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Help me out! Which would you choose?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Guinness20, Feb 25, 2014.

  1. Fender American Standard P bass - mystic red

    52 vote(s)
  2. Fender American Deluxe Jazz bass - natural

    50 vote(s)
  3. Musicman Stingray 3eq bass

    30 vote(s)
  4. Musicman Stingray 4hh bass

    24 vote(s)
  1. Guinness20


    Jan 24, 2013
    Liverpool, UK
    I'm really struggling choosing between these four basses. Having been into a guitar shop and spent ages playing a load of basses, I've narrowed it down to these four. Now it's weighing up the pros and cons of each. Without sounding douche-y, it's not so much about the price. The stingray hh is as high as I can go, so it's just about which bass suits me best.

    Absolutely loved the Fender american standard p bass - the finish on the back of the neck was superb and it had the clarity of a jazz bass but with an additional low end punch. It is the cheapest, but as I'm between bands there's no point buying any pedals that could become redundant when I join a new band. There would be a couple of things I'd have to do if I bought this though - I'd have to put a black pickguard on it (can't beat red with black pg & maple) and I'd have to get the pickup flush to the body. I'm a finger player and like to rest my thumb on top of a pickup, but felt like I didn't have much room to rest my thumb on the angled split pickup.

    The Fender american deluxe jazz bass is probably the best looking of all the contenders in natural. Again the finish on the neck was great, and the fretboard with the blocks and binding is stunning. However, I didn't care for the passive tone at all. Then again, I could just leave it on active and still be happy.

    I actually started with the 2eq stingray - I'd never played a stingray before so was blown away by how punchy it was! But the 2eq was too bright for me, so tried the 3eq stingray. It's a completely different animal! It still sounded aggressive, but I had more control over it. Wasn't perfect though; the finish on the back of the neck was really nice but not to the standard of the fenders. I haven't listed a colour in he poll because I'm not sure yet - can't afford the ash-bodied version but the hardwood is still really nice. The candy red finish looks different depending on the light but can be beautiful, and also love the blue pearl. I would have a wait on my hands depending on the finish I went for (possibly up to 16 weeks!), but it's not like I don't already have a bass, and I think the right instrument would be worth the wait.

    Then I thought about the stingray 4hh bass. Now I haven't played this so there is a bit of a gamble, but then I played a regular epi thunderbird knowing the classic pro would only be better. I'd have that much more versatility available.

    So those are the choices. Apologies for such a long opening post, just kept waffling :scowl: I play heavy rock - metal, but then a versatile instrument covers me if I start to play other types of music in the future. The deluxe jazz is the only one I'd be able to pick up and play straight away, but then I think I like the tones of the precision and stingray slightly more. So what would you do? :help:
  2. tangentmusic

    tangentmusic A figment of our exaggeration

    Aug 17, 2007
    I love a Jazz in a natural finish, but that's just me. Very nice bass. Very pretty. Very versatile. Can't go wrong with one... Altho... The P-Bass is nice too...
  3. peledog


    Jul 9, 2010
    San Diego, CA
    Those are all great basses. A P bass has more low mids, while a jazz has more low end. Any of the basses you've listed will fit in with what you want to do music wise.

    There will be varying on opinions about which bass would be the most versatile. Getting tones can depend on your hands and where you pluck the strings - closer to the bridge or to the neck - and then the type of pickup will ultimately control the tone. I think as far as versatility - a two pickup bass with EQ is easiest to work with. Personally, I like a jazz bass.

    If you see yourself playing more than one genre, my suggestion would be to go with a two pickup configuration.
  4. Malak the Mad

    Malak the Mad Over the River and through the Looking Glass Supporting Member

    Over the past couple of years I've come to the conclusion that I'm a Jazz-man, both for their necks and bodies. So, given the selection before me, my choice is an obvious one. Also, I would assume the active/passive choice would lend to a little more versatility.

