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Fender 5 String Jazz Bass?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Funk Warts, Jul 10, 2001.

  1. Definitely

    4 vote(s)
  2. Maybe

    6 vote(s)
  3. No

    1 vote(s)
  1. Funk Warts

    Funk Warts

    Jun 13, 2001
    London, UK
    After posting about whether to get a 5 string or not, and every one saying that I should, I decided to head on down to my local guitar shop and try one out. They only had one, an Ernie Ball Music Man. It felt nice, but was priced at around £1100 (I think about US$2000) well out of my price range, which is up to £500 (around US$850).

    I was looking on the Internet to get some ideas when I came across the 5 string Fender Jazz Bass. Undoubtedly a nice looking bass, also very famous and all that. It was priced around £400 I think (around US$625).

    Does anyone own a jazz bass? Is it worth checking one out? What kind of sounds does it give?

    Once again, the talkbass forums have been more then useful. Thanks to everyone - click an ad.
  2. Hello Funk Warts. How's things.

    Well, I'm affraid I don't own - nor have I ever played - a J5 but I would be slightly concerned (about Fenders in general) having read a threads on here and elsewhere, of late.

    Some guys clearly love 'em. Others describe them in terms of being neck-heavy, having deadspots on the neck and all sorts. My Squier P is definitely neck heavy which I REALLY HATE :mad: (+ dead spots) and I can only think a J5 would be worse 'cos of the 5 tuners etc. I think some guys, too, think the low B is a bit rubber-bandish.

    Presumably (he said potentially making himself look naive) @ the price it must be a Mexican Standard J5? The general advice is to play load of these things cos some are really ace whilst some are...well, just the opposite

    Clearly you're a Yamaha man. Is there nothing from that range that you'd fancy?

    Rockin John
  3. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member In Memoriam

    Well there's no doubt that the best Fender 5 string Jazz is the Roscoe Beck signature - I've owned one of these and cannot speak highly enough of them.

    As to MIM 5 string Jazz basses, I've tried a few in shops and they can be pretty good, but quality is variable and you really have to try them and find one that suits you. I preferred the neck on the 5 string MIM over the US standard, but as I say it's down to what suits you.

    I think they are definitely worth considering and you aren't going to get much else in the sub £500 bracket in terms of 5 strings apart from Ibanez and I would always say that Fender is a better investment in terms of being able to upgrade and holding their value.

    I would advise buying second-hand if you really can't afford more - make that trip to the Bass Centre in Wapping!! ;)
  4. DaveB


    Mar 29, 2000
    Toronto Ontario
    I'm with Bruce. I have a Roscoe Beck and it's a fabulous 5 string. However, if you want to stay at a lower price point I think the Mexican Fender Jazz is a pretty good choice. Like all Fenders, you have to try a bunch to get the one that has "your" feel and playability. But keep looking and you will.
    Once you have the one with the neck you like then you'll have a good value bass with decent tone that can easily be upgraded with new pickups.
  5. I've played a MIM Fender Jazz 5, but everyone here says that they vary, so maybe I just played a bad one. But it was bad, I didn't like the low B at all. I love the MIM Fender Jazz 4 strings, but that 5 wasn't anything special. As Rockin John suggested, you seem to like Yamaha's, I have the same two as you, except my RBX260's a fretless, and I have the RBX765A, which is a 5 string. The 5 string's a good bass, unless you have a problem with all of your basses looking the same, which admittedly, could be pretty boring. Yamaha also makes the BBN5II, which is also a pretty good 5 string, at a good price.
  6. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member In Memoriam

    You might also come across a Yamaha TRB5 in some of the larger shops in London for about £500 used and these are excellent basses - especially the through-neck ones with piezo pickups in the bridge.
  7. Brad Johnson

    Brad Johnson Supporting Member

    Mar 8, 2000
    Gaithersburg, Md
    DR Strings
    I have two MIA Jazz Deluxe 5's that I bought used for ~$500 US. I like them ...a lot. I've played all of the other Fenders, for me the JD5 works best.

    Which Fender did you see on the net? Are you interested in used or only new?
  8. Traveler


    Jun 26, 2001
    Greenwood, AR.
    My friend (a guitar player, boooooo) decided he wanted a bass in his collection. He already has 4 guitars. So he bought a Washburn 5-string fretless for about 900 bucks. I played it. WoW! What a 5-string. IMHO, I dont think Ive ever played a better 5 for under 1500 bucks.
  9. I would think that if you had the opportunity you should get the Fender 5 stringer.
    Or you could save your pennies and buy a Ernie Ball Music man stingray 5 string (awesome bass in my terms).
  10. Funk Warts

    Funk Warts

    Jun 13, 2001
    London, UK
    Yo, bigunslinger.

    How much exactly am I looking at (in £) for a Stingray?

    Isn't that what Flea used to play?
  11. agyeman

    agyeman Member

    Mar 6, 2001
    about £989 @ http://www.flyingpigmusic.co.uk

    The 5 string is £1118.00.
  12. Just three months ago I got my Fender 5-string Jazz Bass. I remember it well £380 from sound control bristol. AHHHHHHHHHHHHH memories.

    It's one hell of a bass and I say get it. I was a bit put off at first because I play a lot of punk and metal and lets face it it's not made for that and it has this little tangy ring to it which annoyed me at first. But as I grew accustomed to it, I found it to be a brilliant bass with a rich and varied range of tones and just generally cool to play.
  13. All I have to say is try before you buy. Nothing sucks worse than ordering a bass and getting it in and it sounds like crap.
  14. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Total Hyper-Elite Member Gold Supporting Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
    Get an American Jazz Deluxe 5, or an Am Standard Jazz 5, or as many have said, the Roscoe Beck. I have an Am Jazz Deluxe 5 (a '94), and it's got great warm tone (from the alder body), but mine has active or passive electronics, so I can really kick it up if I need to. The RB5 is all passive, but is a true tone monster. I got it for $640 used at GC in perfect condition. Somebody here just sold one (a sunburst) for $750, as I recall. A great price.

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