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Essex neck question.

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Jiro, May 20, 2005.

  1. Jiro


    Mar 15, 2004
    I really don't like this head stock! is the neck pocket on this essex bass the same as any other fender bass? If i get it i will replace the neck probably. On Rondos site, it says its 34.5" scale. I heard people sticking warmoth necks on these guitars but those were for the Jazz copies. This is a p-bass style body.
  2. illidian


    Jul 2, 2004
    There are two Essex headstocks (termed "New," and, "Old"). I'm sure Kurt would work with you if you only like one of the two.

    Also, Essex necks are slightly off Fender necks (which also causes the pickguard to be a bit off).

  3. It's not a 34.5" scale unless they changed when they changed the headstock. All of Rondo's P copies are standard 34" scale. I've had 5 of these in the shop and have owned 2 and they are all pretty much standard. The heel of the neck can vary slightly from Fenders - it's a little wider by about 1/32". Sometimes this makes a difference, sometimes it doesn't. As for pickguards, only Fender pg's have a chance in hell of actually drop-in fitting Fenders so it's all a wash. If you get a decent aftermarket pg, it will most likely fit 75% of the holes, 15% of the holes will be slightly off, and the rest will be off enough to have to redrill. Again, not a big deal.

    I really wish folks would stop being disappointed with tit for tat comparisons between a $125 bass and a $1,250 bass when we all know what the $125 is capable of.
  4. Ed Goode

    Ed Goode Jersey to Georgia Gold Supporting Member Supporting Member

    Nov 4, 2004
    Acworth, GA
    Endorsing Artist: FBB Bass Works
    +10 billion :bassist: What the heck do all of you expect :confused:
  5. illidian


    Jul 2, 2004
    I was just letting the guy know (in case he already does not).

    For $125, Essex basses are the best value out there. The issues with them are negligable and able to be fixed easily.
  6. Jiro


    Mar 15, 2004
    According to the Rondosite(http://www.rondomusic.net/spj62.html)

    -Width of the neck at the nut: 1 9/16"; at the 20th fret: 2 9/16"
    -Overall length 45"; Scale length: 34.5"
    -Width at the widest point: 13"
    -Actual Weight is only 7 lbs
    -Note the vintage white bass also ships with a white pick guard, not the black one shown

    Now im really confused... the last note is not clear... does the white one actually come with a white pick gaurd?... Does it come with both white and black pick gaurds? I think white on white would look kind of ugly.
  7. toad


    Jun 26, 2002
    I must be a sicko, I kinda think that headstock is one of the better ones out there on a fender copy.
  8. Jiro


    Mar 15, 2004
    How are these basses for slapping anyway?
  9. I know it's hard to believe, what with Kurt's sometime's typo's clouding the picture, but the SPB-62's really have a 34" scale. Here's a pic of one I've got in the shop now with the tape on it's neck...

  10. Hey, I wasn't shootin' at ya ;) ...The Essex definitely has differences with a Fender and knowing all of them is helpful when you are out there shopping for upgrades. It's like the old days of personal computers when compatibility standards between the major players hadn't been sorted out yet - you had to know what worked with what and what didn't.

    I recently did a setup of Dave Siff's Japanese market Fender Precision. We put inserts in the neck and while the neck was off, it was an opportunity to do an actual side by side comparison of the Essex and a very nice Fender. The Essex won in weight and of course cost and was even in paint finish (it was tough to compare a Lake Placid Blue Essex with a top notch sunburst Fender) but lost on all other counts to the Fender. I am the first defender of the Essex as a good instrument, but when you can see them the way I did, it really becomes clear where the Essex falls short. The main things I noticed were pure fit issues. The Fender had the finest finished and fitting neck pocket one could ask for and I put that to the quality of the tooling used in the Fender factory. It's been noted elsewhere that Essex routing is rough. That's what I observed and it comes from poor tool quality and maintenance. Fix that alone and it would bring the Essex up to about 80% of the Fender quality and then you would be hard pressed to gleen out the remaining 20% of the differences.

    Tonally we will have to wait to see. This Essex is Thisn'sucks and it's being done up as a Steve Harris Signature with an SD Quarter Pounder pup. Dave Siff's Fender had one installed in it too. I'll get Dave out here to help with a side by side when the build is completed. That will be an interesting experiment.
  11. illidian


    Jul 2, 2004
    How is the Lake Placid Blue on the Essex? It looks nice on Rondo's website, but I'd love to see a real picture. It's my second favorite after the 3TS. Do you know how well Essex's Sunburst usually runs?

    I'd love to see that comparison. The Fender will win, but then the question is: is it worth all the extra money. I'd like to know how close the Essex is, though.
  12. Jiro


    Mar 15, 2004
    Thanks hambone! Im not sure if i should get a P/J or just J maybe ill just get both :)

    So since you got tons of experience with these basses which upgrade is the most beneficial besides new strings? Im thinking of replacing the pickups to some barts.
  13. In my opinion electronics is probably the first place to make the largest improvement in this order - pots, then pups. Then it would be tuners and bridge if that's your bag. I like high mass bridges and high quality tuners so that's what I usually do anyway. That's the replacement end of the scale. Without doing that, the best thing any Essex owner could do for their instrument is have a professional setup done to it. If that's done right and thoroughly, it will eliminate about 90% of the issues that cause you to think "this thing is a piece of crap". I haven't found an Essex yet that I haven't been able to set up to my or someone elses liking. THEN they play great!

    The Blue finish on the Essex is top notch. I'm not a fan of bursts so I'm probably not the best judge but the 3 tones I've seen in person have all been nicely shaped and well executed. No problems there.

    If I had to make a call I would say that the Essex easily competes against the lesser Fender series - all of the Squier stuff and most of the Mexican imports. So right there it's value is about double. I will go so far as to say the Essex probably would compete favorably with some $500-$700 range instruments. Again, the perceived value is about 5 times it's purchase price. And, if you were to go in and do the complete top to bottom hotrodding of the instrument with top quality components like a Japanese or American Fender would sport, you would be pushing it even higher. By then you would probably have about $500-$700 in the instrument and, depending on the skill of the technician doing the work, you could probably match the Fender. It would take some tweeking and tuning but it could be done. I don't know if you could precisely match the "feel" that any particular Fender instrument had but you could match the quality, playabilty, and tone.

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