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Sadowsky Ultra vintage vs. Vintage Fender

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Joelc73, Jul 2, 2002.


  1. Joelc73

    Joelc73 Supporting Member

    Nov 13, 2000
    New York
    Lately I've been seriously considering investing in a good, vintage sounding, four string Jazz bass. I don't know that I have the stomach though to throw down 5 - 6K for a beat up early 60's jazz bass.

    How does the Sadowsky ultra J stack up to a vintage J? Also, any thoughts on Fender relic / nos or even a 62 RI.

    Thanks.
     
  2. Nino Valenti

    Nino Valenti Commercial User

    Feb 2, 2001
    Staten Island NYC
    Builder: Valenti Basses
    I've played some 60's Fender's. Some were AWESOME. The sound was IT. Some were not. Some were just bad.

    Also, when you're considering buying a vintage Fender, you have to be careful from who you buy it from. Not saying that they're cooks, but make sure that THEY are knowledgable enough to know if it's a real Fender, because there are alot of fakes out there that LOOK too good to be true.

    If you're dead set on getting a Fender & don't want to throw down up tp $5000+, you could look into the Fender Custom Shop. I've played a few CS Jazzes (about $3000) that were very nice. also, you could look into a USA '62 RI (about $1500)which is about.

    BUT, I've played a Sadowsky Ultra Vintage Jazz & that would be my decision. :)
     
  3. narud

    narud Supporting Member

    Mar 15, 2001
    santa maria,california
    i own a 62 a jazz that i had refinished and its already worth more than i paid for a couple years ago. if your not dead set on an original finish, a refin will cop you the tone and feel for less money. the ultra rigid feeling necks of the sadowsky and lakland jazz basses make all of them sound a little bit more modern but are more reliable. but, if you find a good old good one theyre tops. i lucked out on mine in that it has super low action with no flip at the end of the fingerboard. i in no way would ever replace it with a sadowsky ultra vintage or c.s fender.

    if you find a good bass for even market price, dont worry about it. in a couple of years it will be worth more than what you paid. you cant say that about a sadowsky ultra vintage.

    as for years a 65-66 jazz will sound more versatile as they usually are a bit hotter and have more top end and a bigger low end. and if you like that sound theyre cheaper as well. the 66 dot neck+binding basses are killer(i had one but sold it for my first fodera)
     
  4. Joelc73

    Joelc73 Supporting Member

    Nov 13, 2000
    New York
    I've seen a couple of refinished 65 j basses in the 3K range. The problem is I never feel confident that an old fender is truely authentic; afterall they are the most copied bass designs ever.

    I'd love to A/B and old jazz against an ultra vintage. If the sounds were close, at least I'd know what I was getting.
     
  5. narud

    narud Supporting Member

    Mar 15, 2001
    santa maria,california
    you should be able get 65 refins for less than 3k. i actually prefer stripped or burst refins rather than solid color refins so that you can tell if the body is legit. if the neck stamp is there, the pot codes are right and theres no conflicting details between the bass and what the seller is telling you(like a seller claiming a bass is an early 62 but the neck has a curved board instead of slab) then you should be fine.
     
  6. Joelc73

    Joelc73 Supporting Member

    Nov 13, 2000
    New York
    Any thoughts on stores to check out for vintage Fenders?
     
  7. RS

    RS

    Aug 27, 2000
    Cleveland, OH
    You have a much better chance of getting a great sounding/playing Sadowsky than vintage Fender.
    I believe most of the good ones are out of circulation.
     
  8. Nino Valenti

    Nino Valenti Commercial User

    Feb 2, 2001
    Staten Island NYC
    Builder: Valenti Basses
    I would be weary about buing online but there are alot of reputable vintage sellers online.

    As for locally, Location: :confused:

    I know Dave Davidson from Sam Ash in Carle place LI is a MAJOR Vintage buyer for the Sam Ash chain, if you live near by, say Nino sent you.
     
  9. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Total Hyper-Elite Member Gold Supporting Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
    If you buy anything but the Sadowsky, I will lose ALL respect for you.
     
  10. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member

    I wouldn't buy one from a chef either! ;)
     
  11. RS

    RS

    Aug 27, 2000
    Cleveland, OH
    You are joking, right?
     
  12. Nino Valenti

    Nino Valenti Commercial User

    Feb 2, 2001
    Staten Island NYC
    Builder: Valenti Basses
    LMAO!!!! I didn't catch that!!! :)
     
  13. JAUQO III-X

    JAUQO III-X Banned

    Jan 4, 2002
    CHICAGO,IL.
    Endorsing artist:see profile.
    For a respected fender vintage dealer check out
    Chicago music exchange at chicagomusicexchange.com
     
  14. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Total Hyper-Elite Member Gold Supporting Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
    RS ~

    No, I'm not joking this time. Why take a chance on a cruddy old bass with cruddy old electronics when you could have a modern, state-of-the-art instrument that blows the Fender away in each and every respect?
     
  15. narud

    narud Supporting Member

    Mar 15, 2001
    santa maria,california
    because you wont lose any money. because youll make money in the long run. because state of the art basses dont sound like cruddy old electronics
     
  16. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Total Hyper-Elite Member Gold Supporting Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
    Well, I own eight basses, at least four of which fall into the modern category. I haven't lost a dime on one yet.
     
  17. jokerjkny

    jokerjkny

    Jan 19, 2002
    NY / NJ / PA
    hmmm... good question.

    but after a good, hard 5 seconds of thought, i say Sadowsky. :D

    but seriously, the sadowsky, with its active preamp and kickin' humbucker pickups, is gonna be a more modern take on the fenfer tone, so keep that in mind. you want a classic jb of yesteryear, or today? your choice.
     
  18. natebass

    natebass

    Sep 6, 2001
    Bremerton, WA
    I say screw it...buy a CORT!!!!:D
     
  19. DanGouge

    DanGouge

    May 25, 2000
    Canada!
    There is a 64(?) Jazz at a store near me, it looks the relic part and has had at least the turners replaced. IIRC it's going for less than the $5-6000 you were dreading. I can put you in touch with them if you're interested. I'll post some more stuff on it if I can find it.

    Munji, you make an excellent point about the advantages of the Sadowsky but, at least in my experience, nothing sounds quite like a true vintage piece. If that tone issue trumps all other technical & financial concerns for a given buyer (and only the individual buyer can make that call) then, they should go for the true vintage machine. Roger Sadowsky makes great stuff (I know, I'm a very satisfied outboard preamp owner) but unless he's got some sort of alchemist on staff, he just can't simulate a bass aging and being played for 40 years.