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My experience at GC today...Fender/EBMM content

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by superfunk47, Mar 1, 2008.

  1. superfunk47


    Sep 9, 2007
    So I've been itching to try out some basses I never have before. I havent been to GC in months, so it was time for a trip...anyway, I'll spare you the details, and get on to my personal experience with these basses.

    I've seen a lot of discussion on these basses, so I figured I'd post my experience with the ones that seem to get the most attention.

    Just as an FYI, this is just what I experienced in these basses. I know that no two are the same, but this is what I experienced.

    Fender American 2008 Jazz Bass

    First of all, I have to say, WOW. They look great (they are jazzes...), but man, the feel of these things...they feel fast, clean, well set up (at a GC, I know :eek: ), etc. As far as sound goes, they really are a blank canvas, in a very good way -- you could do a lot to color the sound with effects, EQ, even just a good amp will make these babies shine. The bass being a Fender, and a nice Fender Bassman sitting right there, I figured I'd plug her in. I set the EQ flat, turned the bass' controls all on full, and got one of the most focused sounds of any bass I've ever played. The neck pickup soloed sounded warm and full, the bridge sounded punchy and alive...there just wasn't any combination that could make this bass sound any less sweet. But the feel of the thing...outstanding. Best feel of the day :cool:

    Fender American 2008 Precision Bass

    Really not too much to add here, if you like P basses, you know what they sound like...the 2008 American is really just all of the best qualities of P basses, all put into one bass.

    EBMM SR5

    See, this is where I know I'm going to get eaten alive...perhaps I had overly high expectations for this bass. Even still, on a bass this expensive, my fingers shouldn't be getting cut up by razor sharp fret ends. On both sides. The sound was really good, don't get me wrong, but it wasnt outstanding to my ears. I know this is subjective, and so I'll just say that the sound isn't my cup of tea (although I really love the sounds a lot of people get from them). Still though -- I tried two of them (the store had 2, nearly identical, both 5ers), and both had really sharp, badly filed fret ends. Other than those frets, they were pretty nice, just not $1500 nice, IMHO.

    Fender Hot Rod Jazz Bass

    I had heard a lot of talk about these things, so when i saw it (and man, did it ever look sharp...in a good way ;)) I was pretty excited to try it out. Overall, it felt and sounded almost exactly like Fender's standard 2008 American line, although it did have the S1 switch, a Badass bridge, noiseless pickups, and a matching headstock. I'm going to have to agree with what's already been said of these -- they're nice, but not $1700 nice. For that extra money, I'd just as soon buy the American, and swap out all of the things I'd need to in order to make it identical to the Hod Rod...and come out having spent less than I would've on the Hot Rod :eek:
  2. DeanT

    DeanT Send lawyers, guns and money...

    That's surprising. I currently have 3 EBMM basses and have had 5 over the years and not one of them ever had sharp frets.
  3. superfunk47


    Sep 9, 2007
    Maybe they give GC their QC rejects :bag:

    I kid, I kid. But I still think that in that price range, you shouldn't have to worry about the quality of the fret ends. I think that should've been cleared up in the $800-$1200 range. But that's just my opinion.
  4. BartmanPDX

    BartmanPDX Supporting Member

    Fret sprout happens on almost any kind of bass. Hang a bass on a wall at a GC, blow hot, dry air from the heating vent on the bass for a few months, and bingo! You've got fret sprout. I've seen it on everything from cheapys to boutiques, though it is more often the case with cheaper basses as the wood is often dried less completely.

    In my experience, it's usually the Fenders at GC that have the fret sprout, most likely because there are so many of them that there are always a few that have been around in the dry environment for a long time and have developed fret sprout. I haven't played an EBMM at GC with fret sprout yet though I'm sure it happens, since it seems to happen to some degree with nearly any bass that's exposed to too much dry air for too long. I'd venture to say that most times when people complain about Fender QC, they are referring to having played a bass at a GC-type place where the bass has been exposed to lots of hot dry air, and as a result the bass has a poor setup and fret sprout, both of which can be easily remedied.

    Where I'd be concerned is if the bass came out of the box with fret sprout from the start. That would no doubt be the fault of poor QC control.
  5. Earwigger

    Earwigger I'm a Roland man now.

