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MIA neck vs. MIM neck

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by bareass, Apr 10, 2009.

  1. i'm thinking of buying a second neck for my now fretless 72 P frankenbass.
    is there a difference in the MIA and MIM neck tone wise, or wood/ quality wise?
    also, a jazz neck fits on the p bass right? i now the opposite works.
    i would like to get a maple FB possibly a onepeice like it originally had. but they are so much money. just a neck cost half of the total price of the bass!
  2. elBandito


    Dec 3, 2008
    Rotten Apple
    MIA has graphite rods for extra support. Should affect the tone somewhat.
  3. LowBSix

    LowBSix Supporting Member Commercial User

    Mar 25, 2008
    818 ~ 805 ~ L.A.
    Endorsing Artist: GHS Strings
    During my tour of the Corona factory, the necks are all cut on the same machines... Some stay in Corona and some sent to Ensendad, Mexico...
  4. stingray69

    stingray69 Talkbass Legit

    Aug 11, 2004
    St Louis Area

    Gotta agree - IME, every dual graphite (or steel) support neck I've played (whether the bass is active or passive) always has a very modern "snap" to the notes, great for slapping, tapping, etc. I believe the extra rigidness results in a brighter, harder attack of the notes played. This may not be so great if you're seeking a warmer, more vintage tone unless offset by darker sounding pickups.
  5. According to what I've read, the main effect of graphite rods is pushing dead spots beyond the usable range of a bass. Some manufacturers choose to say "eliminate" those but that is not correct.
    I've never heard that graphite rods resulted in timber difference whatsoever , so I wouldn't stand for that.
  6. cassanova


    Sep 4, 2000
    I own 2 MIA Fenders and used to own a MIM Deluxe Active Jazz for up until 2004 or 2005.

    IME with the basses both MIA and MIM necks are quality. The MIM I owned had a factory defect but the replacement neck put on it never had a problem in the 6 years that I owned it.

    The MIM has a couple of less frets as well. Both necks were very comfortable for me to play and my MIM also had very good fretwork. Both MIM and MIA necks are made of maple but the MIA gives you the option of a maple board where as the MIM Dlx Active does not, its strictly Pau Ferro. Which IMO was a nice fretboard wood and to answer your question about a jazz neck being able to fit a P, IIRC the answer is yes, both necks are interchangeable, but I might be mistaken on that.

    I cannot really comment on the tonality differences of the MIA and MIM necks as my MIM Dlx Active Jazz was made of poplar, my Fenders are Alder/Ash so they are obviously going to sound different.

    I hope this helps you somewhat.

    I've never heard of that either. The only thing I've heard that dual rods do is increase the stability of the neck.
  7. stingray69

    stingray69 Talkbass Legit

    Aug 11, 2004
    St Louis Area
    Really? No one here ever tried a Moses or other similar ultra-hard, ultra-rigid neck? How about even an ebony fingerboard? No tonal difference to your ears? :meh: To me, these types of necks always sound ultra-clean & bright/modern, not what I'd call a warm & vintage tone, but we all hear things differently I suppose. :cool:

    +1 on the dead-spot issue, they are great for that.
  8. bassbully

    bassbully Endorsed by The PHALEX CORN BASS..mmm...corn!

    Sep 7, 2006
    Blimp City USA
    FWIW the only tonal diff i hear is rosewood to maple boards. I have both rosewood and maple MIMs and have put them againt MIA rosewood and maple...not much diff from my mind. My MIMs fretworks have always been top knotch.
  9. WoodyG3


    May 6, 2003
    Colorado, USA
    One thing I'll say in favor of MIM necks is that I prefer the truss rod adjustment at the headstock.
  10. you can't compare a graphite support to a ebony fingerboard. the ebony wood will give you a huge tonal difference. that would be like comparing hard maple body to plastic. they are both hard. but the tones are night and day
  11. savit260


    Mar 6, 2006
    +1 on the adjustment.

    I've never liked the finish on the MIM necks.

    They can be made to feel good IMO, but it takes way too long and too much work to get a good broken in feeling. (required IMO)

    The American Series necks felt nearly as bad (IMO) until just reacently. They're finally buffing them out smooth now as of 08. A HUGE improvement to the overall feel IMO.
  12. I own a '08 USA Fender Jazz (maple/maple) as well as a recently acquired '09 MIM Fender Precision (also maple/maple). To my eyes, the quality of the maple in both necks appears to be about the same. As for tone, it's true that the graphite rods DO impart a certain hi-fi modern "ping" to the upper midrange frequencies- it's subtle, but definitely audible. Do graphite bars eliminate deadspots? No. A little extra stiffness and mass might help matters somewhat but graphite rods are not the magic cure for deadspots. My Jazz with graphite rods in the neck has deadspots in the same place as my friends '64 Jazz with no graphite rods. The deadspots on my '09 MIM P are less noticeable than on my Jazz, which I attribute to the added thickness and mass of the neck.

    My personal preference is NO graphite rods because, to me, that's the real sound of a classic Fender. If I were in your position I'd look around for a MIM P or J neck. Personally I'd go for the MIM P, which is very very similar to the late 60's/early 70's Fender "B" necks and would be totally appropriate for your '72 Precision. If possible, go down to your local Fender dealer and play a few MIA and MIM Fenders- that's the best way to find out. Good luck getting your bass together- post a few pics when she's back up and running!
  13. stingray69

    stingray69 Talkbass Legit

    Aug 11, 2004
    St Louis Area
    I thought it was a reasonable comparison - both do the same thing, change the overall rigidness of the neck. In my mind it does not seem to matter whether the ultra-rigid material is the ultra-hardwood fretboard itself or graphite bars added just beneath the fingerboard, the end result is the same - an increase in rigidness, clarity & brightness. But what do I know? These are just my observations I am sharing, you'll have to form your own. As hertzsogood (love the name) points out - best option is to play a few & you decide what the difference is as it applies to your ears. Best of luck...:cool:
  14. cassanova


    Sep 4, 2000
    I've always heard the fretboard wood has a minimal effect on the tone and by minimal I mean I've heard you cannot hear an audible difference.
  15. nickbear


    Jun 12, 2007
    surrey, uk
    just got an 09 mim p bass.. im so pleased with the neck! it doesnt feel sticky at all.. feels very stable and the rosewood on the fretboard looks really awesome,, a lot better than some of the other mim basses i have seen... granted i did try a few before i settled on this one but all the necks felt really good on the new mim fender basses. no dead spots at all.. i would happily have this neck in a mia bass.

    i used to have a status graphite neck on a jazz bass which replaced a broken mia jazz neck ( car crash) .. it was so solid but the tone just lacked warmth... had a hell of a lot of presence though!
  16. SwitchGear

    SwitchGear Supporting Member

    Mar 23, 2005
    Yesterday I bought a '09 mim P with maple neck/fretboard. I am very impressed with the overall quality with the bass compared to other mim's I have owned in the past, no negatives. Fret ends are smooth, low action with no buzz, sweet balanced tone on all strings. I especially dig the look of the maple fretboard.
  17. king_biscuit

    king_biscuit Supporting Member

    May 21, 2006
    Not to my ears, but it depends on the tone setting and the strings. Maple has more high end snap, but you are not going to hear it with flats and the tone control rolled off. btw, Roger Sadowsky believes that it has a major impact on tone.

    Also, the stiffer the neck, the brighter and more compressed the tone. That's a major reason why 60/70s Fenders sound different than modern Fenders.

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