How to buy a fender jazz?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by ozrider, Jun 25, 2008.

  1. I have been trying to pickup a 70s fender jazz on ebay but am wondering if these things I have heard about the quality control for fender means that I should only ever buy a jazz that I get to play. posts of forums suggest that the differences in playability, sound etc are significant. Anyone who owns these or know anything about the jazz care to comment?
  2. superfunk47


    Sep 9, 2007
    Personally, I wouldn't buy a vintage bass sight unseen, least of all a 70's Fender. I'd much sooner go with a 2008 Am. Std. and know I'm getting a good bass, even if it is sight unseen. That way even if there is a problem I'm covered by their warantee.

    IMO, YMMV, etc. etc.
  3. Remember, old does not equal good. Or even satisfactory. In fact, it could be downright crap.
  4. DougD

    DougD Bassman7654

    Sep 19, 2002
    North Las Vegas NV
    And there are way too many fakes floating around to take a chance IMHO
  5. Valerus


    Aug 4, 2005
    Austin, Texas
    With cash or maybe a credit card.

  6. Lesfunk

    Lesfunk Bootlegger guitars : S.I.T. Strings Supporting Member

    Apr 5, 2007
    Florida USA
    Hey Will How's yer 75 Reissue treating You? Still Like it I hope.
  7. Lesfunk

    Lesfunk Bootlegger guitars : S.I.T. Strings Supporting Member

    Apr 5, 2007
    Florida USA
    To the OP, If you're ready to spend the kind of money that they're getting for a 70's Fender, Consider a Sadowsky Metro or a Lakland. You'll be getting a better instrument.
  8. Valerus


    Aug 4, 2005
    Austin, Texas
    I'll just PM you
  9. Thanks for the feedback. I have bought a 83' fender p in the past but had a chance to play it first and it is still my preferred bass as it has the sweetest tone. I need a bass that would play a brighter slap style so is the new fender jazz USA made any good? ...and why are people paying so much for these 70s jazz'? I am thinking maybe if they were really any good people would not be selling them as frequently as I see them on ebay. Conversely, I rarely ever see any 80's fender jazz...
  10. As the subject briefly popped up. Why don't you try a 75 reissue?
  11. Yeah, they seem to be everywhere on ebay...but I really want an american made fender... seems no point owning any other. I think they exist but I don't see any american made 75 reissues down under... funny but I was actually hunting for a '75 fender jazz (not the reissue) on Ebay.
  12. I bought a few(USA)70's Fenders IN the 70's, and the guy selling them to me said they were crap, and, looking back, they WERE crap (badly made,finished etc, and fairly lack-lustre sound-wise. By todays standards, they couldn't hold a candle to, say a good Indonesian made instrument. Perhaps there were some great ones (there MUST have been!) but, just in case you get one of the ones I had, I'd say, play it first.
  13. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member In Memoriam

    I agree with this 100% - so I was looking at buying a pro-level instrument in the late 70s/early 80s and had the same experience - the first Ibanez Musicians that came out (hand-crafted in Japan) were so much better - as evidenced by the fact that big-name bands at the time took them up - like Sting in his Police days.

    If there were some good ones - they didn't make it to the UK..:p
  14. sflajimmy


    Nov 6, 2005
    South Florida
    A lot of us "older" members know this is true and then we see the prices for 70's Fenders skyrocketing and you wonder why?? It's that older is better thing and as stated here it's just not always true.
  15. JimB52

    JimB52 User Supporting Member

    May 24, 2007
    East Coast
    For a little more than a clean '70s Jazz you could find a stripped/refinned mid-late '60s Jazz. Get that instead. Or a Custom Shop Jazz and save some money.
  16. Hamerguy


    Mar 29, 2008
    The new 70's Classic Fender Jazz looks promising. MIM but I think the Classic series comes quite close to the US series. I'd say it is worth it to check this one out.
  17. DougD

    DougD Bassman7654

    Sep 19, 2002
    North Las Vegas NV
    I agree, and as an official old fart:) I can testify first hand that only a few really good ones actually made it anywhere. I remember the old pre-CBS post-CBS argument. Back in the days, After Leo left Just about ANYTHING was better than a Fender. The price jump all started when (IMHO) someone got the bright idea that those old battle axes would sell as collectors items. And people who wanted to get in on the action drove the prices up. Most of the fools that paid that kind of money for the old fenders, don't even play an instrument. :( (If they played bass they would have known better) Don't get me wrong, There are some real gems out there, but it's sorta like hitting the lottery, you have a 1 in a million shot :) I'd say buy it if you just want to hold on to it as a collectors item, but if you want a real player look elsewhere IMHO. The newer Fenders are in a whole different league now, Heck, I'd put my $279 Squier VM jazz up against a vintage Fender and probably win out 9 out of 10 times :). Just my opinion and you're mileage may vary :)
  18. gnome01


    Oct 30, 2001
    Bronx NY, USA
    From my experience nothing sounds like a good 70's or 60's Fender (the reissues can sound just as GOOD, but not necessarily the same. The reason people are willing to pay 3-4k for a 70's one is the prices of the 60's ones are simply out of hand even if the 70's ones are overpriced for what they are. If you can find a good CBS bass, it's a way to get that one of a kind sound at a more reasonable price (especially if it's modified). That said, TRY BEFORE YOU BUY! I found a pretty cheap '72 Jazz on ebay, bought it, and it was barely playable. Had a good refret done on it and it played much better - but still sounded terrible. I'd say less than half of the CBS instruments I've played were good instruments, and only a few were great.
  19. I agree with most everything that has been said so far. I've owned my share of 70's Fenders and they weren't anything special. It's all hype. Somebody decided somewhere along the line to start pushing them as the next best thing to 60's Fenders. IMO, it just ain't so. The new Fenders are leaps and bounds better than the CBS ones. All you're getting is an old bass with an old finish, old frets and electronics. Nothing more.
  20. moon-bass

    moon-bass They call me El Jefe Supporting Member

    May 10, 2004
    USA, New Orleans
    You'll get lots of opinions here, and a lot of antecdotes - I don't have an exception to that :)

    I had a '74 Jazz that was terrible - sounded dead, heavy, just didn't play well. Sold it years ago.

    I had a '78 P-Bass - just didn't like it. Again, very heavy, and the neck just seemed ... off. Sold that one too.

    A few months ago I started gassing for an early '70's Jazz ... I looked high and low, passed up quite a few on eBay other places (gbase, etc.) before I found "the one." I bought a '72 Jazz off of eBay awhile ago. It is absolutely fantastic. Great neck, great player, not too heavy, a little "relic-ed," ... just a great bass. I like it much better than both of my late 90's J Basses.

    What I did was I looked for a seller that knew what he was talking about. I asked a lot of questions, made sure I had an option to return, paid with Amex, kept the e-mails, etc. I stayed away from anyone that would refuse returns (as long as I paid shipping). The good '70's basses are out there, but like any purchase, do you homework.

    That being said, I also own a Sadowsky and John Suhr, and absolutely love both of them. If you are looking for that classic J sound and have a few thousand $$$ to spend, you may be better off going with a new bass, that IMO, is much superior and much less of a crap shoot.

    As always, YMMV ...