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Thinking about moving to a Deluxe Active J-Bass

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by SirGrotius, Sep 24, 2008.

  1. I gig here and there but mostly play just for fun. I've had a Fender Jazz Bass (Mexican) basically since I started playing as a teenager. I upgraded the pickups a while back because the stock ones buzzed and I wanted more of a "sublime" sound (I was a teen!).

    Now I'm wondering how a Deluxe Active Jazz Bass might differ from the above? How much of an upgrade, if at all, would this be? I've never played an active bass before, but get the impression they're significantly more popular. I'm not a mid-range freak, though. I see this bass in the $500-$600 range.

    If the above won't sound that different, I'm also consider a Dean Performer Series Acoustic Fretless bass, which is a little cheaper but really would only be used for messing around in my flat.

    Thanks for any helpful pointers! I don't recall the specific pickups I have in my Mexican J-Bass--I think they're single-coil basslines. I maxed out on highs and lows.
  2. jamesy


    Mar 9, 2006
    I don't like active pickups at all. They sound too compressed and hot, the low end is often 'woofy' sounding, the high end is always voiced at some ridiculous frequency and they're often played on coffee tables with necks.
  3. I've played several and while their looks and feel are amazing, the preamp just doesnt do anything for me. The bass control is to boomy, and the treble was to zingy IMO. I didnt use the midrange control at all in my trials

    If you got one and stuck a sadoswky or aguilar OBP-1 in there, you'd have a killer bass for a steal of a deal
  4. lowendgenerator


    Mar 26, 2006
    AHA! Therein lies your problem. The bass and treble don't do much for me either, but the midrange is where it's at! With the right strings and a twist of the little knob, I can cut through the mix like a hot knife through a hooker. ;)

    I wish all of my jazz basses had that extra few dB of mid boost.

    I own one and you should too. :bassist:
  5. YCBass

    YCBass Supporting Member

    Aug 29, 2007
    I had one briefly about 2 years ago... I really enjoyed it. I for one like active basses (and passive too). I thought it sounded really nice and tight. The only reason I sold it was because I wanted a passive Jazz 4 to compliment my active Jazz 5 - didn't have use for 2 active basses.

    And yes, I agree 100% with lowendgenerator - the midrange IS where it's at!
  6. I just picked up an american deluxe active and think the preamp is a definite plus. The mid control is almost and instant "cut through the mix" knob on heavier songs. I like to boost the treble and bass when I slap. Sure this could all be done on the amp/external preamp but not as quikcly or easily.

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