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Fender Geddy Lee Jazz in your Opinion??

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by ALBION100, May 13, 2005.

  1. ALBION100


    Apr 21, 2005
    I currently own and play a Fender P Bass, but have recently been thinking about getting myself the Geddy Lee sig Bass.

    I was just wondering what other people opinions were of the Geddy Bass and if any one has got one how do they rate it.

    Any comments welcome please??

  2. HMZ

    HMZ Supporting Member

    Dec 21, 2003
    Great bass!! the Geddy is better then the two American Jazz basses I have owned.
  3. philiprst


    Mar 24, 2005
    Many people hear have good things to say about the GL and I was excited when my local music store got one in stock. I am a huge Geddy Lee fan and I love the look of the bass but I was disappointed in the one I actually played. I think it all comes down to whether or not you like the unique features of the bass. The neck is "shaved" down to be thinner then a regular jazz and I found that uncomfortable. The pickups were noisy and, I thought, weak sounding although you can make quite a nice growl. Another thing I really disliked, although this is purely cosmetic, is that the block markers and neck binding are painted on. Having said all that, the bass was nicely put together in a Japanese mass-produced sort of way and at just under $700 was great value.
  4. jasonc


    Feb 3, 2005
    Cleveland, Ohio
    Okay. So i've been pining over this bass for a while now. Well i FINALLY just got one. I was playing an MIM Fender Standard Jazz for the last 2 years or so. I played the Geddy in the store a few times and loved the feel. I have smaller hands, and absolutely loved the shaved neck. Anyhow, as I said I finally got one - and I love it. I didn't expect a huge difference between my MIM Jazz and this one, but boy was I wrong. The Geddy sounds unbelievably better! Way more sustain, much more "full" sounding, and as I said early - the thin neck does it for me. I was going to keep my MIM Jazz as a back up, or incase it turned out I didn't like the G.Lee... Instead, I'm parting with it, confident in the Geddy Lee. The tone on this blows away the MIM. Growl, punch, and warmth can easily be diealed in. I use Fender 7250 H strings (higher tension .045-.110) just for reference. They sound golden.

    People have talked about how the neck is "too thin" or "fragile" - it's not. Atleast in my case. As I said, this bass is quality Japan crafted and is definately a keeper. I've played MIA Jazz basses, and this one is on the same playing field (if not higher - for me - simply because of the neck). Also, the tuners have been an issue for some people (ugliness factor and coming loose/detuning), but i've had no problems, and honestly dont think they look bad at all.

    Lasty, the finish. The super High Gloss... some aren't a big fan of it, but I am. I like it. So it's basically up to you. Comes down to personal choice. I love it. Go out and play it a bunch. If it does it for ya - get it. It's an awesome sounding/feeling bass.
  5. Vic

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

    Oct 14, 2002
    Central Illinois
    Staff, Bass Gear Magazine
    I've owned and played many fantastic basses, including a lot of great Fenders, including J's, both new and vintage. I currently have a very nice GENUINE '72 J on loan from a friend (tho it has EMG pickups in it right now). That said...

    The GL blows them all away. I bought this bass on pure impulse because it impressed me so much... and I generally hate black J's... tho it's growing on me now.

    First, the pickups: Mine had the typical single-coil hum, but I recall the output being plenty strong (this is greatly affected by setup - pickup height). I replaced them with DiMarzio Model J (DP123) to lose the SC hum and couldn't be happier, 'cause the tone (which I loved) was preserved. Otherwise, I woulda' put the orig's back in. Yes, it's that good, IMHO.

    Tuners: Yes, they're faithful to the '72 design, which means they're crude by today's standards. Some folks whine about these. However, I have no intention of replacing them, 'cause I don't have any problems tuning the bass or keeping it in tune.

    Action: Unreal. Plays as well as any of my boutique basses (see my gear page below). I have to keep reminding myself it's not a custom shop Fender costing thousands. Yeah, the neck is slim, (noticeably moreso than the real '72) and I find it completely effortless to play, and have had no adjustment issues whatsoever after owning it thru three seasons in the cruel midwest so far.

    Tone: To die for. Growl out the you know what, slap tone that kills, and all the meat Fender is known for. I'm sure the Badass II bridge has a lot to do with this, too.

    Two words: Buy it.
  6. HMZ

    HMZ Supporting Member

    Dec 21, 2003
    I customized my GL a little bit I installed DiMarzio Model J pickups to get rid of the hum and increase output and I replaced the white pick guard with a black one.
  7. jasonc


    Feb 3, 2005
    Cleveland, Ohio
    I have a black pick guard on my GL also. Looks sweet.
  8. WordShaman


    Apr 26, 2005
    I own the Geddy Lee and an American Series Jazz bass. I wouldn't say it's better, but it is different. They are both great instruments.
  9. Walbassman


    Nov 27, 2002
    Nashville, TN
    I had three of them when they were first introduced and I could not hang with any of them. The necks were the primary problem as they would not hold tune. If I put a badass II on a 70's jazz and changed the pickups out I could have the same sound. For that money, get an SX and change out the electronics and the bridge and have a really good quality bass for half and then some on the price.
  10. philiprst


    Mar 24, 2005
    I'll just mention that the GL I tried initially had very poor action due to a huge concave bow in the neck. I got the store tech to adjust the truss rod but even after this adjustment the bow was still there. It's possible that they didn't do a good job so that further work could have made it play fine, but I do suggest that you have this bass adjusted to your liking before you decide buy it. Probably, I just encountered a bad one.

