MIA jazz bass, standard or deluxe?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by jtm3183, Mar 16, 2014.

  1. jtm3183


    Feb 10, 2014
    Can someone tell me some big differences between the American Standard and Deluxe Fender jazz basses? I played a deluxe made in 2000 that was $1200 and it was incredible, and I am testing an American standard tomorrow that is for $900. So I just want to know what to look for as far as differences go when I try it. Is the extra $300 worth it? I'll throw in a picture of the deluxe, but the picture doesn't do it justice to how it looks in person, it's amazing.

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  2. SteveC

    SteveC Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Nov 12, 2004
    North Dakota
    Aren't the Deluxe basses active and have 21 or 22 frets and he Standards are passive 20 fret basses?
  3. jtm3183


    Feb 10, 2014
    I know that they have the active and passive difference but I didn't hear about the fret thing. I was also wanting personal opinions on them.
  4. PJ Muzikmansky

    PJ Muzikmansky

    Jan 4, 2013
    I'll qualify my post first-up and say that I can really only speak for my experience with the American standard jazz.

    I purchased a 2012 Am std 9 months ago and frankly it is the best jazz bass I've ever played. 10 out of 10. To give you an idea of how good it is, I also own a Sadowsky Metro UV70 5 string with the hum-cancelling pickups and have to say the jazz is equal to it in terms of construction, fit and finish, and sounds *a lot* better IMO.

    This jazz has become my go-to gigging bass since and I do hesitate in recommending it to anyone. The 2000 jazz deluxe ? Well I tried one of those in 2001 and while it was a very nice bass, I didn't really dig the sound (or the small body). Would it be worth the $300 dollar up charge in comparison with the Am std? Absolutely not.

    I hope this helps
  5. scuzzy


    Feb 15, 2006
    Troy, MO
    I'm quite certain that the only difference is active vs passive and deluxe is 21 fret, standard is 20 fret. more tonal control with the active, but will have a very different tonal color than the passive. if you like active....get a deluxe. if you like passive....get the standard.
  6. GM60466


    May 20, 2006
    Land of Lakland
    I play a Standard and it is enough one for me.
  7. Smooth_bass88

    Smooth_bass88 Groove it Supporting Member

    Oct 31, 2006
    Without trying to turn this into an active vs. passive debate, I personally prefer a passive jazz to an active one for two reasons: With an active you have to worry about the battery dying; and with an active, there are so many tonal options you may find yourself endlessly fiddling with the knobs.
  8. davedblyoo

    davedblyoo "All the mayhem and none of the sticky mess." Supporting Member

    Nov 15, 2012
    Augusta, GA
    I've owned both Standards and a Deluxe. Although I played it a lot, I never really found a sound I really liked with the Deluxe and didn't feel bad selling it to help finance my third divorce. The Deluxe was an early one with the Suhr preamp in it. I felt like the build quality may have been a little better than the 1995 American Standard Jazz that I bought new before I bought the deluxe. Still have the '95 Standard, have a 2012 Standard that I bought new, and picked up a new 2013 today, and I gotta say that the newer model Standards are probably nicer that the 90s versions. Unless you just HAVE to have the preamp, and the Deluxe calls your name late at night, you're probably just wasting $300 bucks. And in response to the post about batteries dying, my American Deluxe would keep going without a battery, unlike my EBMM Stingray 5 which becomes completely useless if I let the battery die.
  9. jtm3183


    Feb 10, 2014
    I'm not to worried about the battery dying, they last months, it wouldn't be a deal breaker for me. But the bass was really light, which wasn't a bad thing, it felt great. I was comparing it to Squiers and a MIM jazz, so obviously it sounded and played a lot better, it definitely set the bar high for the Standard. I don't know what year the Standard is though, I'll ask the store owner when I go in tomorrow or write down the serial number. But if the only real difference is the extra fret and the active pickups, I don't want to throw an extra 300 into that, I could get a used amp to go with the Standard for that much. It's awesome that you guys actually have experience with both. I always hear that for jazzes, to get the authentic tone you gotta go passive. But the deluxe felt great. I guess I'll have to see how it goes tomorrow, hopefully I like it and go home with it. $900 sounds like a pretty good price considering the GC by my place doesn't carry the standard version, only the deluxe.