Fender Wood Choices Affect Tone?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Funky-Wunky, Feb 5, 2005.

  1. Funky-Wunky


    Jun 15, 2004
    There are so many different configurations of the fender bass, it can be quite confusing. I know there are bodies of alder, poplar, ash, walnut, basswood, etc. Add the differences in maple and rosewood fretboards, makes for more variation.

    Say you have identical P-bass pickups put into P basses made of different woods. How much different are the basses going to sound? I know that the differences in weight can be significant. Anyone ever have similar basses of different woods to compare the tone? :confused:
  2. JPJ


    Apr 21, 2001
    Chicago, IL
    Over the years, there have actually been a TON of threads on this subject, discussing the impact (of lack thereof) that body woods, neck material, and fingerboards have with respect to tone...not to mention all of the bolt-on vs. set-neck vs. neck through threads, etc. There have also been several threads where various builders have built "twin" basses, trying to keep as many variables as constant as possible with the intent of having only one variable. The success of these experiments is debatable depending on how much of a stickler you are for running experiments that have one vs. multiple variables.

    In my opinion, EVERYTHING has an impact on tone. The real question is not "is there a difference', but how much of a difference is there, and can you even detect it (or does it even matter to you)? This is a very personal and individualized question. One person will tell you that they hate basses with maple fingerboards becaue they're too bright, whereas the next guy will tell you that fingerboard woods have absolutely no impact on tone becaue he can't tell a difference beween his two jazz basses, one with a maple board, one with a rosewood board. That might not be a quick and easy answer to your question, but its an honest one. ;)
  3. Lorenzini


    Dec 31, 2004
    Los Angeles

    What he said, seriously. :bag:
  4. I agree. If you're serious about finding one or more basses that work for you, you'll undoubtbly be buying/selling or buying/buying some gear.... Make sure you like and know how to work your stage rig/rigs which greatly affect the end result of your situation/situations.