Epiphone Jack Casady: what's the wrap?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Raman, Apr 28, 2021.

  1. Raman


    Feb 19, 2003
    Montreal, Qc
    I'm perfectly happy with my G&L L-2500 tribby as my main instrument. It reliably and comfortably provides a super full range of tones that I can use in all my eclectic musings.
    I have a couple other very cheap basses, but I rarely play them at all. I sometimes muse that I will get rid of those 2 and buy myself a 2nd, really nice bass. My 3 top choices are:
    -MusicMan Ray35
    -Fender P
    -Epiphone Jack Casady

    The Jack Casady is the most puzzling for me. It never seems to go down in price! I keep looking out for a deal, but none ever seems to come.
    Is it really that good?

    For me, it's not a natural choice since I'm preferably a 5 string player. Yet the Casady bass appeals to me more than even a MusicMan...

    Is the Casady such a great bass?
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  2. BassBuzzRS


    Oct 18, 2005
    From what I have read, it's an interesting bass, that sounds unique enough that people want to keep it. At least keep it if the resale price would be low.
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  3. I have one and I love it. I had it with rounds and it sounded really good. Now I have it with flats and it sounds glorious. It's comfotable to play and it sits in the mix really nicely. Besides, the tone control is one of the most versatile passive tones I've seen on a bass. It may seem not too relevant, but I can get a lot of different tones with it. You just have to try one and see how it feels.
  4. Wibble666


    Apr 20, 2021
    The Casady is a shockingly great playing and sounding bass when set up right so don’t go by what it’s like in the store ... and don’t go on price either as it sounds way better than that, a real tone monster that plays very comfortably and just feels right in my opinion for my style. So good that Gallup has used one on stage as an alternative to the knight (your avatar).I have had mine since they first came out and it’s solid, the only things I had to do was glue in the bridge posts since the whole thing just fell off when changing strings lol and remove the dodgy pickgaurd, but seriously this guitar has a real detailed tone quality, you can get a very warm 60s vibe out of it but without it sounding too dated. Casady did a real good job of designing so it has that genuine hollow body thing going on but without it being prone to feedback, and the electrics are pretty good too with the attenuator being pretty useful rather than some gimmick. I’m no great fan of airplane but I can see the guy really knew his stuff when it came to designing his own bass and it shows here in spades. So I can’t really fault it ...it’s a bargain and a keeper ...I always wondered what it would sound like fretless ...maybe one day I will buy another just to find out.
    Last edited: Apr 28, 2021
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  5. Glueing the bridge can be avoided changing the strings one by one!!! :)
  6. Wibble666


    Apr 20, 2021
    It just bothered me setup wise that string tension was the only thing keeping it all together ...so you should really glue it as that’s what it was designed to be like and keep the whole thing rock solid.
  7. andruca


    Mar 31, 2004
    Madrid (Spain)
    You can get the best of both worlds, a Star Bass 5er that looks like a hollow and sounds like an ultra fat woody Jazz Bass (no microphonics, no feedback) with crazy sustain. If you're not that much into the hollow/semihollow "honk" this is a great option (you can kinda' get the "honk" by playing where the neck starts, also flatwounds change its character a lot). I've extensively tried the JC, also many Ibby Artcores, some Tanglewood, the Starfire II (after getting the Star Bass), also owned an Epiphone Viola for some years (after also trying the Icon/Contemporary Hofner options back in the day). The Star Bass is superior to any hollow/semihollow for my taste and needs (also a mostly 5 string player).

    Last edited: Apr 28, 2021
  8. Wibble666


    Apr 20, 2021
    Are the pickups attached directly to the resonating top soundboard on that one or is it like the artcores that look hollow but really aren’t with everything bolted onto a central solid wood spine with sound boxes either side.
    Last edited: Apr 28, 2021
  9. andruca


    Mar 31, 2004
    Madrid (Spain)
    Body has a central solid maple block.

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  10. Wibble666


    Apr 20, 2021
    Ah ok ...the Casady was specifically made with the saddles attached to the central spine for stability but the pickup is mounted on the top soundboard to get the direct hollow tone ...

    this means it will not feedback like a full hollow body but still retain that tone ..but for sure it will for that same reason feedback more readily than a solid spine.

    this was a compromise that Casady was willing to make and is worth considering when trying to choose.
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  11. Son of Wobble

    Son of Wobble

    Mar 8, 2010
    I saw Mani of the stone roses playing bass for primal scream and he changed from his signature short scale Rickenbacker to the Jack for a couple songs. Lots of feedback.
    That data point aside, I've also heard the bass sound great played in an ensemble.
    Wibble666 likes this.
  12. MynameisMe

    MynameisMe Be kind. Supporting Member

    Dec 31, 2018
    Jax, Florida
    The one I had played great. Never any feedback issues. The scary part was the three-way switch seemed easy to break off and kind of cheap.
    Battery glue my bridge because it popped out at changing strings.
    The resale value is fairly high it took me a little while to sell mine but it was a great bass, my wife loved it.
    Think she wishes I would have kept it.
    Sounds really woody with flats and sounds terrific with rounds.. probably should have kept it but didn't play it enough.
    Sorado71 and Raman like this.
  13. RichardW


