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I need some help with a Fender conundrum...

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by finalrequiem, Apr 21, 2009.

  1. Ok, so I searched high and low and couldn't find anything that answered my question. Sooo, either no one has asked or there isn't a real answer. At any rate here goes:

    I have decided that I *need* a MIA Fender. I like the Jazz and P' and would like to have one of each at some point so that isn't an issue. Here is where I'm getting a little bogged down. I have my eye on a Jazz V Deluxe and a Standard P that are pretty close in price. The Jazz is mid 90's and the P is almost new. I'm not interested so much in whether one or the other is a better buy, I'm interested in the comparison between the quality of each decade and also whether the Jazz being a deluxe would make a difference. I don't plan on ever selling whichever I get, I want something I can play the living daylights out of and then play some more. I don't really care about the money as both are within spitting distance of one another, I'm just interested in the nuances of the instrument and insights that Fender owners would know/have. I have come to feel that MIA Fenders are about as good a bass around in the "Ride hard & put up wet, take a beating, play some more, and hold their value" category. I might be wrong but who cares? Any excuse to buy an instrument, right?

    I guess I'm just interested in the observations and opinions of TB about '90s vs. '00s, whether there was a quality difference in the Deluxes in the '90s, and what YOU would do if given the choice of either at the exact price.

    Thanks! Oh, and in Oklahoma City, finding and playing the exact basses that I'm looking at is tough. I have played similar and liked both.

    P.S. I know it's my own choice, I'm not going to make my decision based on what you tell me to do, I just like to get some perspective before making a decision!

    /end wall 'o text
  2. purfektstranger


    Apr 10, 2003
    I think the 2008 Fenders (US) are a real improvement over past years. Excellent fit and finish and they did away with the S1 switching as well. P bass neck is comfortable and there are more colour-neck combinations to choose from....
  3. Rumblefisher


    Aug 22, 2007
    Astoria, NY
    I've only been playing for a year and a half, so I can't really answer the '90s part of the question (although I have played some beaten up Fenders from then, it wouldn't be a fair comparison, as these were really dug into). What i CAN say is that I was pretty impressed with the 2008 Fender P, and I'm not particularly a Fender fan...they always seemed like a "default" choice for me, which I guess is a testament to the quality and popularity of the Fender sound; just not for me. Anyway, the 2008 was nice in terms of tone, but it was the quality of the neck work that really impressed me...it was clean, comfortable, nice frets, plus that nice wider P nut. Since you want both anyway, what are you looking for now? 5 string or 4? Which neck is more comfortable to you? "Vintage" is not necessarily better, and, if you go with the P, it will be vintage in 10 years anyway :) Other than the obvious (5 v 4, etc.), this seems to be a case of 6 of one, 1/2 dozen of the other...hope someone can help you with the 90s J.
  4. savit260


    Mar 6, 2006
    The build quality IMO was pretty good in the late 90's, and had slipped a bit (on average) through the later American Series basses.

    That said, I'd take the newer Precision over the Jazz Deluxe V, becasue of this simple fact.

    If you want a "Traditional" Fender, out of the two , the Precision is the one. To me the "deluxes" stray away from what makes the traditional Fenders so good. They are more of a "niche" instrument IMO.

    The American Standard line, introduced last year stepped up the game for Fender IMO, but there are plenty of good older American Series basses out there as well.

    I wouldn't be too hung up on the year or decade of build, just so long as it's a good player.

    Again, skip the Deluxe, and go for the Precision if you want what most people think of when they think Fender.
  5. bump
  6. purfektstranger


    Apr 10, 2003
    In your op you didn't specify what year the precision was. If it has the S1 switching personally speaking I would say no because it aint for me. Rather than focusing on the year of manufacture of the basses perhaps you should figure out which one feels and sounds better. All US made Fenders should last a fair while. Find a couple that play like you want them to and they could last you a lifetime.
  7. Double Agent

    Double Agent Supporting Member

    Mar 10, 2006
    Lakeland, FL
    I think the newer Jazz 5s are better than the 90's Jazz 5s, deluxe or standard. Fender actually had a stigma attached to them for a while that they couldn't make a nice 5-string bass. Whether it was fair or not, who knows? But, the current American Dlx Jazz V is much, much better sounding and playing than the 90's versions that I played. Given that info, I would go for the P-bass and look for a used Am Dlx 5er that is newer than 2004 for your next bass.

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