Questions About 1975 Fender Precision Basses

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by BigDrew, Jun 17, 2019.

  1. BigDrew


    Jun 1, 2016
    Hello all!

    My teacher has a 1975 precision bass in natural with a rosewood board. I would love to pick up a similar bass, but I have some questions. His pickups are crazy powerful; is this typical of the year? Also, it seems like rosewood boards are hard to find in that year; was maple just more popular? Thanks in advance!
  2. buldog5151bass

    buldog5151bass Kibble, milkbones, and P Basses. And redheads.

    Oct 22, 2003
    Lots of maple boards in the 70s. FWIW, that was was Fender quality control started getting pretty spotty. Don't worry about the year - play instruments until you find one you like.
  3. BigDrew


    Jun 1, 2016
    I totally get it, but it seems like the 75's have very hot pickups. I'm really just trying to validate what I've seen in the wild.
  4. David Heath

    David Heath

    Apr 7, 2017
    Well, I have a '76 Precision and the pickups are not particularly hot. I would say that the PUs seem a bit imbalanced. The E-string is notably quieter than the others even when adjusted nearer the string. The bridge was in the wrong place too!
  5. Gilmourisgod


    Jun 23, 2014
    Cape Cod MA
    Ugh. I cant believe people are mooning over 70's Fenders now, i was there, and a lot of it was crap. The best basses ever made are being made right now, and that includes the Pre CBS 60's basses. My first bass teacher had a 76' P, dont remember it being hot pickup, just all around.......meh. Sloppy neck pocket fit, sloppy tuners.
  6. BigDrew


    Jun 1, 2016
    I’m “mooning” over 70’s Fenders? I’m not sure what that even means. Does that answer any questions about the pu’s in 1975 P basses?
    p-ripper, jimmyb, FranF and 1 other person like this.
  7. two fingers

    two fingers Opinionated blowhard. But not mad about it. Inactive

    Feb 7, 2005
    Eastern NC USA
    I had a '76 and a friend had a '75. I didn't notice and difference in pickup strength. Mine wasn't particularly hot either.

    Rosewood is much less common in the 70s than maple. But I wouldn't go as far as to say it's "rare". Maple was just more popular then.

    If I ever pull the trigger on one it'll be a fretless maple board one like early Sting/Police era. Just a great sound.
    getbent and Aqualung60 like this.
  8. Gilmourisgod


    Jun 23, 2014
    Cape Cod MA
    Answer: No. Nothing special or hot about 70's pups.
    bobyoung53, JMarkD, AGCurry and 2 others like this.
  9. BigDrew


    Jun 1, 2016
    Great! Thank you guys for the quick responses.
    mikeswals likes this.
  10. Honkey tonk

    Honkey tonk Turn it up

    Feb 10, 2019
    Lower 48
    I have a 77 that has a nice hairy growl, not sure if I would consider it a hot pick up.
  11. mongo2


    Feb 17, 2008
    Da Shaw
    One of my very few on line purchases about 25 years ago was a '75 P bass ("A" neck, 'burst/rosewood) that was in very nice shape but I felt the pickups were weak enough that I wound up replacing them with an aftermarket set.
    Last edited: Jun 18, 2019
  12. BigDrew


    Jun 1, 2016
    Interesting. I know quality was of concern during this time and that things varied greatly from bass to bass. I guess he just got lucky!
  13. BassFishingInAmerica


    Jul 24, 2014
    I haven’t noticed that 70s pickups are more powerful, but they definitely have a different sound. I’ve owned a few and always have perceived a noticeable difference, especially when recording. Mostly a deeper, darker, more growly sound. Sometimes, that can be perceived as more powerful.
  14. McFarlin


    Oct 27, 2011
    Austin, TX
    Are you sure his pickup is the original?
    TrustRod, bobyoung53, Axstar and 3 others like this.
  15. tpaul

    tpaul Supporting Member

    Mar 19, 2011
    It probably has aftermarket pickups.
    Cheez and bobba66 like this.
  16. mdogs

    mdogs Supporting Member

    One bass means nothing, you can't make this kind of generalization over that sample size. I have never heard of a 75's pickups being hot. How close are the pickups to the strings? Are they the original pickups. 70's Fender basses are going for stupid money these days, I don't care how old they are, the overall quality was horrible. Like most things, people talk themselves into hearing and feeling what they want to believe. If you want to say that you own a bass from 1975 because that is important to you, ok. But, I would say that 98% of those basses don't play or sound as good as today's MIMs, let alone the MIA's.
    Axstar, justjake, Low84 and 2 others like this.
  17. buldog5151bass

    buldog5151bass Kibble, milkbones, and P Basses. And redheads.

    Oct 22, 2003
    There is nothing magical or different about pickups that year. Also remember, they had pickups in a box, and got more when the box was running low. You can't make generalizations about one instrument.
    AGCurry and getbent like this.
  18. Don't fix on a year or pickup. Almost same fenders can play way differently. Wait for the right one.
    1960jbass and Bill Whitehurst like this.
  19. Ghastly


    Oct 18, 2015
    Mill Valley
    I have a '73 p bass, and it's my #1. The only bad thing I can say about it is that it is 10 lbs. Pickups are not particularly hot, but seem well balanced and are strong. It has a B neck. I've heard that earlier 70s Fender instruments tend to be better than the later ones, but I'm sure it's a mixed bag.
  20. TheReceder


    Jul 12, 2010
    I'd double check that they're the original pups. A lot of players were upgrading to Seymour Duncan quarter pounders back then.