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Fender P-Bass or G&L

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Sundogue, Nov 30, 2004.

  1. Sundogue


    Apr 26, 2001
    Wausau, WI
    Due to the long scale neck of my Cirrus and accompanying joint problems in my wrist and hand, and after discussions with my doctor, I may need to get rid of my Cirrus (which I absolutely love) and get a shorter scale bass.

    I'm thinking either a P-Bass or a G&L. Anybody have preferences of one over the other? I like both offerings.

    I really hate to get rid of my Cirrus, but I'd rather be able to play than be crippled up and not play. I've already tried different strap lengths to avoid the problem, but the long scale of the Cirrus is just causing me unavoidable pain...and I play alot down near the nut, and the length is forcing my hand and wrist into a damaging angle where my wrist cannot handle the stress any longer.

    When I play shorter scale basses for any length of time, my wrist and hand do not hurt or get anywhere near as stiff and sore as when I do the same on my Cirrus.
  2. silky smoove

    silky smoove

    May 19, 2004
    Seattle, WA
    My vote would go to the G&L L-2000 or 2500. I find the P to be.... dare I say it.... boring. If you're looking for versatility I would definitely say the G&L. It really comes down to personal taste, try them both and see what you like the most.
  3. M.R. Ogle

    M.R. Ogle Supporting Member Commercial User

    Nov 5, 2004
    Mount Vernon, Illinois
    Backstage Guitar Lab owner
    Is your Cirrus longer than a 34" scale? If not, I'm not aware of any shorter-scale 30 or 32" basses from G&L... maybe Fender has one, though.
    But if you're just comparing heads-up a new P bass or a new G&L... seriously, you 'd have to choose the G&L products. Their quality is outstanding, and the sonic range much greater.
  4. Since you love your Cirrus, why not try finding a bass with a similar construction, electronics and sound? Precision basses are great, but at the other end of the spectrum from a Cirrus when it comes to the above mentioned characteristics (I've never played a G&L 2000, so I don't know about those). A NT Warwick Streamer, a Spector, or similar would be a lot more Cirrusy. As if you didn't know that...
    But then again, you might want a decisive break with your painful past, and in that case: go P-bass!
  5. Alexander


    Aug 13, 2001
    Seattle, WA
    I would have to agree with Silky Smoove (Cool name, BTW :p ) and recommend the G&L. Personally, I think everyone should have a P in their arsenal, because it has a very distinct tone that many times is just what the doctor ordered (and nothing else will do). But, I wouldn't want it as my only bass.
  6. M.R. Ogle

    M.R. Ogle Supporting Member Commercial User

    Nov 5, 2004
    Mount Vernon, Illinois
    Backstage Guitar Lab owner
    What he said!
  7. Sundogue


    Apr 26, 2001
    Wausau, WI
    Well, it's a 35" scale. What a difference an inch makes.

    The G&L does offer more versatility. Just considering options. I may keep my Cirrus. I've got a gig next weekend and I'll have to see how my "adjustments" affect me when the gig is over.

    After a gig, at night when I go to bed, I can't make a fist and my hand/wrist hurts like hell and I have to ice it, take pills and the next day it is even worse.

    I do stretching exercizes, run hot water over my hands, Ben-Gay on my wrist and arm, etc. before I play. But at the end of the night it is damn sore and stiff. One thing I noticed was when someone made mention of how long a bass I played. I hadn't really thought of it before, but after that I realized that in fact, playing alot of notes down near the nut, my wrist is bent awkwardly and there is more strain on my wrist and hand.

    However when I played a friend's P-Bass for a day it never really bothered me.

    It does seem to be less of an issue when I have the strap longer and I can get the headstock closer to me. However, the style of music I play and the way I play, a low slung bass sucks for my playing style.
  8. I say G&L, but you may have already guessed. :p

    If you want a P get the G&L Sb1. If you want a jazz then get a JB-2. If you want a very versatile bass then the L2000.

  9. silky smoove

    silky smoove

    May 19, 2004
    Seattle, WA
    Thanks! It was given to me by my band's previous drummer because he said my lines were silky smoove (I would tend to disagree).

    Sundogue: That is really terrible that a 35" scale makes such a difference for you. I'm not much of a Peavey-guy so this might not be possible, but would it be possible to get a 34" Cirrus? If you didn't want to shell out the cash for another Cirrus, what about the cheaper BXP model (I think they're called BXP....???). At any rate, good luck and I hope that all works out for you.
  10. xyllion

    xyllion Commercial User

    Jan 14, 2003
    San Jose, CA, USA
    Owner, Looperlative Audio Products
    Well, I own both an L-2000 and a Fender P. All I can say is try both and see which you like better. They are very different basses. I must say that neither is at all like Peavey.
  11. Sundogue


    Apr 26, 2001
    Wausau, WI
    Well, to be honest...nothing compares to my Cirrus, either in tone, looks or feel. And it is the most comfortable bass I've ever played...with the exception of low notes near the nut for an extended time.

