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NBD Charvel Pro-mod San Dimas IV PJ


BillyBass
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I bought a 5 string version a few months ago and, impressed by the fiver, I Thought I would get the 4 string version.

 

I've been after an active PJ, with a J pup at the bridge just as usable on its own as the P pup.  @Old Horse Murphy suggested one of these Charvels and I've followed his advice

 

 

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These look so tasty! They really picked some gorgeous finishes for them, that pair really well with the cream pickups and roasted maple neck. Simply lovely! I'm a sucker for reverse PJ too. Slight GAS :lol:

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46 minutes ago, PaulThePlug said:

Luverly neck 'n fretboard colour...

Dimazio's in 70's Cream?

they are DiMarzios, not sure of the vintage of the cream colour

 

33 minutes ago, LeftyJ said:

These look so tasty! They really picked some gorgeous finishes for them, that pair really well with the cream pickups and roasted maple neck. Simply lovely! I'm a sucker for reverse PJ too. Slight GAS :lol:

well here's a pic with the bass next to its big sister

 

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6 minutes ago, Old Horse Murphy said:

I'm really glad it worked out for you 👍

I think its worked out for me, I had about 30 minutes with it earlier today and so far all boxes seem ticked .  I was after the 'perfect PJ'. My BB wasn't that and you and one or two others suggested getting an active PJ.  You suggested this one in particular (in a thread in September 21).  

 

I couldn't stretch to Fender Ultra prices (and stay out of the dog house) so it was this or a Player Plus P bass.  The Charvel has a few advantages, or things I preferred: It was £200 cheaper, it has luminlay side dots with a black surround, which is the most visible dot on a roasted maple neck, they are lighter, and the P pup is a reverse P, which I'm hoping means less woolly E string and less'pingy' G string.

 

I love the look, and tomorrow, when I have a few hours to get to know it I'm hoping my first impressions will be confirmed.

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11 hours ago, MacDaddy said:

What's the neck like? Is it close to a P or have Charvel kept to their slim shred profile?

No, it's not your standard P bass neck.  More like a Jazz neck.  The neck really is lovely to play, its slim, fast, has a lovely colour and the fretboard edges are rolled off so it really feels nice in your hand.

 

The bass isn't a P bass with a J pup added, it is more of a hybrid:  P body, J neck, Both P and J pups (though the P is reversed).  With the active controls the J pup can do way more than just adding a bit of treble to the P pup.  So far, for home practice, I like the P pup soloed in passive and the J pup soloed with a 50% boost to the mids.  I don't think I'll use the pups blended.

 

One of the bands I'm in does mainly punk stuff.  I'm going to try the p pup soloed for pick stuff and the J pup soloed for fingers.

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I played the same red Jazz V in PMT the other day - it was gorgeous!!   Really tempted by one.

 

Did some digging when I got home and different websites seem to list the scale lengths differently - some 34 and some 35.  @BillyBass are you able to confirm which it is?  Thanks!

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Posted (edited)
7 hours ago, MattW said:

I played the same red Jazz V in PMT the other day - it was gorgeous!!   Really tempted by one.

 

Did some digging when I got home and different websites seem to list the scale lengths differently - some 34 and some 35.  @BillyBass are you able to confirm which it is?  Thanks!

34"

 

It's my first fiver so I can't compare it to others but so far, the things I don't like are: 

There is some neck dive, I have a good strap so its not really problematic

The B string lacks the definition of the other strings.  I've replaced the stock 125 with a 135 and this has improved things but I can see why a longer scale would be of interest to people.

Mine weighs about 4.5 kg.  Not uncomfortable but lighter would be better.

 

What I do like is: how it looks and plays; the neck with its rolled fretboard edge feels lovely in my hand, the black surrounded luminlay dots are perfect for roasted maple necks and I get some great tones out of it.  Overall, I'm still very pleased with it; I believe I would have to spend considerably more to improve things.

 

I live in Barnet; I'm not sure which side of Essex you live in but if you are nearer to Waltham Abbey than Southend, you can come over and try mine if you like.

