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Fender bass opinion..Marcus Miller, Geddy Lee, & the Mexico made Jazz

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by napski, Apr 15, 2006.

  1. napski

    napski Great. Where the heck am I now?

    Oct 27, 2005
    I just got through selling my Ernie Ball SUB bass since I wasn't happy with it. It was ok, but it just wasn't for me.

    Now I am on the hunt for a new bass.

    I went by the music store and checked out one of the Fender Jazz basses that was made in Mexico with the brown rosewood neck. When I slapped on it a little (with no amp on), I was totally impressed. It was smooth! A very good feel. I broke out a pick and tried it with the same results. I guess I was looking for something that can sound good with my fingers, picks and slap. A good rounded bass.

    Yet, I've been hearing so many good things about the Geddy Lee Jazz Fender and the Marcus Miller Jazz Fender, so now I'm a little confused since I don't have the opportunity to play on either one.

    I would hate to drop $440 on this Mexico Fender without trying the others, but I would have to travel at least 6 hours total just to try one out (yes, I live out in the middle of nowhere). PLus I don't think that the Mexico Fender retains as much value as the others. But can you really get some good versatility in the Marcus and the Geddy bass? With the exception of the electronics and the Bad Ass bridge, is there really a MAJOR difference in all 3 of these basses (neck, feel, overall sound, etc.)

    So any of you out there have had a chance to play on any or all of these and can shed some good opinions here before I drop my money down, please let me know.

  2. Akito


    Dec 1, 2003
    Well my opinion on this subject won't be the most authoritatize you could hope for, but here it is.
    From trying them all out in stores I was most impressed with the Marcus Miller bass. More booty than the Geddy and a very expressive tone. Remember the Geddy has a very shallow neck, that's up to you if that's a good thing. I also think the Geddy is a little thin sounding.
    It seems on the Mexican fenders that it's all about finding a good one that you like. Sounds like you have done that. Is $440 their best price on it? I was quoted a price on a new GL of $583.
  3. HiFi


    Apr 20, 2002
    Southern California
    The Marcus kills, especially if slap is in your plans.

    However, when I bought my new bass, I went to a handful of stores and tried out everything I could get my hands on. I found a special run natural MIM that played great, better than any other bass I had tried (most of the other MIMs played crummy), and the tone was about the best I had heard. I hadn't planned on buying an MIM, but I had to when I played this one.

    I would recommend playing as many basses as you can before dropping any money on one.
  4. rhythm


    Dec 4, 2005
    Try out a Spector (shameless plug!).
  5. lamborghini98

    lamborghini98 The Aristocrats

    May 1, 2005
    NYC; Portland, OR
    I also recommend trying out as many basses as possible before buying one. Is there any reason youre only looking at Fender basses?

    I would suggest the Marcus Miller, then the Geddy Lee, then a MIM (in that order). The Miller is such a good bass, IMO, but I really like the neck on the Geddy.

    If youre going to get a MIM, why dont you look for a used one and save some money?
  6. arjosy


    Jan 4, 2006
    New Joisey
    I own both a MIM Jazz as well as the Geddy Lee. I've had the MIM for about 4 years and the Geddy for about six months. I really like the MIM and wouldn't part with it. But I have to say if I had to choose, I would get the Geddy. For the extra money, the construction, feel, and electronics are superior to the MIM. Also, the MIM jazz (at least mine anyway) needs a neck adjustment about every six months (usually with the change from the cold to warm months). The Geddy neck shipped right where I like it and hasn't budged that I can tell. I also like the maple neck for feel and looks. Again, personal preference.

    Like one of the other posters said earlier, play a bunch and see which one you like. Good luck and happy hunting.
  7. hands5


    Jan 15, 2003
    good 'ol USA/Tampa fla.
    A real good setup and all 3 of them are pretty damn good IMO it all depends on what you want
  8. tplyons


    Apr 6, 2003
    Madison, NJ
    I love the Marcus AND the Geddy. I hope to own both, but a good deal came on the Marcus sooner, so that's what I have now.
  9. napski

    napski Great. Where the heck am I now?

