Review of the new Fender Precision 2008

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by GeneralElectric, Jun 21, 2008.

  1. GeneralElectric


    Dec 26, 2007
    NY, NY
    This is my second 2008 Precision bass. There was nothing wrong with the first, it was just stolen.:meh: I've had it for a few months now, and now I feel I'm able to write a review on it.

    This bass is Olympic white, tort, with a maple board. I'll post pictures sometime tomorrow hopefully.

    The first 2008 P-Bass I played in the store without any intention of buying it. I was buying strings and decided to give the new P-Bass a whirl. Holy Crap! I put it on lay away, and came back a week later with the cash for it. When it was stolen, I was worried I wouldn't find as sweet a bass as the first one. Well I did. The quality control is very consistant, both P-basses were winners, and they rank up there with the best Precisions I've played. In my opinion, they're on even keel with the Lakland basses.

    Fit and Finish
    In terms of fit and finish, the quality was top notch. The neck pocket fit was nice and tight. The Olympic white finish was even with no thin spots in it. Sometimes you see bits of the wood grain on lighter finishes where it was unevenly applied. It was very glossy and smooth. The neck finish was smooth and my hands didn't stick at all.

    The Neck
    A very nice feel due to the satin nitro finish. The finger board has rolled edges which also makes it a dream to play. My criticism of the neck lies in the use of Jumbo frets. Thats just a personal thing though. The frets were dressed very nicely, even, and were all seated properly.

    There is only one imperfection on the neck. Between the D and G tuners, on the flat side of the bass side of the head stock, there is a blemish in the wood. Its just a small black line a few millimeters long and is about as thick as a heavy sewing needle. You wouldn't notice it unless you ran a careful eye over the entire bass, which I did. I'm guessing its a mineral deposit in the wood.

    The tint on the neck is a nice touch, and it isn't pale like some of Fender's past basses. It should be noticed that it doesn't have any neck dive, but hey, since when do Ps dive, amirite?:D

    The Body
    The finish was nice and smooth with no imperfections. When I got the bass I noticed a blueish compound near the treble side of the neck pocket. It brushed off. I have no idea where it came from, but it was gone in when I flicked at it with a Q-Tip.
    I hate Poly finishes, but this one is very nice. The body is very resonant and I can feel it vibrate when I pluck a note. Its a tad on the heavy side overall (the bass, not the body) and it comes in at almost 9 pounds. The contours of the bass are nice and comfy.

    The pickguard was nice, vibrant, and has a great tort. shell pattern.

    The Hardware
    The new tuners are great. Lightweight and they turn easily. My bass can keep in tune for several days of play time. My only gripe here is one of aesthetics, I like the bigger old fashioned Fender tuners. Wait, I forgot, those tapered ends. They're kind of annoying when I put its current set of flats on, but they don't affect anything except when you're changing the strings. For me, it was only the E string, which turned out to be fine in a day after the string settled.

    The new bridge is top notch as well and I really like it. It doesn't look out of place to me, unlike BadAss Bridges, and the adjustments are quick and easy to make. I haven't had any problems with it at all and I can't wait till they start to sell these.

    The Electronics
    I like these pickups. With rounds the bass has lots of growl, with flats you have smooth lines everywhere. Its not so much a thumper with the current strings, GHS flatwounds, but it sounds like a P-Bass with a hint of modern bass sound in it.

    The pots turn smoothly and there is no crackly areas. The treble knob turned up didn't make the bass sound thin and you can hear noticable differences when you turn the treble knob in either direction. A common problem is that you can only hear a difference when its all the way off or on.

    The bass was also well grounded and there was no humming.

    The new SKB Fender case is pretty great in my opinion. Its form fit with soft feeling lining. For some reason, it has new car smell. :confused: It has a side compartment as well, which is quite roomy. I fit my pocket tuner, my Fulltone BassDrive, and two cables in there comfortably. The case is also built like a rock. I left it on the top of truck bed cover, and drove off, only to hear it fall off when I was doing about 25-30mph. That was dumb. But, the case was still in great shape with no dents or gouges. The bass was still as snug as a bug, and was also still in tune.

    It comes with the standard Fender case candy, the manuals and registration cards, etc. But it also comes with every tool you'll need to adjust anything on your bass. This might not seem like a lot, but its very handy if you ask me. The truss rod tool is also quite nice, due to its size, and its ease of use. Its also good for other basses with a similar truss rod set up.

    The bass comes with a very nice cable, and a dinky Fender strap (which I swapped out) It also comes with that annoying Fender bumpersticker, and all that jazz. It also came with a box of Fender Extra Heavy picks. I don't know if the shop happened to toss them in both times, as I got free strings and a Levy's strap as well.

