Least expensive way to achieve authentic P bass tone for recordings

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by ThinCrappyTone, Jun 26, 2020.

  1. ThinCrappyTone

    ThinCrappyTone Guest

    Oct 1, 2011
    Hello, bass friends. Just like everyone and their brother, I occasionally like to do demo videos of music gear. Nothing serious, just once in a while for fun.

    Since P’s are so popular, it would seem to make sense to use one of those to do the demos. That way the P people have a decent reference point for what they are hearing. However, I don’t own one.

    With so many options out there, and never having owned a P before, I’m not sure which way to go. I want to keep it as cheap as possible, but don’t want to “underspend” and get something that isn't quite authentic-sounding, and/or needs upgrades and elbow grease. Looking for something out-of-the-box good to go.

    So, here is the question to you: What would your recommendation be for the least expensive way to do this (achieve a classic P bass tone for recording)?

    Would something like this do it? Or would this need upgrades, in your opinion? Or could one get something just as good, but cheaper, going the Glarry route, for example?

    Squier Electric Affinity Series Precision P-Bass PJ - musical...

    Thanks in advance for any help!
  2. Jebberz

    Jebberz Supporting Member

    Jul 3, 2012
    Quebec city
    A Squier with a P only pickup will do the trick
  3. ThinCrappyTone

    ThinCrappyTone Guest

    Oct 1, 2011
    Thank you!
  4. JeezyMcNuggles

    JeezyMcNuggles Supporting Member

    Feb 23, 2018
    Santa Maria, CA
    I suck, but nobody really notices
    P Bass? Glarry P bass?
    /\/\3phist0 likes this.
  5. JeezyMcNuggles

    JeezyMcNuggles Supporting Member

    Feb 23, 2018
    Santa Maria, CA
    I suck, but nobody really notices
    Anything that has a split in the sweet spot will give you a P bass tone.
  6. JW56789

    JW56789 Guest

    Feb 18, 2017
    Unless it's just feels alien enough from your regular axe to be a problem, it's far cheaper to just get a Precision Bass (the prices are all over the map) than to spend a lot on electronic skullduggery that in the end may simply make your wallet lighter without achieving what you're after.

    Get one of these, cheap enough, and a great little bass:

    Classic Vibe '60s Precision Bass® | Squier Electric Basses
  7. CallMeAl


    Dec 2, 2016
    Ithaca Ny
    I agree with the above, in that it takes only a split coil in the sweet spot to get there. I spent $125 on a Squier Affinity and $180 on a Squier Standard, and they sound pretty dang good to me .

    the benefit of getting a Squier is they (generally) accept fender parts; which sounds like isn’t a factor for you. The compromise with going super cheap (Glarry) isn’t necessarily sound, but feel, especially the neck.
    ThinCrappyTone likes this.
  8. Samatza


    Apr 15, 2019
    Any P pickup bass and a tube preamp will sound heavenly in the mix.
    ThinCrappyTone likes this.
  9. Maxdusty


    Mar 9, 2012
    Michigan USA
    check out your pawn shops, or local CL listings. You'll find cheap P basses. Squier or otherwise. If you're lucky, you'll find a 90s Peavey Fury which is US made and absolutely killer for the money (I paid $100 for mine and it literally put my MIM P bass to shame). Keep an eye out for a used Squier CV P bass and that should really satisfy you too.
  10. CallMeAl


    Dec 2, 2016
    Ithaca Ny
    I’d go check out this one
    ThinCrappyTone and jackn1202 like this.
  11. buldog5151bass

    buldog5151bass Kibble, milkbones, and P Basses. And redheads.

    Oct 22, 2003
    I wouldn't get an Affinity unless you intend to upgrade the pickup.
  12. luciens


    Feb 9, 2020
    I'll second just getting a Squire Precision bass and just getting it overwith. Don't let that "Squire" on the headstock fool you - they're actually really good basses for pretty cheap. And it'll sound exactly like a Precision bass. Because that's what it is... :)

    IronSpatula and ThinCrappyTone like this.
  13. socialleper

    socialleper Bringer of doom and top shelf beer Supporting Member

    May 31, 2009
    Canyon Country, CA
    A P is a P is a P.
    If it has a split single coil you are good.
    Peavey Fury/Forum are well built and cheap. There is a Euro company called Vintage that makes some good value models.
    andruca and ThinCrappyTone like this.
  14. johnnynitro


    Jan 14, 2012
    Rent one ?
    ThinCrappyTone likes this.
  15. Texican


    Aug 9, 2018
    Shouldn’t be a problem since none of them say “Squire” on the headstock. :roflmao:;)
  16. ThinCrappyTone

    ThinCrappyTone Guest

    Oct 1, 2011
    thanks, thats a pitfall I was hoping to avoid!
    Monterey Bay-ss likes this.
  17. I like my SX basses.
    ThinCrappyTone and MasterG like this.
  18. Texican


    Aug 9, 2018
    I disagree... I think the stock affinity P pickup will serve you just fine. It won’t be the “best”, but it’s more than serviceable. I have some high end P pickups and I don’t mind the stock affinity. I’d worry more about the setup than anything.
    TrustRod and ThinCrappyTone like this.
  19. wraub


    Apr 9, 2004
    ennui, az
    I got a 2017 Squier Affinity P Bass (PJ) for less than 50 bucks at a nearby pawn shop, and I am continually stunned at how capable it really is. It sounds good, plays well, and isn't heavy. It's all good.
    ThinCrappyTone and Texican like this.