    Oct 27, 2005
    Wow! Thanks everyone for your thoughts, opinions and suggestions! Keep them coming.

    I just wish I could find a store around here that had more "good" basses to try out (all of them carry such the crappy basses, except for the Mexico made Fender Jazz I described above). Unfortunately, I live in the sticks, so I am kinda screwed that way. Looks like I will have to take a BIG trip one weekend to a good music store outside of my state and see if I can find a music shop that has a better selection.

    The Geddy sounds cool because of the thinner neck, but I wonder how it is with slap? Doesn't seem like it would be a good slapper. But everyone is gung-ho on the Marcus. I'm dying to try them all if I get the chance.

    I don't know much about the MIM, but I look into that as well.
  10. Vic

    Vic There's more music in the nuance than the notes. Supporting Member

    Oct 14, 2002
    Central Illinois
    Staff, Bass Gear Magazine
    IMHO, the MM is cool, but I really don't like the preamp in them at all. I have a Geddy, and the slap tone on it is killer. It's a 70's J, so it's gonna' sound great for that. Basically, the GL is pretty much the same thing as a MM without the preamp and with a thinner neck profile, which is great for me.

    Definitely before you make a decision you should play all three, and make sure they're all set up at least halfway decent even if it means you take tools to the music store to lower the saddles (you won't be doing trussrods, of course... especially on the GL.)
  11. That's your best bet....

    The geddy sounds like a fender jazz bass with 70s pickup position being slapped IMO
  12. Are you still in Dresden? Last time I was at Buckdancer's Choice in Portland they had a Geddy Lee and several MIM and USA basses in stock. That was a while ago so the GL may not be there anymore, but AFAIK they are a stocking Fender dealer with competitive prices. Northern Kingdom has Fender, and there is a really nice store to the south in Wells. Can't remember the name, but they used to stock Stambaugh basses among others.

    I play a Geddy and feel it's a good value for a great all-around bass (fingerstyle, pick, slap). But I've played a few really nice Marcus and nice MIM basses as well. One difference between the GL/Marcus vs. MIM Standard is pickup placement. The GL and MM have the bridge pickup in the '70s location, ~.4" closer to the bridge than the MIM Standard Jazz that has the bridge pickup in the '60s location. It's a preference thing, but definitely makes a difference in tone.

    As bassable and others have said it's ideal to try as many basses as possible before choosing one. But heck, if that MIM impressed you a lot ain't nothing wrong with that.
  13. ArwinH

    ArwinH run rabbit run

    Dec 1, 2005
    Southern California
    What I dont get is that your profile says:
    "Fender (yuck!)"

    Under Previously owned gear, and now you considering three fender basses.
  14. Rockman


    Mar 2, 2006
    I only tried one bass at the, store i imediately felt amazing playing it and bought it. Now I am happy with my Gedy Lee because it is fluid, the maple with the black block inlays make it look dead sexy too.
  15. napski

    napski Great. Where the heck am I now?

    Oct 27, 2005
    Yeah, the Fender at the time I was playing on was a REALLY crappy percision bass! That is until I went to the store and tried this new MIM Fender Jazz. That changed my mind real quick!! Plus I did some more research into the Fender Jazzes.

    I just updated my profile now because now I don't have any equipment anymore. I got rid of my SWR amp too since it just kept lacking that bottom I was looking for, but at the time the price was right.
  16. Beefbass

    Beefbass Guest

    Feb 4, 2001

    People have a right to change their minds here at TB-unless there's been a coup de tat :D :hyper:
  17. napski

    napski Great. Where the heck am I now?

    Oct 27, 2005
  18. hands5


    Jan 15, 2003
    good 'ol USA/Tampa fla.
    Personally,I think the MM Jazz would be better if they just went with a regular 9 volt boost only preamp,because I think the peamps that uses the 18volt setup makes the instrument sound too sterile sounding IMO.

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