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IJE

Help me mod this bargain bass!

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So this bass came up on marketplace today, a 1994 special edition 'Ltd 83' Encore P bass copy.

I know these are generally at the bottom of the food chain but at £20 and 15 min down the road it was a no brainer so I'm taking it on as a project bass. It's actually turned out better than I expected, it's got loads of bite and I'm quite fond of the obvious mileage wear it has accumulated. I'm not sure what's special about it per se apart from the gold hardware and generally impressive build quality,  but I'm guessing this may have been a response to Fender's limited edition Strats in 1993 that featured gold hardware. 

 Sound clips attached (raw & processed) for whoever's intrigued. 

I've already got a '73 P with flats that covers that area for me but I've been wanting a second P I can have rounds on for a slightly more modern sound so I've decided to mod this one and see if I can get it to occupy that role! 

Past the obvious maintenance (string change, setup etc) and upgrading pups I'm wondering what mods would have the most impact on improving the sound and playability? I'm also looking for recommendations for which pickups to upgrade to. I'd like a sound that has a little bump in the low mids but retains a nice smooth high end too. I've got Fralin over-wounds in one of my other Jazz basses which I quite like, but I know there are many other options out there. 

 

P.S.

If anyone owns one of these or has some information about them I'd love to hear that!

 

Thanks :) 

 

   

 

  

Encore 2.jpeg

Encore 1.jpeg

Encore P Processed.wav Encore P Raw.wav

Edited by IJE
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That's a really nice looking body (once you get the sticker/artwork removed. Got your money's worth with that alone!

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25 minutes ago, Mykesbass said:

That's a really nice looking body (once you get the sticker/artwork removed. Got your money's worth with that alone!

Sadly that mark is going nowhere..it's been carved into the wood. Looks like some kind of unfinished Ram on a hill - I'll just learn to love him! 

 

Screenshot 2020-11-15 at 17.10.33.png

Edited by IJE
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Bear in mind that no matter what you do to it, it will never be worth a fortune. 

If you're keeping the bass do whatever you to improve the playability.

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9 minutes ago, TheGreek said:

Bear in mind that no matter what you do to it, it will never be worth a fortune. 

If you're keeping the bass do whatever you to improve the playability.

Thanks, I'm not really looking to up the value - just to get it to the best place I can in terms of playability / tone 

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1 hour ago, IJE said:

Sadly that mark is going nowhere..it's been carved into the wood. Looks like some kind of unfinished Ram on a hill - I'll just learn to love him! 

 

Screenshot 2020-11-15 at 17.10.33.png

Looks like the result of a weird genetic experiment using DNA from a ram, a giraffe and Mickey Mouse. :) 

I also used an Encore bass as the start for a mod.  I had a med. scale  Hondo II neck spliced into a short scale double cut Encore body and it is a corker!  Ki0gon loom and an Entwistle PBXN pickup.  Yummy.

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3 minutes ago, SpondonBassed said:

I've got one of those in mine too.

Be rude not to.

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15 minutes ago, Paul S said:

 Ki0gon loom and an Entwistle PBXN pickup.  Yummy.

This is all the OP requires, along with a set of D'Addario pro steels.

Modern, punchy sounding P bass, lots of top end and plenty of beef. 

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19 minutes ago, Paul S said:

I also used an Encore bass as the start for a mod.  I had a med. scale  Hondo II neck spliced into a short scale double cut Encore body and it is a corker!  Ki0gon loom and an Entwistle PBXN pickup.  Yummy.

Just found the pic I was looking for.  Bit out of focus but you get the idea. :)  A 3.1kg rawk machine 

honcore.jpg

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38 minutes ago, Paul S said:

Looks like the result of a weird genetic experiment using DNA from a ram, a giraffe and Mickey Mouse. :) 

I also used an Encore bass as the start for a mod.  I had a med. scale  Hondo II neck spliced into a short scale double cut Encore body and it is a corker!  Ki0gon loom and an Entwistle PBXN pickup.  Yummy.

Thanks for the replies! Beastly looking bass there. 

 

Never heard of the Entwistle pups - that's a phenomenal price too. I had my eye on the Fender CS 62 ones - how do they match up? 

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Im a big fan of Entwistle Neos.  They can hold their heads high among company costing 3 or 4 times the price.

If Alnico tones are more your thing Wilkinson are worth a look too.

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1 hour ago, IJE said:

Never heard of the Entwistle pups - that's a phenomenal price too. I had my eye on the Fender CS 62 ones - how do they match up? 

They are different beasts in a lot of ways.  Both give a Precision bass tone, but with different flavours.  The Entwistle Neo is a more aggressive, harder sound.  But roll off the tone and it still does vintage - but perhaps not so lush and rich.  Similar to my ears to a Seymour Duncan quarterpounder, which was industry standard replacement for rock for some while but a good deal more expensive.  I did actually put a CS '62 set in that Honcore bass to replace the PBXN that I initially fitted.  'Give it a treat' I thought.   Tried it, put the PBXN back in again.  For the job I needed - a slightly edgier rockier tone for a blues rock trio - the PBXN was a better fit. 

For me that is one of the absolute joys of fiddling about, trying different pickups, which ones match the sound in my head. etc.  A Ki0gon loom has a screw terminal fixing so you don't even need to worry about soldering.

Speaking of a better fit - one thing with the PBXN is the pole pieces are very long so you'll need to make sure you have a fairly generous cavity,  So to speak.

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15 hours ago, Paul S said:

the pole pieces are very long so you'll need to make sure you have a fairly generous cavity,  So to speak.

image.png.a91dcef4cdf009bf5aaace619b1d948c.png

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Nice texture and colour wood, sort of tea colour...

For me, the artwork would have to go... sanded and blended in to the forearm contour.

Brushed Brass Scratch plate as a sort of nod to the gold hardware... I don't do tort.

If the Pickups are lacking... what ever turns up on sale here to keep the cost down. SD Quarter Pounder on here a week or so back, Think there is a Squire P, which might be a bit better if cheap.

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Thanks for the replies everyone! I’m tempted to try the 62’ CS pups so will keep updating. I think the ram will stay too. 
 

does anyone actually know the story of these basses? From what I gather this was a run that was made to exact Fender specs as an attempt to create higher end instruments than their usual output. I’ve contacted JHS to try and shed some light

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