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Fender Classic 50's or 70's Precision?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by awilkie84, Mar 21, 2013.

Fender Classic Series 50 or 70 Precision?

Poll closed Mar 28, 2013.
  1. 50's

    57 vote(s)
  2. 70's

    60 vote(s)
  1. I'm in the market for a new P-bass, as finding a decent replacement body for my 96 MIM is turning up fruitless.
    I tried the 70's yesterday at my local L&M and LOVE it.
    I haven't had a chance to try the 50's but it gets good reviews. It's also about $100 cheaper (after tax).

    What's everyone's thoughts on these 2? Which would you go with?
  2. johnbegone

    johnbegone Supporting Member

    Sep 16, 2004
    Chicago, IL
    I have two of the 50's p's. I really like them. I actually never tried out the 70's. If you tried one and loved it - buy that one. As with anything, there will always be discrepancies between basses, so buy what you try when you can!

    I think the thing people will not like about the 50's is the neck. It's a huge flat baseball bat style. One of the largest nut widths you can get. I'm 6'4 and have large hands so I really like it. I don't like jazz necks at all. In fact, I'm thinking of buying a 50's neck to put on a jazz bass I have as well.

    The only thing I don't like is the gold pickguard (the metal has a weird feel to me) but that's a $30 part to replace.
  3. mp40smg


    Aug 11, 2010
    Worcester, Ma.
    IMO, the 50s (from an aestetic perspective) does absolutely nothing for me.

    at least the 70s has somewhat of a retro vibe to it.
  4. miles'tone


    Feb 26, 2008
    Wales, U.K
    If you've found one you love, buy it before someone else does.
  5. I've owned both and I think I liked the 70's better, it's got much more of a Jazz type neck on it, the 50's is super wide at the nut. I also like the block inlays which was an acquired taste for me, I'd get a white 70's if is was doing it again...
  6. lpdeluxe

    lpdeluxe Still rockin'

    Nov 22, 2004
    Deep E Texas
    The Classic '50s is one of the best Fender basses made. I've had one for 7 years, and it is my go-to-bass for gigs, beating out my AV '57 P. The nitro finish on the '57 is nicer, but the poly '50s will last forever in a bar band environment.

  7. Well, I can have a 50's brought into the store for a $50 refundable deposit. So, there's no risk in buying something I won't like.

    As for the neck, I'm not a Jazz fan, but I don't like baseball bats. I like a moderately wide board, but a slim back.

    The gold pickguard doesn't seem to bother me. lol Although, I'd definitely a black body & not a fiesta or burst.

    I like the block inlays, but for $100 difference in the cost of the bass, I can live without it.
  8. Is the 70's a MIM or the Made in Japan? Also to be clear, when i said the neck on the 70's is more like a Jazz neck, I just meant it is a little thinner at the nut, not overly so though...
  9. R&B

    R&B Both kinds of music: Rhythm AND Blues! Supporting Member

    I recently sold my '50s to make room for a '57 AVRI. Both recent models, both great, and I do miss the '50s. I still have an MIJ '70s. Also great.

    The necks on the Classic Series basses are very different and each is nice in its own way. Wide/flat and fairly thin front-to-back on the '50s; narrower with 1-5/8" nut and even tighter jazz-like string spacing on the '70s. The '70s BnB neck has a very glossy poly finish.

    The pup in the '50s, according to a reliable TB'er who checked with Fender Customer Service, is the same as the pre-2012 American Standard. The '70s also sounds excellent and I really dig the vibe of that era. So I would give a slight edge to the '70s.
  10. This particular one is an MIJ. Although, the MIMs that I've played were equally as nice.
  11. Twocan

    Twocan Living the Dream

    Oct 5, 2009
    I loved my 50's P with the exception of the truss rod access. GREAT BASS for the money.
  12. Brockerboy


    Nov 15, 2012
    70s bro
  13. 4andnomore


    Nov 14, 2008
    I voted 50s cuz I don't care for the blox on P. But if you love it, buy it!

    Any P is a good P in my book :)
  14. WoodyJ

    WoodyJ Supporting Member

    Jul 29, 2008
    Smyrna, GA
    You might want to check out an American Special. These have a killer slim (front-to back) neck profile and a 1.625" nut.

    I generally go for the Vintage series ones but this one played and sounded so good that I bought one on sale ($699) and modded it slightly with a rosewood board neck,a tort guard and vintage reverse tall tuners. These also have the pre-2012 Am Standard pickup and are a great buy for a USA P-Bass.

  15. I owned an American Special for awhile and it was a great bass. I sold it to get my Spector ReBop 5DLX.
    To me, the 70s P plays better for the money. It's about $150 cheaper & feels/weighs about the same.
    I like the look of the 50s P, though. So, if it plays well & has good reviews here, I may spring for that one.
  16. Dragan


    Oct 5, 2009
    you talk about classic series '70 P bass?

    I didn't had chance to try it yet,but for me it does'nt fit. blocks and binding on 70 P bass?
    I'd pass...(especially since I have the REAL thang!haha!!)

    BTW. '50 classic P is lovely instrument!
  17. RyanJD


    Apr 19, 2011
    Basically word for word what I was going to say.
    Except I only have one 50's P and I love it.

    I like the maple on it. I have rosewood on my Fender Jazz. They balance each other nicely.
    Some people have changed the pickup on the 50's P. I have no idea why. It sounds fantastic to my ears.
  18. I have a Classic 50's P-Bass and I love it. They are professional quality instruments and need no "upgrades" to make them playable.
  19. RyanJD


    Apr 19, 2011
    Yeah true. That truss rod...
  20. Thanks for the info, guys.

    For those of you with Classic 50s. What's the weight like?

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