How do you like yer MIM Fender?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by mikarre, Mar 23, 2003.

  1. mikarre

    mikarre Guest

    I think I'm going to buy a bass soon, in the $400-$600 range. I've had Ibanez Soundgears before and I liked them, but I'm wondering if I might be better off with a MIM Fender Jazz or Precision. The Active Jazz Standard looked pretty cool. I also saw a candy red Deluxe Precision in a shop the other day that looked great.

    Would you say the MIM Fenders are the best bet in that price range?

    Are active electronics needed in the J bass, or is the passive version decent enough?

    I don't know if this helps, but I'm into metal (Iced Earth, Nevermore, In Flames, etc), but I'd like to be able to play anything. Maybe the Soundgear would be better.

    Any opinions appreciated. Thanks! BTW, nice forum!
  2. the soundgear might be better suited for metal, with the slimmer neck and all.
    as far as the actives j-basses; i don't dig 'em. some folks advise putting a j-retro in. i dunno; but i don't like the stock EQ in the deluxe jazzes. i prefer a passive myself (geddy lee jazz bass?)
  3. SoComSurfing

    SoComSurfing Mercedes Benz Superdome. S 127. R 22. S 12-13.

    Feb 15, 2002
    Mobile, Al
    If you want active, I'd recommend an Essex Jazz, and add a J-Retro. That should be just under $400, and one HELL of a bass! Or, if you want the P-Bass, an Essex with a U-Retro.
    Or, if you want passive, an Essex with good pickups (Fralins for Jazz, SD 1/4#s for P) should beat the crap out of any MIM Fender.
  4. geezer316


    Jan 26, 2003
    i own an 97 mex j/bass and i am cool with it,i purchased it used of e-bay for 225.00$,when i got it it was hurting bad,each string was at a different height,the intonation was toast and the strings were 1/2 in off the frett-board,the fretts were sticking out the sides of the neck wich mite i add was bowed to be better suited for archery,well i had all the above adjusted and did a little up-grading and now its where it should be, now my japanese j/p bass blows it out the water wich i might add i got for 300.00,thats what i suggest a japanese fender,they are equal to us made and better than essex,ibanez and many others,and by the way i also owned a gsr 200 ibanez,it was like playing a 2X4 with strings,and my roomate has a 400sr ibanez and its not much better,best bet go play a few of each and form your own opinion along with the info you get from us
  5. I love my '97 MIM P. I have done a few modifacations, such as another string retainer on the headstock over the A & D strings, a black pearloid pickguard, and a Leo Quann BadAss II bridge. I also plan to replace the nut soon.

    P.S. I play hard rock and metal, and it works great! Essex isn't a bad way to go either. If you search for ESSEX MEGATHREAD, you'll find about 35 pages of happy customers.

    Keep rockin' :bassist:
  6. Ben Mishler

    Ben Mishler

    Jan 22, 2003
    San Jose
    I love my MIM P very much. I modified it with a new pickguard, DiMarzio pups, and a pickup guard. Now I really love it. It was a great buy for the money, and one that I would do again in a second.
  7. niomosy


    Nov 9, 2002
    Sauteed in a white wine sauce? ;)

    Sorry, was listening to Monty Python...
  8. MIM fenders are usually pretty solid. they skimp on the pups and hardware. i modded my one j with fender deluxe noiseless pups, a new nut and a fender deluxe adjustable bridge (about $170 for mods), which (in addition to the bass) is just under what one would pay for a new MIJ fender, that doesnt have the phatty bridge and pups.

    quality control seems to be a big issue with MIM fenders.
  9. xyllion

    xyllion Commercial User

    Jan 14, 2003
    San Jose, CA, USA
    Owner, Looperlative Audio Products
    The thing about MIMs are that they aren't very consistent. You can find some real gems, but you are also likely to find some real dogs. With MIMs, it is best to play a bunch and you can probably find a good one. Buying a MIM sight-unseen is risky at best, but then again only $200-$250 on eBay is almost worth the risk.

