Dismiss Notice

Psst... Ready to join TalkBass and start posting, make new friends, sell your gear, and more?  Register your free account in 30 seconds.

Should I get a J-Retro for Lakland Darryl Jones?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by weldon, Aug 24, 2004.


  1. weldon

    weldon

    Jan 3, 2003
    Denver, CO
    OK, I know this gets into active vs passive, onboard vs outboard, etc. but I'm not trying to start a religious debate here. I'm going to order a Lakland Darryl Jones because I want a Jazz style bass and I dig the bound neck and block inlays that give it that vintage vibe. I'm going to run it through a BBE B-Max. We play rock covers from 60's to 00's (heavy on 70's) with some Motown, Funk, Pop Punk, and Country thrown in.

    I'm asking about the J-Retro because it really needs to be factory installed on this bass. I play an active bass now but I don't tend to fiddle too much with the tone onstage. I do like to make it a bit brighter for slap and get it mellow and thick for country and slow rock. I've heard great things about the J-Retro and I worry that I'll miss it if I don't order it that way. But then I could use the money for something else. Oh, the pain of making a decision!

    Do you think that the J-Retro will...

    1) complement the B-Max+Aguilar?
    2) hold the value of the Darryl Jones if I trade it in a couple years?

    I'd love to just try two DJ's side-by-side with and without the J-Retro but I don't have that luxury. I will get a chance to play the passive version again tomorrow though :) Man, I love this bass!
     
  2. Z-Bass

    Z-Bass Supporting Member

    Apr 22, 2004
    Pittsburgh, PA
    To modify or not to modify, question that plagues many. If you're concerned about instrument value down the road or if you don't want to go through the hassle of the install I would maybe look into the J-Retro outboard. I believe they still make these. Sorry can't comment on the tone since I've never had the opportunity to play through a j-retro.....or a Daryl Jones bass (but I'd love to).
     
  3. The J-Retro will add a new dimension to the sound for certain..!!

    re-sale value isnt a problem

    Keep the orignal parts and pop them bk in when u come to sell and sell the J-Retro off as well...they fetch good money second hand too..

    But it certainly wont degrade your sound :)...
     
  4. I'd say you'd do yourself a favor by just buying a Sadowsky outboard. I've had one since '89 and like the idea of being able use it on any passive instrument I use.
     
  5. spiritbass

    spiritbass Supporting Member

    Jun 9, 2004
    Ashland, MO
    Hey Weldon. I had a lake placid blue/rosewood Darry Jones in hand for a while with factory installed J-retro. In my opinion it makes a great bass even better. Would it "enhance" your pre/power amp setup? Yes, in the sense that you can compensate for high-frequency loss in the cable connecting axe to preamp. One of the best aspects of the J-retro in my opinion is the sweepable mids. I'd say a retro-equipped DJ would be worth $150-$200 more than a passive if you were to sell it. I hope this helps to bring an end to your agony!
     
  6. Wilbyman

    Wilbyman

    Sep 10, 2003
    Parkersburg, WV
    Man,

    I haven't ever heard/used a J-Retro, but I've checked out the clip of Ed Friedland's J-Retro in his 70's jazz on his site edfriedland.com. That is some wicked bad tone! Few people who say they've got the Marcus tone ACTUALLY have it, but Ed's got it dialed in that bass!

    http://www.edfriedland.com/audio/jazzbass.mp3

    :eek:

    Will
     
  7. Fretless5verfan

    Fretless5verfan Supporting Member

    Jan 17, 2002
    Philadelphia
    Why is the "MM" tone the one slap tone almost everyone wants to have?
     
  8. Adam Barkley

    Adam Barkley Mayday!

    Aug 26, 2003
    Jackson, MS
    Because it is a great slap sound. :D Not boomy, not sterile, not ridiculously bright; really just an overall good slap/fingerstyle tone.
     
  9. Dude

    Dude Commercial User

    Mar 19, 2000
    AZ
    Owner: The Dude Pit Forum (closed) Producer: School of Bass
    The J-Retro & Aero combination is in your face aggressive if you want it to be or downright thumpy...but you do need to get them installed at the factory as they are modified a bit for the Darryl Jones and OEM equipment only. I do not sell the Darryl Jones Retro aftermarket.

    Any Lakland authorized dealer can get you one.
     
