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jazz bass vs. p bass

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Mind Eroded, Jun 22, 2004.


  1. Mind Eroded

    Mind Eroded Supporting Member

    Apr 25, 2003
    Brooklyn/Buffalo, NY
    I guess im alittle confused between the differences of a jazz bass and p bass i know the deal about the pick ups and stuff and the thinner neck but alot of the stuff im reading is contradictory to other stuff as to the sounds of each individual bass..now im just a regular guy..been playin bass for a good 3 years so the differences to me arent really that obvious when i try the different basses out at my local sam ash especially with all those shmuck music/instrument nazis who work there looking at me ...i know talkbass.com is full of them so i figure i can ask for some advice. :confused:

    ps. sorry i havent been playing bass for 200 years like the rest of you im a n00b :bag:
     
  2. Mudfuzz

    Mudfuzz

    Apr 3, 2004
    WA...
    P= wide neck, [although fender from time to time has made them with thin necks] one split humbucking pickup [except from 51 - 56 where it had one single coil pickup] and a more symmetrical body shape.

    J=thin neck, and two single coil pickups and a more offset body shape.

    All else other than mojo is the same.
     
  3. MascisMan

    MascisMan

    Nov 21, 2003
    Dallas, Tx
    Have you played each bass in a band environment? They are way different
     
  4. Both sounds radically different, i'm surprised you didn't hear any difference while playing them. Have you tried the jazz with both pick ups full? It should sound radically different, maybe you tried the jazz with only the neck pick-up on, that would explain why you think they sound simmilar.
     
  5. Mind Eroded

    Mind Eroded Supporting Member

    Apr 25, 2003
    Brooklyn/Buffalo, NY
    i know all the cosmetic differences i just meant like differences soundwise
     
  6. Mind Eroded

    Mind Eroded Supporting Member

    Apr 25, 2003
    Brooklyn/Buffalo, NY
    i just noticed the jazz bass has a more thinner refined type of sound while the the p bass has like a punchy growl to it
     
  7. Mudfuzz

    Mudfuzz

    Apr 3, 2004
    WA...
    PICKUPS ARE THE DIFFERENCE!

    And I own 3 jazz type, 5 P type, 1 with a P-J, one with P-H and 1 with a H [hunbucker].
     
  8. Mudfuzz

    Mudfuzz

    Apr 3, 2004
    WA...
    I've played Jazz's that defy that. Go listen to Aston "Family Man" Barrett.
     
  9. Mind Eroded

    Mind Eroded Supporting Member

    Apr 25, 2003
    Brooklyn/Buffalo, NY
    im actually really considering the MIM deluxe p-bass with the p/j pick up combo and jazz neck...i heard that the parts are built in the U.S. and its only assembled in mexico..is this true? :confused:
     
  10. Mudfuzz

    Mudfuzz

    Apr 3, 2004
    WA...
    Have you played it, I played a MIA deluxe p-bass few years back and I liked it.
     
  11. Mind Eroded

    Mind Eroded Supporting Member

    Apr 25, 2003
    Brooklyn/Buffalo, NY
    ive played it once at guitar center and messed around with it..i thought it represented the p-bass sound better than the jazz bass according to my knowledge which is questionable so thats why i ask
     
  12. xyllion

    xyllion Commercial User

    Jan 14, 2003
    San Jose, CA, USA
    Owner, Looperlative Audio Products
    The difference is that a jazz bass falls over when you set it against your amp. :D
     
  13. Mudfuzz

    Mudfuzz

    Apr 3, 2004
    WA...
    So that's why I had to refinish mine, I just thought some one had thrown it down a flight of stairs. :D

    The good part was I got it for $499.00.
     
  14. pgurns

    pgurns

    Dec 26, 2003
    Northern, IL
    Now thats some funny **** LOL
     
  15. funky plunky

    funky plunky

    Mar 18, 2004
    This is just my opinion, but the way i see it, is the P bass sounds better in a solo environment, because of the pure, soft, bassy tone of it. The jazz bass performs better in a band environment, as its cuts through a band making the bass alot more present to the listener and easier to hear with its more raw agressive tone. This is just coming from someone who has one of each, and has used them both while playing with other musicians.
     
  16. morebass!

    morebass! I'm listening

    May 31, 2002
    Madison WI
    I'll second that. I dig the P when I'm plunking around at home but can't cut through live as well with it. The J sounds less rich soloed to my ear.
     
  17. Mud Flaps

    Mud Flaps

    Feb 3, 2003
    Norton, MA
    LOL, that's why I'm proud to play a cardboard box with strings drawn in crayon.

    By "a cardboard box with strings drawn in crayon", I of course mean 44-02 :D .
     
  18. xyllion

    xyllion Commercial User

    Jan 14, 2003
    San Jose, CA, USA
    Owner, Looperlative Audio Products
    Honestly, I didn't make that line up. It has been used for years.

    Maybe I'm getting less picky in my old age, I seem to find a way to get comfortable with a wide variety of basses. I have 5 basses at the moment (others have come and gone).

    I have a '78 P. Despite the accusations that a P can't be heard in a band, I find that it cuts through a band like no other. I recently played in a 5-piece band with two guitars and a keyboard. I found that my P sat in the mix better than anything else I had at the time. That includes a very nice jazz bass.

    I have a Franken-jazz bass with an MM bridge pup and a J neck pup. Very versatile bass, I find that its strengths are in the MM pup sounds. The neck pup adds some extra bottom.

    I have a 6-string custom. This is my noodle at home bass, but it has also found a place in one of my bands.

    I have a 5-string fretless. Haven't been playing this one too much lately, but it works really nicely for mellow ballads.

    My 5th is a Steinberger Spirit. I take with me on vacation. It is easy to transport and if I ever get around to it, I'm going to build a headphone amp to install in the body.

    So, take your pick, P or J, both are useful. Both can be played in bands (and have been for decades).
     
  19. Mudfuzz

    Mudfuzz

    Apr 3, 2004
    WA...
    It's a mojo thing.
     
  20. bazzanderson

    bazzanderson

    Oct 7, 2002
    Austin, TX
    "It's a mojo thing"

    "I have a '78 P. Despite the accusations that a P can't be heard in a band, I find that it cuts through a band like no other. I recently played in a 5-piece band with two guitars and a keyboard. I found that my P sat in the mix better than anything else I had at the time. That includes a very nice jazz bass."

    All of this is of course true and it's definitely a mojo thing. I favor a more "P" like sound in a band situation to cut through...always been the case for me but of course YMMV. I've owned both and have liked both for their distinctive tones but just favored the P. Had a J in which I wired the pickups in series and LOVED that tone (think P tone with a tad more clarity).

    Either bass is a good choice for modern rock, punk, metal...hell just about any genre of modern music.
    -Bazz-