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Fender American Performer Bass... Yay or Nay?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by MarcGreenwood, Aug 2, 2019.

  1. MarcGreenwood


    Aug 7, 2015
    Hi everybody,

    I've been thinking for a couple of years that a PJ will be something cool to add to my arsenal. In the last recording I made, the studio had a Yamaha BB1000S and I used it in a couple of songs to get a "clinky" sound with the pick, sounded fantastic. The idea of have a sort of that sound with a PJ has become serious in recent times, so I am decided to get it.

    So, the questions are... The Performer Series are made with good woods? More than 2 piece wood body? Are they a good canvas to put a nice pickups and a different wiring with a pickup selector to keep the Precision sound safe? Or it will be better to buy an Am Std or something like that and take it to my luthier to route it...?

    PD. The Elite seems a really nice thing, with the ebony fingerboard... but I want to keep the classic P-Bass sound, my main bass is a pretty P-Bass 1965 L series, and I really want to keep rocking with something that sound similar (I know it's imposible to match it) to that.

  2. Tad

    Tad Supporting Member

    Dec 10, 2007
    Boise, Idaho
    I say, yay to the Performer.

    Justinian, gepettus, oren and 8 others like this.
  3. MarcGreenwood


    Aug 7, 2015
    Tad likes this.
  4. murphy


    May 5, 2004
    Toronto, Canada
    Be aware the neck will be very different to your 60s precision...1.62 nut
    Last edited: Aug 2, 2019
    MarcGreenwood likes this.
  5. Paulabass


    Sep 18, 2017
    My only gripe with them is the satin finish. Within weeks a satin finish is glossy everywhere you touch. This is just my humble little gripe, but to me is a deal breaker. I did have a hwy 1 that I liked that I took apart and buffed to semi-gloss.
  6. 4sight

    4sight Supporting Member

    The Performers are very nice, but if you had such success with a BB Yamaha, why not another?

    I'd put them up against any other mass produced bass build and playability wise.
  7. Linnin


    Jul 19, 2012
    Linningrad, Earth
    YAY! I only wish that there were lefty Performers.
    MarcGreenwood likes this.
  8. MAFbass1992


    Feb 4, 2012
    I think it's a good instrument. During the last couple of weeks I went to try them at different music stores and beside the Elite series, they were the best playable basses. The modern C neck profile is very confortable. I had an AM Pro jazz bass and I wanted a thicker neck after all!

    Is it worth the price? I'm currently debating over that. I think so but... Only the tuners are the same than the Am Pro series, which is very nice, compared to the American Special model before. Otherwise if it matters, change the nut, put better pickups and a hi mass bridge? If you like the colors go for it! I'm not crazy about the colors that came out with the black pickguard. Sunburst is nice, but I already have three basses in sunburst... First world problems hey!
    MarcGreenwood likes this.
  9. One thing I like about the performer series is that they are very light. My jazz weighs just under 9 lbs. The pickups are more modern sounding with tons of punch. Some people don’t like the Greasebucket circuitry but I am personally fine with it.
    Last edited: Aug 2, 2019
  10. MAFbass1992


    Feb 4, 2012
    I liked the Yosemite pickups for the PJ, but not really in a jazz bass. Compared to the V-MOD it sounded to bright and lacked bottom end. Take my advice with a grain of salt because there's so much you can do in a music store...!

    And yes the Performers I tried were all very light and well balanced. Which is a good thing to consider for a good ''Performer'' bass in that price range!
    MarcGreenwood likes this.
  11. MarcGreenwood


    Aug 7, 2015
    Well, I am P-Bass guy, forever. I'm only looking to get closer to that BB PJ sound while keep my P-Bass sound. I know that the position of the Precision pickups on the BB1000S are different, and it have it's own sound, no Fender can replicate that, different beasts...
  12. DrStein


    Nov 8, 2009
    Athens, Greece
    While endorsing my unexpectedly successful thread
    Does anyone here have a bigger guitar than bass collection
    I would like to report that my recently acquired American Performer Telecaster is a Triple A instrument so, yes, you can rest assured of the quality aspect of the series (at least).
    MarcGreenwood likes this.
  13. MarcGreenwood


    Aug 7, 2015
    I will put other pickups, other wiring, badass bridge... So... the wood, the body and neck itself, are good like the rest of the american range? I know that Elite it's another history... but I prefer a passive, 20 frets, classic looking bass (with a JB pickup in the bridge).
    murphy likes this.
  14. MAFbass1992


    Feb 4, 2012
    Me too! I have no idea about the wood so I'd like to know!
    MarcGreenwood likes this.
  15. MarcGreenwood


    Aug 7, 2015
  16. HardNHeavy


    Apr 17, 2014

    thats a great color...........fenders new copper penny isnt it.......Just built a P/J bass and used a blank affinity body (Alder), gutted it and put Bart pup, which tend to be bright, with a MM jazz maple neck and a tusq nut which gave the bass lots of clarity believe it or not, then with hipshot, schaller tuners etc.....I can get a P sound with the split coils and rolling up the treble easily..
    Last edited: Aug 2, 2019
    MarcGreenwood and Tad like this.
  17. I don't like the feel of the neck and I've never liked the Greasebucket thing, so a nay for me.
    MarcGreenwood and Lownote38 like this.
  18. FugaziBomb


    Jun 5, 2017
    If you're looking to replace that jazz bass pickup, may I suggest something like this

    It will improve upon the sound immensely ;)
    MarcGreenwood and MAFbass1992 like this.
  19. DanGroove


    Apr 27, 2017
    Yes to the performer. They also make the Elite with a Maple fretboard in several colors though.


    Attached Files:

    MarcGreenwood likes this.
  20. Lownote38


    Aug 8, 2013
    Nashville, TN
    I purchased a Performer Strat body for my guitar, and it isn't satin. It's gloss. Do you mean the neck?

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