    Now, it is a 5 string and I've been using the low B and E for notes I would normally play on the E and A string otherwise. This does allow me to play a little higher up. But tone-wise the E, F, F# on the E string and the A, B, Bb on the A string sounds better than when played on the B and E string accordingly.

    I'm still kind of experimenting with how I wear it. In over 25 years of playing, I've never had my bass low...I've always tended to play it higher up (though not "right under my chin" high).

    While it is more comfortable on my left wrist when worn lower and the neck tilted up, the bass hangs on me weird and it just doesn't feel like a part of me. I fight with it more, whereas higher up it doesn't move at all and I just play it.

    It's a beautiful bass. I've played P basses before and I've owned a Pre-CBS model I loved but got rid of years ago. It's a little too traditional sounding now. I've played a friend's G&L L-2500 and it sounded great and the feel was good, but it was nowhere near as sweet as my Cirrus.

    I really don't like any other Peavey basses and in fact, even other Cirri didn't really trip my trigger. There is just something unique about the one I have that feels different. I played it every day on my lunch hour, for a week (about three years ago) and I fell in love with it (I never even plugged it in). I just had to have it.

    Here's hoping I find a way to keep the Cirrus.
  12. winston


    May 2, 2000
    Berkeley, CA
    I traded in my Cirrus 6 for a 5 because the neck width was uncomfortable for my left wrist. I've seen people put a metal extender on the upper horn (with a strap button attached), reducing the length your left hand has to reach.
  13. spiritbass

    spiritbass Supporting Member

    Jun 9, 2004
    Ashland, MO
    Ouch, dude! I'm a fairly recent convert to fiver's and am still on the 'fretting posture' learning curve for my left hand. My best suggestion is from Victor Wooten. Learn to back off when you start to feel any pain; use a little less pressure on the board, find a better arm/hand posture. I have the good fortune of being permanently attached to my Lakland 55-94. If I were to go to a 34" five, I'd think Metro or Valenti. MHO
    Best of luck toward playing without pain...!
  14. silky smoove

    silky smoove

    May 19, 2004
    Seattle, WA
    This might not be an option for you, but have you considered moving away from a 5-string and moving to a 4-string? If the B is really a necessity for you and you could do away with the G string, tuning to B-E-A-D might be a possibility as well.... Just a thought and a potential alternative route for you to consider. The slimmer neck might make all the difference in the world.
  15. srxplayer


    May 19, 2004
    Highland, CA

    G & L's are excellent basses. Well made and sound great.

    The G & L gets my vote too.
  16. coop


    Jun 22, 2002
    I don't know if this would work or not, but the "Strapture" strap
    looks like it might allow you to shift your Bass further to your right, making it easier for you to reach down by the nut. But I don't own one of those straps so I'm just guessing here. http://www.strapture.com/index.html

    And I vote G&L if you end up going that way. Best of luck.
  17. I admit I have never played a Cirrus standing up, but I have a feeling it's not the 35'' scale that's the problem. I remember having similar issues (although not as severe) with a Spector NS 2-a (34''). The short upper horn was causing the neck to be "way out there" and my wrist got tired soon. I decided I have to stick with instruments where the upper strap button is in line with the 12th fret. Check out if you can adjust the position of the bass body relative to your body. Maybe that will help.
  18. Turock

    Turock Supporting Member

    Apr 30, 2000
    I'm with Minimalist. I have several 34s and 35s and I really can't tell the difference.
  19. smarvelous


    Jun 2, 2002
    Albany, CA
    Just my .02c ... Take look at what is the root cause of your pain issues, you may be able to play that cirrus again someday.

    My #1 recommendation: (I play 34", 35" and 41.5" (upright)) In the low registers, I play using only the index, middle and pinky finger (3 fret hand spacing) this is what the upright bass "Simandl" technique calls for. This will help immensley and believe it or not you can learn to play fast this way. Just switch to 4 fingers per fret further up the neck. Ask an upright player to show you how.

    2. Orientation/position of your shoulder->arm->wrist->hand->fingers. They're all connected (e.g. if you are scrunching your shoulder it could result in hand pain!) Have an experienced bassist watch you play and help troubleshoot what you may be doing wrong.

    3. Bass position on your body and strap length. You may be also having a problem with neck dive which causes more strain on your hands as they are trying to balance the bass in addition to playing.

    4. Get a lower action. Sometimes you can lower the nut which makes fretting easier. Try putting a capo on the first fret and you will see what a lower nut will feel like.

    Above all back off playing while you sort this out (I know its hard) You will be able to play without pain, if you can sort out whats going on.

    good luck!


    Jun 1, 2003
    Orlando, FL