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gareth

P Basses - they all sound the same!

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4 minutes ago, ubit said:

I have three. They all sound quite different.

I mean, I agree that generically they have a similar sound but rounds against flats, different pick ups etc. make a difference.

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1 hour ago, ubit said:

I mean, I agree that generically they have a similar sound but rounds against flats, different pick ups etc. make a difference.

Like cats. They all look like cats, but they don’t all look the same.😉

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I seemed, in the main, to prefer the sound of the ceramic pickup equipped ones (although one of the alnicos sounded very similar). Of course, we're to to deal with YouTube video compression and there are probably more differences in the flesh, but still a good comparison nonetheless. Interestingly the soloed neck P/Js held up well and weren't all that different (if at all) to the P equipped only, which flys in the face of some the opinions I've read in other threads. As was pointed out earlier, in a mix you'd be hard pressed to hear the difference.

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14 hours ago, chris_b said:

The one good thing that is probably common between all P basses is the authority and solidity of the notes.

We quite often disagree on P basses @chris_b - I'm afraid I can't agree on this point as they can sound woolly, indistinct and unfocused. For instance, it's more likely than not that significant ghost noting will not be audible (especially live). An example of this was Robbie Williams' Radio 2 concert, which I watched on television earlier in the week - you could see the bass player playing notes which you simply couldn't hear, although the generality was ok. I think this is why Leo and Co continued to produce enhanced versions in the Jazz, Stingray and L1000. The design dates back to 1957 after all. 

I think this thread should be retitled 'Sound Similar' rather than 'Sound The Same'. As has been stated, a Precision can be a versatile bass the sound of which is heavily influenced by playing technique, plucking position, muting styles - and also the tone control. My favourite sound on them is tone off or almost off and plucked heavily - between the pick up and bridge - for jazz closer to the neck. The best P bass sounds I ever heard live were played by black players (eg Kool and the Gang, Billy Preston Band (Louis Johnson), Robert Popwell) in the early 70s who appeared to use the tone off sound but played aggressively - something which brings the P bass to life if loud enough in the mix - an Acoustic 371 helped. 

I worry about these comparison videos - I think a lot has to do with the interface and also skill of the player. Whilst there's no denying the skill of someone like Scott Devine, would he get the best out of, say a Stingray (which he claims to have not played in the past) than say a Precision? I know I'm not in the same league playing wise but would I get the best out of an Alembic? I doubt it. 

FWIW I've played lots of P basses - I've noticed some are more woody sounding with better tone and resonance. The best (IMHO) I've played was a Fender 60th Anniversary Precision. Sounded great (and noticeably better back to back with a then current Mexican and American standard). The differences may be relatively marginal but anyone who thinks a £100 or even £500 bass is better than a £2000 Bass is probably overlooking a lot of differences, including depth of sound and resonance. 

 

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Loads of good points above, thanks - what we also have to account for I am afraid are the fingers of the player - yes it’s consistent across a particular player in a comparison video, but for overall depth of sound it makes a huge difference.

Had a mate round recently who is a far far superior player than me, leagues ahead - we played the same bass same settings, my mrs noticed the difference in sound of my spring rolls compared to his pipe cleaner fingers - he sounded better but I ‘sounded’ better if you get my drift

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8 hours ago, drTStingray said:

 I think this is why Leo and Co continued to produce enhanced versions in the Jazz, Stingray and L1000. The design dates back to 1957 after all. 

He perfected it all with the L1000. 😍

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Just now, LukeFRC said:

He perfected it all with the L1000. 😍

Shame he finished the headstock off in the dark 😂

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4 minutes ago, dave_bass5 said:

Shame he finished the headstock off in the dark 😂

nah - Leo got that right too... mine looks a bit like this: 

90e726_ec088f47d28a43858c4d5d66582df598~

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3 minutes ago, LukeFRC said:

nah - Leo got that right too... mine looks a bit like this: 

90e726_ec088f47d28a43858c4d5d66582df598~

Vindicated 🙂

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On 27/12/2019 at 19:01, gareth said:

Only just seen this 

It’s a shame that the basses used don’t include some USA fenders!

I would like to see included

Fullerton Reissue 57 and 62 p basses

Original p basses - 1953, 1955, 1957, 1962, 1966, 1968, 1970, 1972, 1975, 1977, 1979, 1980, 1982 

I am willing to bet a heap of money that - they ALL sound pretty much the same!

Can you tell the difference?

Does it really justify the difference in price - £100 to £10000+ ???

 

Dunno.

I had 4 Precision style basses simultaneously, and they all sounded most definitely "Precision", but also most definitely different from each other, not just at home alone, but in a band context.

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