Finally played a Sadowsky and Pre-CBS Fender Precision

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by bassballs27, Jan 28, 2013.

  1. bassballs27

    bassballs27 Supporting Member

    Aug 12, 2002
    Ontario, Canada
    Good evening Ladies and Gentlemen,

    It's been about 5 years since I've used this site and I've recently got the bug to get back on here and finally become a Supporting Member! YAY!

    I had a vacation day today and decided to check out some bass guitars out in Toronto. As many of my fellow Canadians have probably complained about, we don't see a whole lot of the fancy names up this way. Even if we are only a 45 minute from the U.S. border. Anyway, I digress.....there has been a change and after my 5 year hiatus from Talkbass and from frequent bass playing in general.....I finally played a Sadowsky.....actually two Sadowsky's in one day! I played a Sadowsky NYC Standard 5 and later a Vintage 5.

    Wow, truly amazing bottom. A very lightweight. Guess what this has's made me interested in putting up some basses for sale. Check out the Classifieds soon (and glare at my Avatar a little more). Do any of you remember Adrian Garcia at all from Accessbass? Well.....I actually have one of his Custom F-Basses.

    Anyway, while I was at "The Twelth Fret" today (a fantastic guitar shop in Toronto I might add), I had the chance to play two Vintage Fender Precision Basses. One was a 1967, the other a 1966. I believe the '67 stood out a little more. Incredible bottom. But oddly enough, not quite as full or the same depth as the Sadowsky Standard 5. But, definitely worth wanting to add to my collection.

    Dang I've GAS for a Sadowsky and Vintage Fenders!

    I was just saying earlier today, isn't funny how I've seen many players in the past start out with the simplistic basses that they could afford, migrate to the boutique basses, but then find some of the best basses....are the more simplistic type....with a twist. Weird isn't it?

    Sadowsky truly rule. And so do the old Fenders.
    My next bass that I'd like to try is Lakland 44 or 55-94. Not sure if they really compare to the Sadowsky, but too each his own. Not trying to start a war with this post, but thought some of its key points might start a discussion.

    Thanks for reading and wait for my classified ads! haha

    -Chris ;)
  2. bikeplate

    bikeplate Supporting Member

    Jun 7, 2001
    Upstate NY
    Cool review. Love my Sadowskys. I have a 61P it's cool but its just not the killer bass on a gig s Sadowsky is. No contest. Might see my P in the classified soon, also. Good luck w the sales and new bass purchases

  3. Fuzzbass

    Fuzzbass P5 with overdrive Supporting Member

    I'm not sure I'll go so far as to say "apples and oranges", but you've compared a modern active bass with a classic passive bass. :p But cheers to you for appreciating both!

    I do, too. One of my favorite basses ever is my old well-worn '64 P (now owned by my brother), and I do think there's something magical about many (not necessarily all) vintage Fenders, especially pre-CBS, but my gig basses are five string Sadowsky P-basses.

    Even if I were playing four strings, I'd gig the Sadowskys. One of my P5's is strung with flats for my classic rock/blues/Motown/Stax band. But again, the vintage Fender tone is also magical.
  4. jim777

    jim777 Tarantula Lobbyist

    Aug 7, 2006
    South Jersey
    Sounds like you had an awesome day and played a bunch of really cool new basses :) I'm jealous lol
  5. I just checked out BGRA.NET - pretty cool!
  6. bassballs27

    bassballs27 Supporting Member

    Aug 12, 2002
    Ontario, Canada
    Yeah, not a real fair comparison, but it was amazing how well that low end carried on both. I had a shot at a 1976 Fender Jazz at all. It didn't sound all that great. It also had a polished or laquered neck. Not all that impressed. You really do have to play Vintage Fenders to find out. There are definitely some gems from Fenders past. The new ones, not impressed. Great for beginners though. But hey, too each is home. I'm sure there's plenty of people out there who are just fine with the latest Fender line up including their custom shop stuff., impressive. I'm an F-Bass player and have loved them for along time. I will also have an F-Bass in my collection for sure, but now I'd be willing to let one or two go based on my experience yesterday.

    Thanks for the comments so far guys!
  7. bassballs27

    bassballs27 Supporting Member

    Aug 12, 2002
    Ontario, Canada
    Yeah, that's from way back in the day. A very good resource for the beginner as was Harmony Central. I used to do a lot of reviewing for Matt Schmill. Such a great guy.

    Matt might even remember my roots from a bass newsgroup we both belonged too.
    That's like 15 years ago, crazy!
  8. That's great that you are back into it. Why did you lay it down?