Edited by BillyBass
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8 hours ago, BillyBass said:

34"

 

It's my first fiver so I can't compare it to others but so far, the things I don't like are: 

There is some neck dive, I have a good strap so its not really problematic

The B string lacks the definition of the other strings.  I've replaced the stock 125 with a 135 and this has improved things but I can see why a longer scale would be of interest to people.

Mine weighs about 4.5 kg.  Not uncomfortable but lighter would be better.

 

What I do like is: how it looks and plays; the neck with its rolled fretboard edge feels lovely in my hand, the black surrounded luminlay dots are perfect for roasted maple necks and I get some great tones out of it.  Overall, I'm still very pleased with it; I believe I would have to spend considerably more to improve things.

 

I live in Barnet; I'm not sure which side of Essex you live in but if you are nearer to Waltham Abbey than Southend, you can come over and try mine if you like.

 

Thanks for the confirmation - 34 inch is definitely my preference, so the fact that it is makes it very appealing!     I have a Maruszczyk Jake 5p on the way next week, but the Charvel may well be next inline!   Really appreciate the offer to try yours - may well take you up on that once I have the funds available 😁

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5 hours ago, horrorshowbass said:

So much want for a green one

I was of two minds about the 4 string; metallic blue or metallic lime green!?  I went for blue but the green does look really nice.  Even the darker metallic green of the 5 string goes really well with the roasted maple neck and gold hardware.  They are just lovely looking basses.  

 

4 hours ago, MattW said:

 

Thanks for the confirmation - 34 inch is definitely my preference, so the fact that it is makes it very appealing!     I have a Maruszczyk Jake 5p on the way next week, but the Charvel may well be next inline!   Really appreciate the offer to try yours - may well take you up on that once I have the funds available 😁

I'm not going anywhere and neither are the basses, so my invitation is an open one, just pm me if you want to come over.

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I was considering one of these in a 5 ..I did watch a YouTube review and they really slagged the electrics poor wiring unusable eq ect ..??which did put me off 

really fancied the lambo green 🙂..wondering if I should reconsider….can always send it back ..

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9 minutes ago, patrikmarky said:

I was considering one of these in a 5 ..I did watch a YouTube review and they really slagged the electrics poor wiring unusable eq ect ..??which did put me off 

really fancied the lambo green 🙂..wondering if I should reconsider….can always send it back ..


I personally found absolutely nothing wrong with the preamp. Granted I'm not a "hifi" preamp aficionado, but it was plenty musical enough and I managed to get a nice array of "passive on steroids" sounds from it. 

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Posted (edited)
3 hours ago, patrikmarky said:

I was considering one of these in a 5 ..I did watch a YouTube review and they really slagged the electrics poor wiring unusable eq ect ..??which did put me off 

really fancied the lambo green 🙂..wondering if I should reconsider….can always send it back ..

I got my 5 string from Andertons, it was their demo model so I'm sure someone had a good look at it before it was put up on the rack.  It was fine and I've had no issues with it.

 

The 4 string I ordered online from PMT.  The first one I got had a faulty pre amp; it made a potentially cone damaging screech when the mids were pushed to about 50%.  It also had a wonky volume pot and no centre détente on the bass.  I sent it back and PMT sent out another, which was fine, no defects whatsoever.

 

So, the quality control issues Mr 'Low end Lobster' flagged up in his videos have not gone away, but you can always send it back if you get a dodgy one.  In my opinion, it's worth the risk.

 

A German bloke gets a great Geddy Lee tone out of his 4 string PJ on Youtube:

 

 

 

Edited by BillyBass
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3 hours ago, Old Horse Murphy said:


I personally found absolutely nothing wrong with the preamp. Granted I'm not a "hifi" preamp aficionado, but it was plenty musical enough and I managed to get a nice array of "passive on steroids" sounds from it. 

I think a lot of this is subjective.  I watch a YouTube clip of a bass video and the demo guy slags it off and so do loads of people in comments underneath, and I think...sounded ok to me, is there something wrong with my ears?

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