Most helpful customer reviews
11 of 12 people found the following review helpful.
Great fretless bass that can be better with a little effort.
I do not own an actual 1962 Jazz Bass, so I can't compare this reissue to an actual vintage bass. I own a 1977, and have owned a 1983 Jazz as well. This bass is well built, light and very resonant. The pick-ups sound very full, the neck feels wonderful and fast, and the nickle plating is a wonderful alternative to cold chrome. The semi figurative grain on the body shows beautifully through the well applied transparent sunburst. I am not sure why Fender used Pau Ferro as a finger board wood since Fender did not offer such an option in 1962, though I do know it is better tone wise(for fret-less) than rosewood. Not sure as to why, but many luthiers choose Pau Ferro for that very application. Having a coated fingerboard certainly helps against wear, though I believe Fender really should have used a thick, tougher epoxy like Jaco did, and not the poly varnish they decided upon. Using round wound strings (like Jaco, he never used flat wounds!!!!) the varnish began to chip and flake off. Not really acceptable in a passive, standard wood bass that retails for well over $2000. I found the nut was not at all well cut: a properly filed nut is very critical in a fretless, especially if you are seeking the "mwah" tone Jaco is known for. The mwah factor comes from the string buzzing evenly along the finger board. I also found the fingerboard to be improperly planed, having what I can describe as a "hump" at the body end of the neck. To have a proper fretless set-up you need a very straight neck with as little relief as possible. This was not possible so I had Harris Thor re-plane the neck and coat the finger board with proper epoxy. The Custom Shop Jaco bass is coated with epoxy, not poly, BTW. Overall a great instrument but at this price point Fender seriously needs to pay attention to the details. It is what makes an expensive instrument desirable, and why they cost so much! That being said, I will never sell my bass now that it is playing as it should; I still grin when I pick it up. as a side note, I replaced the pick-ups with a pair of Nordstrand NJ4SE, made for fret-less bass. Way way better than the Fender vintage pups.
Álvaro L. Torres
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful.
Greatest fretless ever.
By ricky d scott
I bought this bass because I wanted a fretless not so much because of jaco. Not that he wasn't a great innovator of our instrument but Rick danko was really my inspiration. I have been playing for 25 years and own 14 fretted basses and not one of them come close to the sound and playability of this bass. I truly love this bass it has really made me rethink bass playing. I would recommend this bass to anyone who wants a fretless. The only complaint I have is the dots are centered instead of on fret lines which I easily corrected by getting a set of led fret markers from fret fx( If you don't know Check em out ).
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful. See all 3 customer reviews...
Simply A Terrific Bass
By G. Simon
I will admit two things up front:
1. I bought this instrument from a brick-and-mortar music shop, not Amazon.com
2. I only got the "Jaco signature" version because the shop was out of the regular American Standard, and they cut me a deal to compensate
So, I would say that while I wouldn't necessarily recommend the Jaco model over the regular one (only because of the $$), this is one great playing and great sounding bass, especially if you change out the stock flatwound strings with roundwound. I notice very little difference between the ones I've tried from the 1970s and mine (from 2008).
If you are a serious fretless player and a serious collector of all things Jaco, then you might actually want to shell out the extra dough for the signature!