    Comes with a Fender polish cloth and a tiny sample of Fender's Mist & Wipe IIRC

    This is a very nice bass.
    Alot of people say "well XXXX is fantastic for the money" I think thats a cop out. Its good or it isn't. This bass is fantastic at almost any price point for a Precision bass. Fender has a winner here for 2008 as many people on this forum know.
  2. hiredoutlaw


    Jun 20, 2008
    Sounds nice. Don't feel like reading it again; what's the price?
  3. GeneralElectric


    Dec 26, 2007
    NY, NY
    I didn't post the price. These retail for about $1000 or so. I got mine for $800 off the door. It comes in a tasty new SKB case and some nice case candy.

    If this bass cost $1500, it'd still be a good buy.:)
  4. hiredoutlaw


    Jun 20, 2008
    Alright, thank you.
  5. fourstringdrums

    fourstringdrums Decidedly Indecisive Supporting Member

    Oct 20, 2002
    Thanks for the review. $800 WITH a case? Every other place I've seen has them for about $1100.
  6. Valerus


    Aug 4, 2005
    Austin, Texas
    Go on.
  7. GeneralElectric


    Dec 26, 2007
    NY, NY
    Ugh... fine... I'll edit the review...:mad:

  8. Sleeq


    Feb 13, 2008
    no pics = no bass.
  9. GeneralElectric


    Dec 26, 2007
    NY, NY
    Har. Har.

    I'll have pics tomorrow when I get my digital camera back from my room mate. Hopefully tomorrow night.:(
  10. fretlessman71

    fretlessman71 Still beats havin' a job Supporting Member

    Aug 8, 2005
    FoCo, NoCo
    You know, I'm thinking that they've pretty much improved upon everything they can improve upon with this batch... and maybe this particular year will be a collector's year, like a '62 Jazz or a '57 T-Bird. Wonder if they have any weird colors or options that aren't going to be that commonly available, and how much they'll be worth in 50 years... :eyebrow::eek:

    Still, these are instruments, not museum pieces; they shouldn't be purchased and stuck in a case. They should be played. :)
  11. lowtide

    lowtide Commercial User

    Oct 14, 2006
    Bradenton, Florida
    Owner: Buzzard's Bass Shop
    I wanna hear more about the theft . . .
    did you post it in the stolen gear thread?
  12. GeneralElectric


    Dec 26, 2007
    NY, NY
    I had posted a thread about it awhile back in OT. I got mugged on the subway on the way home from a gig in Midtown. It wasn't a happy day.:meh:

    I've just been keeping my eyes on CL and eBay, and I gave my friend's heads up. If it turns up, I hope someone sees it.

    I didn't know we had a stolen gear thread.:help:
  13. savit260


    Mar 6, 2006
    $800 is the pirce I paid for my 08 American Standard Precision as well, with the case and candy.
  14. fourstringdrums

    fourstringdrums Decidedly Indecisive Supporting Member

    Oct 20, 2002
    Damn, I wish I knew that. I just bought a Highway One P and while it's a great bass, the neck refinements on the American Standards are appealing to me.

    Still every place online I've seen has it for $1099.

    Ah well. I still got a nice bass so I'm only slightly complaining :)
  15. savit260


    Mar 6, 2006

    You'll never get better pricing unless you ask, and know how to negotiate a better deal.

    Sticker price is just a suggestion, so far as I'm concerned.
    It's not like it was hanging there with an $800 price tag on it. ;)
  16. 1954bassman


    Jun 7, 2004
    Hickory, NC
    Sounds like you have a winner! I mean Keeper
  17. fourstringdrums

    fourstringdrums Decidedly Indecisive Supporting Member

    Oct 20, 2002
    True but I'd never think that most places would come $300 off sticker. Hell the best I could do was $50 off sticker on my Highway One and I work there! :) Though their sticker was still $50 cheaper than any other place I had seen.
  18. savit260


    Mar 6, 2006
    Having a long, and well established relationship with the dealer helps, (as in lots of gear purchased there over the years) as does cash in hand, and a willingness to walk out the door if you don't get your price. ;)

    Here's a couple of shots of my new Precision out earing it's keep.
  19. I tried one the other day at the Guitar Center in Orlando and still am kicking myself for not buying it... amazing basses!!!... Hopefully will get one in the next couple of months.

    P.S. The bridge is very good.
  20. bassalo


    Jan 23, 2008
    +1. I hope so - I own one. :)

    Nice review GE. Very thorough and spot on. The 08s are schweet. :hyper: