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Fender US Highway

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by rud3boy, Jun 26, 2003.

  1. rud3boy


    Jun 18, 2003
    Does anyone know how the new Fender US Highway bass's stack up against the American and Mexican models? I've been looking to buy a fender jazz for a while and im not sure if i should buy one of those or just keep saving for an American.
  2. switchblade

    switchblade Guest

    May 31, 2003
    London, England, UK
    I hear they are fairly nice to play, but I personally would go for the American.
  3. Actually, they are American. They don't have top-notch hardware, though.
  4. Another thing to consider is that they don't come with a hardshell case. Add a hundred dollars to the price and you get pretty close to an Am STD. I don't think they have the graphite reinforced neck and the hardware isn't as good. I don't think they're a very good buy when you consider what you don't get compared to an AM STD for a few hundred more.
  5. dgce


    Jun 17, 2001
    Massachusetts, USA
    I believe the Highway line comes with Fender gig bag. The hardware is of the more vintage ilk but my guess its the same that's used on the Mexican models. On the other hand, these are US made axes with alder (not poplar) bodies. I feel pretty confident that the necks are graphite reinforced. Can't say much for the colors though I did see a Highway Strat with a blue finish that looked kind of cool. The matte finish is see-through and the blue seemed to look nice against the wood grain. Figure $200 less would get you a Mex Bass and about $300 more would get you a American Bass. The Highways seem to be a reasonable comprise between the Amer and Mex, no?

  6. Atshen


    Mar 13, 2003
    Grim Cold Québec
  7. Trevorus


    Oct 18, 2002
    Urbana, IL
    The Mexican Fenders are alder now also. The do come with a bag. Here's the insode scoop: The hardware on the mexicans is the same stuff as used on squiers. So you're getting better pickups, and thinner finishes. You can put them on regular latex(orange rubber) standas, because the finish will react. Save the money and get the american. If you add in the cost of the case, better hardware, better pickups, and better finish, your money is better spent on the American. The Highway !'s are a good compramise for those looking for a good middle ground. They are good, but not great.
  8. dgce


    Jun 17, 2001
    Massachusetts, USA
    You know, tmo33 makes a good point. I'd upgrade a Mex Stand because they're so inexpensive (even more so used on eBay). However, upgrading a US Highway really doesn't make much sense given they're only a couple of hundred bucks cheaper than the American line. Then again, if you dig the Highway stock, it might be worth the bucks.

    Say, when did the Mex basses switch to alder? I thought only re-issues and signature Mex axes used alder or ash. Are you saying your basic Mex Standard axe is now made of alder rather than poplar?
  9. brock29609

    brock29609 4 strings, 2 wheels

    May 11, 2003
    Greenville, SC
    I'm pretty sure that Highway 1 = Mexican Deluxe, just assembled here.
  10. Trevorus


    Oct 18, 2002
    Urbana, IL
    yep, I think it was last year. go to a guitar store and look at the little sticker on the pickguard. Or look in a fender frontline catalog. They have material and finish options.
  11. bodhan


    Nov 19, 2002
    I just purchased a Mexican JB. It came with a stick on it saying "Standard Jazz Bass, alder body, maple neck, jumbo frets ... etc ... and new enhanced pick ups". Anyone knows what's new on these pickups? Well, Fender webpage says: "The J-Bass now incorporates two Bi-Pole pickups fashioned after the American Series pickups."
  12. pyrohr


    Aug 28, 2001
    Pakistani compound
    I have been waiting for these to come out since I first saw them in frontline. At first I was told they were only a special order meaning you order one and they ship it. That was the first thing that turned me off. Then I saw the arodyne (sp) jazz and was dissappointed with that. I walk into G.C. and low and behold a highway 1 pbass. I grabbed it, took it to the bass room and plugged it up. I was mad it didn't sound better than it did. I looked the bass over and it was basically a MIM bass with a different finish, neck tuners and all. No thanks I'll pass on this one :rolleyes:
  13. geezer316


    Jan 26, 2003
    the H.W.1 series is not now,and will ever be a mexican quality bass "assembled over here".Do you know that for a fact ? or are you assuming it just because in your mind it sounds like a logical possibility ? i played one last week and it was far closer to a US made fender than that chunk of junk we call Fender Mexico.I dont have anuything against the person who said that,but i just cant tolerate answers and quotes that are not true.Like on E-bay people always advertise a mexican bass with this little diddy"plays as good as any american made fender,but for half the price"I cant count how many times i've heard that one. i know you only said "its probably.........blah blah blah,but someone who does'nt know better will go with that advice.Please if are'nt sure about a bass and its spec's,dont make them up just to have something to say.(brock29609)PS OLP Basses are really made by Music Man and are the "real deal "for only 220.00$ (see what i mean;) )
  14. Flatwound

    Flatwound Supporting Member

    Sep 9, 2000
    San Diego
    Even thought about buying one, although I haven't made a decision. I've owned some Precisions both MIJ and MIA, and I thought the two Highway 1 P's I played were great. They felt good and had classic P tone. A/B'ed with a MIM, the Highway 1 was obviously superior.

    I called Fender and the CSR I spoke to told me that all the hardware is MIA, electronics are MIA as well, although none of it is the same as the American Series stuff. He also said the neck does not have graphite reinforcement.

    I think they fit just fine between MIM and Am. Series basses.
  15. dgce


    Jun 17, 2001
    Massachusetts, USA
    Well Brother you're entitled to your opinion but given the money, I'd say the Mex stuff isn't half bad. A pickup and perhaps a bridge upgrade with a proper set up and I think the Mex J&P basses (gits too) are pretty good workhorses. And now this news that the bodies are made from alder not poplar (am I the only one who didn't know this?). Sure, I've tried some Fender Mex stuff right off the rack that were setup horribly and did indeed sound and play like complete crap. Then again I could say the same about some of the American line as well (and most definitely the old American Standard line).

    I think the US Highway line is only really worth it if you dig it stock. Set up correctly, they're probably pretty good basses. However, if anyone feels the need to upgrade a Highway line ax then I say upgrade a Mex instead or save your $$$ for an American J or P bass. You'd definately be getting pretty good bang for the buck IMHO.

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