American Jazz Bass Review

manufacturer: Fender date: 11/23/2010 category: Bass Guitars
Fender: American Jazz Bass
American Jazz Bass guitar features the innovative S-1 switching system, which gives you great Jazz Bass and Precsion Bass guitar tones from one instrument.
 Sound: 9.5
 Overall Impression: 9.8
 Reliability & Durability: 9.8
 Action, Fit & Finish: 10
 Features: 10
 Overall rating:
 9.1 
 Reviewer rating:
 9.8 
 Users rating:
 8.4 
 Votes:
 108 
reviews (4) 27 comments vote for this gear:
overall: 9.8
American Jazz Bass Reviewed by: kingurth, on january 11, 2008
6 of 6 people found this review helpful

Features: So this is an American-made Fender Jazz Bass. Let me start by talking about my favorite part: the neck. A lovely 20-fret maple neck with a creamy-smooth satin finish. The neck is ultra-thin yet rounded out nicely, so as to have "body" while still being thin and fast. The nut width is tiny (though I don't know the exact measurements), adding to speed and comfort. Mine came in black with a standard black pickguard, which looks really classy compared to the buttery maple neck and the silver of the control panel. I get complimented on it all the time! It really is a sight to behold. The body is string-through, allowing for some pretty long sustain. In terms of pickups, you get two single coil pickups that you can Switch from parallel to series using the built-in S1 Switching System, allowing you to Switch seamlessly between the great traditional Jazz Bass sound and a fatter, Precision-style sound. My main praise of this is that you can have the fat P-Bass tone without the chunkiness of the P-Bass neck. In terms of control, you get two volume knobs (one for the bridge pickup and one for the neck pickup, on which the S1 button is installed) and a tone knob. I love turning the neck pickup off and leaving the bridge pickup on, and then pressing the S1 button, which pretty much cuts the signal because when the switching system is active, the bridge pickup has no output. The tuners are great traditional Fender tuners, which help keep the bass in tune for a long time. Unfortunately, the bass didn't come with any "accessories," though I didn't really need any of that anyway. // 10

Sound: Thanks to the S1 system, you can get a really wide range of tones out of this baby. On one hand you have the classically bright Jazz Bass sound, while on the other hand you have a rich, P-Bass-like sound. You can pretty much work this into any style of music. I use the fatter tones when I'm playing a bit heavier rock, and the brighter tones when I'm doing popier stuff or straight up jazz. There's a whole lot of variety. Depending on what settings you use, there can be a little bit of noise, but a quick turn of a knob or two will cut the noise completely. Also, the bright tone goes great with the effects I pass my bass through sometimes (flanger, delay) and the fat tone works great with distortion. // 9

Action, Fit & Finish: When I got it it was set up perfectly. I haven't had to adjust it yet (and I've had it for about a year). Everything was properly routed and bookmatched, and the bass had no flaws or anything. Nothing was loose, nothing was poorly fit, nada. Really high quality parts. Not to mention the fact that this guitar is, well, pretty sexy. A true masterpiece of luthiery. // 10

Reliability & Durability: Despite the fact that it's safely tucked away into its hardshell case whenever it's not being played, this little bad boy's taken more than enough beating for one bass' lifetime, and even then I'm positive I'll still be using this in twenty years. Everything's built solidly, and I feel like I can always depend on this bass to pull through. I would definitely use (and have used) this at a gig without a backup. Even though it's got a few nicks now, that's my fault, not the bass'. It looks more unique with the dings anyway. // 10

Overall Impression: I've found my one true bass love, and I'm not afraid to admit it. Other than maybe a Rickenbacher, I don't think I'll need another bass ever as long as I Live. If this one broke beyond repair, I'd run out and get a new one in an instant. Though I hope that never happens, because I feel so connected to this one already. I love everything about it, from the tone to the action to the look and back again. All other basses just seem well, wrong now. This one is so "right." I only wish that maybe I had a better bass amp so I could fully enjoy it. // 10

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overall: 9.4
American Jazz Bass Reviewed by: splinterino, on november 05, 2007
2 of 2 people found this review helpful

Features: Hard case, strap, warranty, cleaning equipment, humidifier, warranty, allen keys, owner details etc. It is shorline gold, with a maple neck (alder body I think). It has two of the standard pickups used in the model and has Jumbo frets. Volume and two controls are given(one for each pickup). // 10

Sound: Well as a bassist who focuses a lot on jazz it is perfect for that kind of sound, with great variation of tones, with a full sound, I'm playing this through 125 watt amp (Carlson). The guitar can make most sounds you could want from a bass guitar, with enough adjustments made on the knobs. When playing such things as bass chords each note is audible-not a drone of sound, so you can really express yourself. The only fault, and this would only really matter for a metal bassist, that it hasn't got much power behind it, the S-1 switching system was a dissappointment as didn't other much more 'bass tone', this to me shows it much more for the advanced bassist who solo's and has his/her own riffs not following the guitar, following a guitar would be pointless on such a instrument really as it's not designed for that. Though as each note is so perfect I am giving it a 9, for it truly makes a beautiful sound. // 9

