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What does all this mean?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Miritalner, Oct 22, 2005.

  1. Miritalner


    Oct 16, 2005
    I've read and seen and heard a lot of references to Jazz and Precision basses and pick-ups, as well as a lot of types of woods used in certain basses. But what is Jazz or Precision? And what woods are the best for bass? I know it depends on what sound you want to get out of your guitar. So for playing something heavy and fast, like power metal with a lot of brain-destroying earth-shaking walls of pure energy, what should I consider worthy?
  2. Jazz Ad

    Jazz Ad Mi la ré sol Supporting Member

    Strong fingers and steady rhythm.

    As for as Precision and Jazz, they're Fender models that have been copied again and again. Check www.fender.com, best way to see the differences.
    I'm pretty sure this question must be in the FAQ, too.
  3. phxlbrmpf


    Dec 27, 2002
  4. Bassmanbob

    Bassmanbob Supporting Member

    I'll make it easy for you. Get an American made P bass.
  5. Miritalner


    Oct 16, 2005
    Oh, so the secret is in P basses, huh? I see now...
  6. Bassmanbob

    Bassmanbob Supporting Member

    There really is no secret, but a lot of Heavy Metalers or Punk Rockers like P basses as their reference. So if you are going to start somewhere, that's where I would if Iwere into your kind of music.

    Ultimately, you may not like the P bass and go with something else. But it's a good start. You can't really go wrong with a P Bass or a J Bass either.
  7. Knavery

    Knavery Supporting Member

    Feb 24, 2004
    Westminster, CO
    Most of my musical career has revolved around playing power metal and various other forms of fast and furious music. Personally, I'd bypass the Fender all together if that's the type of music you play. Fenders are excellent instruments--I have two. But you need something that will slice through the guitar and drums. If you're playing punk like Greenday (if you call that punk), than a P bass is more than adequate. Hell, even a jazz would for that. But if you're playing stuff like early Metallica, Tool, or System of A Down, and other bands like it, consider looking into basses such as:

    G & L

    There are many other options out there, but if I were you, I'd try to find a bass with a two soapbar pick-up configuration with active electronics.

    Again, these are just my opinions. Some bassists have played Fender, and gotten a decent sound with metal liks Steve Harris from Iron Maiden.

    Go play some before making a purchase. I hope you find what you're looking for.
  8. Miritalner


    Oct 16, 2005
    Thanks for these replies! I find this info quite useful. :cool:
    Actually, I've heard that Fender basses are not very good option for the 80s style of metal, as that's what I'm into. Oh well, one day I just gotta go to a shop and try out some of their stock to find a decent axe...
  9. Bassmanbob

    Bassmanbob Supporting Member

    For 80's Metal you NEED a pointy bass. You know, one of those head stocks that can take an eye out. I had a Guild Pilot bass that was great for that. You can get them used for about $350.00, but it didn't have enough low end for my liking.

    You said you wanted low end. If it's your first bass and you want low end, I would recommend a Fender. You really can't go wrong with a Fender as your first bass. Just my opinion.
  10. Miritalner


    Oct 16, 2005
    Yeah, but Fender doesn't have pointy basses, as far I I know! It's their slunt headstock shape that totally freaks me out! :mad: I like double-sided headstocks and, IMO, they look much more characteristic for metal then one-sided types. I know there is that Dimension thing, but all of the other basses don't really look nice to me.
  11. Pennydreadful

    Pennydreadful Goin out West

    Jun 13, 2005
    Arlington, Texas
    Fender used to have pointy basses. Performers, I think they were called. Neat basses.
  12. d8g3jdh

    d8g3jdh Guest

    Aug 9, 2005

    My new L-2000 is great, and with all the options it gives you there's more than one way to make yourself heard.

    You dont need a pointy bass, its just common for alot of metal. Cliff Burton didnt have a pointy bass (at least i wouldnt call his basses pointy) and look how good he was (and well-known he is now). It's not how it looks, its how you use it, so don't sacrifice sound quality for looks.

  13. iriegnome

    iriegnome Bassstar style Supporting Member

    Nov 23, 2001
    Kenosha, WI 53140
    MOst of the difference from a P- to a J- is neck and Pickups. The neck is slimmer and trimmer on a J. 1-1/2" Nut width compared to 1-5/8" on a P. I have bigger hands, but Imuch prefer the Jazz "Scale" necks. I have them on every bass I own, except my '78 P. The pickups are completely different. The P- split coil and the Dual J- Single Coils. Many different tones for each. The basses are basically made from the same wood though and both have the same heal width, so (for me) it is a preferance of 1-1/2" or 1-5/8"
  14. NewAndImprov


    Oct 17, 2005
    I always giggle at the names that Leo chose for his basses, the Precision and the Jazz. It's like you can have one or the other, you can be precise, or you can play jazz, but you can't do both.

    reminds me of the old joke about the kid who told his dad he wanted to be a jazz musician when he grew up.
  15. Miritalner


    Oct 16, 2005
    Hey, but metal is like 40% about pure show-off with all that long-hair flying around, shiny leather, iron spikes, swords and dragons, monsters and deamons. Ritual hoodies, sacred phrases, certain ways of behaviour that is bassicly a way to impress themselves and the people around... Yep, I know there will be a lot of people around who will burn me at the stake for saying that. But heavy metal is a kind of music that breeds a hell lot of imagery that people more or less begin to associate themselves with.
    So pointy bass is not compulsory, but preferrable! And for me personally, playing a bass that I don't like in terms of appearence, will cause certain unwillingness to pick it up next time and play it, and play it good.
    Cliff Burton was from Metallica, and they were not kind of that power or speed metal I am talking about. They in fact were thrash/speed and their symbolics were not like those of, say, Judas Priest and W.A.S.P. Then the band went alternative and of course, in the world of alternative, symbolism of fantasy and horror has not that great value as in tr00 heavy metal.
    So while being a good musician is the ultimate goal, keeping up with your image is very important for metallist, too.

    Anyway, all that I was sying was that you can always find an alternative to a "bad-looking" Fender, IMO. Say, change that headstock. Or get rid of the body and mount a new one, keeping the electronics... Or get another guitar...
  16. Jonki

    Jonki I will not slap my Bee!

    Oct 14, 2003
    Arendal, Norway
    go and tell that to Steve Harris!

    Fenders are good, but the main thing is find your own tone and not doing like other people are saying "Fender are no good for metal" or "Jazz bass in rock?"

    try different basses and amps, and you will find something who suits _you_