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Review: Valenti Vintage PJ5 #027

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Andy Brown, Apr 13, 2006.


  1. Andy Brown

    Andy Brown Commercial User

    Jul 23, 2004
    Rhode Island
    Founder/Owner: Wing Instruments
    Background

    A couple of months ago I was running some miscellaneous specs by Nino for a vintage PJ with a P-bass body. I was thinking of going classic with a nice burst and a tort guard. I probably would have forgotten about it if not for the one in the Sadowsky In Stock page. I started a thread about it here and next thing I know I get an email from Nino... "... so you like #4443, eh? Look at this..". Well, "this" was his #027 Valenti PJ5. He offered to ship it to me to get my impression of it, and of course I couldn't refuse that.

    First Impressions

    You gotta love that new bass smell. I don't know if it's the smell of the wood, the finish, or even the foam in the case, but it's just as intoxicating as thet new car smell.

    My expectations were high for this one for a couple of reasons: 1. I already owned a Valenti and know first-hand what Nino is capable of; 2. This is Nino's 19th bass since he built mine (going by the s/n) and with practice comes perfection, and 3) this was Nino's first use of neck and body from USACG, who have an impeccible reputation for quality.

    From the initial pics (here), it looked like exactly what I was thinking of. When I first saw it, however the body ended up being darker than in the pics, and the fretboard ended up a little more reddish (both good things)... it's just perfect in person.

    When I picked it out of the case, I was a little stunned to feel the quality (dare I say almost Metro-like?). For the second straight time, I was amazed. Fit, form, and finish... from the neck, to the fretwork, to the setup, I just had a feeling it would be killer.

    Plugging It In

    Plugging it in was even better. Having had a P-Bass in the past and being a Jazz guy now, I was wanting a little variety. Even more specific, I'm a Jazz/Ash-body/Maple Fretboard guy. Going back to a P-Bass/Alder-body/Rosewood would probably give me the 'departure in tone' I was looking for... and it does. I don't think I'll be able to accurately describe the tone, so I put together some miscellaneous clips for your perusal. All I can say is "Nino did it again!".

    The Move to USACG

    This is Nino's first 5-string bass with USACG parts, and in seeing the results, I'm glad that he hooked up with them as an alternative to Warmoth. USACG offers more options especially in the neck department. For example, the profile (from top of the fretboard to the back of the neck) is thinner and it also has the shallow "C" profile you'd find on a Sadowsky Metro or F Bass. The 12" radius board is also a welcome option.

    Pros

    * Everything - it actually feels as high quality as my Sadowsky UV70MB5
    * Price - Nino's basses have to be the best bargain on the planet.

    Cons

    * USACG doesn't offer blocks and binding - would have been nice, but I'm not complaining, and this isn't Nino's fault.

    Conclusion

    After the first 30 mins of playing this bass, I decided it isn't going back to Nino.

    Specs

    * Alder Body (looks like between a '59 and Tobacco burst)
    * Maple Neck (with Vintage tint) and Rosewood board (12" radius, 22 frets, clay dots)
    * Nordstrand NP5 and NJ5 pickups (both hum-cancelling)
    * Aguilar OBP-1 Preamp
    * Controls: Vol - Blend - VTC - Treble/Bass
    * Push/Pull for Active/Passive on Volume
    * Hipshot "B" Bridge (19mm spacing)
    * Hipshot Ultralight Tuners

    Clips

    * Fingerstyle - Both Pickups - Flat EQ - B string featured LINK
    * Fingerstyle - Both Pickups - Flat EQ - B string featured LINK
    * Fingerstyle - P Pickup - Flat EQ LINK
    * Fingerstyle - J Pickup - Flat EQ LINK
    * Slap (if you can call it that) - Both Pickups - Flat EQ LINK
    * Pick - Both Pickups - Flat EQ LINK
    * Pick - J (Bridge) Pickup - Flat EQ LINK
    * Pick - P (Neck) Pickup - Flat EQ LINK
    * Pick - J (Bridge) Pickup - 25% Boost on Treble and Bass LINK

    Man, one thing I've learned in recording clips today... my timing sucks. On the bright side, I've found my new practice regiment. Put that on the 'Pros' side too.

