Other Guitars

Fender American Professional Jazzmaster

1

I finally had a chance to play an American Professional Jazzmaster last night. I loved it! If I had the money I would have bought it on the spot. The neck feels great. The strings are pretty close to the edge especially the low E but it is a non-issue. It played great. I think it's just another thing people were trying to find wrong with them. The bridge works great with this guitar too. It sounds good acoustically and the strings stayed in the slots. If I had one of these guitars I don't see any reason to swap the bridge. I didn't plug it in but it sounded lively acoustically which I'm of the belief translates to the plugged in sound. If the pickups are a hybrid Jazzmaster / Stratocaster design like I've read I'm sure I would love them too. The guitar felt very familiar to me immediately. The particular guitar I played had the action just a little bit higher than I like it but I noticed these come with the micro-tilt feature on the neck heel. If I ever get one of these I know that I would be able to adjust the neck angle, action and the playability perfectly for me. I also like the simplified controls.

The American Professional Jazzmaster is what I would want to ask the Fender Custom Shop to build for me if it didn't exist.

2

The problem I have with those is the same problem I had with my TVL sig Jazzmaster, i.e. a toggle switch too close to the neck. I was always switching to the rhythm circuit by accident. I solved it with a new pickguard and a slider switch in place of the toggle.

3

I'd love to try one! I would have left the pickup switch where it was on the originals, but otherwise they look pretty cool to me.

4

I agree with both of you regarding the toggle. It's the only thing I would want to change. I would either move it up like this Squier Jazzmaster or keep it on the lower bout.

5

The one I played was setup high as well.

I don't like that it doesn't have the thumbwheels, those are iconic to me. They build these with just the routes necessary, so the upper cavity is just an oval and the lower horn cavity is not there.

I played a Mexican relic, it looked like someone hit it with a bicycle chain, that felt really good.

It took me a while to decide not to get a Jazzmaster, that the tremolo is too twitchy for me and that I don't think a Bigsby is correct on the guitar were the greatest factors.

The best version I thought of was a really Jazzy Jazzmaster, a black Warmoth body (fully routed, in case I changed my mind), tortoise pickguard, a 12" radius ebony neck with no markers, then just the thumbwheel controls and a floating mini-humbucker.

But I would rather have a 6121 like that.

6

Here's the American Professional body.

7

Oh wow, even just moving the switch to the cutaway would involve some pretty dramatic wood work!

8

I’ve also been wanting to try one of these, but haven’t found any locally.

I have a fancy offset that I’m just not loving, so I’m looking at simpler, moderately priced options.

I’m a bit concerned with the pickups in these. Under the hood they look a bit like Strat pickups disguised as Jazzmaster pickups. Not that there’s anything wrong with Strat pickups.

9

I recently did a makeover on one of these for Noel Gallagher. I like that they've addressed the issues with the bridge & the switch (which I like) The neck was pale & pasty which looked wrong ( I re-finned it) I thought it sounded good clean but a bit spikey with overdrive. The shielding was inadequate (professional? hah) causing crackling when the 'guard was touched. Overall a descent guitar.

10

A friend of mine just got a Squier "Deluxe Jazzmaster". Deal of the year, if you don't mind candy apple red and a gold anodized pickguard. (I actually love the look).

It has P90's under the covers and a tune-a-matic bridge, so it's not for offset purists, but it plays great, great fretwork on medium jumbo frets, satin finished neck, and it sounds killer. And they're stupid cheap.

11

Tony, isn't the bridge on the new professional ones pretty much a staytrem style mustang bridge?

12

I have one. I swapped the pickups for Fender '65 Jazzmaster pickups (the "vintage modified" original pickups do indeed look-and sound--like strat pickups), added a Staytrem bridge (the string spacing was also off with the Mustang-ish bridge that came with the guitar). Now it also sports a tort guard from WD, although I don't think I have a picture of it since I made that change. It's a cool guitar, and one of my current favourites.

13

To clarify, when I said "string spacing," I meant that the high and low "E" strings were too close to the edge of the fretboard for my comfort. The bridge that is stock with the guitar is an improvement over the vintage JM bridge, but it is not a Staytrem, which I think is the best offset bridge out there. The Mastery, from a purely cosmetic standpoint, doesn't look "right " to me.

Great blog about this guitar and other offsets is here:

Link

14

Tony, isn't the bridge on the new professional ones pretty much a staytrem style mustang bridge?

– WB

Pretty much Walt. A mustang style (although the string slots are all the same width, not wider for thicker strings) There are nylon bushings that go into the thimbles to stop vibration loosening stuff.

15

A friend of mine just got a Squier "Deluxe Jazzmaster". Deal of the year, if you don't mind candy apple red and a gold anodized pickguard. (I actually love the look).

It has P90's under the covers and a tune-a-matic bridge, so it's not for offset purists, but it plays great, great fretwork on medium jumbo frets, satin finished neck, and it sounds killer. And they're stupid cheap.

– WB

Funny, they happened to have a similar one locally, but it had a hardtail. It was a good looking guitar, aside from the odd look of no vibrato. I like the gold pickguard, but I'm probably going to do something more like this.

16

The Squier "Deluxe Jazzmasters" are the same as the J. Mascis JM except in red. They may not appeal to the JM "purists" but they are very nice guitars and really big bang for the buck.

17

Just played one at my local GC. Loved the neck, even with a slightly flatter radius than I prefer. Nice big frets, and the bridge is solid. Didn’t plug it in, but it was surprisingly light. Maple board does look weird, but it felt nice.

18

G&L has gotten into the Jazzmaster act with their Doheney model:

Hope they come out with a model in the Tribute line soon.

19

Meanest, most blooziest guitar I ever heard was a '63 Jazzmaster that out-Gibsoned any Les Paul. Those original pickups did not sound at all strat-ish.

20

I just got this 2012 AVRI 1965 model in Aztec Gold. It's the first guitar I ever bought just because of the colour! Ha!Very pleased indeed .It's got just the right amount of beefy jangle for a good range of styles.


Register Sign in to join the conversation