  11. purfektstranger


    Apr 10, 2003
    Great looking and sounding bass but the neck was too thin for me.
  12. adam on bass

    adam on bass Supporting Member

    Feb 4, 2002
    New Braunfels, Texas
    Endorsing Artist: Spector, GK, EMG and D'Addario
    i played one at GC a week ago and i loved it. if i had the cash i'd own one.
  13. Gastambide


    Mar 4, 2005
    The one I played at a GC had a really bowed neck, resulting in a terribly high action - so I couldn't get a chance to see what it really should feel like. Although, the slim neck and Badass are reason enough for me to seriously consider one. (I have a Badass II on my customized Fender P-bass, and I swear by it!) Too bad they only make it in black! (I generally dislike any painted finish, but I detest black - especially with a white pickgaurd!) Now if they made it in sunburst with a tortoise pickgaurd...(like one of Geddy's other custom jazz basses), I'd have some serious GAS! To me, that's the classic Fender Jazz look - sunburst/tortoise w/ a maple fingerboard and black block inlays....Oh, baby!
  14. TyKao


    Jun 29, 2003
    I went to the Guitar Center in NYC recently and tried one. The fit and finish was fantastic and it was very easy to play. However, I didn't think much of the sound. I was hooked into an Aguilar 2X12 combo amp and could not get a decent amount of low end out of it even when I had the low and mid-frequencies of the eq jacked up to the maximum. I'm sure it would cut through very nicely though since I could get clear highs out of it.

    Unfortunately, I've played a couple of Geddy basses at different stores and this is constantly what happens. I've seen various reviews around the web echoing this experience, so I don't think I'm alone. I can't tell whether it's the Badass bridge, the pickups, or the body wood that's at fault.
  15. Vic

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

    Oct 14, 2002
    Central Illinois
    Staff, Bass Gear Magazine
    Wow. Mine's plenty bright, but it's also got plenty of low end as well. I THOUGHT it had that even with the stock p'ups, but at this point, I couldn't testify to it since it's been a long time.

    Strange, this is the first I've heard of it, and I've read quite a bit about these.

    The body wood is just alder, so that's not it. I seriously doubt it's the bridge, so I'd say you had a problem with the p'ups. I wonder if a height adjustment wouldn't "fix" it (continuing with my ongoing complaint about how guitar stores seriously neglect their inventory). I just don't recall having any problem with the original tone... just the single-coil hum. :confused:
  16. Vic

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

    Oct 14, 2002
    Central Illinois
    Staff, Bass Gear Magazine
    Exactly. This both ticks me off as well as confuses me to no end. Don't they want their stock to move????

    +1!!! (except I want perl inlays) FENDER, ARE YOU LISTENING???

    Nailed it. Thing is, this one has to be black 'cause it's a tribute to the original. However, if they just did what you said, GET OUTA' MY WAY, IT'S MINE!!!

    Also, the ONLY reason I bought this thing was 'cause it was so awesome, because like you, black J's are my very LEAST favorite by a large margin.
  17. jasonc


    Feb 3, 2005
    Cleveland, Ohio
    Yeah. As far as high action at stores, its usually due to poor store set up. I've played a few in different stores before I got one, and about 2/3 were in need of a set up - badly. I've had them mess around with them for me which fixed them for me to test play them. Ultimately, I decided I liked it, and could have it set up the way I want it - so I took the plunge. And again - I am SOOOOO glad I did. I love this bass.

    Just make sure ya play the one you're planning on purchasing. Don't be afraid to ask to adjust it!
  18. philiprst


    Mar 24, 2005
    It's quite possible that the pickups were the problem with the one I tried, although I thought I read somewhere that they are 62 vintage reissue pickups like on some of the MIA basses so I imagined they would be decent. Perhaps the pickup height should have been adjusted. I doubt that the store had touched the bass since it arrived.
  19. Vic

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

    Oct 14, 2002
    Central Illinois
    Staff, Bass Gear Magazine
    The Fender site only says "USA Vintage" pickups, but I think you're right. I think I remember someone here at TB figured Fender didn't use the reissue 75's, but instead the reissue 62's, because I think they said Geddy had older pickups in his '72. AFAIK, anyway...
  20. [ NG:E ] Asuka

    [ NG:E ] Asuka

    Apr 8, 2005
    I like it more than the American Fenders.

    But for some reason I like the MIM one's more than the American fenders too...

    I gues Im easy to please...

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