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Width - Ibanez vs Fender. Is it really such a big difference?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Hurdea Darius, May 31, 2020.

  1. Hurdea Darius

    Hurdea Darius

    Aug 11, 2019
    Call it as you like - neck width, fretboard width, bridge string spacing, nut width etc. The thing is that I have big hands. I like metal so Ibanez is always recommended to me by the people I talk with. But the same people, when I tell them I have big hands, say that it'd be better for me to buy something with a wider neck. As I see on producer's sites, almost any Ibanez is 45mm on the nut and Fenders are like 47.6mm. I see that Fenders are 69mm on the last fret while the Ibanez is like 68.8-68.9 or something. Accurate or inaccurate, these differences of a few millimeters I wrote above, at least in my mind, do not seem to make such a difference as folks say. I mean, how could 1 mm more or less affect your playing? Please tell me if I'm wrong, if I would really need a wider neck for my long hands and if my info written above is accurate. Thanks in advance!
  2. Hurdea Darius

    Hurdea Darius

    Aug 11, 2019
    Whooops, I forgot to specify that these basses are 5 string. Tho I believe everyone got the ideea since the necks are that wide :))
    scuzzy and HG1180 like this.
  3. Fun Size Nick

    Fun Size Nick

    Feb 21, 2006
    Hong Kong
    I suppose as a proportion of your fingertip width, a couple of mm difference can be pretty significant. I can certainly feel it.

    Ibanez necks tend to have shallower profiles (back-to-front) as well, which has as big an effect on feel as fingerboard width to me.
    gh0st42, Malak the Mad and BxBomber like this.
  4. Yahboy


    May 21, 2008
    Another different is most ibby SR 5 string has narrow 16.5mm string spacing vs 18/19mm on Fender 5 string.
    But there are adjustable saddle spacing bridge on new era SR bass.
    Ggaa and Kro like this.
  5. a-37


    Apr 23, 2015
    You should try it yourself. Nobody else can really know if you'll like the wider neck better or if the string spacing at nut or bridge makes a big difference to you.

    I am really tired of people equating narrow neck with speed and comfort and ease of play. I was struggling with a narrow Jazz style neck which was recommended for a beginner because it was supposed to be all of the above but found out a Precision style one felt natural to me. Similarly even though it might be that you end up preferring a wider neck you should try both if possible. I know "both" is overly simplified but let's say both an Ibanez style and one or more of the wider options. Only you can decide which is better or if it matters at all.
  6. Sid the Kid

    Sid the Kid Supporting Member

    Jun 7, 2013
    Ibanez looks metal but sounds vanilla. You want Darkglass + any bass for metal.

    It’s a personal thing. I have rather small hands and I prefer wider necks and wide spacing. The Fender neck is wider and rounder than the Ibanez, but not more comfortable in my experience.

    Those couple of mm do make a difference. You won’t know until you bond with one for a while then try out others with different specs.
    AustinRanger101 and HG1180 like this.
  7. people talk about tiny ibanez necks when compared to fenders, I've got a couple jazz basses and never felt like ibbys were uncomfortable. Take that for what it's worth I suppose.
  8. Relayer71

    Relayer71 Supporting Member

    Jun 25, 2009
    I think Ibanez' BTB series has wider necks than the SR. They look more metal, too :D
    Jazz Ad likes this.
  9. JRA

    JRA my words = opinion Supporting Member

    :laugh: for experienced players = a few mm here and there can make a difference re: comfort and the avoidance of 'fatigue'.
    we can try to guess what you need/want --- but you could begin to determine your real preferences by playing some of the axes you reference. i'm thinking that it's time for you to do a little participant-observation research on behalf of yourself!

    go play a few and report your findings. you might actually prefer micro-scale basses! good luck! :thumbsup:
  10. J_Bass


    Feb 7, 2008
    Porto, Portugal
    You can have big hands and prefer narrower necks. I don't see the relation between the two.

    The opposite is also true.

    I don't see pianos having narrower keys for people with small hands.

    What matters is what is comfortable for each player. Nothing to do with sizes.
  11. Shaggai


    May 7, 2018
    New Jersey
    I think you have to find your preference, it just may take more than a run through the local music store to figure out just what type of neck (or scale, or number of strings) you like.
  12. Hurdea Darius

    Hurdea Darius

    Aug 11, 2019
    Yes, I would go to the music store to try some basses. The thing is that the closest music store where I can try out some basses is 850km away :roflmao:... And now, more precisely - I don't really wanna buy an Ibanez, I don't wanna buy a Fender neither. My eyes are on the Cort C5 Plus and Marcus Miller V3 - the budget Ibanez and the budget Fender for a guy like me, who wants to buy a MXR M81 and a looper too. I asked about Ibanez and Fender because if it would have been to ask about Cort and Marcus Miller nobody would've responded :)).
  13. Kro

    Kro Supporting Member

    May 7, 2003
    New Jersey
    Personally, I think it has more to do with personal preference than it does hand/finger size.

    With that being said, small spacing differences are very noticeable to me. Less so at the nut, and moreso at the bridge.

    My current number one bass is a Precision with the traditional 19mm bridge spacing and it's fine, but I LOVE the 16.5mm spacing that 5-string Soundgears use.

    Anyways, if you don't already have a rock-solid preference, I recommend just getting the bass you want and adapting your playing to it. We all have our preferences, but adapting isn't hard as long as the will is there. :thumbsup:
    J_Bass, Seashore and Hurdea Darius like this.
  14. devo1


    May 6, 2010
    Luckily these basses are the easiest to find at GC or any store. Go try them both. Ibanez has SR and BTB basses. The BTB might be best for you.
  15. buldog5151bass

    buldog5151bass Kibble, milkbones, and P Basses. And redheads.

    Oct 22, 2003
    Nut width is not the only issue. On the Epiphone Thunderbird it's 1.73", and Epiphone Viola it's 1.65", both comparable to a P bass, which I have played for decades. But both are much narrower at the bridge, so are very uncomfortable for me to play. So don't buy blind.
  16. klokker


    Jan 7, 2009
    Steele City, NE
    It's a big deal for me personally, if its a 5 string. I want a narrower spacing. But like a P bass 4 string? The wider neck is fine.
  17. non


    Aug 4, 2015
    i have a couple of ibby sr's and fender jazz.
    the biggest difference in the necks is front to back width. the ibanez sr is "thinner" front to back. the necks feels very fast. my current favorite bass is my warmoth with a jazz "slim tapper" neck. it feels right in between a ibby sr and a jazz. super comfy.
  18. BtaylorTheRogue


    Nov 14, 2016
    I have big monster paws and I like thin necks
    Ggaa and alaskaleftybass like this.
  19. BarfanyShart


    Sep 19, 2019
    DC Metro
    It's really more about your technique (left hand and right hand) than the size of your hand. Back when i thumped my BG like a DB, i couldn't stand something like an Ibanez neck. Now, I'd be pretty comfortable going to something very narrow - and I still have the muscular stubs of a bass man.
    Seashore likes this.
  20. Dynomuttasaurus


    Jul 23, 2016
    Nailed it for me. I have about a dozen basses and use them all. However, I only use a select few for playing out 4-hour bar gigs because the wider/thicker necks give me hand cramps. I may love their sound, but wide/thick necks basses are reserved for either shorter gigs and/or recording. This is my personal taste. Yours (not may) will vary.
    alaskaleftybass and JRA like this.

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