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Official Musicman Caprice/Cutlass Club!

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by fourstringdrums, Jan 6, 2018.


  1. filler83

    filler83

    Jan 5, 2015
    Cleveland, OH
    I have played a caprice and the pickups/sound seem consistent with what has been mentioned in that it is a little polite with the music man vibe to it. Supposed to be more like a jazz? Does the split coil p pickup still cut through in mix like a typical p pickup?

    I haven’t played a cutlass though. Does the cutlass sound like a precision or a stingray or somewhere in between? Or can it kind of do both with playing with the volume and tone knobs?

    Thanks
     
  2. xnewyorka

    xnewyorka Supporting Member

    Jun 26, 2006
    NYC Area
    Did you see post #997 in this thread? There are some recordings of both.
    I had all knobs all the way up on both the Caprices and the Cutlass for the recording though.
    Now that you mention it, I probably should have also solo'd each Caprice pickup. I'll try and make another one doing that.

    With the tone all the way up, the Cutlass sounds a lot like a P-bass, and nothing at all like a StingRay.
    When you turn the tone way down, all basses sound roughly similar. The primary determining factors on the sound of the bass are the pickup placement and the pickup construction type, both of which have a huge impact on the frequency response curve of the pickup. Turning down the tone control reduces the impact of both of those factors because it removes a lot of the upper end of the frequency response curve.
     
  3. lowdownthump

    lowdownthump

    Jul 17, 2004
    The P pickup on the Caprice when solo to me sound more like a 60’s era P.

    The Cutlass sounds more like a 70’s era P. The output is hotter .
     
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  4. filler83

    filler83

    Jan 5, 2015
    Cleveland, OH
    I just watched them. Sorry for not listening to them before posting. Thanks for posting those samples!

    The caprice and cutlass both sound great!
     
    HD007 likes this.
  5. filler83

    filler83

    Jan 5, 2015
    Cleveland, OH
    Interesting - thanks for the comparison. So both should cut through a mix like a typical p pickup, correct?
     
    lowdownthump likes this.
  6. xnewyorka

    xnewyorka Supporting Member

    Jun 26, 2006
    NYC Area
    Yeah, exactly!
    So if I had to choose just one, I would choose....
    ....
    ...
    ...
    One of each!
     
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  7. Inara

    Inara Fretless Femme Supporting Member

    Jun 12, 2017
    Seattle, WA USA
    I find that my Caprice sits in the mix perfectly, like a great P. I've said before that it's the bass that finally made me stop crying over the astonishing-but-boat-anchor-ish '74 P that I had to let go. The Cutlass might cut more ... I haven't played one in person, let alone in a mix, but the sound clips I've heard do seem hotter, like everyone says.
     
    lowdownthump likes this.
  8. pickles

    pickles Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 23, 2000
    Ventura, CA
    I have both now. The P pickups do sound different. Both great, I’ll fire up some sound clips when I have time. High level the cutlass is strong, fat, and bright (as opposed to sweet or extended). The caprice is punchy, balanced, and sweet. That’s without considering the bridge pickup. One other interesting thing is the tone control on the caprice has much more range. The cutlass won’t go fully wooly even with the tone all the way down.

    And they’re both black, so nobody can say its the paint causing the difference ;)

    For the kind of person that thinks all P basses sound the same, they both sound like P basses.

    If I didn’t need the J pickup on any given gig, I’d usually prefer the cutlass. But the caprice has so many great blended sounds its the one going to gigs that need to cover lots of sounds.
     
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  9. lowdownthump

    lowdownthump

    Jul 17, 2004
    This was my experience with the Cutlass when I auditioned them in store. The tone control wouldn’t give me that full tone off range. That’s one reason I went with the Caprice .

    If I was a rocker or played heavier music I’d go Cutlass. But since I need that old school Motown thump , I went Caprice. Caprice is punchy and sweet and smooth. It can grind when needed. But the Cutlass is aggressive , punchy , and powerful right out of the gate. You can dial it back some, but it stays pretty hot.
     
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  10. fourstringdrums

    fourstringdrums Decidedly Indecisive Supporting Member

    Oct 20, 2002
    Massachusetts
    I'm getting antsy, as I always seem to and want to try something different. I love my caprice, but can't afford both it and something else. I had my eye on an Ibanez SR650 before I bought it, and am getting the eye again. Someone talk me out of it :)

    I'm curious though how the Ibanez necks compare to the Caprice. I know the nut width is the same, though it's a flatter radius.
     
    Inara likes this.
  11. Don't do it.

    I used to own an Ibanez SR1300NTF, just before I bought my Caprice. First of all the quality of the electronics was horrible. There was a problem with the main board and since I purchased online, I couldn't easily return it. It took me months to get Ibanez to finally send a replacement. Their customer service is horrible.

    Secondly, that neck was very average compared to the Caprice.

    Thirdly, I just could not get a tone that I loved from the SR1300, but I've never had a tone I don't love from the Caprice.

    So, my advice... don't do it.
     
  12. Inara

    Inara Fretless Femme Supporting Member

    Jun 12, 2017
    Seattle, WA USA
    I believe the Caprice neck is thicker front-to-back than Ibanez 4-string necks. I only have Ibanez fivers right now, so I can't grab both to compare, but I'm pretty sure.

    As to electronics quality issues as mentioned by @Edgetone (and I've heard the same from other players as well - I'm not in any way disagreeing with his experience), I usually upgrade my Ibanez instruments with USA Bartolini pickups and preamps anyway, and get great tone that way. But this is also why I generally will buy Ibanez basses used if possible.

    Having said all that, the Caprice is, to me, in another universe from any Ibanez I've ever owned or played. My primary gigging bass that I use in both my current bands is an Ibanez Portamento fretless 5, with the upgrades I mentioned above, and I love it, but I will 100% echo @Edgetone's advice: don't do it. ;)
     
  13. fourstringdrums

    fourstringdrums Decidedly Indecisive Supporting Member

    Oct 20, 2002
    Massachusetts
    The SR650 has Nordstrand (canadian) pickups. That's the only reason why I'm considering it.
     
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  14. Inara

    Inara Fretless Femme Supporting Member

    Jun 12, 2017
    Seattle, WA USA
    I do love me some Nordstrand pickups!
     
    fourstringdrums likes this.
  15. Original Poser

    Original Poser

    Nov 24, 2017
    Seattle
    Did you have that tort pickguard specially made, or take it off a Heritage? Cool.
     
    HD007 likes this.
  16. raphaeld

    raphaeld

    Sep 19, 2012
    Israel
    If anyone is looking for a Caprice then there's one on Reverb!! Ivory White one (same as my Cutlass)
    Too bad the nut width is too thin for me otherwise I would seriously consider it!

    Music Man Caprice Bass Ivory White 2017 (s632)
     
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  17. bmac314

    bmac314 Supporting Member

    Apr 2, 2015
    Louisiana
  18. Discount Saint

    Discount Saint Bassist for the music in my head Supporting Member

    Jan 26, 2007
    Victoria, BC, Canada
    I had it made, yeah. Love the tort on white look for this bass!
     
  19. coyoteboy

    coyoteboy easy there, Ned Supporting Member

    Mar 29, 2000
    Sactomato, CA
    Had some dude fix my nut.

    Feels much better now.

    Cutlass
     
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  20. Inara

    Inara Fretless Femme Supporting Member

    Jun 12, 2017
    Seattle, WA USA
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