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Fender Deluxe P Bass Special Question

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by rowyco, Sep 9, 2005.

  1. rowyco


    Sep 24, 2004
    Traverse City, MI
    I have the older model of this bass with the passive pickups and simply adore it. I think I want a new one that sounds somewhat similar but now the newer model has active pickups. I want to try one out for myself but no one around me has any to play. How much will the active pickups change the sound of this bass?

    I don’t know if this helps you answer my question but I usually play with both my precision and jazz (bridge) pickup volumes almost all the way up.

  2. FireAarro


    Aug 8, 2004
    Just a correction, the newer models have passive pickups and an active preamp.
  3. rowyco


    Sep 24, 2004
    Traverse City, MI
    Sorry for the stupid question but what exactly does the active preamp do?
  4. Jazzin'

    Jazzin' ...Bluesin' and Funkin'

    The preamp should have an EQ, probably 3band.
  5. rowyco


    Sep 24, 2004
    Traverse City, MI
    Could I easily turn the active preamp off? But then would I lose some of the sound quality?
  6. seansbrew


    Oct 23, 2000
    Mesa AZ.
    Can you explain this more. I thought that if a bass has boostable frequencies like bass, treble, mids, that the pick ups would automatically be considered active.

    I have the Fender American deluxe p bass and it has an awesome aggresive tone. Probably the most aggresive p bass I have ever heard. The treble can be a little brittle, but I cured that with TI flats. Also, there is no option (stock) on this bass for passive mode.
  7. dBerriff


    Oct 2, 2004
    Oakham, UK
    You cannot turn the pre-amp off - there is no passive switch. So fresh batteries are the order of the day although they do last a long time.

    Not everyone likes the sound of the Fender pre-amp but I'm happy with mine (recent 18v setup). What you get is tone boost as well as cut for bass, mid and treble.

    The precision pickup sounds just like a precision to my ears, with perhaps just a touch more output although the main reason for the pre-amp seems to be tone shaping rather than boosting the output.

    The bridge humbucker sound very different - a strong mid-range honk that needs a bit of tone shaping (in my opinion). I find a bit of bass boost and a touch of mid cut make for a very strong sound that is usefully different to a standard Precision or Jazz output. I haven't actually gigged with this bass yet so I cannot comment on how well it will sit in the overall mix.

    If you try one be subtle with the mid control - it is fierce.

    Physically it is a comfortable bass to play with well finished neck and frets. The body is bit smaller than a standard Precision and quite light. Mine is well balanced - the light-weight tuners seem to do the trick. The neck is on the thick side but I don't find that a problem. The bonus is the tuning is rock solid and there are no dead spots.

    If this sounds understated I should say I think mine is a superb bass and a "keeper". I just need a few rock/soul gigs to use it more, rather than my usual Jazz. :)
  8. seansbrew


    Oct 23, 2000
    Mesa AZ.
    +1 for the eq advice, I use mine the same way, the mids can be a bit brutal. The abundant mids come in handy if you want a Jaco sound with the neck pick up turned down. This is the most comfortable p bass I have played.
  9. orskard


    Mar 17, 2004
    i also have the older p bass special. I love that thing. Its my first and only bass.

    Sunbusrt, rosewood board, upgraded black guard, and BAII.

    what is yours?
  10. rowyco


    Sep 24, 2004
    Traverse City, MI
    Mine is black (don't really like the color but I got it used for a great price), maple fretboard, and black pearl pickguard (looks great with the black).

    I wanted to add a Badass II bridge but I didn't know if it would fit since the body is precision size (shorter) and with that jazz bridge pickup I didn't think a BAII would fit in there. Did you have to modify anything to make it fit right? And did you file slots into the bridge?