Best Jazzmaster Available Right NOW



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Re: Best Jazzmaster Available Right NOW

Postby Hyphen Nation » Tue Jul 26, 2016 1:44 am

If you can save a little more, the thin skins at Wildwood are probably the most tempting things around. Some of the blems have been nicely discounted to sub $2k, too, for what is essentially a custom shop build, with limited edition colors. I keep looking at them myself and I have a lot of offsets already...
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Re: Best Jazzmaster Available Right NOW

Postby megamaeng » Tue Jul 26, 2016 8:02 am

I could save more for the right guitar and I'll definitely look into the thin skin some more. I think the question for me, and by the looks of the interwebs the question for a lot of folks, is whether it's worth the extra cash for the AVRI or thin skins over the TVL's. I'm not necessarily looking for the jazzmaster with the best value, but don't want to feel like I'm overpaying just for labels on the headstock.

Opinions seem to be divided between the jump up in price from the TVL's to the US jazzmasters. Resale value does factor into my decision so there's that.
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Re: Best Jazzmaster Available Right NOW

Postby megamaeng » Tue Jul 26, 2016 12:14 pm

I'm sure this is a question better suited elsewhere and I can probably research it out but does anyone have an opinion on modding and upgrading my squier j mascis that I do love the feel of, vs building one out of parts? In other words, is it better to just enjoy the squier and start fresh if I want to upgrade or is it a great platform for modifications?
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Re: Best Jazzmaster Available Right NOW

Postby popvulture » Tue Jul 26, 2016 12:15 pm

The one I just bought is one of the thin skins from Wildwood. Very worth it, IMO—I've owned CS guitars and the AV65s feel nearly indistinguishable from the NOSs. Top quality build, excellent sounding pickups (beautifully round neck pickup, cutting bridge that's a little hotter/beefier than a strat), big neck. The neck is what really makes or breaks a guitar for me, and the '65 is a close to perfect size for someone with big hands. If you're looking for a thinner, "faster" neck (fat necks feel faster to me, so YMMV), these might not be for you.

I think the TVLs are absolutely fantastic, and I almost bought one instead of the AV65—for me it just came down to a cosmetic thing, in that I'm not super crazy about block inlays on JMs. Picky, but it pushed me over the line. That said, the pickups are the same as in the 65, and the neck feels very similar if not the same. The finish is poly I think, which makes it feel a little heavier, but negligibly so. One great thing is that the bridge is already upgraded to a Mustang, so that's a plus. I mentioned in another thread that while at CME a month or so ago, one of the guys mentioned that they're apparently getting TVLs in all black, so that might be something you wanna hold out for. Sounds pretty rad to me.

The 60s lacquer models are pretty cool, aside from having a pretty aggressively tinted neck. It looks fine if you ask me, but it may not be your cup of tea. Those models are a little closer to the previous '62 AVRIs.
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Re: Best Jazzmaster Available Right NOW

Postby popvulture » Tue Jul 26, 2016 12:19 pm

And to answer your question about upgrading the Mascis or not, I'd build one from parts over doing that. I think the Mascis is awesome, and it's especially enjoyable considering how great it sounds/plays for the price. As I mentioned in another thread though, for the amount of $ you'd spend upgrading it, you could probably get yourself a pretty sick Partsmaster that's more customized for you.
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Re: Best Jazzmaster Available Right NOW

Postby megamaeng » Tue Jul 26, 2016 12:27 pm

Thanks man!

This is such great info. And I think that the problem is that there are so many good options haha. I mean all the differences between the models you mentioned could be considered plusses and minuses to different people.

Regarding the neck, I really like the one in the squier. Does that mean really my best option is the thin skin or parts since on paper they are the only ones with the same radius? Or which model would you say has the same neck feel as that? I guess I don't know if the j mascis would be considered "fat" or not.
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Re: Best Jazzmaster Available Right NOW

Postby popvulture » Tue Jul 26, 2016 12:40 pm

Hm can't remember what the Mascis neck feels like. Do the specs say it's the same shape as the 65?
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https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JphJfwsUbT4
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Re: Best Jazzmaster Available Right NOW

Postby megamaeng » Tue Jul 26, 2016 1:39 pm

as far as I can tell it seems like the specs are closest to the thin skins which means rosewood 9.5" radius, nut width at 1.675 for JM and 1.65 for thin skin, and "mid 60's C shape". The mascis has a nice satin finish that I like. The TVL and AVRI seem to differ from the thin skin in that it is a 7.25" radius. But same nut width and C shape. I have no idea if that radius makes a big difference. If so, then seems like it has be parts or thin skin for me. Problem is the lack of places for me to try. Maybe I should just enjoy the squier and be blissfully ignorant and just get some new pedals to take my mind off the idea of a new guitar haha.
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Re: Best Jazzmaster Available Right NOW

