Standard Precision Bass review by Fender

logo Ultimate Guitar
  • Sound: 10
  • Overall Impression: 10
  • Reliability & Durability: 10
  • Action, Fit & Finish: 10
  • Features: 8
  • Reviewer's score: 9.6 Superb
  • Users' score: 8.1 (71 votes)
Fender: Standard Precision Bass

Sound — 10
This bass is the standard sound for almost any type of music, simply put, I would use it for anyting. It normally gets run through a 60watt amp with 1 15inch speaker, and it is not at all muddy. I have s DigiTech bass modeling pedal, but I don't use it much with this bass, however, it can handle a bit of distortion if needed. Nothing is noisy on this bass, however when I turn the tone knob up when using any smaller of speakers, the treble can get a little too scratchy. Almost any sound that I want can come out of this bass, it isnt a perfect impressionist, but it can do a variety of sounds.

Overall Impression — 10
I play everything and the bass does everything. I've been playing 3 years and also own an Ibanez gsr200, which despite the begginer bass tag, is not too shabby. If it was stolen, I would probably get a P-Bass Special with the 2nd pickup, or I might get another standard. I love everything about it, ecxept for the fact that it was not made in the '60s. My favorite feature is the neck, necks on jazzes and ibanezes are just too thin and not substantial enough, while other basses, like the Epi/Gibson Thunderbird have necks that are just too big. I compared it to a Standard Jazz Bass, my Ibanez, an Epi Thunderbird, a Squier P Special, a Squier J, and a Yamaha, all in the $300 range. I chose this bass simply because it felt better than all the other I tried. The Yamaha was a close 2nd. The only things I wish it had were a bridge humbucker, and a tremolo. I know there is no need for a bass tremolo, but it would still be pretty sweet. Oh and I wish it was covered in gold leaf, and chocolate syrup, and women, and money, and food, and the cure for aids (which I would sell), but it is just a bass.

Reliability & Durability — 10
I have gigged with this guitar with no backup, of course we weren't playing "London Calling". The hardware is nearly indestrutible, mainly because of its beautiful simplicity. The strap buttons for some reason did not work well for me at all, even though they looked identical to every other strap buttons in the world. so I replaced them with straplocks, and everything is good. As stated, it has 1 real scratch. The finish is amazing. I would feel confident cutting down a tree with this axe, plugged in!

Action, Fit & Finish — 10
I have it set up pretty good now, I got it used so I don't know what it was like from the factory. My only complaints are of a single noticable scratch, and a less than mediocre, but acceptable bridge. Otherwise this bass is solid like a rock, a titanium rock! Everything is very easy to adjust and generally stays adjusted for ever.

Features — 8
The bass I'm reviewing is a midnight wine '98 Standard P-Bass, made in Mexico. It is totally factory minus the white pickguard, which has been replaced with a black one, and chrome knobs. 21 fret bolt-on maple neck, rosewood fretboard, the neck shape is about average for a bass, not too thick, but still wide enough and very substantial. The body is ash I believe and is finished in a maroon type color called midnight wine. Only 1 passive tone and volume control, but despite being simple, it has a huge tonal range. The pickup is a signature humbucking split P, which is expected on a P-Bass. The tuners are a little big, and therefore get knocked out of tune a bit easier than most basses. The bridge is barely acceptable which is why this gets an 8 not a 9.

3 comments sorted by best / new / date

    zakduarte wrote: japanese fenders are the best quality. better than the USA ones, which is why they are harder to find. We cant even get them in europe anymore without special ordering. But seriously,compared to a mexican...very big difference.
    they arent the best, they are pretty much even, sometimes better and i find with bass they are never worse then fender USA, but they are harder to find because they are only made for japan now, and im pretty sure they only ever did make them for japan. exports are done by other companies or people. i prefer jap fender, because fender usa has all that patriotic american crap attached to the price "made in america, so the commies dont get any" etc.
    I played one of these babys at lessons and let me tell you that it was one of the best basses I have ever played... not that i have played that many
    Jake732 wrote: the P in arctic white looks stunning. i would definetly get it instead of any other bass in its price range. And im going to.
    I think it looks better in red.