Updated: January 25, 2020 by Richard Cole
Fender’s Jazz bass guitar is by far one of the most popular bass guitars in history. It has remained largely the same ever since it was first introduced, with only limited changes to the overall concept.
Leo Fender later perfected this design but world still sees Jazz bass as the pinnacle of class. If you ask any bass player out there what are some of the most important elements of any bass guitar, the neck is probably going to come up in most cases. There’s a good reason for this. Unlike it is the case with electric guitars, the neck on a bass guitar has to be near perfect because of the thickness of the strings.
Fender’s Jazz bass is known for having one of the most playable necks on the market. Fender Jazz neck is also something that has evolved over time. While the original designs are still available on some Fender bass guitars, you will see more modern examples in much wider use.
Before Jazz bass ever appeared, Fender was having great success with their Precision series. This bass guitar was heavily inspired by the Telecaster, which also applied to the neck. While it was certainly playable, Precision neck was rather wide at the nut.
When Jazz bass was being developed, Leo fender wanted to try something new. Instead of just taking the neck from the Precision series and putting it on the new model, he designed a completely new neck. The new model had a narrower nut, and the profile of the neck was more rounded. This later became known as the C shape profile.
These two features are about the only thing that has remained the same until this very day. Everything else underwent a series of changes, including the radius of the neck. Vintage models came with a 12 inch radius, while the more modern ones have a 9.5 inch radius.
The standard Jazz neck today has 20 medium Jumbo frets on a 34 inch long scale. The choice of fretboards comes down to either Rosewood or Maple, which is standard Fender selection. Within the core of the neck you will find a Posi-Flex graphite support rods, which extend the flexibility of this design.
The most recent change that Fender introduced in 2016 is a hybrid profile that goes from C to D shape.
There is still your regular 5 bolt neck plate and everything else we are used to, but the profile is different. It’s also worth noting that there are 24 fret versions of the neck on select Jazz bass models.
These are definitely not as common, but some players tend to prefer the additional two frets.
Fender Jazz bass is undoubtedly one of the most popular bass guitars at the moment. The neck we just talked about has a lot to do with that. Fender is one of the rare companies who offer lifetime warranty on their necks.
With that said, the way Fender neck is constructed the chances of it failing are marginal at best. Any deformation that might occur is easily corrected using the truss rod. However, in case you need to replace the neck, Fender has got you completely covered.
Whether or not you like Fender Jazz bass, you need to appreciate the ingenuity of this bass guitar. Not only is it one of the most classic bass models known to man, but it also inspired many of the bass guitars we can find on the market today. This is especially true for the Fender Bass neck.
You will see a variation of this design being used on a whole bunch of different bass guitars. It is simply too good, and other brands would rather stick with something that has been proven to work than experiment with new designs.
Lastly, Fender Jazz Bass Neck is not a cheap piece of wood. These cost more than some decent bass guitars. However, the price is well worth the investment. The type of performance and playing comfort this neck offers is rarely found elsewhere, no matter how close of a copy you find. Nothing really comes close to an original Fender.