    I forget who the bassist was or what band he plays for (I think it was a Christian rock band), but someone on TalkBass posted a Youtube video of his. The gist was when you're in a live situation, a bass just sounds like a bass. To that end he simplified his whole rig, ditching most (if not all) of his pedals and putting together a two-output junction; one to the amps and one to the soundboard/PA.
  5. lowfreqgeek


    Mar 15, 2010
    Albuquerque, NM
    Endorsing Artist: Regenerate Guitar Works, Honey Badger Pickups, Westone Audio
    Regular 3-band Stingray. I've loved my P and J basses for many years, but the Stingray does it for me these days. I can get just about any kind of genre I want out of my fretless SR5.
  6. cv115505


    Sep 14, 2012
    Oklahoma City
    Depends on what you already have... if this is going to be your only bass, I would pick either the Jazz of the MM HH configuration just for the added versatility... a close second would be the P with the MM H coming in last. You can get a usable P tone from a J IMO so I would likely go that route.
  7. Killens84

    Killens84 Supporting Member

    Sep 3, 2008
    There's just nothing like a good passive P bass.
  8. rfslick


    Dec 31, 2008
    Benicia, CA. USA
    Depending on your individual taste, you will never go wrong with either a Jazz or Precision. They are universal and almost everything else was fashioned after one of them.
  9. Guinness20


    Jan 24, 2013
    Liverpool, UK
    Well I currently play an Epiphone classic pro thunderbird. I absolutely love it, but it's quite muddy so I want something bright (not too bright though!) and some clarity.

    It's tough with the jazz because, if I don't like the passive tone it's a fair assumption I'd just leave it on active. So it may as well be an active bass, like the stingray(s). Comparing the two - both have treble, mid and bass controls. The jazz has the pan knob, but the hh has the 5 way selector. The jazz has a real nice clarity to it, but for me the stingray is a bit brighter - not to the extent of a real clank on the strings though. But then I wouldn't have to wait for the jazz, god this is so hard!

    To anybody out there who owns both an sr4 3eq stingray and a 4hh stingray, of the two which do you prefer? Is the hh significantly better cos of the 2nd pickup and selector?
  10. Dave W

    Dave W Supporting Member

    Mar 1, 2007
    White Plains
    I think you have that backwards. ;)

    It's also interesting you felt the 2 band EQ was brighter than the 3 band. I've noticed the opposite.

    As for single H vs. HH, it's a personal preference thing. I've had a few of both and greatly prefer the single H models.
  11. Guinness20


    Jan 24, 2013
    Liverpool, UK
    No, it felt a little stickier, maybe that's the wrong word. Defintiely wasn't as smooth as the fenders, though it was still nice.
  12. P Town

    P Town

    Dec 7, 2011
    I voted for the Am Dlx J, in natural, because I already own one. I bought it after buying the Am Dlx P in natural It was such a nice instrument, I decided to get the J as well. I will say, that even though the J cost $100.00 more, I prefer the P. But, if you own both, (flats on the P, rounds on the J), you are ready for anything. I plug them into my B-15, PF-500, B-100R, B12-XTC, BA-110, DI, or anything else, and the weakest link in the chain, is my lack of talent, and ability.
  13. Dave W

    Dave W Supporting Member

    Mar 1, 2007
    White Plains
    If it was brand new it's possible that there was some wax buildup, but that will come off and the neck will essentially feel like a bare piece of wood. If it was used it could have just been dirty.
  14. Jungy


    Jun 9, 2011
    I'd get the P-Bass from your description. Any chance you can try a G&L L2000? Active/passive, 2 pickups, custom built, within your budget, different sound to the Stingray ( may or may not like).
  15. Guinness20


    Jan 24, 2013
    Liverpool, UK
    I'd love to try one but in the uk I've never come across a shop that sells them. If I adjusted the screws on the p bass pickup to get it sitting flush to the body could there be any potential problems? It's just because I'd like more space to anchor my thumb on top of it.
  16. Dave W

    Dave W Supporting Member

    Mar 1, 2007
    White Plains
    Pickup height is another personal preference. Sinking it so it's flush with the body is pretty low and you may not have the output you want from it.
  17. Gizmot

    Gizmot Supporting Member

    Mar 22, 2009
    Nashville area
    These are all decent basses -- but I second the recommendation to try a G & L L2000. They have a wider palette of sounds than the Fender and more "cool guy factor"
  18. Guinness20


    Jan 24, 2013
    Liverpool, UK
    **** really? Didn't realise that getting the pickup flush could cause such problems. That's a big turn off!
  19. Kmonk


    Oct 18, 2012
    South Shore, Massachusetts
    Endorsing Artist: Fender, Spector, Ampeg, Curt Mangan Strings
  20. Guinness20


    Jan 24, 2013
    Liverpool, UK
    I know sorry. It's just I realised I could afford the h. Also, I didn't get much info of that thread. I mean I've only just found ot getting the precision pickup flush could compromise it.