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Differentiating Fender models / qualities

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by eddododo, Nov 22, 2013.

  1. eddododo


    Apr 7, 2010
    Does anyone have a cheat-sheet of sorts for understanding fender model naming?
    Im talking differences between deluxe, standard, special, etc..
    I would love to know their relative 'worth' or 'goodness' in plain terms..
    Obvious questions are: which are active, which have additional/unique pickups, which are not MIA, stuff like that

    I know its petty, available information, but nothing's wrong with a good reference in one place.. if you'd rather suggest Google or the o.k. search function, find another thread to not contribute to :)

    Granted i have some of them obviously figured out, i just hate to search every time a classified ad piques my interest

  2. 2cooltoolz

    2cooltoolz Supporting Member

    Nov 12, 2009
    Lake Conroe, TX
    I'd love to help you out, and it might be a fun project for a boring evening, but Fender doesn't really want you anybody to understand! :D
  3. dougjwray


    Jul 20, 2005
  4. tjh

    tjh Supporting Member

    Mar 22, 2006
    you dont need a cheat sheet ...

    ... you have us ...

    ... any question that you have about Fender basses you will find somebody on here that can answer it ... many of us have our specialties, or what we know best, but rest assured, someone will know, or will know where to find out ...

    ... just read, then read some more ... search on here by models, years, AB comparisons, etc .. it will be amazing what you can learn, and quickly ... just realize, that other than specs and facts, everyone on here has an opinion, so it will be up to you to determine which opinions you align your interests/tastes with most for the answers you receive on the other inquiries ... other than that, read and then read some more .. stickies are your friend, and a completed profile will go a very long way toward getting the most accurate responses ... BTW, I see you have started your profile, but the vague answers on 'genres', interests, gigs, etc wont help us to meet your needs with responses ... JMHO ;)
  5. Jim C

    Jim C Spector#496:More curves than Sophia + better sound Supporting Member

    Nov 29, 2008
    I agree that the information exists but it is a lot of research time
    I think the OP (and I) would like a table that has information regarding years, country of origin, and quality based on a general consensus
    Quality and value ratings could also be an unreasonable expectation based on personal experiences.
  6. eddododo


    Apr 7, 2010
    Ha.. indeed

    Though i find it a cumbersome layout to compare general specs..
  7. eddododo


    Apr 7, 2010
    Perhaps I'm mis remembering, sites not so bad, but.. eh.. CHEAT SHEET
  8. hsech

    hsech I'm not old, I'm just seasoned. Gold Supporting Member

    Jun 27, 2012
    Central Iowa
    Don't be lazy. Do your Internet R E S E A R C H !!!
  9. eddododo


    Apr 7, 2010
    BUT that's the issue. Im looking up circuits and learning songs and breadboarding and reading.. i just would like to open a 'fender fs/ft' and not have to open two sites to see if its worthy of trade or its price, dig?

    I mean this kindly, but there are too many 'do the right thing, research patience yada' answers on talkbass; the notion is never lost on me, but if every threads' answer is 'search old threads' then there's a bit of memetic incest, no? As in, the 'genetic' weeding out of good information by reverse-information-darwinism

    plus, people still talk about the weather, don't they?
  10. tjh

    tjh Supporting Member

    Mar 22, 2006
    FWIW, a 'supporting member' blue oval gets you asking 'What is is worth?" priviledges all you want .. best buy in the bass world ...

    ... " Im looking up circuits and learning songs and breadboarding and reading.. i just would like to open a 'fender fs/ft' and not have to open two sites to see if its worthy of trade or its price, dig?'

    .. yup, I dig ... thats why the earlier suggestions to search, because answers to such a general question takes a long time to answer, and because we already answered them multiple times before .. and, we are ALL doing the above stuff same as you .... do your searching and learning, then ask your specific questions, it spreads the effort/time out ... thats how we got to know the differences ;)
  11. eddododo


    Apr 7, 2010
    Noooooooooo ;)

    On a side note, i just noticed my membership expired, whoops
  12. WretchedExcess


    Jul 29, 2013
    He could research at the Fender site until he's old and grey and still not have a good appreciation for what the real difference is between a C profile, a modern C profile, a 70s C profile and a thick C profile, etc.. Some cross section photos like they have at warmoth would help a lot.

    Even with that information it's easy to be disappointed when you realize that the model names that Fender gives it's instruments don't have a lot to do with the actual features on the instruments. I've yet to see a current prodution 70s fender bass that has a neck like a vintage 70s fender bass.
  13. mokkat


    Jan 22, 2008
    it's a jungle out there. Even if you had an official sheet of differences between models and US/mex/jpn/squier/etc, you would still need unofficial sources to find out how the quality+quality control was for a particular bass/series/place in what intervals of time.
    For example, good look finding info by just searching around if you're trying to compare a 2004 US P with a 1986 japanese Squier P, to guess which is "best" in the context of the price set.
  14. Super Iridium

    Super Iridium Supporting Member

    Jan 21, 2013
    I think what the OC wants is simple, because I've been looking for it too. Let me explain it this way, if I may. Back in the day, GM had five basic car brands, and ranked in order of increasing features/price, they were Chevy, Olds, Pontiac, Buick and Cadillac. Now of course there were exceptions to the ranking (a super expensive, loaded Buick might cost more than a bare-bones Cadillac, for example), and you could not even hope to memorize all of the various models, features and options offered within each brand, but the Basic rule was still useful for consumers--a Buick was generally a step up in quality /features from a Chevy; a Cadillac was generally a step up in quality/features from a Buick, and so forth.

    So is it ridiculous to ask for the same thing from Fender? For example, is a Special a step up or down from a Standard? Is a Blacktop a step up or down from a Highway One? I think that would help the OP, and the same for me too! Thanks.
  15. Tim1


    Sep 9, 2005
    New Zealand
    There is an excellent book:
    The Fender Bass: An Illustrated History by J W Black.
    Won't give you the current value but a great starting point and an excellent resource for establishing authenticity.
  16. 2cooltoolz

    2cooltoolz Supporting Member

    Nov 12, 2009
    Lake Conroe, TX
    Yeah, life sucks, doesn't it?
  17. eddododo


    Apr 7, 2010