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Looking in P-basses-- after all these years..

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by alaskaleftybass, Feb 21, 2016.


  1. alaskaleftybass

    alaskaleftybass Will Hanbury, Jr. Supporting Member

    Mar 21, 2012
    Sitka, Alaska
    I made the switch to Ibanez basses in 1980. My Ibanez basses have been excellent performers.
    After being a regular member of TB for so many years I'm finally succumbing to the temptation of buying another P-bass. I know it's a different world now for Fender since the 80's. So I have some questions I hope you can help with.

    Sidebar: From the early 70's to the first part of the 80's my most loved bass was a Fender P-bass in sunburst. I literally wore it down to 'roadworn.' But the dead spots on the neck always bothered me. Normally was a very weak D and G, or sometimes a very weak A.

    Is it possible to get an authentic Fender P-bass with a narrow neck? I've been playing super fast 38mm necks for over 30 years. I know the Jazz is similar in size but I would rather have the shorter length of the P-bass.

    Also, has Fender more or less taken care of the issues of dead spots on the neck? That was really a problem in the 70's when I owned several Fenders.

    Also, what are the new pickups like on the new P-basses? Are they good right out of the box?

    Finally, MIA and MIM? How much better are the MIA's?

    For those of you interested in friendly help, thank you in advance. :bassist:
     
    Last edited: Feb 21, 2016
  2. The P and J necks are both identical (apart from the width at the nut), and made for 34" scale. If you want a short-scale P-ish sound, take a look at the Fender Mustang Bass.
     
    TinIndian and alaskaleftybass like this.
  3. alaskaleftybass

    alaskaleftybass Will Hanbury, Jr. Supporting Member

    Mar 21, 2012
    Sitka, Alaska
    Thanks. It's been longer than I thought! No, I'm not interested in the Mustang. I was under the wrong impression that the P-bass was shorter.
     
  4. woodyng2

    woodyng2 Supporting Member

    Oct 4, 2015
    Oregon Coast
    image. I've recently got a new-ish pair,a '13 Am.Std.J,and a '14 MIM P bass. The j neck feels a bit narrow at the nut compared to the P,but both necks feel similar to me. I haven't owned a real Fender since 1975,most times since then when i've tried one out,i didn't much like them! These 2 are very nice,seems like Fender has stepped up its game in recent years,with great fit,finish,and hardware details. The custom shop pickups in these basses sound great. As far as downsides, Both basses are a bit lacking in the fret dressing,with the Mexican one being the worse of the 2.
     
  5. I think the Nate Mendel signature is up your alley. The neck on it almost feels like a Jazz Bass. I personally find it okay but I wish it had more meat on the neck but meh.
     
  6. alaskaleftybass

    alaskaleftybass Will Hanbury, Jr. Supporting Member

    Mar 21, 2012
    Sitka, Alaska
    Thank you guys. Beautiful basses by the way. I'm off to look for the Nate Mendel. I hope it's available custom. Forgot to mention-- I'm a lefty! So add that to complicate the issue LOL!
     
    Gilman and woodyng2 like this.
  7. My new Precision. I'm not really hooked on the QP pickup yet but we'll see.

    image.
     
  8. alaskaleftybass

    alaskaleftybass Will Hanbury, Jr. Supporting Member

    Mar 21, 2012
    Sitka, Alaska
    Wow. Nice looking setup. After thinking about it, I'm sure I could adapt to the wider neck without a problem. That will make it easier for me to find a stock lefty Fender rather than having to go custom....
     
  9. Relsom

    Relsom Supporting Member

    Nov 23, 2013
    The Old Dominion
    I tried to get along with P-basses in the mid '70s but thought they were lifeless, unwieldy beasts with fat chunky necks that couldn't be heard through the mix. And this is coming from a guy that was use to an EB-0. Figure that.
    I went the Rickenbacker route, then Stingray, L2K, and Spectors before giving Fenders another chance in the mid '90s.
    I'm glad I did. I chalk it up to that my tastes had not matured to the point of really being able to appreciate the simple perfection that is the P-Bass. A lot of folks have said it and I'll say it again....Leo got it right.
     
  10. The MIM standard necks are pretty nice too. I like the thickness and width of those necks. I think they make lefty necks too but not sure.

    There's always Stratosphere on eBay
     
    woodyng2 and alaskaleftybass like this.
  11. Feralhog

    Feralhog

    Dec 29, 2014
    NH
    None
    Fender does currently make ONE lefty precision (in their normal offerings). You can find it on the Fender site. Don't know about "right out of the box" but "right off the wall" the righty was gas inducing.........
     
    alaskaleftybass likes this.
  12. buldog5151bass

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

    Oct 22, 2003
    Connecticut
    Build what you want from All Parts or Warmoth - P bass with a J neck.
     
  13. alaskaleftybass

    alaskaleftybass Will Hanbury, Jr. Supporting Member

    Mar 21, 2012
    Sitka, Alaska
    Lots of great suggestions here! Thank you guys!
     
  14. wvbass

    wvbass Supporting Member

    Mar 1, 2004
    West Virginia
    If you've been playing an Ibanez since the 80's (Soundgear?), there might not be a P bass neck that doesn't feel huge to you. As a lefty, the narrowest nut you are going to get is about 41mm. That may not sound like much more than 38mm, but your hands will have to be the judge.

    Others will disagree, but the P bass hasn't really changed much. There are some construction improvements and changes to hardware, but the marketing spin really makes more of that than what it is. Dead spots are still there. Their severity varies from bass to bass and with the reinforce necks I would hope it is less of a problem than when you last owner a Fender.
     
    alaskaleftybass likes this.
  15. obimark

    obimark

    Sep 1, 2011
    I love my Squier Classic Vibe P-bass- slightly thicker neck- but GREAT classic sound.
     
    jd56hawk and alaskaleftybass like this.
  16. GretschWretch

    GretschWretch Supporting Member

    Dec 27, 2013
    East Central Alabama

    +1, and then some. Leo got it right, except for the dead spots, which nobody except Lady Luck can get right.

    However, I have had enough success with Fenders and Magnatone Hurricanes to make an inductive leap that a fat) finger clamped down HARD just north of the nut at either three or nine of the clock goes a long way toward turning dead spots into usable notes. Miscellaneous bits from a hardware store placed elsewhere on the back of the headstock sometimes can get you the rest of the way.
     
    alaskaleftybass likes this.
  17. obimark

    obimark

    Sep 1, 2011
    I must have got lucky with my Squier P because there are no dead spots to speak of. (only some grounding noise, which I will address)
     
    jd56hawk and alaskaleftybass like this.
  18. wvbass

    wvbass Supporting Member

    Mar 1, 2004
    West Virginia
    But then my Fat Finger gets in the way of my Hipshot. :facepalm:
     
    alaskaleftybass likes this.
  19. I like your style
     

    Attached Files:

    alaskaleftybass likes this.
  20. Is that an MIM P and a Rumble 40 or 100?
     
    alaskaleftybass likes this.

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