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razor5cl

Anyone in London got a Fender Aerodyne Jazz Bass I could try out?

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I've got a slightly odd request here, mods please feel free to delete or move as appropriate.

 

So I've been playing bass for nearly two years now and I'd like to finally upgrade from my cheap Ibanez Talman bass that I started out on. I've got my eye dead set on a Fender Aerodyne Jazz, it just looks like the one for me. 

 

However I live in London and all the ones I've seen for sale are a fair trek away - I'm reluctant to drive a few hours to play one only to find I don't really like it or it's not for me. 

 

Do any kind Basschatters in London have an Aerodyne that I could maybe come and try out for a bit? I'll make it worth your while in beers!

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Aerodynes get a rough press and its undeserved in my opinion. In fact there are two second hand Aerodynes at Bass Direct at the moment which is one of the reasons I’m organising a trip up there soon so I can try them out. I used to own one but sold it on here, one of the basses I regret selling. They are light, look good and sound excellent in my humble opinion... Damn I wish I hadn’t sold it!

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Just now, Frank Blank said:

Aerodynes get a rough press and its undeserved in my opinion. In fact there are two second hand Aerodynes at Bass Direct at the moment which is one of the reasons I’m organising a trip up there soon so I can try them out. I used to own one but sold it on here, one of the basses I regret selling. They are light, look good and sound excellent in my humble opinion... Damn I wish I hadn’t sold it!

I actually had my eye on those Aerodynes! Specifically the more expensive one without the finish cracks. I saw you're doing a trip up there and I'd love to go but I think I'm not gonna be around or have the money for a little while, so have at it!

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I like the look of them. Tried one out in Wunjos alongside several other PJ basses though and it was the worst of the bunch. That’s just one opinion of one bass though, so take it with a pinch of salt!

Definitely worth paying them a visit though, and try out some of the PJ Jaguar basses to compare, now those I liked!

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4 minutes ago, dannybuoy said:

I like the look of them. Tried one out in Wunjos alongside several other PJ basses though and it was the worst of the bunch. That’s just one opinion of one bass though, so take it with a pinch of salt!

Definitely worth paying them a visit though, and try out some of the PJ Jaguar basses to compare, now those I liked!

I'd love to try one for sure, the look just sells it for me. Sleek like a Jazz bass but with the added punch of a P. To be honest if I got one I'd keep it on the P setting most of the time since I prefer that sound, but having the Jazz pickup is great for a certain time and place.

 

I'm surprised because they seem like fantastic basses but they seem to be a bit overlooked, maybe they aren't as good as other P/J options for the price then...

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The only thing that put me off of mine was no fret markers on the board itself, other than that they’re great basses. I did a Duff and put a Seymour Duncan Hot Stack in the bridge, hum-cancelling plus a lot fuller sounding. I’ve recently been thinking about getting one again.....

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6 minutes ago, Lozz196 said:

The only thing that put me off of mine was no fret markers on the board itself, other than that they’re great basses. I did a Duff and put a Seymour Duncan Hot Stack in the bridge, hum-cancelling plus a lot fuller sounding. I’ve recently been thinking about getting one again.....

Sounds great! Does it have fretmarkers on the top of the neck? No fretmarkers on the board looks really clean to me but I was wondering whether it had any at all, since that might be a bit of an issue for me.

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I’m sure it has side markers. I prefer the sleeker look of no dots also, you can’t see them when you’re playing anyway! They are useful in a jam though so it’s easier for others to work out what you’re playing.

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Yes, they do have them on the top, if your eyesight isn’t dreadfully middle-aged, or you don’t play very brightly lit stages you shouldn’t have any problems.

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That's good to hear, I do prefer the sleeker no-dot look on the board, but I do occasionally need the top markers. I'm sure with practice I'll stop needing them entirely though. 

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14 hours ago, razor5cl said:

I actually had my eye on those Aerodynes! Specifically the more expensive one without the finish cracks.

That’s the one I’m going to look at!

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13 hours ago, Lozz196 said:

Yes, they do have them on the top, if your eyesight isn’t dreadfully middle-aged, or you don’t play very brightly lit stages you shouldn’t have any problems.

Even so, do you find that you ever look at the front of the board whilst playing? It would involve arching your neck forward and tilting the bass back, which I'd find pretty difficult. On the bass I have without board inlays, I can't tell the difference when I'm playing it as I can only see the side dots anyway!