    Aug 23, 2005
    Cleveland, Ohio
    I've never been impressed with the SR5 (or SR4) tone I've heard at GC. On recordings they sound a lot different, but if I had never heard a recording and just played one in the store I would never buy it for that price. I think there's something to GC getting the rejects... :)
  6. superfunk47


    Sep 9, 2007
    I can imagine the SR's would sound a lot different, and likely a lot better in a mix. I just can't get on with that tone for 1500...I guess I'll never be a SR man :/
  7. superfunk47


    Sep 9, 2007
    Oh! I forgot to add one.

    G&L L2000 Tribute

    This bass is FANTASTIC! It had all of the versatility you could ever want, especially in such a cheap package :eek: They get a lot of attention, and now I see why! I just wish I had more time to play this baby, but alas, the dreaded girlfriend headache syndrome set in within 5 minutes of sitting down with the thing :rolleyes:

    But dang. Great feel, great sounds, great price...the only thing I'd change is a Fender compatible neck/pocket so I could swap it out for a new one later :p No real complaints, though! Outstanding bass.
  8. coreyfyfe

    coreyfyfe Supporting Member

    Nov 19, 2007
    boston, ma
    i saw a hot rod today at a GC just this afternoon. i went in to get strings, had to look around, and had the exact same reaction. i looked at it was i was like damn, thats a nice bass, then i saw that tag and just couldn't justify it. where the hell did they come up with 1700 for a bass with not much difference from the american series?

    as far as the frets, as said above thats the usual feel of fenders that have hung around GC for a while, but im surprised to hear about it on an SR5. i guess at 1500 they arent moving very well these days and are sitting around as long as some of the old fenders...
  9. UncleBalsamic


    Jul 8, 2007
    I'm also kind of surprised about that SR5, they have a great reputation quality wise and I've only ever played good ones. It's a shame, if those frets were fixed up it'd be a lovely bass.
  10. Crabby


    Dec 22, 2004
    Both my SR4 and SR5 have the most amazing fretwork. I can see how an SR5 might sound a little different then expected when you first pick one up. Especially if you're used to a passive sound. But believe me, nothing cuts through a mix and has such a distinctive tone to me as a Stingray bass. I usually set mine dead flat and with the SR5, have it set to parallel. From there a little boost in the low end from the on board eq, provides all the booty shaking low end, one could ever want.
  11. superfunk47


    Sep 9, 2007
    I liked the SR5 okay, and know that if I ordered one the frets would be fine (although I'd order a 4 string...).

    The sound was good, just nothing that spoke to me. I could see how itd be a useful tool to an active musician, though. I suppose it's like a P bass; by itself, the tone is nothing special, but in a mix, it really shines. Maybe I'll find someone who owns one and borrow it, and see how it fits into a live band setting :D
  12. GregC

    GregC Johnny and Joe Gold Supporting Member

    Jan 19, 2007
    Perfect, this is exactly what I was going to say. I own a Fender P, and have thus far not found the tones of a 'Ray to my liking, but I haven't played one with a fret problem. I agree, this is probably a "sitting in GC too long" issue, just like the Fenders people talk about sometimes.

    No offense to you, superfunk, by the way, you just reported what you experienced.:) So you gonna buy a J now?:D
  13. superfunk47


    Sep 9, 2007
    I already have 2 J's (fretted and fretless), and I'm still looking at building a Warmoth J...so in a sense, yes, I most certainly will :D
  14. Hawaii Islander

    Hawaii Islander Supporting Member

    Aug 11, 2007
    Rio Rico, AZ
    Does anyone have links to, or pics of a Fender Hot Rod Jazz Bass? I google searched and can't find any pics anywhere. I even checked on Guitarcenter.com. Just curious. Thanks!
  15. GregC

    GregC Johnny and Joe Gold Supporting Member

    Jan 19, 2007
    Yo HI, somebody here bought one a couple weeks ago and took pics. It looks pretty much like a white MIA with tort pg, rosewood board and a BAII bridge. I think it had a matching headstock.
  16. stinger ray

    stinger ray

    May 20, 2006
    When I bought my SR5 in 1998 it had sprout going on but they were hard to find around here back then so I bought it anyway. I had a Luthier friend who owed me a favor fix it up. 20 minutes later ahhhh smooth as silk. It does happen folks, even to the immortal Stingray. Wood is wood.


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