Mustang Bass Review

manufacturer: Fender date: 02/11/2009 category: Bass Guitars
Fender: Mustang Bass
The Fender Mustang Bass is a reissue of the '64 classic. This is a great bass for smaller players or anyone who likes a lightweight instrument with a short, fast neck. 30" scale length. Alder body. Maple neck. One split single-coil pickup. Rosewood fretboard with dot markers and nickel frets.
 Sound: 7
 Overall Impression: 8.5
 Reliability & Durability: 9.5
 Action, Fit & Finish: 9.5
 Features: 8.5
 Overall rating:
 Reviewer rating:
 Users rating:
reviews (2) 16 comments vote for this gear:
overall: 8.4
Mustang Bass Reviewed by: nea1io, on february 11, 2009
2 of 2 people found this review helpful

Features: The Mustang Bass I picked up was a Japanese made 2007 model in Vintage White (a cream color). It has 19 frets and a really nice narrow and fast little maple neck that has a nice coat of lacquer that really doesn't slow me down. My Mustang's (alder? ) body is light and glossy with absolutely no flaws I can see. It's all passive with a single mini-P pickup in the center of the body that can range from almost P-Bass sounds to a shrill and unique tone using the tone knob effectively. The bridge is a pretty heavy string-thru body that I've never seen before. The tuners are standard Fender and hold tune very well. The bass came with no accessories. // 7

Sound: I play mostly alternative and reggae at the moment and the Mustang can work in these genres and others great with a little effort and EQ. The amp you use it with determines your sound mostly. I play it on a small Peavy Microbass but have used it on larger Ampeg amps and others and it sounded great. I like to use effects as well and this bass handles them well. It sounds much better than my old bass with fuzz or other effects. The bass rarely ever has much noise with me even with volume and tone maxed out. I don't put the tone past 4 or 5 often though; it gets a little too trebly for me. It doesn't have the greatest variety but can fit in well to many different genres. It's sounds stays somewhere between a P-Bass and a J-bass. The sound is definitely old school; I couldn't recommend it at all for modern metal or anything requiring down tuning (due to the short scale neck). // 8

Action, Fit & Finish: My Mustang came very well setup with the intonation just a little off on the high notes on the E string. It's action came pretty low. The pickups are adjusted just fine to me and the bridge and nut were fine as well. The fret ends were smooth and there are no dead spots on the neck. The finish is perfect, one of the best finishes I've seen. The hardware was all well put together with shiny tight tuners and other hardware. The controls are dead quiet and the tone knob is very responsive. I don't think you can get any better under $1000. // 9

Reliability & Durability: This guitar would be great for Live playing due to it's light weight, small size, and lack of noise! All the hardware is solid and very dependable, just like any other Fender. The finish is pretty thick and still looks Brand New to me. It doesn't get dents or scratches very easy. I would easily play Live with it without a backup. The only thing it needs is strap locks and then it would be set for a gig! // 9

Overall Impression: Like I said, I play alternative and reggae, and it can work in both genres. It doesn't have the brightest or heaviest tone in the world but stays in the middle most of the time. It can adapt well to any genre in my opinion. I love the simplicity of this bass, it's just a well made bass without any batteries or other stuff in the way. If stolen I would definitely get a new one as soon as possible. My favorite things about it are the fast neck and the overall look of the bass. I just love looking at it! It's beautiful! The only things I dislike about the bass itself are that the pickup isn't really good for anchoring your thumb to play fingerstyle so it needs a thumbrest and it can get too trebly with the tone maxed out. I wish it came with a bridge pickup and a case. I took this bass over some more expensive USA made Fender J-basses and I honestly think I made the the right decision. This bass fits me like a glove. // 9

Was this review helpful to you? Yes / No
Post your comment
overall: 8.8
Mustang Bass Reviewed by: unregistered, on september 29, 2008
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Price paid: $ 550

Purchased from: Hix Bros. Music

Features: I got this for me ex for our anniversary one year. When she left me she also took the Mustang Bass out of my life, that's what hurts. It's a shortscale bass, which is great for younger students or smaller people. The bass was introduced in the 1960's as a student's bass and is now revered as a collector's peice. This reproduction has been produced for the Japanese market for at least a decade before we got it (I know because I was drooling over them and thinking of importing on ten years before they introduced them here). My model was from the first year they were in the states, whcih I believe was 2003. The finish was a bueatiful Vintage white finish, and neck was the smoothest neck I've felt on a Fender in a long time, just too short for me, and the tuners were solid. It did come with a gig-bag, which saved me a bit of money on her, and was the nicest bass I've ever bought, actually. // 10

Sound: The split single coil pickup doesn't produce the thickest, bassiest sound in the world, but it does sound good. I prefer the P-Bass sound, myself, but the Mustang Bass still had a good tone. It was very punchy and bright, did a good job to cut through the muck and be heard, just not as good a job at laying down the basement. // 6

Action, Fit & Finish: The finish on the bass was just amazing, but the set-up was terrible. Took me about an hour to set the thing up beautifully, there were no fret ends sticking out, no poorly crowned frets, the nut was perfectly cut, didn't bind the strings at all. The hardware on the bass was all solid and felt better than that of most MIM Fenders. There was also not a single flaw in the finish or build of the bass, it was the most impressive bass I've ever bought. // 10

Reliability & Durability: This thing is rock solid, just like any other Fender. It will take a beating and it will keep going. It stays in tune better than most basses in the sub $700 category and the bridge is rock solid. The finish is not going to be marred or destroyed without being horribley abused, either. I'd depend on that bass for gigs and recording (if I didn't play P-basses) and stake my life on it if I had to. Just replace the strap buttons... always replace your strap buttons with strap locks. // 10

Overall Impression: I play a lot of differant kind of music and I doubt that I would ever actually use this bass. I know my ex did/does use this bass for punk/emo music (ala Rise Against and Thrice)and absolutely loves it. I never much cared for how thin the Mustang Bass tone is compared to the P-Bass, but it works and it sounds good. Comparing this bass to my p-basses is almost unfair, since I'm so fond of the P-basses. If I actually liked the way the bass sounded and played, which I didn't, I would have gotten another one or tried to get it back from her somehow, but I just don't like it. It's a great bass, just not my style. I do wish there were more upgrade options out there for, though. There's no aftermarket pickups or upgrade bridges for it and I think that a hotter pickup and a beefier bridge would do wonders for this thing's tone. If you dig the Mustang basses, you can't pass this up, but if you're more into P-basses and Jazz basses, this probably won't be your favorite bass. // 8

Was this review helpful to you? Yes / No
Post your comment
Only "https" links are allowed for pictures,
otherwise they won't appear