Fretless: Jazz or P Bass?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by irjason, Jan 22, 2006.

  1. Jazz bass

    56 vote(s)
  2. P bass

    14 vote(s)
  1. irjason

    irjason Supporting Member

    Nov 17, 2001
    Louisville, KY
    I am thinking of getting a fretless and have been looking at an SX. I just can't decide on a Jazz or P bass. So I need some advice.
    I have a Jazz now, and have had P style in the past, but no fretless at all. I like the sound of both. Which one would you get as a fretless and why?
  2. P if you're more into an upright sound, J if you want a bit more versatility.
  3. phxlbrmpf


    Dec 27, 2002
    I really want a fretless P, you simply don't see many of 'em at the moment (aside from the new awesome-looking Tony Franklin signature bass). P basses simply sound fatter than Js in my opinion, which should be very interesting for fretless.
  4. AFlyOnGeddysWal


    Sep 27, 2004
    A J for the versatility, I guess one could always swap the neck pickup for a humbucker for a similar P sound. I like single coils, and favor the bridge pickup.
  5. Dr. Cheese

    Dr. Cheese Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 3, 2004
    Metro St. Louis
    I would pick the P if fretless were my main bass so I could be more distinctive than the typical Jaco style bridge pickup sound. If a bassist is working in studios or as a sideman, I would recommend the J because that will be the sound that many will want. I really think a bass like the new Tony Franklin fretless would be ideal because it has the P/J setup and one could get the Jaco sound and a beefier fretless sound too.
  6. marwady

    marwady Supporting Member

    Jul 9, 2005
    Northern Michigan
    Here's an idea:

    Buy an SX P/J and an SX fretless. Swap the necks and now you have the best of both for about $250.00.

    I am saying this because I did the same thing with a Fender MIM Precision Special (P bass with a Jazz bridge pup). I found a fretless MIM jazz neck for cheap and swapped them. I now have a Fender fretless with a great P thump and Jazz growl, lots of mwah, too.!!
  7. Kael

    Kael Supporting Member

    Dec 26, 2004
    Oklahoma City
    Alternatively, buy both a fretless P and a fretless J and get yourself out of swapping necks. SX's appear to be cheap enough that getting both should be feasible for most anyone.
  8. irjason

    irjason Supporting Member

    Nov 17, 2001
    Louisville, KY
    Thanks everyone. Seems like the Jazz is the winner. I really like the look of this one:
    So that's probably where I will end up once I get the rebate from my cell phone.
    klocwerk I hadn't noticed the P/J on there before. Thanks for pointing it out. This is the other one I'm considering now.
  9. dgce


    Jun 17, 2001
    Massachusetts, USA
    "Its crazy, but it just might work!" ;)
  10. I'd say jazz.

    I have (and love) a fretless P-bass, but sometimes I find it a bit lacking in growl. I think a jazz with a series/parallel switch (easily done) to give it a bit more beef when you need it would be a good call.