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Loved my Aerodyne, wasn’t aware of any bad press - they always just seemed quite overlooked. Jazz neck, PJ and all that gunmetal.. The lightest bass Fender produce too 

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7 minutes ago, Drax said:

Loved my Aerodyne, wasn’t aware of any bad press - they always just seemed quite overlooked. Jazz neck, PJ and all that gunmetal.. The lightest bass Fender produce too 

I'm so excited to try and play one, jazz neck, PJ, all black, and slim neck is literally all my boxes ticked. 

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If you’re going to try out the one in Wunjos, also check out the Duff McKagan basses and the Yamaha BB734A if they have them! Same boxes ticked!

image.jpeg.a6a76b7b4f7e4eb1eb36cdde44efe119.jpeg

 

image.thumb.jpeg.b4735a3d6a2632e7667301f8a22f436b.jpeg

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8 hours ago, dannybuoy said:

If you’re going to try out the one in Wunjos, also check out the Duff McKagan basses and the Yamaha BB734A if they have them! Same boxes ticked!

image.jpeg.a6a76b7b4f7e4eb1eb36cdde44efe119.jpeg

 

image.thumb.jpeg.b4735a3d6a2632e7667301f8a22f436b.jpeg

I saw both of these on their website and my curiosity was duly piqued! I'll be sure to have a play around. 

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21 hours ago, dannybuoy said:

Even so, do you find that you ever look at the front of the board whilst playing? It would involve arching your neck forward and tilting the bass back, which I'd find pretty difficult. On the bass I have without board inlays, I can't tell the difference when I'm playing it as I can only see the side dots anyway!

Every now and then I look at my fretboard, but due to strap length it’s just a cursory nod to the left, no need to angle the bass at all. I find the need to do this more when we’ve got really bright stage lights coming straight into the eyeballs. It’s probably more for reassurance than anything, and it’s also why I switched to maple fretboards as found rosewood ones too difficult to see on such stages.

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interesting @Lozz196  - not heard of that as a reason for using maple boards before  

I’m generally always blank dark/rosewood fboards, definitely had a few sketchy moments where I can’t see the side dots.. 

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28 minutes ago, Drax said:

interesting @Lozz196  - not heard of that as a reason for using maple boards before  

I’m generally always blank dark/rosewood fboards, definitely had a few sketchy moments where I can’t see the side dots.. 

I remember seeing a thread (I think on BC) about side dots, where a few guys had added glow in the dark stickers (small round dots) over the side dots to overcome this problem. 

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4 minutes ago, DoubleOhStephan said:

I remember seeing a thread (I think on BC) about side dots, where a few guys had added glow in the dark stickers (small round dots) over the side dots to overcome this problem. 

This is quite a cool way of doing it, I've also seen really expensive custom jobs where people get LEDs put in, looks very flash and a bit chintzy but cool nontheless.

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Alright, so today I finally had a chance to pop into Wunjo and try out one of these bad boys.

The Aerodyne really looked the part in the flesh, sleek and smooth, and the body shape was really nice and comfortable. It felt alright to play, however the thin neck wasn't the most comfortable for my hands. I was actually almost disappointed with how it sounded, the P pickup sounded OK but had no real guts to it and the J pickup just sounded weak to my ears.

The man in there also gave me a Nate Mendel P bass to play around with, that one felt quite nice to play but something about the finish on the back of the neck just didn't agree with me. Also the sound of the P pickup was really nice however it wasn't really capable of getting any other tones - which is what I'd expect from a P bass to be honest.

However on the recommendation of @dannybuoy I also tried out the Yamaha BB734 and that one was just perfect, the Goldilocks bass for me if you will. The neck was a bit chunkier and it just felt really nice in the hand, playing it was really comfortable and the body shape was a little more substantial than the Aerodyne which made it sit really nicely on the leg. It was also satisfyingly heavy - felt nice when sitting for a short period but not sure how that translates to standing up on a two hour rehearsal. For me what swung it was the sound of the Yamaha, the electronics were really nice and both P and J pickup were singing when I played it. The active EQ was fun to play around with and you can coax some nice sounds out of it, and to top it all off it has an active/passive switch so you can just play it with passive P/J like the Aerodyne.

I'm really surprised since I was dead set on that Aerodyne but in the flesh it just didn't stack up to the Yamaha.

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Just shows doesn’t it, what the hands and ears decide on should trump what the eyes have thought looks alright. On a similar vein I tried out one of the lower range Musicman Stingrays at the weekend, no idea which as they’re flitting from one model to another and I can’t keep up, but back in track it looked great but I thought it felt and sounded awful.

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