Talk:Fender Precision Bass

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A comment[edit]

I'd like to point out that for such a revolutionary instrument, one just as revolutionary as the Strat or Tele, it gets rather short-changed here. Bassists please edit this. Zoso

It's a dual problem:

  • 1)Fewer bassists than guitarists.
  • 2)A less interesting history than the Strat. I mean, once the updates came in, that was about it. Revolutionary, no doubt, but no one played it with their teeth.

Still, it's taking shape pretty well. Deltabeignet 23:11, 17 May 2005 (UTC)

In a way the few updates to the Precision are due to the the fact that Leo got it right the first time around. The alder body, stiff maple neck and punchy pickups pretty much were all that was needed for the instrument to be an unqualified success. (talk) 17:21, 21 November 2007 (UTC)Crash Pad Dad 11/21/2007

I removed the reference to Ampegs being the preferred bass of musicians. That seems very opinionated, and I know a good many bassists who prefer other brands such as GK. -LoL

P Bass inspired by Stratocaster, or the other way?[edit]

this article mentions the Precision Bass being modeled after the Stratocaster guitar; the Stratocaster guitar mentions it being modelled on the Precision Bass - should one of these articles should be changed? I wouldn't know which one, otherwise I'd do it myself. - j.

The P Bass was designed by Leo Fender, and was the basis for the design of the Stratocaster. This is documented in numerable books, one of which I have at home. I'll go through it this coming weekend just to verify before I make a change to the main page Jhayes94 21:42, 1 March 2006 (UTC)

I read the article more closely, and no where does it say the P Bass design is based on the stratocaster, it only says the stratocaster was an influence for design changes. I'll look into this a bit more. Jhayes94 21:47, 1 March 2006 (UTC)

After some research, there's no reason to change any of the information in either article.Jhayes94 16:24, 21 March 2006 (UTC)

Early Paul Tutmarc, Audiovox basses[edit]

The claims made here about the earlier electric basses are fascinating, but IMO it's just the sort of thing that needs a cited source. The one external link is to a forum site home page, not a great deal of help. Andrewa 22:00, 17 March 2006 (UTC)

The Experience Music Project (EMP) in Seattle has one of these electric basses, and Peter Blecha the former chief curator at the EMP, is reported to have found another that predates the one on display at the EMP. A photo from an advertisement printed in a 1937 of Paul H. Tutmarc (1896–1972), holding lap steel guitar and 16-fret, 30"-scale Audiovox Model 736 Bass Fiddle in the background can be found here I used to have a photo of the one on display at the EMP, but cannot find it right now. Ozbass 11:51, 23 November 2006 (UTC)

Actually, this Swiss (?) German language site has a number of good images of the Model #736 as well as a scan of the advertisement. A neat design feature is that the headstock is a miniature version of the body. Ozbass 12:10, 23 November 2006 (UTC)

Bass terminology[edit]

The classical instrument heretofore referred to as the "double bass" is the "Bass Viol". It is also called a "Contrabass", since in the range of classical instruments the Cello is also a bass instrument, maybe baritone in voice, but in Chamber is the bass instrument. Contrabass means "lower yet." "Stand up bass, or upright bass" are familiar terms which became used with the onset of bass guitars which were a smaller instrument capable of playing Contrabass frequencies, that is E42, from a hand-held or lap position. I am a P Bass player of 41 years. Magi Media 06:00, 25 March 2006 (UTC)Magi Media.

Please check the manual and tags that came with your P Bass. If it is a genuine Fender or other reputable brand, the term used is electric bass. After a few years on woodwind, I started playing bass 36 years ago, and have owned 6 electric basses (including two Fender basses I still have) as well as some double basses. I have never owned an instrument manufactured as, or labelled as a "bass guitar". Ozbass 13:14, 4 December 2006 (UTC)

Fretted 'Precision' nature of the P Bass.[edit]

I feel that the Precision Bass article should mention that one of the reasons Leo thought the P Bass would be marketable was that the fretted bass guitar would be easy for guitar players to use, potentially doubling their gigging capacity. The fact that the instrument had frets would allow guitarists to play it in tune.

The name "Precision Bass" was chosen to help convey the idea that someone not trained as a bassist could play the instrument in tune with 'precision'.

Fasthurricane 16:47, 27 September 2006 (UTC)

Please back up your statements with a reference to avoid POV (Point of View) novel historical interpretations. As a former professional bassist who started out at a time when electric bass players were also referred to as "Fender bassists" I have never heard your version of the origin of the name and its marketing rationale for targeting guitarists.

The following quote is from the official History of Fender® Musical Instruments Corporation.

"That same year, (1951) Fender introduced a revolutionary new invention—the Precision Bass (..which..) had frets so that it could be played with “precision,” and it could be amplified, thus liberating bassists from unwieldy and increasingly difficult-to-hear acoustic basses."

No mention of Leo making it easy for guitarists - it was all about bass players.

I have heard elsewhere that recordings of double basses played with poor intonation sounded awful, as did putting pick-ups on acoustic guitars that did not have precise fret positioning.

It should also be noted that contrary to their hype, the precision bass was not so "revolutionary" and definitely not a "new invention" as Tutmarc (Audiovox) had already designed and marketed a solid body electric fretted bass played horizontally circa 1936. See links above Ozbass 13:33, 23 November 2006 (UTC)

"Most players tend to replace the pickups with Seymour Duncans."

Really? Most bass players replace the stock pickups in their p basses with Seymour Duncans? Could we get a citation on that?

