If you had a Fender endorsement....

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by yowsa52, Jul 23, 2013.

  1. Which 5 string would you get? Asking for my son. Probably something comparable to the EB Bongos he uses now.
  2. Dave W

    Dave W Supporting Member

    Mar 1, 2007
    Westchester, NY
    They don't make anything even remotely comparable to a Bongo.
  3. iiipopes

    iiipopes Supporting Member

    May 4, 2009
    I wouldn't play Fender 5-strings. They are great as 4-strings: the origin of the species; the standard to be measured by, etc.; (I play a custom half-fanned fret version of a P/J as my main instrument) but not as a 5-string. A fiver is a completely different beast needing different design criteria. As I have set forth in various threads:

    1) At least a three-piece neck for stability and damping of resonances (dead notes).
    2) 2 (B&E) + 3 (ADG) tuner arrangement so the B string doesn't bind over the nut or around the tuner, but has enough space for the string leader to tune the B string smoothly.
    3) Lightweight Hipshot, Gotoh or Schaller tuners.
    4) The "neck" pickup in proportionally the same position as the D-G segment of a Precision bass pickup to get the proper balance of fundamental and overtones on the B string.
    5) Longer upper horn to balance the bass against neck dive.
    6) Clean broad-band hum-cancelling electronics, whether active or passive, because Jazz growl doesn't necessarily equal clean when it gets to the B string and P thump doesn't necessarily mean solid fundamental and sustain.

    There are many basses on the market that meet these criteria, from my $279 on sale Ibanez SRA305 to the multi-thousand dollar offerings of Dingwall and Little.

    Shop a lot. Play a lot. If you see one you like, put it down and walk away from it and come back a couple of days later to see if you feel the same way about it then.

    Notice I did not say anything about nut width, bridge spacing, scaling, neck contour, bolt on or neck through, or body or fingerboard wood. This is because these are all personal preferences and good basses are out there with all variations on these themes.
  4. jthurston


    Nov 22, 2011
    Houston, Texas
    I don't know anything about Bongos, but Fender's American Deluxe 5-string Jazz is a beautiful bass.
  5. cfsporn


    Aug 20, 2011
    New York City
    Um. If I had a Fender Endorsement, I'd use it to get a 5 string unlined fretless Jazz with >34 inch scale. As it stands, I have yet to play an off the rack Fender 5er that was any better than average.

    My advice is, if your son likes Bongos, get him a Bongo. If cash is a concern, get him a SBMM Ray35 or one of the old MIA SUB 5s.
  6. JimB52

    JimB52 User Supporting Member

    May 24, 2007
    East Coast
    I would ask them to make the Roscoe Beck V Signature bass again. Probably the best five string Fender has ever made. Nothing like the Bongo, though.
  7. gustobassman

    gustobassman I'm only here for the after party.. Supporting Member

    Mar 31, 2011
    Sandy Eggo
    Yeah, like someone said, the Fender 5 is nothing like a Bongo. If you want active, American Deluxe Jazz basses are beauties. I owned an American Standard Jazz 5 for 15 years that was stolen. Best bass i have ever owned.

    BUT - back to your original question.. :p IF i was endorsed by Fender i would do everything possible to get the (or something like the) Roscoe Beck 5'er. Just a beast of a bass.
  8. Tonegasm


    Mar 22, 2010
    They don't have a 5 string that I would play.
  9. ddhm


    Mar 18, 2011
    Memphis Tn USA
    I'd not get a Fender 5. Of course, you've not mentioned why you've decided on a Fender. If it's just gotta be a Fender, I'd have to say "pass". I had a 5 string P fretless once... didn't like it. I've also had a few other Fenders (Musicmaster, 4 string P, 4 string J) but they all were lacking to me. They are pretty well old technology... unchanged through the ages. They certainly had the right idea 50+ years ago but that's long since past. iiipopes is pretty on the $ I'd say.

    Not exactly the answer you are looking for but I'd get a Lakland. From what I've seen (and imho), the Laklands are what Fenders should have evolved into. They still have the Fender vibe but aren't a Fender. Since cost was mentioned, a Lakland Skyline might be the thing. A basic 55-01 msrp is $824. If that's near real, a used one would be really affordable I'd think.

    One could also suggest one of the Spector Codas if you are lookin' for a J. I think Carvin just came out with a new line of P-ish or J-ish basses too. So long as it's fretted, a Carvin might not be a bad idea.

    Wait, wait, wait a sec... Fender owns EB now, don't they? How about a nice Family Reserve Sting Ray 5? That's a Fender I'd play ;)
  10. John Freeman

    John Freeman Supporting Member

    Jul 29, 2009
    Happy Valley, PA
    I'd go with either a Marcus Miller V or American Deluxe Jazz V. Both are excellent basses and but as said before, are nothing like a Bongo. Hey, it's great to have options!
  11. Highly unlikely I'd get an endorsement from anybody let alone Fender, but if I did probably the American standard p5 I'm playing now.
    Not anything like a Bongo but still a very nice bass.
  12. StuartV

    StuartV Finally figuring out what I really like Supporting Member

    Jul 27, 2006
    Manassas, VA
    If your son is good enough to get a Fender endorsement, why does he need your advice on which bass to get? (no, I'm not trying to be a smartass - seriously)

    If *I* had the skill/connections/cred to get a Fender endorsement, then I would use that same cred to try and get an endorsement from (in order of preference, roughly) Ernie Ball Music Man, G&L, Peavey (if they would ante up to make me basses out of their Custom Shop), Sadowsky, Lull, Wilkins, Lakland, Roscoe, Alembic, or Stambaugh. And probably some others I can't think of right now. Then I would get a 5 string that I actually like from one of them.
  13. Maybe his Son doesn't like the Fender 5's either, so he is coming here to see if he can possibly help him in any way.

    I say thanks, Dad!
  14. mtb777

    mtb777 Serving bottom for the Most High. Inactive

    Apr 1, 2010
    Sunny South Florida
    Just played an American Deluxe Jazz 5 with the maple fingerboard and it is a great bass. Way better that the rosewood version. If I were endorsed, I'd want a Steve Bailey 6. One of each. Fretted and Fretless. Maybe a Victor Bailey Koa 5. Or Koa SB 6's!
  15. He doesn't need my help, he needs your help since he is not familiar with what they have that would be similar to the Bongo. From what I have read from your responses nothing they have is similar.
  16. As a younger man he had to play dad's P Bass that he hated. Fender was never considered after that. Haha
  17. cfsporn


    Aug 20, 2011
    New York City
    Why does it need to be a Fender? Did your son actually get an endorsement deal?
  18. Tom Howland

    Tom Howland

    Feb 11, 2003

    I agree, The Roscoe Beck V is Fender best ever. JMO
  19. READ MY OPINION AND TAKE IT AS FACT! You should have just left that last paragraph man. This is ALL personal preference. I love my Fender V so far, the B is my favourite part of it.
  20. 5?


    "No" to fender, and "No" to a 5 = non-starter. Sorry, bro.

    BUT IF I HAD to pick? Hmmm. A J, right?