    Feb 25, 2016
    near Philly
    I love my JCB for all the reasons listed above. Only complaint about it--minor--is the neck dive. Otherwise, it is versatile, comfortable to play, and looks great. And I think the price is a tremendous value.
  14. I have a love-hate relationship with mine. I’m constantly wrestling with it to keep the neck from diving to the floor, the bridge has a fixed radius that doesn’t match the fingerboard so the A and D strings are higher than the E and G strings, and the sharp edge of the body digs into my arm. But it sounds and looks great.
  15. bassdude51

    bassdude51 "You never even called me by my name." Supporting Member

    Nov 1, 2008
    Central Ohio
    The Jack Casady Epiphone has been in production since 1998. That's nearly 23 years. That alone says something about it.

    Production has recently moved from Korea to China. I have no idea if quality is different.

    Back in Feb. 2021, I found a used 2006 Casady on Facebook Market Place and only a few miles from my home. It's in EX condition and bass + case was $500. I couldn't resist. Mine is black.

    How does it sound? I put some light gauge GHS Pressure Wounds on it. IMO, it sounds about 85% like a Precision Bass with the 15% having a slightly "woody" and organic sound. I'd say it has less top end compared to a P Bass.

    The pickup switch takes the pickup from normal to slightly hot to very hot. Meaning the output goes up and the tone gets thicker with high end coming down.

    My Casady is under 8 lbs.

    They are neck divers because the upper strap button is way down to where the neck attaches to the body.

    The quality of my MIK is VG and above average. The nut is 1 + 5/8 wide and at the last fret, it is a little bit narrower than a Fender. Making it a bit easier to place higher register.

    I don't care much for the 3 point bridge but I'm able to adjust it OK. Normally, you have to loosen the strings to turn the 3 mounting screws or else, the screw heads will get schmucked up.

    There can be a problem with string silk coming over the bridge saddles. There's a guy who sells a "mod bar" on eBay that pulls the strings back on these Gibson 3 point bridges. (Or one can thread the strings through some bolt nuts to pull the silk back.) My light gauge GHS P W sit OK onto the saddles. Strings without silk, even better.

    I really like the Casady! But keep in mind, it is not a bright sounding bass but the rest of the tone spectrum is defined and distinct. (I'm not into bright.)

    Keep your eyes open for a used one and they come up for sale here on Talk Bass often enough.

    It's an excellent bass!

    (Recently went with black speed knobs.)

    DSCF9389.JPG DSCF9390.JPG
    Last edited: Apr 28, 2021
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  16. Wibble666


    Apr 20, 2021
    that’s exactly mine ...same case, same everything!!
    bassdude51 likes this.
  17. MynameisMe

    MynameisMe Be kind. Supporting Member

    Dec 31, 2018
    Jax, Florida
    I would probably buy a black or any color besides the gold that I had. I did not like the color
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  18. bholder

    bholder Affable Sociopath Supporting Member

    Sep 2, 2001
    Vestal, NY
    Received a gift from Sire* (see sig)
    I have 3. Must like them well enough, eh?
  19. mellowgerman

    mellowgerman Supporting Member

    Jan 23, 2008
    Orlando, FL
    I've owned 2 Casady basses and toured with one of them for most of 2014. Top notch instruments if you don't mind the feel. It does hang differently than a typical solid-body like a Fender, so there will likely require some getting-used-to. I also agree that those bridges are awful, so the Hipshot Supertone bridge is the one thing I would consider an important upgrade. Aside from allowing for a proper set-up, I actually found the string-to-string output to become more even once I added the Hipshot. I am by no means a fancy bridge fanatic and I think Fenders are just fine with their original lightweight bent-metal bridge design, but with the original 3-point bridge on the Casady, the A and D strings were quieter (not super drastically but enough to be noticeable and bother me). It also wasn't just the strings, as I tried several different sets with the same results. Anyway, the Hipshot fixed that, so it seems like it was a resonance transfer issue or something of the sort. Those low impedance pickups are super sensitive to nuance and subtleties, which is why they're so special, but this also means it will pick up any resonance issues caused by design flaws.
    Long story short, I'm just not a long-scale player. I CAN play them, but I feel comfy and at home on short-scale basses, so I ultimately didn't feel like I had to keep a Casady in my arsenal. That said, I definitely missed that awesome tone, so I was inspired to track down a set of Casady electronics and put them in a short scale. Earlier this year I did so by putting the pickup, transformer, and switch into an Eastwood Newport bass, in approximately the same position as on the Casady. Even though it's not a hollowbody, I love the results and it's one of my go-to basses when I don't want to bring one of my more valuable/delicate basses.
    Last edited: Apr 28, 2021
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