ESP J Four - run afoul of search feature!

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Fealach, Dec 13, 2007.

  1. Fealach

    Fealach Guest

    Apr 23, 2003
    Gone to a better place
    For all I know there are dozens of threads here on this bass, but I can't find them... "J" is too short to use, and "ESP four" brings up every single 4 string ESP ever made.

    What I get from Google is that these were ash or alder bodied Jazz clones with EMG pickups and rosewood fretboards.

    What's a good price for one that's got some scratches and wear, nothing through the finish,


    has a maple fretboard and non-EMG pickups? They look like your standard exposed pole Jazz pickups. Japan made. The only sales history on Ebay has a rosewood/EMG model with a $300 price, did not sell, reserve not met, so that's not much help.

    I don't need it, but it sounds and plays so good... I don't know what to offer the guy, and he doesn't know much about it.
  2. Bobster


    Mar 27, 2006
    Austin, TX
  3. Fealach

    Fealach Guest

    Apr 23, 2003
    Gone to a better place
    Thanks for the tip, that did give a lot more results.

    Unfortunately, most of it was pretty old, maybe half dealing with 5 strings. I see mentions of a other models, relatively few just of a J Four - which is all this one said. The posts that do describe a J Four mention EMGs and rosewood.

    I do appreciate the Google tip - your result gives me the impression that the non EMG pickups and maple board must be pretty rare in these basses. Of course the pickups could be aftermarket, but a maple board with an ESP logo would be harder to come by than Jazz pickups.

    With any luck somebody will happen upon the thread who has some idea of the current value of these basses, even if it is of the seemingly moe common configuration.
  4. You just missed a really nice one on ebay. No maple board or non EMGs, but nice non the less.
    Maybe you can get one from Japan.
  5. Fealach

    Fealach Guest

    Apr 23, 2003
    Gone to a better place
    I've seen the one on Ebay, but it's frustrating since the reserve wasn't met. Similar to the one in the link from ESP, but an older model and only 3 knobs, pearloid pickguard, trams purple finish that shows the wood grain, and MOP-looking dots on the maple neck. Visually quite striking. Do you think the differences between this bass and the EMG/rosewood models would mean a difference in value?

    What the seller wants is more than twice what the bidding went to on the Ebay auction, but reserve was not met, and there were no others in completed auctions. It seems silly though to assume that the standard rosewood model is only worht $300 from that one auction, I'd think a really nice Japanese made Jazz would be worth more than that!

    I guess they're just too uncommon for even TB members to have seen enough of them to know what they're worth. :meh:
  6. Doctor J

    Doctor J

    Dec 23, 2005
    I have a 1987 ESP 400 Series Jazz bass and it's a top class bass by any standard. There was a model from that time with the translucent purple finish you described called the 800 Series, it had gold hardware, is that the one? If you have the chance to get an ESP Jazz take it and don't worry about the price, I can't see you being disappointed. I would never sell mine.
  7. Fealach

    Fealach Guest

    Apr 23, 2003
    Gone to a better place
    Chrome hardware, and not the 2Tek bridge others have mentioned - just your basic Fender style cheap looking bent metal bridge. I must say it played and sounded as good or better than any J style bass I've played, even 70's Fenders and upscale basses that start with L and S. Just may have to see how the finances look after I pay the bills for the month, and check if it's still available, but that would make 5 fretted 4 string basses for me, so I wonder about my sanity.
  8. groove pump

    groove pump

    Oct 24, 2006
    Grab it!

    My numero-uno bass is a Franken-jazz that I found years back and I thought it was all Warmoth when I bought it. Surprize! When I swapped the P neck for the same thing in a J cut from Warmoth, I found the ESP logo in the pocket. Pretty sure that this one is alder and top routed for passive pickups (mine has DiMarzio Ultra J's and a Badass II). The finish is a stunning cherry sunburst with a little bit of flame in the top and the quality of this bass has me routinely shaking my head at US Fenders and so on. I honestly adore this thing (only cost me $350) and I've had an eye out for these ESP's ever since I found this one.

    Well, grab it if you conceivably need a nice Jazz even someday in the future...
  9. washburnfan

    washburnfan Guest

    Oct 19, 2007
    new haven ct
    I had a J-Four got rid of it... The balance on mine was really neck-heavy... It was an ash body trans blue with the pearloid pickguard and rosewood board... Cant remember if it had EMG's or not. Plain Fender-style bridge.
  10. I hope you can find what you need. I almost bought an orange 400 years ago. I made a big mistake!! I will make sure not to pass on another ESP Jazz again.
  11. hamertek98


    Apr 3, 2004
    I've seen some on ebay the last couple years. Rosewood and maple. They've gone from $350-500 if I remember correctly. Can't remember what pups they had, but I recall at least one purple one. I've never seen one with a 2-tek bridge for sell...that would cure any neck-dive! I've heard good things about them.
  12. EpicSoundtracks


    Mar 10, 2006
    Oakland, CA
    Lollar Pickups, Dunlop Strings
    I had two J-Fours (was an ESP endorsee briefly in the '90s). Not sure of body wood, and for the life of me, I can't remember if mine were active or passive! I suspect they were passive, but can't be sure. One was gun metal blue, the other was seafoam green. Traded the GMB one in @ GC for something, and sold the SFG one outright for $300 or so.

    That probably doesn't help you much, huh? ;)