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J-retro in an SX Jazz?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by xcental34x, Jan 25, 2004.


  1. xcental34x

    xcental34x

    Feb 28, 2003
    Memphrica, TN
    Will a standard J-retro fit into the control cavity of an SX SJB-75? I've got a amazing idea to mod a Sunburst Jazz, and a J-retro and Bartolini pick-up upgrade just happen to be part of it.

    ~Patrick
     
  2. Hey! You copied me! :p


    Well, I think that it would fit, since all Jazz Bass cavities (AFAIK) are built do a speficic diameter.
     
  3. xcental34x

    xcental34x

    Feb 28, 2003
    Memphrica, TN
    I'm sorry! :bawl:

    But my idea is more than just Barts and a Retro.

    Here are the full deets.
    -tortiose shell pickguard
    -Leo Quan Bad@$$ bridge
    -Bartolini pickups
    -J-retro preamp
    -chrome pickup cover
    -Dimarzio cliplock strap system

    Vintage looks, hi-fi growly sound.

    I may think of another thing to do to it. I just gotta rack my brain for some more ideas. Maybe a Hipshot bass xtender, since I'm forced to play in Drop D on most songs.

    ~Patrick:bassist: :p
     
  4. brianrost

    brianrost Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 26, 2000
    Boston, Taxachusetts
    How much did you pay for the SX? By the time you've tricked it out you'll have spent enough money to just buy a better bass and keep the SX as a backup!!!

    My personal rule of thumb is unless I really love the feel and UNAMPLIFIED tone of a bass and I plan on keeping it forever it's crazy to spend more than 50% of the value of the bass on upgrades.
     
  5. Rock City

    Rock City

    Apr 8, 2001
    Boston,Ma
    Damn Brian!
    Sometimes you scare me!!!! I've NEVER bought a bass by playing it plugged in. As Roger Sadowsky says...."a bass is an acoustic instrument first". If your bass doesn't work acoustically, it will NEVER work no matter what you do to it. All the pickups and preamps and bridges, will not fix a bad instrument.
    I don't think I would do the upgrades either, but that's up to you.
    GEEK
     
  6. artistanbul

    artistanbul Nihavend Longa Vita Brevis

    Apr 15, 2003
    Turkey-Istanbul
    I think not in this case. An SX is basically like a do it yourself kit :) let nino do basses with warmoth parts and we'll do with SX parts. Furthermore I think it will be nice as well.
     
  7. artistanbul

    artistanbul Nihavend Longa Vita Brevis

    Apr 15, 2003
    Turkey-Istanbul
    and you know. A VW Beetle can carry a porsche engine quite well. ;)
    edit: and may I say not in the trunk :p
     
  8. Jon Burnet

    Jon Burnet

    Jan 21, 2001
    Memphis, TN
    I HAVE AN SX

    i am in memphis


    i can let you play before you buy.

    that being said, for what it is its great. but what you have planned is going squirel hunting with an uzi. if you ever tire of it you will end up with a bass thats worth less than 100 bucks even though you have 3 times that in mods. better idea is to do this with warmoth or even a custom builder... i happen to know some that are rather affordable.
     
  9. cheezewiz

    cheezewiz

    Mar 27, 2002
    Ohio
    I guess I agree with some of the others. Why put a $250 preamp and $100 pickups in a $120 bass?
     
  10. natrab

    natrab

    Dec 9, 2003
    Bay Area, CA
    I'm upgrading my SX through the hand-me-down method. Getting a badass II, barts, and a J-retro for my MIA Fender Jazz Bass, and popping the old stock parts on the SX. I'll see if it's a noticable difference.

    However the stock SX basses seem to work pretty well. I love using it for gigs because I'm not worried to leave it in my car or up on stage cuz it's not bloody murder if it gets stolen. I've also never had any trouble getting a good tone out of them.
     
  11. doc540

    doc540

    Jul 28, 2003
    Beaumont, Texas
    I suggest y'all hold the your comments about price/value/mods until you actually hold and play an Essex Jbass copy.

    I bought one a few months ago. The fit, finish, and quality is outstanding in proportion to the price, outstanding.

    I installed a used BadassII bridge (twenty bucks), and just snagged a set of active EMG's off ebay for $86.

    When finished I'll have less than $250 in a great playing and sounding beater.

    IMHO, that defines price/value.
     
  12. Jon Burnet

    Jon Burnet

    Jan 21, 2001
    Memphis, TN
    i suggest you read our posts and our profiles. most of us DO own essex basses. that being said... i still stand by what i said.
     
  13. doc540

    doc540

    Jul 28, 2003
    Beaumont, Texas
    Would you agree that it's reasonable to spend around $100 to modify and upgrade an Essex Jbass? (That's nearly 100% of the purchase price.)

    Personally, I don't have a problem even with spending 100% of an Essex's purchase price on upgrades if the guitar is well made and plays well to begin with.

    It not exactly the old "trying to make a purse out of a sow's ear" situation.

    In contrast, spending a lot of money on a cheap guitar which is poorly constructed or doesn't play well is foolish to me.

    I've read many times here that the fit and finish of an Essex is superior to many new Fenders. If so, upgrading an Essex is not only a matter of personal preference, but makes good sense if it improves the tone.
     
  14. xyllion

    xyllion Commercial User

    Jan 14, 2003
    San Jose, CA, USA
    Owner, Looperlative Audio Products
    Hey, if the guy wants to hot rod an SX, why rain on his parade? I don't know if the J Retro will fit. I would guess that if it doesn't, then it should be close enough that a dremel tool can take out the little bit of wood necessary to make it fit.

    As for resale, save the old parts. If you later decide to sell it off, restore the bass to original and then sell the J Retro seperately. You will get the best possible resale price that way. A J Retro on its own will sell close to $200 used, but installed in an SX, you will be lucky if you get $200.

    So, if you like the SX but are looking for more flexibility in sound, then go ahead and try dropping in a J Retro.
     
  15. Jon Burnet

    Jon Burnet

    Jan 21, 2001
    Memphis, TN
    i would at least look at a stompbox so you can use the preamp on other basses. there are stomp versions of the sadowsky and the j retro and also many other outboard versions.
     
  16. natrab

    natrab

    Dec 9, 2003
    Bay Area, CA
    xyllion has a point. The J-Retro keeps pretty good resale value. It's also nice because it can be dropped into any J-Bass. It's a worthwhile investment no matter what bass you put it in.
     
  17. xcental34x

    xcental34x

    Feb 28, 2003
    Memphrica, TN
    Thank you, Bob. I do not care about resell value. I know what I'd like for this bass. Its sorta of a hobby of mine. I modded my first Squier II P-bass, I modded my MIM Jazz, I changed the pickguard on my Stingray. I'm just not pleased by stock. Plus, $150 for a project bass beats shelling out $400-500 for a Warmoth.

    ~Patrick
     
  18. xyllion

    xyllion Commercial User

    Jan 14, 2003
    San Jose, CA, USA
    Owner, Looperlative Audio Products
    You're welcome. I'm like you. I like to fiddle, but don't have unlimited funds to do it. Close to 2 years ago now, I put together a jazz with bits and pieces that I got off eBay. I dropped a J Retro in and had a killer fretless. I later tore it apart and sold off the pieces because there was something else that I wanted more, but hey isn't that the way of GAS?

    BTW, I believe there are some measurements for the J Retro on John East's web site. I don't know it off the top of my head, but there is a link to it in the J Retro forum of The Dudepit.
     
  19. So how many of you guys have put a J-retro into an SX? How is it?