  10. gfab333

    gfab333

    Mar 22, 2000
    Honolulu, Hawaii
    Aloha from Hawaii Weldon,

    I've been playing a Skyline JO5 w/ a factory installed J-Retro since late 2002. In answer to your questions, IMHO, 1) yes, and 2) yes.

    If you do a search for J-Retro posts, you'll find a lot of positive comments on the on board preamp (including my posted review when I first received my bass). One very nice feature is the sweepable mids. In short, I'm very happy with my on board J-Retro. From your initial post, I'd say that you'll be happy with this upgrade.

    In all fairness, I must say that an outboard J-Retro, Sadowsky, or other preamp may also be what you're looking for. you should seek to try these other options out if at all possible. best of luck to you in your search for tone!

    :bassist: :eyebrow: :D
     
  11. boo

    boo

    Oct 12, 2002
    Netherlands

    +1, buy the Sadowsky ;)
     
  12. Dude

    Dude Commercial User

    Mar 19, 2000
    AZ
    Owner: The Dude Pit Forum (closed) Producer: School of Bass
  13. vene-nemesis

    vene-nemesis Banned

    Jul 17, 2003
    Bilbao España

    fingerstyle isnt pretty good with the fender preamp but a bart agui obp-3 or a j-retro "MM plate" can help you to get the tone we all want out of jazz.
     
  14. weldon

    weldon

    Jan 3, 2003
    Denver, CO
    So many excellent comments! I really appreciate those that took the time to share their experience with the J-Retro on their own bass. Also, thanks to those that addressed my second question about resale value. I'm convinced that it won't be a mistake to get the J-Retro with the Darryl Jones. Now I just need to make sure that I don't want the money for an Aguilar GS112 :)

    I'm off to play the Darryl Jones one more time and order my new one. I'm sure I'll make up my mind before then. Dude, I would order from you but I'm lucky to have Gary Rosen at GuitarX just across town. Anyone in Denver should check out his store.

    I'll be sure to post a full review as soon as I get the DJ.

    Weldon
     
  15. vene-nemesis

    vene-nemesis Banned

    Jul 17, 2003
    Bilbao España
    hey remember to post a sound clip too, i think we all want it.
     
  16. Dude

    Dude Commercial User

    Mar 19, 2000
    AZ
    Owner: The Dude Pit Forum (closed) Producer: School of Bass
    I don't sell the Darryl Jones version to the public anyway. As I said, it's a slightly modified J-Retro in order to fit the curved control plate of the DJ that I only sell to the Lakland factory.

    I just sell them the "guts" without the control plate and Carl at the factory mounts them into the stock DJ control plates which he has to drill out the two small holes for the mini-toggle switches. I also believe that he needs to route out a small bit of the outside corner of the control cavity so it's not available as a "drop in". Nothing too major to do to fit them in but it does require a bit of work to get them in.

    I already received a call today from Gary at Guitar-X. He must have called the factory to order one on your behalf to order one and they're out of stock and they referred him to me.

    Good news and bad news. Bad news is I don't have any in stock either but the good news is that I have 4 on their way from the UK now that were slotted to go to the factory but I'll pull one out of the shipment for Guitar-X.

    Who is going to do the installation for you?
     
  17. Dude

    Dude Commercial User

    Mar 19, 2000
    AZ
    Owner: The Dude Pit Forum (closed) Producer: School of Bass
    Oh wait...I see that you don't have a Darryl Jones yet. If you're going to be ordering a DJ from Gary I'd advise that you just have him order it from the factory and have the factory do the installation of the preamp.

    Any Lakland dealer can order both the Darryl Jones and Joe Osborn models with factory installed J-Retro preamps since January 2004 when they added the J-Retro as a factory upgrade option.

    I left a message for Gary.
     
  18. Dude

    Dude Commercial User

    Mar 19, 2000
    AZ
    Owner: The Dude Pit Forum (closed) Producer: School of Bass
  19. weldon

    weldon

    Jan 3, 2003
    Denver, CO
    That's exactly what I plan to do, and the reason for asking about the J-Retro in the first place. I knew that I would need to order it from the factory that way.

    Thanks for providing the information to me and Gary.
     
  20. Dude

    Dude Commercial User

    Mar 19, 2000
    AZ
    Owner: The Dude Pit Forum (closed) Producer: School of Bass
    I just talked to Gary on the telephone (cool dude) and will send him a preamp out of the next shipment that comes in. It may be about 2 weeks before it clears customs and I can ship it to him. Gary said that his tech at the store can do the installation for you no problem.