    Believe it or not those Essex basses have a good reputation. If you are looking for something cheap to get the job done, you just can't beat them.
  10. Mike N

    Mike N Missing the old TB

    Jan 28, 2001
    New York
    For $600 you should be able to find a used MIA.
  11. Very good point, Mike.

    I think when you mention the $400 - $600 price range, you should include Ibanez and Yamaha in the conversation. I own both a MIM fretless Jazz and a $400 Yamaha 5 string, and as far as tone, playability and construction go, I definitely prefer the Yamaha, but, that's just me.

    Ibanez is stressing the word, "loud," whenever I see an ad for their new SRX series. Check them out:

    Here's Yamaha's site:

    One thing I now insist on when getting a new bass is: 24 frets. Many of the Ibanez and Yamaha models feature this. I never missed them until I bought a bass that had them, but, now I 'm hooked on 'em.

    Good luck.

  12. christle

    christle Supporting Member

    Jan 26, 2002
    Winnipeg, MB
    Personally I love my MIM Jazz (passive). Plays like a dream and sounds good too. For my playing preferences I put TI flats on the bass. When I picked mine I was lucky that the salesman, who knows my wife, went and sorted through the MIMs for a decent one for me to try. As everyone suggests try a bunch first then decide. That applies to all basses. Not just MIM's :)

  13. Mike N

    Mike N Missing the old TB

    Jan 28, 2001
    New York
    I dont know what prompted Leo to stop at 20 frets. I dont venture up there very often, but its nice to have the extra's if you need it. The MIA Deluxe P & J have 22 frets, and theres a few oddball Squires Ive seen(and own one) with 21 frets.
  14. christle

    christle Supporting Member

    Jan 26, 2002
    Winnipeg, MB
    If I remember correctly from some of the reading I have done on the history of the Precision, it is because he wanted to emulate the range of the upright bass. Only he wanted to be more precise. Players at the time didn't venture into the range some of us play in today. I think it is as simple as that.

  15. Honestly, I'm liking my MIM P better than this sweet G&L P at a local shop, and it's probably one of the better p's that I've played. I'd say almost one of the best 4 strings I've played...up to par with that one Warwick I played once (FNA I believe, single MEC humbucker) and a natural Ric at another local shop.
  16. j3b3r


    Aug 19, 2000
    I love my 97 MIM jazz, it's a decent Bass and you can get it for about $250 used. I replaced the pickups with EMG J set and EMG BQS EQ Which cost me another $200. I also replace the bridge with BadButt II. And now, I wont trade this bass even into a MIA fender. It sounds far better than any American fender, and well suited for any kind of musics coz I can shape the tone anyway I like thanks to the EQ.

    I play Hip metal and Rock mostly, and I also play Jazz in local Pub. I plug it directly into mixer, doesnt need any preamps or heads. No noise, punchy sound, boomy bass, decent midrange, clear trebble.

    Well, at the end, it's all coming back to you.
    You should try the bass by yourself, coz every players have their own playing style.

    Keep Rocking GUys !! :bassist:
  17. Mike N

    Mike N Missing the old TB

    Jan 28, 2001
    New York
  18. NJL


    Apr 12, 2002
    San Antonio
    My MIM Fender gets me the same amount of money for gigs as would a Fodera or other high price bass. Don't get me wrong, I would sell my car and walk to work everyday for a Fodera ;)

    Until i get a Fodera my Fender rocks!
  19. terser


    Dec 23, 2002
    South Jersey
    I love my MIM Fender Jazz. I have a Spector Rebop 5 and a EB Musicman Spider 4 which I just got today :D but I will always make time to pick up my '91 MIM Jazz. However, be prepared to do some work on it. I upgraded mine to Fender Custom Shop 60s pu's and a BAII bridge plus the plastic nut split at the D string which I had to replace with a bone one. On another note, all of the parts are very accessible and very easy to work on. She growls like a somnabitch.
  20. If you like the Soundgears, definitely check out the SRX series. For my last bass I started out looking for a good MIM Fender Jazz but didn't find any I really liked. From there, I was about to buy a Geddy Lee sig Jazz when I found my SRX500. IMO it plays better, looks better, and hands down it sounds better than even most of the higher end Fenders I tried.