Fender Wikiproject Proposal[edit]

I have proposed a Wikiproject for articles relating to Fender. If you are interested, please add you name here. Izzy007 Talk 21:30, 3 September 2007 (UTC)


Can we get a list of well known musicians who play Fender Precision Basses such as Mike Dirnt from Green Day and Roger Waters of Pink Floyd... etc etc? Just an idea. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 22:12, 25 February 2008 (UTC)


The picture of the P Bass with the jackson pollock is blatant plug and should be deleted. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 00:47, 5 May 2008 (UTC)

Patent sketch[edit]

If that really is a patent sketch for the P Bass, then why does it not match the original design of the P Bass? As I've noted before on the Jazz Bass article, it indeed is a patent sketch of a Jazz Bass. (talk) 23:15, 31 July 2008 (UTC)

Precision Lite[edit]

I came here hoping for some info on my precision model, which seems to have somewhat vanished off the face of the earth, certainly the internet. Has anybody got anything on the 'Precision Lite'? I bought this model in the early 90's but it seems to have disappeared pretty quickly. No info at Fender themselves. Would love to find out some more info about it. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 00:30, 11 December 2009 (UTC)

split coil vs. humbucker[edit]

This article describes the pickup as a split coil humbucker. The article on humbucker lists the split coil as another way of reducing noise. So should this article be edited to simply state the pickup is split? When I think of humbuckers, I think of the twin coil configuration, as made notable by Gibson, not a split coil configuration. Wschart (talk) 21:56, 29 January 2010 (UTC)

I agree. The split P element is not a humbucker, nor is the jazz style element referenced in the American Deluxe mentioned in the article. Angeloh (talk) 21:37, 27 December 2010 (UTC)

Notable Players[edit]

There seem to be far too many players in this section. Are they notable people who once played a P-bass, or are they notable for their use of the P-bass? This list should probably focus on the second group. Perhaps this section should simply contain players who have a signature model P-bass, with the link to the more complete list for those who want more depth. Bakkster Man (talk) 19:45, 11 May 2010 (UTC)

The artists that seem to have signature models are: Pino Palladino [1], Steve Harris, Tony Franklin, Duff McKagan, Mark Hoppus, Mike Dirnt, Sting[2], and Pete Wentz [3]. That's probably a good start for trimming things down. Perhaps add a few more prolific players who played a precision bass nearly exclusively, but keep the list on this page relatively short. Bakkster Man (talk) 20:03, 11 May 2010 (UTC)
There is a List of Precision Bass players where a lot of the folks listed here should be moved there, if they are not there already. Einar aka Carptrash (talk) 20:10, 11 May 2010 (UTC)
I have culled the list as I suggested. I expect there may be several (fewer than 5) additional players who are known for their use of the Precision and are prolific enough to include in this section. Can someone fill this in, as I'm more of a Jazz bass guy? ;) Bakkster Man (talk) 21:39, 11 May 2010 (UTC)


Perhaps someone with more historical knowledge than I can add something about the history of the tuners. "Vintage" style tuners turn in the opposite direction of modern tuners to have the same effect. Current reissues of older style basses have these vintage style tuners. Having played bass for years using modern-style tuners that turn in the same direction as guitar tuners, I was a bit boggled the first time I encountered vintage-style tuners. I heard somewhere that the originals were intended to mimic the function of upright bass tuners and the modern tuners are intended to function like guitar tuners. I have no proof of that. I don't know when the change ttook place. I know that reissues of 1957 P-basses have the older style tuners.

Mcknigs (talk) 15:04, 15 April 2011 (UTC)

Bridge and Pickup Covers?[edit]

I came to this page looking for information on Bridge and Pickup Covers that are so common on older P-Basses. Seems like a section should be added about them and their purpose. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 04:37, 2 June 2012 (UTC)

External links modified[edit]

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Merger proposal[edit]

Formal request has been received to merge the article Fender '51 Precision Bass into Fender Precision Bass; dated: July 2018. Proposer's Rationale: The '51 Precision Bass article is too short and doesn't hold enough information to warrant having its own article. All the information held in the '51 Precision Bass article can be safely moved into the Fender Precision Bass article. Pinging proposer @DanTheGamer2003: Discuss here. Richard3120 (talk) 21:05, 15 July 2018 (UTC)

To be honest, there's nothing much to merge. The photo appears to be of an original 1951 bass, not a reissue. The Sting bass is not a version of the 51 reissue, it's a copy of a 56 P. Suggest deleting the page as per WP:IAR. Catfish Jim and the soapdish 13:04, 16 July 2018 (UTC)

Orphaned references in Fender Precision Bass[edit]

I check pages listed in Category:Pages with incorrect ref formatting to try to fix reference errors. One of the things I do is look for content for orphaned references in wikilinked articles. I have found content for some of Fender Precision Bass's orphans, the problem is that I found more than one version. I can't determine which (if any) is correct for this article, so I am asking for a sentient editor to look it over and copy the correct ref content into this article.

Reference named "Bass Player":

  • From Peter Cetera: Jisi, Chris (December 2007). "The Inspiration". Bass Player. pp. 36–47. Archived from the original on December 1, 2007. Retrieved February 26, 2017. Unknown parameter |dead-url= ignored (|url-status= suggested) (help); Italic or bold markup not allowed in: |website= (help)
  • From Fender Jaguar Bass: Leigh, Bill; Herrera, Jonathan; Olwell, Greg (April 2006). "Fender Jaguar Bass & Pino Palladino Precision Bass". Bass Player: Online Edition. Bass Player. Retrieved August 11, 2008.

I apologize if any of the above are effectively identical; I am just a simple computer program, so I can't determine whether minor differences are significant or not. AnomieBOT 12:07, 30 March 2019 (UTC)