Sunday, September 28, 2014

1997 Fender JB62-75US Jazz Bass Review


Every bassist needs to keep at least one Jazz Bass around, and today we are looking at my current Fender Jazz. Those that know me are surely tired of hearing me talk about how good Japanese Fenders are, so I will just say that this one meets my high expectations. This is a recently imported crafted in 1997 Japan Fender 62-75US Jazz Bass that came straight to me from Tokyo.

This model code is easy enough to decode: the 62 indicates that this is a 1962 re-issue, the 75 is the original sales price (75,000 Yen) and the US means that this bass shipped from the factory with Fender United States-sourced pickups. This bass looks the part, with a smart 3-tone sunburst finish (poly) over the ash body and a faux tortoise shell guard.

The neck is slim with a pretty rosewood fretboard. The 20 original frets are vintage sized, and there are nice full-sized tuners, not the wrong-looking small base tuners that are found on the 62-58. The logos all look right (except for the contour body one, which is not in the right place) and they even put the extra strap button on the back of the headstock.

They also put the right bridge on this bass, a serrated vintage style unit with the period correct ground strap running from it to the pickup cavity. There are the usual Jazz Bass volume/volume/tone knobs connected to the single coil pickups. No big surprises here.

The overall condition of this instrument is very good, with just normal play wear. The original frets are in good shape and are still level, – the craftsmanship is first rate. The US pickups are a bit beefier, with more output than their Japanese counterparts. What more could you want?

I set it up with roundwounds, and it has a nice medium action, a fast neck, it looks good, and it sounds exactly like a Jazz Bass should. It is not terribly heavy, either, coming in at 9 ½ pounds. You cannot beat the prices of these instruments either, especially if you pick one up overseas. There is nothing on the used market in the US that can even compare at this price point. If you are looking for a solid Jazz Bass, you need to check one of these out if you can find one!


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