NBD: Heartfield DR!

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Lujon, Jun 30, 2020.

  1. Lujon


    May 29, 2020
    I had been searching for an active jazz bass, preferably from Japan, when this 1989 Heartfield DR4 came up on the local Craigslist. Unfortunately I missed it, so I continued looking at other options. Then this came up again on eBay, marked up a fair bit but I didn’t want to miss out a second time! I was able to pick it up locally, with hard-case, original receipts and owners manual still inside.

    For anyone unfamiliar, these were made by Fender in Japan for a couple of years in the late 80’s and early 90’s. They featured a layer of graphite under the fretboard, and a pre-amp that produces some very interesting tones. It’s definitely not for everyone but I love the way it sounds. Much more unique than my passive Fender J bass. The photos don't do any justice to the fade in the paint, but it looks as interesting as it sounds. Also, fun fact, Steve Bailey used a fretless six string Heartfield on the Rippingtons Album, Tourist in Paradise!

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Jun 30, 2020
  2. spufman

    spufman Supporting Member

    Feb 7, 2005
    Central CT
    Nice one, looks just like mine! Got it new and it was my only bass for 10 years. Always ate batteries, but never let me down. Still fun to play, light and punchy.
    Lujon likes this.
  3. Lujon


    May 29, 2020

    After looking at the sales receipt more closely I need to correct the year: it’s a 1991. Also, it weighs 7lb 8oz!
    StevieMac likes this.
  4. StevieMac


    Mar 17, 2005
    Vancouver, BC
    Back when these were new l had a 5 string on order in the same finish. The demo bass sounded great but after months of waiting I finally cancelled the order. Probably would have been worth the wait but the impatience of youth got the better of me.

    Cool bass, congrats and enjoy!
    Lujon likes this.
  5. Killing Floor

    Killing Floor Supporting Member

    Feb 7, 2020
    Austin, TX
    Nice looking handle. Looks well appointed too. Enjoy.
    Lujon likes this.
  6. Dark Horse

    Dark Horse Supporting Member

    Jul 31, 2008
    Austin, TX
    GREAT bass ! I miss my DR5.... I should’ve kept it.
    Enjoy !
    Lujon likes this.
  7. B String

    B String Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2002
    Los Angeles
    I have a DR5 that I was fortunate enough to get from Fender (the parent company) when they first came out. Very stable bass that when set up well plays easily all the way up the neck. I didn't love the electronics in the bass so I replaced them with Nordstrand pickups and preamp. Much better!
    StevieMac likes this.
  8. wazzel


    Dec 27, 2007
    Cypress, TX
    I have a DR5 of the same color, '93 I think. Never play it tho.