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Why are Jazz basses so much more popular than Precision?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by riff19, Dec 11, 2004.

  1. riff19


    Nov 22, 2004
    I am having no luck finding a local dealer to try a Fender American Deluxe Precision V string. Everyone has Jazz bases. Same situation on ebay, all jazz, very few P.

    Why is Jazz so much more popular? I find the Jazz to have a very sterile tone when recording to tape, and the P has that thump/boom sound that brings a track to life.
  2. Figjam


    Aug 5, 2003
    Boston, MA
    Its not that jazzes are more popular than precisions, but jazz FIVE strings are more popular than precision FIVE strings.
  3. AB53211


    Apr 15, 2004
    imo, fender 5 strings play bad. I think they are just as popular a jazzes
  4. ApeIsHigh81


    Aug 24, 2004
    I don't see one more popular than the other at all. It's just a regional/music store issue for you I suppose.
  5. Yeah, I also am not a fan of fender 5's I have played. Keep in mind that is only ones I have played, which is only 4 which have been in the store for god knows how long.
  6. Gabu


    Jan 2, 2001
    Lake Elsinore, CA
    Maybe if you are seeing a lot more Jazzes that indicates that the Precisions are being held on to... while the Jazzes are being dumped.

    Hmm... ;)

    I like both actually.
  7. I'm more attracted to J's myself, However i wouldn't mind picking up a P too!
  8. Toasted


    May 26, 2003
    Leeds, UK
    Its for the simple fact that jazzes are better.
  9. I think the Jazz is considered the more modern sounding, versatile one. The P was always popular for the traditional tone, but as time went on, more players wanted the oppertunity to solo pickups, etc. Why is the Strat more popular than the Tele? More modern design. Not necessarily better overall, but the idea is that it's a progression, offering some things missing on the original. The Tele itself is a progression of the Esquire, which had only 1 pickup. Pretty limited tone. Sounds great, but there's only so much you can do with it.
  10. Doug Parent

    Doug Parent Gold Supporting Member

    May 31, 2004
    San Diego, Ca.
    Dealer Nordstrand Pickups.
    right on joey
  11. hands5


    Jan 15, 2003
    good 'ol USA/Tampa fla.
    what do you mean by sterile ?.because the last time I heard a Jazz 4/5, both of them had plenty honk,grunt,bite,and boom.
  12. Vic

    Vic There's more music in the nuance than the notes. Supporting Member

    Oct 14, 2002
    Central Illinois
    Staff, Bass Gear Magazine
    Not to mention growl. :)

    I have both a great J and a great P, and I'd say I'm more of a J guy, but for purely subjective reasons... I like the sound better, and the slimmer neck is more fun for me to play on.

    In other words, I wouldn't say one's better than the other, just different, and yes, I'd say the P is more organic and vintage sounding, while the J is a bit more modern (and a bit more versatile), which is exactly what Leo had in mind when it was designed.

    However, if you want a great P sound, you pretty much have to get a P... IMHO, while I do like the neck pickup sound on the J, it can't really cover the P tone, which is why I have my P.
  13. luknfur


    Jan 14, 2004

    If I had to be stuck with one configuration in a bass it would be a J set. More J pups made than the rest of pups combined. J's can be had in stacked HB's, singles, hum-canceling, quads, splits, whatever. Tonal options are basically endless. I'd guess there's about a 50/50 chance if you wired those thin J's in series or threw a series/parallel switch in it, they'd be fat enough recorded.

    I like a good P tone but haven't found it in a P pup yet, but I have in pretty much every other configuration - including many J sets. I haven't given up on P's yet but a P pup is the least likely pup I'm inlcined to buy simply cause I haven't had any luck with them relative to other styles. I've had Fender, Bart, EMG, Dimarzio, Duncan, and Celinder P's that come to mind.
  14. swampash


    Dec 13, 2004
    not sure if the J’s are so much more popular, but may be because of the tonal range and better sounding electronics, and slimmer neck, they certainly seem preferred over the p's. P basses are a little wider (making it harder to move around, for the smaller handed) and have less options in tonal range. Seems very true that there are usually more J basses available though ;) :bassist:
  15. Nino Valenti

    Nino Valenti Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 2, 2001
    Staten Island NYC
    Builder: Valenti Basses
    Because I play a JAzz Styles bass and obviously, everyone wants to be just like me!!!!!!!!!!!

  16. Sundogue


    Apr 26, 2001
    Wausau, WI
    There are many possibilities why.

    The Jazz really does look sexier (read: More curves) with it's offset body. The neck is slimmer (which I find a bit odd as a reason to like it more than the P-Bass when so many are clamoring for more spacing between strings, especially on 5 string basses). But some 4 string lovers like a very slim neck and the Jazz has got that over the P-Bass.

    It does have more tonal variety, though I personally think the tone of a P-Bass is where it's at anyway.

    Some of the reasons may include playing style. It appears that those who like to slap prefer Jazzes, though I know of a guy who is a terrific slapper and he plays a P-Bass, so I know it's possible (it's all in the hands perhaps?).

    As far as availability, there may be more people hanging on to their P-Basses because only a P-Bass can give a true P-Bass sound (some may come close, but not quite). Also, there may be alot of people getting Jazzes specifically because they are looking for that classic Fender tone and find that the Jazz didn't do it for them (they should have just got a Precision ;) ).

    I will probably get a Jazz some day to compliment my P-Bass, but I will also probably get a Precision neck for it, as I prefer the P neck to the Jazz. But that's me.
  17. Frank Martin

    Frank Martin Bitten by the luthiery bug...

    Oct 8, 2001
    Budapest, Hungary, EU
    Or the other way round: the demand is so low that dealers don't stock 5er Ps :p

    Also, I think Jazzes look waaay better than Ps. So do Strats look better than Teles.

    All other reasons are already here
  18. Vic

    Vic There's more music in the nuance than the notes. Supporting Member

    Oct 14, 2002
    Central Illinois
    Staff, Bass Gear Magazine
    LOL! You rawk... ;)
  19. Joe Beets

    Joe Beets Guest

    Nov 21, 2004
    The J-Bass is more popular because it is easier to get that twangy guitar-like sound that many prefer these days. With a P-Bass you can turn the tone knob up all the way and pluck down close to the bridge with a set of bright round wound strings and come close, but it's not quite the same.
  20. embellisher

    embellisher Holy Ghost filled Bass Player Supporting Member

    Different strokes for different folks. I have never thought of a Jazz as sounding 'sterile'.

    P basses have that low mids grunt, J basses have that high(er) mid growl.

    I like both, so I have both.