    (ps: this review on your site is quite interesting! really?! ~)

    oops! just read on your site not to make direct links. sorry!
  9. mikezimmerman

    mikezimmerman Supporting Member

    Apr 29, 2001
    Omaha, Nebraska
    Yeah, I remember the bass newsgroups, and The Bottom Line (TBL) listserv as well. Memories! I've got a few reviews in BGRA, too...
  10. Fuzzbass

    Fuzzbass P5 with overdrive Supporting Member

    F-Basses are also incredible. Same as with Sadowsky, I appreciate the top-quality fit, finish, and fretwork.

    FWIW: I'm not a fancy player, so one reason (not the biggest but still significant) that I choose Sadowsky over other high-end instruments is that they are what I call "stealth boutiques" -- the painted Fender-style models, anyway. Plenty of folks at gigs -- sometimes other bassists -- think I'm rockin' a Fender. I've owned blingy/quilty boutiques (Modulus, MTD USA, Warwick) but again, I'm just a stay-at-home support player, and don't feel as comfortable playing a fancy or modern looking bass.

    Again, the biggest reasons I go with Sadowsky are playability/fretwork, tone, build quality. But hey, appearance counts too!
  11. bassballs27

    bassballs27 Supporting Member

    Aug 12, 2002
    Ontario, Canada
    Well, I got very busy buying a house and renovating it. Also, I was quite happy with my basses for with so many other financial obligations, I just couldn't see spending anymore money.

    I joined a serious band about 3-4 years ago now. It was an awesome experience. Man, I've got to hand it to bands that are able to keep it together and especially those that gig full time. Hats off to you them. That is amazing if you can hold it what you play and do!

    Anyway, I don't think I'll not have bass as my main instrument. However, my new project is to get into guitar, drums, and vocals. I'm setting up a jam area in my basement and want to get some of my friends inspired. It is such a pain to get 4 musicians in a room at once and play up here in Ontario.....just can't seem to find the right people!
  12. bassballs27

    bassballs27 Supporting Member

    Aug 12, 2002
    Ontario, Canada
    Very cool Mike. I'm glad to hear there's still a few of us around!
  13. bassballs27

    bassballs27 Supporting Member

    Aug 12, 2002
    Ontario, Canada
    Yeah, I hear what you're saying. I'm not a gigging player myself anymore.....didn't play a whole lot when I did either. And I still want to keep trying to get back into it.

    Some of these fancy basses just look incredible. And their light feel and comfort is unbelievable too. But, tried and true.....F-Bass doesn't do too bad in band situations at all. I would just prefer to have F-Bass and Sadowsky in my arsenal as of now.....and a P-Bass.

    I ended up posting that ad last night!
    Let see what is the cards for me!
  14. taurus1


    Sep 13, 2006
    Vancouver B.C.
    I hope that one day, I too will be too good a player for a Fender. I just have to keep practicing really really hard, for now I'll just have to keep using beginner (Fender) basses.
    pacojas likes this.
  15. DiabolusInMusic

    DiabolusInMusic Functionless Art is Merely Tolerated Vandalism Supporting Member

    +1. CBS bought Fender in 65, so those are actually CBS era Fenders.

    Still very cool story, oh and you're in Toronto you are in no position to complain about not seeing good gear. Our only option was L&M until less than a year ago... and I know you know what that selection looks like. It only gets MUCH worse when you go out of major centers.
  16. Wow. I play Fender and didn't take it that way.
  17. I would take a Sadowsky over a vintage Fender any day, but then I'm old enough to have played a lot of those Fenders when they were new. :)
  18. So, then, you are accustomed to the sound of a Fender.

    Are you sure you would "take" a Sadowsky?

    (quality yes - blows a vintage Fender out - but sound?)
  19. Yes, because on passive mode a Sadowsky sounds very close to a Fender. Why take lesser quality for a tiny difference in sound? And a lot of times, vintage just means "old".
  20. bassballs27

    bassballs27 Supporting Member

    Aug 12, 2002
    Ontario, Canada
    Well, I guess you can argue that the Sadowsky is a better value at the end of the day. It's like getting a Fender and a modern bass in one. I can't believe the prices that they're putting on the 1960's Fender Precision and especially the Jazz basses. They're basically becoming unaffordable collectors pieces if they're a Pre-CBS in great shape. See with Sadowsky, you variation in tones that the Fenders can't produce. Fender, on the other hand are great for that one tone (not nearly as deep and clear as the Sadowsky I must add). haha.

    F-Bass seems emulate a great Jazz bass in single coil mode too. But, it's not the same as Sadowsky. I haven't had a chance to try George's VF Series of F-Basses. Anybody check those out who are Sadowsky or Vintage Fender Fans?