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Fender Deluxe Active Jazz sounds artificial

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Skel, Mar 17, 2006.

  1. Skel


    Jun 19, 2005
    Boulder, Colorado
    I recently bought a new MIM Deluxe Active Jazz online. Besides being able to feel the edges of the frets when I slide up & down the neck, to my ears the active electronics make the tone sound artificial or "fakey", but mainly on the "G" string. Does anybody else know what I'm talking about, and is it only Fender, Fender MIM, or just active basses in general?
  2. Nedmundo

    Nedmundo Supporting Member

    Jan 7, 2005
    I've had that reaction to several active basses, and the less expensive they are, the more "artificial" they are likely to sound. But even some more expensive, otherwise good active basses seem to have a weak "twang" on the D and G strings, especially with the treble up. I guess my Jazz sometimes does too though...so just get a good P-bass and be done with it already! :D (I love some active basses though, and just ordered a G&L.)
  3. canopener


    Sep 15, 2003
    Isle of Lucy
    String it with some flats.
  4. syciprider

    syciprider Banned

    May 27, 2005
    Inland Empire
    You mean it sounds like a synthesizer? Why, that makes it better!
  5. syciprider

    syciprider Banned

    May 27, 2005
    Inland Empire
    But to be serious, sometimes it is the power of suggestion. You heard somewhere (like TB) that actives have a distinct sound. So the first time you play an active, you "hear" this sound.
  6. Skel


    Jun 19, 2005
    Boulder, Colorado
    I'm sure it wasn't a "suggested" thing - I've never read that before about active basses. I think I'm going to trade my Geddy and my MIM active deluxe for a passive MIA basic jazz - I really think I'd love the low end and the modern "C" neck. I'm sure I'm not the first to decide "passive" is what I like.
  7. Marcus Willett

    Marcus Willett

    Feb 8, 2005
    Palm Bay, FL
    Endorsing Artist: Bag End - Dean Markley - Thunderfunk
    Nope. I switched "back" to passive basses after 10 years of using active (some with EMG's, some Stingrays, some with after-market pre amps...you name it) and never looked back. If I want "that" sound, there are plenty of ways to get it after the fact, but for me nothing beats the "real-ness" of a passive setup.
  8. marcopalla


    Aug 31, 2005
    When I bought it ( I had a completly different bass, an ibanez sr1000) I was surprised, but in some months I understood some things

    - by default J MIM DLX hasn't fender strings but cheap koreans (strange! but true), so change them fast. If you don't like G (too highs tones, me too), try 0.45 or more. I use elixir heavy.
    - It has many tones so U have to know them.
    I think it naturally tends to have many trebles, wich is not bass tone we usually hear in 90% of music.
    So decrease treble on the knobs (I usually have the high knob to 1/4 and only in soloing I increase). And I personally boost little the basses and use more neck pickup, about 3/4 (i've seen is a very common reg)
    - mid control has a great influence on general tone, try different setup
    - it change a lot from an amp to another so U have to remember the tone U like and set every time U change amp (I think more than others bass).
    - feeling the edges of the frets is really strange, but a good luthier can resolve in 10 minutes
    - if U feel yet it has a cold/artificial tone U could try a preamp, maybe a tube one (I use warwick quadruplet and gives some warm tones, but others are also better)

    WHen U'll find the right tone U'll love it I'm shure.

    best regards,
  9. It's true, I experience the same thing on higher notes on my MIA Deluxe.. The thing about the preamp is that even flat, it has a slight boost in bass, midrange, and treble. This gives it a hot sound. The treble does sound a bit artificial (the midrange and bass boost give it a nice active flavor, though). Try cutting the treble slightly.

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