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Mexican Jazz Bass or American Jazz Bass?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by 5Bass5, Jan 20, 2013.

  1. 5Bass5


    Apr 13, 2011
    So I've been saving up money for a new bass. I'm sure I want a Jazz Bass, but I don't know if I want a Mexican one or an American one. Right now I have almost $400 saved up, and it took me at least half a year to get that. I can get a Mexican one for $599, while I can get an American one for $999. Right now, I'd really like something much better then my current Rogue bass which I dislike, but I'd be fine with anything better then it. So should I get a Mexican one, or get more money and wait longer to get an American one?
  2. Look around the TalkBass classifieds. You can probably get a used (but extremely well taken care of) American made Jazz Bass for under $1,000. I have seen them go anywhere from $800-$1,000 and in between.

    Also, check Ebay. They always have some good standard jazzes for sale for GREAT prices. DEFINITELY settle for the American though..
  3. SirMjac28

    SirMjac28 Patiently Waiting For The Next British Invasion

    Aug 25, 2010
    The Great Midwest
    +1 I have two MIM basses and love them with a few upgrades they play as well as any MIA bass I've played but bass surfer is right you can find a nice used MIA bass for a good price and the resale value will be there if you decide to upgrade basses in the future good luck.
  4. You could probably find an affordable, used AM Standard Jazz in good condition somewhere. That's what I'd go for.
  5. Rumbledom

    Rumbledom Inactive

    Jan 19, 2013
    Ask 10 different people, get 10 different replies. As for used -- you can get a great deal, or you can get something someone else is trying to unload. It's a crapshoot. Bottom line, try a few and see what you like.

    Personally, I find the American's far superior to the Mexis but if you want a good budget bass, go with the Squier classic vibe jazz. It's excellent.
  6. 5Bass5


    Apr 13, 2011
    What do you mean, "a few upgrades"?
  7. pedroims


    Dec 19, 2007
    You said $999..that is a Fender American Special...I have never own this model so I cant comment. A new Fender American Standard will cost couple hundred more. As mentioned before I will go for a used bass. In fact, I would recommend Lakland JO (4460). There are made in Indonesia but they are in same quality range than a Fender MIA. Search in the classified section you will find great deals. As per Fender Mexican bass , I will recommend the roadworn, they are absolutly killer basses.
  8. 5Bass5


    Apr 13, 2011
    Oh, I assumed the Special ones were more money then the Standard ones. =P Then the American Standards are $1349.
  9. Contemporary MIM's are the bomb. Especially with a maple board. I was torn between MIM and MIA, and although money was not a concern, and I auditioned several MIAs, I went MIM. Three times. (For the record, I do own a couple of MIAs, very nice basses too. Worth the extra $$$ ? I dunno.)

    Please be mindful this comment applies to CONTEMPORARY MIMs, from around 2009 on. Over the decades the quality varies wildly.
  10. Turtle71

    Turtle71 Supporting Member

    Aug 11, 2009
    Madison, WI
    I think either one would be an improvement.

    As has been said already, buying a MIM is usually a good move, however saving a little more and buying the MIA might prove to be an even better choice.

    I have played many of both, and I recently played one of the new American Specials, I have to say, if getting a gig bag instead of a hardcase doesn't bother you, then you just can't go wrong with the MIA Specials (there are other differences that separate them from the MIA standards too, but probably don't need to go into that.)
  11. +1 Right back at you! I have had my fair share of MIM Jazz Basses as well and some were really nice instruments, but ever since I have ventured into the higher end basses of Fender, I have always noticed the difference in more ways than one. Some people don't mind or don't see a HUGE difference, but it really depends on the player!
  12. Dredmahawkus


    Nov 4, 2012
    My MIA deluxe blows away my MIM. I have more money in repairs and upgrades then it cost to get a standard MIA. This MIM is only 10 weeks old and its already getting the neck replaced from Fender. Soon as it got cold here and the air dried the neck totally twisted...its straight on one side and bowed on the other....then even after all that it plays nothing like the american. Do yourself a favor and just save the extra couple hundred for a MIA.
  13. johnson79


    Jan 8, 2010
    Lancaster, PA
    Have you played both MIM, American Special, and American Standard? I wasn't crazy about the Special. The MIM FSR ash at GC is very nice. And like a previous poster said, the Road Worn are nice, though I've never played one.

    How about a used Geddy Lee?
  14. A "hand picked" MIM Jazz bass would be a good move. After trying quite a few Jazz basses, I got my fretless MIM 11 years ago (it was all ready used, it's a year 2000 model) and since then, I've tried many MIA fretless J's for the fun of it and none I've tried made me wan't to switch to an MIA. Only upgrade I've made is changing the pickups.
  15. garp


    Feb 7, 2009
    Connecticut USA
    Play several of each, and let your hands and ears make the decision for you.

    — garp
    (owner of 1 MIA and 3 MIMs)
  16. Kmonk


    Oct 18, 2012
    South Shore, Massachusetts
    Endorsing Artist: Fender, Spector, Ampeg, Curt Mangan, Nordstrand Pickups, Korg , Conquest Sound
    Save up for an MIA. Check craigslist and Ebay. You should be able to pick one up for under $1,000.
  17. deeptubes


    Feb 21, 2011
    Virginia Beach
    I have a couple of different Fenders, 2 MIA - '84 P Elite II, '90 HM - and 2 MIM - '00 P Special Deluxe, '04 Dimension. They are all stock except for a Badass II on the Special Deluxe. The Dimension is my favorite player, Elite is a close 2nd, Special Deluxe 3rd, and currently the HM is 4th but it's been in pieces since spring. I need to put it back together.

    Get what sounds great, plays easily, and feels best in your hands. Where it was made doesn't really matter.
  18. birminghambass

    birminghambass Supporting Member

    Sep 18, 2002
    Birmingham, AL
    Regardless of your choice buy used!
  19. Hmm, if you got a MIM Fender Jazz bass now but deep down in your heart know you really want a MIA Fender Jazz bass I’d say wait and get a MIA Fender Jazz bass. With that said - I have both MIA and MIM Fender Jazz basses and I like both of them.

  20. Primary

    Primary TB Assistant

    Here are some related products that TB members are talking about. Clicking on a product will take you to TB’s partner, Primary, where you can find links to TB discussions about these products.

    Mar 3, 2021

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