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The S1 switch: a make or break feature?

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by ectoflanger, Apr 12, 2009.

  1. ectoflanger


    Mar 17, 2009
    When I was considering the purchase of my first Jazz Bass, an '07 American Std-- I nearly demurred when I found that it did not have the S1 switch. However, I made the purchase anyhow and have not regretted it--



    Guess you could say I'm a fool for a pretty bass :p

    Now that I'm looking at used Jazz V's I found a '98 model that has the S1 as well as newer models that don't. Never heard the S1 in action. Would it be a make or break item for any of you more experienced Jazz bass players?
  2. You do know that you could add it easily, right? All you gotta do is replace any one of your pots with a pot containing a push-pull switch, and wire it up. No visible mods necessary.
    Not a big fan of it, but some folks really like it. Easy to try if you want.
  3. Mystic Michael

    Mystic Michael Hip No Ties

    Apr 1, 2004
    New York, NY
    For the uninitiated among us, could you kindly explain: What exactly is the S1 switch, and what does it do?

    (Lovely red finish/tort pickguard/rosewood fretboard combination. Ever consider getting the headstock finished to match?)

  4. tplyons


    Apr 6, 2003
    Madison, NJ
    The S-1 switch is a push/push switch installed into the volume pot on your Jazz or Precision (or Strat or Tele) to put your pickups into series or parallel configuration.

    Personally, I love having the switch, I just feel the switch feels cheap.
  5. I was never offended by the S-1 switch. IDK why people freak out about it that much. though I dont own one either...
  6. Could be a late '07 model. Fender did away with the S1 with their 2008 instruments.
    I also noticed your bass has the HMV bridge (a feature beginning with their '08s).

    Gorgeous bass btw!
  7. robert43


    Jun 5, 2007
    The S1 on a Jazz will make it more like a P bass sound .
    I like it on a J bass but I think its a waste of time on a P bass.
    Like others have said replace the neck voulume pot with a push / pull pot .
    Here on the SD shows it
    Against a standard bass
    I would do it if you can soilder it will cost about $15 if you like keep it , if not go back to old way & sell the pot
  8. HMZ

    HMZ Supporting Member

    Dec 21, 2003
    I have an S-1 switch from a 2007 Fender jazz on e-bay right now if your interested.
  9. That is a really nice bass!!

    fwiw I was psyched about the S1 switch on my jazz when I got it . . . i've since ripped it out. just didnt like it - and as mentioned the switch itself was REALLY cheap and was an inch away from breaking
  10. eastcoasteddie


    Mar 24, 2006
    I like it. I've got 2 S1's. If I get another Jazz, it will get one as well.
  11. ectoflanger


    Mar 17, 2009
    Thank you for the feedback as well as the compliments!!!

    After thinking about it, I'm going to leave my '07 as is-- I really like the bright sound of the Jazz as a counterpoint to my darker-toned Warwick Std Bubinga fretless.

    However I will bear in mind what you shared with me regarding the S-1 switch (yes I can solder!) for future instruments.
  12. walterw

    walterw Supportive Fender Gold Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 20, 2009
    i found it a bit gimmicky on jazz basses, murky on strats, and useless on p-basses. however, on the jazz V, i think it was a godsend and the missing tonal ingredient; that series setting really made the B come to life, and fixed the anemic overall tone.
  13. robert43


    Jun 5, 2007
    Hi yes it is a love / hate either you love it or not. From what I have seen of the Fender prices , I wouldnt buy 1 from them either a aftermart pot & switch or just a little switch . 1st 1 no mods to bass, 2nd 1 cheaper but you have to drill a hole
  14. millahh

    millahh Supporting Member

    Sep 20, 2005
    The cheapness really jumped out at me, too. if I had wound up buying the HWY 1 jazz, I'd have ripped out their switching pot, and put in a normal push/pull pot instead. It's like they were trying to be cute/different by using a really awkward design, instead of using a standard, robust design.

    Personally, I like the to have the option.
  15. I agree with the posts about it being useless on a P-bass. I had one on mine. Never used it after an initial test. As far as I was concerned, it screwed up the classic P-bass sound.
  16. I went to a local music store last week and played quite a few jazzes with S-1 switches and now I plan on adding one to my FSR because I found that I like them a lot. Although, I do not think it would make or break a purchase for me.

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