Action, Fit & Finish: The pickups are great, equal for each string so one doesn't get more power than another, the bridge works fine, with a nice neat system. I love the solid maple neck, which allows you to see the quality of the wood unlike rosewood necks. Nothing was/is damaged in anyway. // 10

Reliability & Durability: Yes I beleive this guitar would withstand Live playing, it has a great 'personality' on stage and alows the user to really stand out. I think the hardware will last for a fair amount of time, the wood especially though the knobs and small other parts might have to be replaced in 10 years time. The finish is good, I would of preffered different colours to my shoreline gold, though it stills looks great(sunset Orange I think is the best colour. // 9

Overall Impression: I play jazz, and anything with a outstanding bass riff (lots of the time slap bass) so it is perfect. I have been playing nearly two years, but started on classical guitar around 6 years ago, so was quite advancd when I started, on classical I use my dads old Juan Estruch trovador classical/flamenco guitar, hand made in barcelona 30 years ago. I would definetely buy this again if it were stolen, though I would like to experiment with the Jaguar bass guitar by Fender. Compared to top range Ibanez's I have played this always comes out on top for clarity and tone, though not volume. // 9

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overall: 10
American Jazz Bass Reviewed by: Caboose1125, on september 20, 2006
0 of 4 people found this review helpful

Features: Mine is a 1993, Mexican made American Jazz Bass. Ironic, I know, but oh well. It has 20 jumbo frets, and has a rosewood fingerboard. The body is alder, and the neck is graphite reinforced maple. It has an American strings-thru-body bridge setup. The bass has two volume controls and a master tone. Volume 1 (with S-1 switch) neck pickup, volume 2 is a bridge pickup. The two pickups are American Jazz Bass single-coil pickups. // 10

Sound: I play quite a variety of music. Everything from heavy metal to grunge, and a little jazz on the side. It handles everything I throw at it perfectly. It handles every type of distortion that I've ever used on it. In my uses with the bass, it seems to have a brighter sound to it. You can get it to have the deep, rich sounds tho. I personally love the sound that this bass puts out. It doesn't always hit the sound you want on the first try, but if you work enough, you can hit the sounds you desire. // 10

Action, Fit & Finish: When I got it everything looked to be in order, so I don't know how it came from the factory. When I got a closer look I found a few electrical things that were wrong, but that was just from the previous owner not taking the best care of it. The guitar itself doesn't contain any flaws, and is very nice quality work. The fret work is flawless and the body is in perfect order. From what I've seen, the set up is perfect. Overall the only problems I have seen were ones from the previous owners neglection of the bass. // 10

Reliability & Durability: I've had this bass going on three months now. Every time I have used it nothing has gone wrong. I've recorded some songs using this bass and have had no problems to date. The hardware is in good shape and nothing that has happened has made it change. The strap buttons are good and work like they should. The finish seems to be good quality and has lasted since 1993. I would use this bass without a backup for sure. It is extremly reliable. // 10

Overall Impression: From metal to grunge to jazz and back, this bass does it all. It holds up every sound, how big or how small. It fits perfectly to every distortion and tone I throw at it. I've been playing for almost two years. I've played many types of basses and this is by far the best I've laid my hands on. If my bass was stolen I would replace it without a doubt. I wouldn't even consider getting something else. My favorite thing about this bass is its versatility, no matter what I want to play this bass can match my expectations and then exceed them. This bass has definately rejuvinated my love for the deep, rich sounds that hold the band together. // 10

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overall: 10
American Jazz Bass Reviewed by: goodnightbob, on november 23, 2010
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Price paid: $ 1699.99

Purchased from: Tarpley music co

Features: 2010 American Deluxe Jazz Bass Natural finish Ash body Maple fret board. Active or passivee electronics, Bone nut cut to perfection. Came with strap locks, strap, patch cord. high mass bridge you can strig thru the body or load it from the top. N3 noiseless pickups. Rolled finger board edges fully bound neck. // 10

Sound: The tones you can get are endless I play thru an Ampeg SVT 4 pro head and a Peavey pro 4-10 cab pretty much straight thru no effects I'm getting bell like highs and some lows that are so warm it melts. Passive or active you can dial in any tone you want. And its quiet no loud hum I play Rock and Blues so its a match made in California lol. // 10

Action, Fit & Finish: This bass was perfect right out of the box it was almost like they set it up just for me. The neck is smooth and fast the frets are dressed perfectly. Sorry if your lookig for Flaws it not gonna happen I can't find ANYTHING wrong with this bass. No loose or missing screws no hums no rattles the bone nut is cut perfect. // 10

Reliability & Durability: Its a Fender need I say more.yes it will stand up to live playing the hardware should out live me. It came with strap locks very solid. I always take a back up its not that I can't depend on it its just smart to have an extra. The finish should last a lifetime if it doesn't good! A worn out looking bass thats been played and not abused is good. // 10

Overall Impression: I play in a Rock and Blues band. I have been playing Bass for about 10 years and Guitar for about 30 years. If this Bass was stolen I would hunt the low life down and put the hurt on! I hate thiefs This is truly the nicest bass I have ever owned I've had plenty. I'm sorry this IS a GLOWING review so don't publish it this bass rocks it. // 10

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