculously priced Tony Franklin fretlless p and I'm already yearning for the more substantial feel of a p neck because jazz necks are HORRIBLE and feel too toyish.

    ROOTSnFIFTHS Low-end Lover since '78!

    Oct 25, 2012
    NJ to Sin City
    I think the bigger 'jump' in size is from 1.5 to 1.75. Add some front to back thickness and someone used to a standard Jazz will feel the difference.

    I always played Jazz sized necks (except for a 72 P I used in the early 80s and hated) but I really want that Precision tone. So I now have an 1.65" P and a 1.75". As you say that 1.65" is not much bigger and does feel pretty good (..says the Jazz Bass player!...). My problem is I like the tone much better on my 1.75" P (Classic series,Road Worn etc). I might change out to a smaller size but fear it would change the tone.
  17. radioface


    May 2, 2013
    I have 3 Js and 3 Ps and switch from one to another with no problems at all.
  18. Gaolee

    Gaolee Official leathers tester and crash dummy

    I like an aircraft carrier deck with the hull to match. A 1.75 width is great, but P necks are road kill Fender flat relative to my ideal. But, I'm happy playing mine anyway. It is a wide one. I am also happy playing a Ric, a short scale Gibson, and upright, and a Thunderbird. It doesn't seem to matter that much.
  19. Mike N

    Mike N Missing the old TB Staff Member Supporting Member

    Jan 28, 2001
    Spencerport, New York
    Likewise I've never understood those who think there's such a big difference between a 34" and 35" scale. I've played (and owned both) and couldn't tell the difference.
  20. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Yamaha, Ampeg, Line 6, EMG
    Won't say I hated them, but I prefer Jazz necks. Not enough to swap out the necks on my Precisions with Jazz necks, though. I find you can get used to anything.