Postby popvulture » Tue Jul 26, 2016 2:45 pm

Not a bad idea if the Squier's treating you fine! :idk:
neonblack wrote:They say tone is in the hooks

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coldbrightsunlight wrote:Yes I am a soppy pop person at heart I think with noises round the edge

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JphJfwsUbT4
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Re: Best Jazzmaster Available Right NOW

Postby Hyphen Nation » Tue Jul 26, 2016 3:00 pm

I would say leave the Mascis as it is. They are great, ripping, and fun guitars. Different than the Thin Skins, TVL's and other options that are in the market right now, but fun for what they are. I'd rather assemble parts, than modify the squire.

This blemished Thin Skin is super tempting...though I think I prefer the OTM ones they have, more.
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Re: Best Jazzmaster Available Right NOW

Postby repoman » Thu Jul 28, 2016 8:04 am

I bought one of those TVL JMs about 4 months ago used for 850
Really really nice sounding and playing guitar. Built better than my Japanese Gretsch.
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Re: Best Jazzmaster Available Right NOW

Postby megamaeng » Thu Jul 28, 2016 8:51 am

So it seems like the consensus is that the TVL, thin skin, or building your own is the best right now. Tough call, tho budget and time point to TVL for me at the moment. I'm looking for something with a bit more output than my squier. Will the pickups in the TVL give me this or am I barking up the wrong tree regarding that? What would be considered the highest output jazzmaster pickup and would it be a simple swap? I guess I could always go for the Jim Root jazzmaster that I have an unhealthy obsession for haha.
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Re: Best Jazzmaster Available Right NOW

Postby rustywire » Thu Jul 28, 2016 9:43 am

I would very much enjoy owning all 3 Root, Moore, Ranaldo JMs :snax:
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Re: Best Jazzmaster Available Right NOW

Postby popvulture » Thu Jul 28, 2016 10:51 am

megamaeng wrote:So it seems like the consensus is that the TVL, thin skin, or building your own is the best right now. Tough call, tho budget and time point to TVL for me at the moment. I'm looking for something with a bit more output than my squier. Will the pickups in the TVL give me this or am I barking up the wrong tree regarding that? What would be considered the highest output jazzmaster pickup and would it be a simple swap? I guess I could always go for the Jim Root jazzmaster that I have an unhealthy obsession for haha.


I haven't done an A/B comparison, but I think the Mascis pickups are higher output than standard JM pickups—I remember reading that they're actually more like a P90.

But to answer your question, highest output would probably be the BLK TRI Jazzmaster pickups. Lollar also makes a P90 that looks like a JM pickup—at one point I thought about getting one to replace my bridge pickup because I was worried about the output, but once it arrived I totally stopped worrying about it. It's not what you'd call high output, but it's higher than a strat and it cuts very well. If you're playing very heavy stuff though, would prob be worth looking into a replacement.

One other thing—if the colors available for the thin skins don't float your boat, the normal AV65s come in sunburst and white, both of which look great IMO. They're not thin skin, but still nitro, and I'm betting the actual difference in finish thickness is negligible, and certainly not in toanz.
neonblack wrote:They say tone is in the hooks

D.o.S. wrote:I'm pretty sure moderation leads to Mustang Sally.

coldbrightsunlight wrote:Yes I am a soppy pop person at heart I think with noises round the edge

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JphJfwsUbT4
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Re: Best Jazzmaster Available Right NOW

Postby megamaeng » Thu Jul 28, 2016 11:13 am

Thanks again for the great info! I'll def keep an eye out on those BLK TRI pickups when they become available.

Do you guys have an opinion on the seymour duncan Hot or Quarter Pound for Jazzmasters? They don't have to be like emg's but I'd like something hotter than the ones in my j mascis. I'm trying to play some high gain stuff into a tube amp without a boost pedal and can't quite get there with the squier.

I definitely like the gold color of the thin skin, it's just a bit pricey for me, but I also like the white AVRI and could see myself being patient for a used model since they seem to be available more often. I'd be bothered with the blem (prob wouldn't stop looking at it, even after I make scratches of my own haha) so unless a used gold one comes along, i'm looking at full price.

Any opinion about the road worn or 60's lacquer? They both seem to be nitro finishes as well. Any of these that have been mentioned have a smoother satin neck? I can't seem to find this info and I think that may be what I like most about the squier neck. The TVL looks pretty glossy to me on the neck in photos.
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