    Pics

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
  2. Smallmouth_Bass

    Smallmouth_Bass

    Dec 29, 2005
    Canada
    The fingerstyle P and J MP3 links are not working.
     
  3. BurningSkies

    BurningSkies CRAZY BALDHEAD Supporting Member

    Feb 20, 2005
    Seweracuse, NY
    Nice. Thanks for the details!
     
  4. flatwounds

    flatwounds

    Apr 22, 2003
    Sydney, Oz
    Amen.
     
  5. Andy Brown

    Andy Brown Commercial User

    Jul 23, 2004
    Rhode Island
    Founder/Owner: Wing Instruments
    Fixed.
     
  6. Thanks AJ!
     
  7. Hollow Man

    Hollow Man Supporting Member

    Apr 28, 2003
    Springfield, VA
    My Valenti GAS is at an all-time high.
     
  8. Fretless5verfan

    Fretless5verfan

    Jan 17, 2002
    NorCal
    Wow. That thing sounds fantastic :eek:

    Food for thought...:ninja:
     
  9. I love the look of that bass. But how does the feel of the neck compare to your other Valenti?
     
  10. steve21

    steve21 Banned

    That's one of the best sounding basses I've ever heard!

    Wow man, Nino you do some great work.

    One question, does the USACG thing mean no more Warmoth parts, or are you going to be using both?
     
  11. Wayner

    Wayner

    May 7, 2004
    Maryland, USA
    that's hot.
     
  12. KayCee

    KayCee

    Oct 4, 2004
    Shawnee, KS
    Congrats, Andy, on a beautiful new axe. What a great looking burst! :bassist:

    Thanks for the review and many playing samples...maybe you can add some (or all) of it to the megathread, too.

    I see that you're selling the Lake Placid Blue bass - one of my favorites. Too bad you can't keep both Valentis, but sometimes that's how it works out.

    Andy
    (KayCee)
     
  13. Nino Valenti

    Nino Valenti Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 2, 2001
    Staten Island NYC
    Builder: Valenti Basses
    Currently I'm only using Warmoth for necks w/Blocks and Binding and upon request.
     
  14. ptidwell

    ptidwell Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jun 13, 2005
    Los Angeles
    Owner LoPHAT Cabinets
    AJ Brown,

    Congratulations, that is absolutely stunning and a great sound too.
    I have Valenti #20 Warmoth body and neck that I am overly happy with. I am going to have Nino put together another in the not to distant future. Right now I am over budget on my new rig so it may be a couple of months. I need to start looking at some USACG jazz bodies and necks.
     
  15. west*coast*bass

    west*coast*bass Supporting Member

    Dec 6, 2003
    Agoura Hills, CA
    Hey AJ, the bass sounds great. I love the Nordstrands. I am very pleased with the Fat Stacks in my new Valenti and I love the sound of Carey's P pickup.

    Nino, you have done it again.

    One question Nino (AJ, sorry for hijacking here...), does Warmoth offer a "C" neck version with specific radius choices?
     
  16. steve21

    steve21 Banned

    Cool, thanks Nino.

    The bass sounds amazing, again, man!
     
  17. Andy Brown

    Andy Brown Commercial User

    Jul 23, 2004
    Rhode Island
    Founder/Owner: Wing Instruments
    The neck has a shallow "C" profile, versus what I would call a "D" for my other one. I had the Warmoth neck shaved to a "C" by Mike Dolan so shape-wise they're similar. Also, the USACG neck is a satin finish versus semi-gloss on the Warmoth, and the USACG also has a 12" radius verus 10" for the Warmoth. Overall, the feel of the new neck is similar to that of a Sadowsky Metro. I think the Warmoth neck is more similar to a Fender.
     
  18. Andy Brown

    Andy Brown Commercial User

    Jul 23, 2004
    Rhode Island
    Founder/Owner: Wing Instruments
    Just do it. The USACG stuff is great.
     
  19. Nino Valenti

    Nino Valenti Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 2, 2001
    Staten Island NYC
    Builder: Valenti Basses
    No.
     
  20. Sean Baumann

    Sean Baumann Supporting Member

    Apr 6, 2000
    Livin' in the USA
    Why is it so radically different in tone than KayCee's?
     

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