J bass for a P bass player

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by mouthmw, Jul 8, 2019.

  1. mouthmw


    Jul 19, 2009
    I've been through a few J basses, and always end up selling them. I prefer the tone and the neck of a P bass (or a Stingray).

    I'm thinking of perhaps giving a J bass one more try, but this time, I'd have to do a J frankenbass of some sort. J body, P neck and Dimarzio Model J pickups is kind of what I'm thinking.

    Here's a quick photoshop (Squier CV Jazz body, CV 70s P neck and Model J pups):

    Having a P bass with flats, a 2 band Stingray with flats and a 3 band Stingray with rounds, I'm thinking of adding one more bass with rounds to my stable, and I'm torn between this kind of a Jazz frankenbass, or a PJ.

    So, how many of you guys are rocking a J bass with a P neck? Pickup ideas are also welcome, those Model J sound intriguing.
  2. tpaul

    tpaul Supporting Member

    Mar 19, 2011
    I went through the same thing, trying J basses and then selling them on. P with flats is my cup of meat. But I finally got an early Squier CV jazz and that did it for me. Not sure why that one works for me while the other J basses didn't. There are different shapes of jazz necks, and while many felt too thin for me, this one feels great.

    However I will say that I swapped the pickups out for DiMarzio Area Js. The 60 cycle hum from the single coil pickups was driving me crazy. I'm sure the Ultra Jazz pickups would be a great choice as well.
    lowdownthump and mouthmw like this.
  3. mouthmw


    Jul 19, 2009
    I had a CV Jazz (earlier, olympic white version) and played it live for something like 5 years. It was a great bass, but I always yearned for a P bass. No more 1.5" nut for me. Gotta be at least 1.625". I'm checking those Dimarzio pickup sets and I agree, those are all interesting for sure. This might be a cool project to get into.
    murphy and noeinstein like this.
  4. tpaul

    tpaul Supporting Member

    Mar 19, 2011
    Yep, that's the one, Olympic White from 2008. MIC.

    Theoretically, given the number of p basses out there with jazz necks grafted into them, there should be a lot of p necks floating around homeless...
    murphy, slugger, flojob and 3 others like this.
  5. bwildt


    Mar 21, 2017
    Wichita, Kansas
    Have you not felt the j-bass love because of the neck or the sound? It kind of sounds like it's the neck. The neck is kind of slim for me but I can live with them. For me, it's the tone. I'm OK with others playing a jazz, but it just doesn't sound right when I'm playing it. Moving to flats (TI) gives me a sound that I like a whole lot better.
    J0hn likes this.
  6. mouthmw


    Jul 19, 2009
    Actually it's a bit of both. Sure I can handle a J neck, but I prefer a wider neck. The tone of a J is fine too, but again, I usually prefer to take out my P or Ray. That's why I thought maybe Model J pickups might be a solid option.

    But even now I'm thinking "meh, just go for a P or a PJ with rounds and call it a day".
    flojob, J0hn and Andre678 like this.
  7. tpaul

    tpaul Supporting Member

    Mar 19, 2011
    For me it's both the neck and the sound.

    Re neck, I don't mind the narrower nut width that much, but I like some meat on the back of the neck. The ultra slim ones don't work for me.

    Re sound, I don't like hum and I don't want to be restricted to the both-pickups-wide-open sound (where they hum-cancel each other). But if you replace the single coils with humbuckers, that opens up a world of possibilities. It also brings it closer to a P-bass sound, so obviously those who are dedicated J-bass fanatics might not like this solution, but it works for me.
    mouthmw likes this.
  8. tpaul

    tpaul Supporting Member

    Mar 19, 2011
    Seems like a nice PJ would do it for you.
    mouthmw and Samatza like this.
  9. Wisebass


    Jan 12, 2017
    Lost in Space
    hi mouthmw :)

    Cool project!

    Just plan to have both! :hyper::hyper::hyper:

    Start with a body, that is routed for a PJ combination and take it to a carpenter!

    All you need is a J pickguard (that way he knows how to route the front Jazz pup cavity)

    Get a good set of Jazz pups and a good PJ set….

    Use these...


    instead of soldering the pups directly to the pots.

    When you want to swap between JJ and PJ, just take a screwdriver swap the pg and the pups...



  10. NKBassman

    NKBassman Lvl 10 Nerd Supporting Member

    Jun 16, 2009
    Winnipeg, MB, Canada
    Sounds like my kind of Jazz bass. The Model J's are very thick sounding, and humbucking. Good choice for a P player.
    mouthmw and Dan_reeves like this.
  11. pappabass

    pappabass Inactive

    May 19, 2006
    Alabama !! Roll Tide
    I had a perfect mim jazz, could just not dig the sound. Now days you can get a pedal and get any sound you want...
    mouthmw likes this.
  12. StringslamDan


    Nov 18, 2012
    If you pickup a Classic vibe jazz Bass, I'll swap you the neck off of my Classic vibe P for your J neck!
    mouthmw likes this.
  13. pbassnut

    pbassnut Supporting Member

    Sep 27, 2004
    Falls Church, VA
    I'm a P-Bass guy at heart, but have a coupla Js with P necks. I like the DiMarzio Area J pickups. They're noise free, have roughly a traditional J tone and have raised A and D pole pieces for improved string balance. They're also relatively inexpensive.
    mouthmw likes this.
  14. mbell75


    May 23, 2016
    Get a Glarry jazz bass. 1.7” nut width and a big beefy neck. Biggest neck I’ve ever seen on a jazz. Best part is it’s only $74

    Another option is a Yamaha RBX170 which has a neck right in between a jazz and a P with a 1.575” nut width, 10 inch radius and a really nice thickness a bit more substantial than a modern C. Probably the most comfortable neck I’ve played.
    Last edited: Jul 8, 2019
    mouthmw likes this.
  15. joel406


    Dec 27, 2013
    You should try an American Standard Jazz.

    The necks seem a little thicker while maintaining the 1.5 nut.

    And the CS60 pickups are beefy and for some reason there is no hum. At least with mine. They are just perfect right out of the box.
    mouthmw likes this.
  16. dabbler


    Aug 17, 2007
    Bowie, MD
    I agree with you. If you don't like the J feel (OK, neck) and you really don't want the J sound, why spend time and money to make a J feel and sound like a P?

    Different strokes for different folks. I happen to have both (along with a few other configurations) because I like variety. When I pick up my J, I expect it to feel and sound like a J. Same for my Ps. Because I like them for what they each are.
    Last edited: Jul 8, 2019
    mouthmw and Tad like this.
  17. Lesgo

    Lesgo Supporting Member

    Jun 20, 2016
    I was in the same situation as you, until I got mine "fixed." Used the Dimarzio Area PJ set.

    Attached Files:

    mouthmw and Andre678 like this.
  18. red_rhino

    red_rhino Artful Dodger Gold Supporting Member

    It really sounds like a PJ with a P neck profile is what you're after. Best of both worlds for you.
    mouthmw likes this.
  19. chaak


    Apr 25, 2013
    now here
    go with a Mike Lull custom
    mouthmw likes this.
  20. Stewie


    Jul 3, 2013
    Near Boston
    I played a 73 J with a fretless P neck for 40 years. The fretless neck is now on an MIM P. The Jazz has 80s EMG actives on it and sounds pretty good with the MIM P neck and flats. It hasn't been out of the closet in months though. It turns out I'm just not a Jazz guy.
    mouthmw likes this.