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Still not sure.... 1978 fretless all original Precision or 1975 refinished jazz bass.

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by malabito, Feb 25, 2004.

  1. I know I have ask this before, but I still have one more week to make a final decision, and I am still not sure what to do. I have the oportunity to change my swr 350 amp head, plus a sabine rack tuner I own, for a 1978 all original Fender Precision bass with fretless maple neck or a 1975 Fender Jazz bass, the Precision its in good condition considering its age and its all original, but it doesnt come with a case. The jazz has been refinished by a professional luthier, but with a traslucent green color, which I know its not original but still looks really nice, the neck is in excellent condition and almost all of the hardware its original(tuners, etc), except for one of the pickups which has been replaced for a vintage RI fender jazz replacement, its doesnt come with a case.

    I have been giving it many thoughts, but I am still not sure which one to get. I have always prefer jazzes over precisions, but that Precision looks really nice, and its a fretless. If in the future I decide to sell one of dose basses, how much could I get for the jazz since it was refinished, would it greatly lost its value. Would the Precision hold more its value, since its original. I am more interested in the playability factor, then its resale value, but the resale factor its always nice knowing.

    As a background, my prinicapl bass is a mtd 535, and I also own a Atk 300. I am into all kind of music, but prefer Jazz and funk.

    Any advice will be greatly apreciated, thanks. :help:


    Here is a picture of the jazz and the precision, (its the one in the middle).....
  2. AJ Love

    AJ Love

    Oct 8, 2002
    Madison WI USA
    they are pretty different basses with different sounds. usually for funk you are gonna want a fretted bass, and most funk bass players would go for a Jazz over a Precision, but don't foget that James Jamers, the Motown bassist, played a (fretted) P bass

    the P Bass will definitely be worth more $$ in terms of re-sale, because it is all original
  3. buzzbass

    buzzbass Shoo Shoo Retarded Flu !

    Apr 23, 2003
    I gotta go with the Jazz, it should be more versatile tone wise.
  4. malabito, I vote for the Jazz Bass, but you already know that.

    The P bass, being a fretless will not sale as fast as a fretted P bass.

    Fretless is a entire different world compared to fretted, most players do not have the discipline it takes to learn the intonation on fretless and they give up before ever learning.

    You might be one of the players who will stick with it, so basically it's gonna come down to you and your likes or dislikes.

    The Jazz Bass will sale quicker then the fretless P.

    You might post this on the Fender forum and see what kind of response the Fender buffs will give you!

    FDP Forum

    Good luck with your decision.

  5. bmc


    Nov 15, 2003
    This is a fun one for me to reply to as I have both. I did, however, put the fretless maple P neck on a jazz body. It also has v/b/t for wiring and Custom shop 60's.

    I have two P's beside that one. One of them has the Jazz neck.

    I play the jazz bodied one the most often and it's because of the tonal flexibility. It growls. It snarls. But is can nice and bassey on the neck pup. For tone, it's much more versatile.

    Very wise and valid comments about learning to play an unlined fretless neck. When I bought the maple fretless, it was the olny bass in the house. It took an honest 6 weeks of an hour a day building up skill to play it in tune. Once there you are there. Not unlike 8 years olds playing violin.

    Once competent on fretless, it has been my primary bass for the past 10 years. I gig every other week and have been for years, playing classic rock and blues....with a fretless. It has never been an issue with any of the bands I have played it. I don't have it set up for mwah sounds, so it works well in all styles of music. Over time, I have come to just love looking down at the beautiful slab of unmarked maple that looks like a blank canvas.

    Tough choice. Very touch choice. To summarize, my personal experience has been that moving to fretless was a real challenge at first that I have never regretted. It has never limited my gigs. It has allowed me to develop my own signature style and sound. Nailing that makes me want to play it all the time.

    You may want to swap the fretless neck onto a jazz body. It's a great combination.

    Good luck. I'd like to know what you decide upon.
  6. Thanks to all for your replies, the balance is going towards the jazz, for the time being, since the atk I own, has been converted into a fretless by a luthier, but if that precision really gots the mwhaaa maybe ill go for the precision. I better stop thinking about it and wait till the moment comes for trying up the basses and making up my mind.
    The thing about the intonation its true, the atk I own has the fretmarks and still its hard, but i am willing to make a commitment.

    It shouldnt be more than a week for the time to come to get my new bass, (if things dont get worse in my country :mad: ). I´ll post some pictures and maybe some sound clips if possible, as soon as I get the bass.

    Thanks to all. :)
  7. Hi, thanks for your reply, it will be very nice if I could swap the necks, but I dont think the seller would like that. Would it be possible if you could send me some sound clips of the fretless precision. Thanks :)

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