jazzmaster...

Discussion in 'Squier Offset Guitars' started by chester22, Feb 12, 2018.

  1. otisblove

    otisblove Squier-Meister

    Age:
    43
    371
    Aug 19, 2016
    Chicago
    I played a J. Mascis Jazzmaster a couple days ago at Guitar Center while I waited for them to look over some stuff I was trading in and it felt and sounded great.

    I can’t imagine how the Fender American Professional model high up on the wall for $1200 more could sound or play any better. If I had any money right now I would have taken it home.
     
  2. so1om

    so1om Dr. Squier

    Age:
    50
    Feb 10, 2010
    Chicago
    My brother gives me a subscription to Vintage Guitar for my birthday every year. I like the product reviews, the pictures, some of the artists. Eddie Ball who is an expert on Gretsch sometimes contributes there. Completely accurate in his research and work. There are a few other writers who are good. BUT....

    This is why I dislike magazine -nearly all of them. I happened across the Jazzmaster issue from a year or two ago. It starts out "Leo Fender's ill-conceived...."

    What?

    It may have missed the mark with his intended market, but.. the guitar is laid out very well, one of the smoothest vibratos, lovely range of tones, comfort with the innovative body design....

    "ill-conceived"?
     
    ElRey67, VealCutlet, Caddy and 2 others like this.
  3. Caddy

    Caddy Dr. Squier

    Age:
    70
    Nov 29, 2010
    Indiana
    I'm with you 100% on that! The whole thing just works, trem, bridge, pickups, body shape. I have no idea what people must be doing while playing to be having problems with the bridge or trem. Been playing them since 1965 and never had a problem with either. Not on my 1964 Jazzmaster or my VM Jazzmaster.
     
  4. grizmit

    grizmit Squier-holic

    Jan 25, 2015
    I think most of us chiming in here are clearly Jazzmaster fans. But just to help inform the OP, the offsets clearly have their critics which point to the unique bridge/saddle design as a drawback. And if you don't have the guitar set up properly, their argument is not invalid. It can be infuriating. So it's worth finding someone who knows what they're doing, or using some resourcefulness and initiative to learn how and to get it right on your own. It's really not that difficult to figure out and the "trouble" is worth it.

    The other criticism that often comes with the design, is that the bridge offers less sustain than say a hardtail, TOM, etc. But again, fans of the offset stock bridge prefer it that way. That's part of the unique tone characteristics and playability.

    Of course, there are bridge mods and other tools to help increase sustain if that's your preference, but it begins to change the "intended" tone characteristics of the guitar. YMMV.

    But that's another beautiful thing about Leo's designs. He wanted us to be able to explore our options and customize. So you can do that, or be happy with Leo's suggested version. Just try not to be scared away by those that don't fully understand how it's put together. It's a brilliant design IMHO.
     
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  5. BorderRadio

    BorderRadio Squier-holic

    Age:
    38
    Oct 5, 2014
    Gilbert, AZ
    Eddie Ball is the man on Gretsch, have a few of his books. I just got into this magazine this weekend funny enough, all the other rags just don't cut it anymore, not as much as this one does. Seemed to have more quality to the content, but I can't really stand the collector vibe running through it.

    The collector vibe is probably why editorial staff reinforce negatives about certain guitar models, either consciously or sub-consciously. Must justify why people should pay 30k for a vintage 1950s Telecaster while only 8k for a vintage early 60s Jazzmaster. Lame, you bet, but the upshot is that late 60s JM may always be the affordable alternative, even as X'ers age and Boomers head out to the Western Lands.
     
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  6. VealCutlet

    VealCutlet Squier-Meister

    335
    Aug 9, 2011
    Brookyn, NYC
    I don't understand the "collector mentality." There was an Antiques Roadshow episode where a guy had (I think) a Sunburst 196os JM that he bought brand new. Beautiful. The specialist/expert asked him "why would you buy this and not a Strat?" and went on to say that if he had bought that year's Strat it would be worth 3x as much as the JM.
     
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  7. grizmit

    grizmit Squier-holic

    Jan 25, 2015
    This vintage value talk reminds reminds me of last night's final jeopardy question. Shout it out if you know the answer...

    "A 2007 headline said after being ridiculed since the 1950s, it “takes its victory lap” & noted the auction of one for $184,000"
     
    VealCutlet likes this.
  8. novamax

    novamax Squier-Meister

    347
    Aug 18, 2015
    Key features for me are:

    The third bridge design is copied from hollow-bodies. It creates a tone with less sustain, higher attack, resulting in more bop-iness, and with more overtones, and overall more stabile pitch / less funky pitch agility.

    The vibrato system is low-range/ high-control, too, compared to a Strat that can do dive-bombs.

    The two circuits are designed for one multi-purpose guitar in a small combo (having to switch frequently-reliably between background and lead).

    The bridge, when setup correctly, solved many problems and allowed for intonation, radius, action, and string spacing adjustments second to hardly any other guitar of that time.

    Pickups and other wiring see the other posts above.

    It is build to be the universal one multi-purpose tool of a Jazz professional who knows what he's doing.

    However, Jazz musicians had their traditional go-to tools with traditional looks and dedicated setup for Jazz. So one might say, it might have been too much ahead of its time... But the lead sound was perfect for a reverb-drenched dedicated lead instrument in vintage instrumental rock bands (aka surf). And the folks later (grunge, then alternative), happy to get an under-hyped pro grade guitar for a 100 bucks in a pawn shop, didn't want to learn and fiddle with all the options, so it was modified often (One might call it downgraded...) for dummie-proof useability.
     
    Last edited: Feb 13, 2018
  9. BorderRadio

    BorderRadio Squier-holic

    Age:
    38
    Oct 5, 2014
    Gilbert, AZ
    I should of quoted your whole post for agreement but this^^ extra +1
     
    novamax likes this.
  10. grizmit

    grizmit Squier-holic

    Jan 25, 2015
    Almost forgot until I saw Antigua's post...

    It's "What is the Edsel?" for those of you playing at home.
     
    so1om likes this.
  11. Ralph124C41

    Ralph124C41 Squier-holic

    Feb 10, 2016
    All this talk has just reintensified my hope to add a Squier VM JM as the final guitar in my collection. Btw, my local shop has a used Fender JM in a darker sonic blue (or maybe a faded daphne blue) priced at about $1,100. Great guitar.
     
    grizmit likes this.
  12. so1om

    so1om Dr. Squier

    Age:
    50
    Feb 10, 2010
    Chicago
    Edsels were great cars and reliable. Sadly car buyers wanted small and compact. Edsels came out around the same time as the Jazzmaster.

    CO-INK-O-DINK????
     
    grizmit likes this.
  13. Caddy

    Caddy Dr. Squier

    Age:
    70
    Nov 29, 2010
    Indiana
    I have one of each of the VM offsets, Jazzmaster, Jaguar and Mustang. All great guitars and so well made, feeling and sounding that I can't imagine how there could be much to gain with the higher priced Fender models of them. Oh, that's right, I would get the Fender headstock logo! ;)

    I did buy new vintage RI Fender pickups for both the Jazzmaster and Jag, but they were only abut $75 a set. Still leaves me far, far below the price of the Fenders.
     
    Last edited: Feb 15, 2018
    VealCutlet likes this.