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Fender Tony Franklin Fretless Precision Bass 3-Color Sunburst

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The Tony Franklin Fretless Precision Bass guitar is built with input from the bassist who has played with the Firm, Whitesnake, David Gilmour, and ma...Click To Read More About This Product

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  • Tony Franklin Fretless Precision Bass Black

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  • Tony Franklin Fretless Precision Bass 3-Color Sunburst

    $1,69999.00

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OVERVIEW

Designed by the session great himself!

The Tony Franklin Fretless Precision Bass guitar is built with input from the bassist who has played with the Firm, Whitesnake, David Gilmour, and many others.

It has an alder body and a modern C-shaped maple neck with an unfinished, unfretted ebony fingerboard with side dot position markers. That trademark growl comes from an American Series Precision Bass neck pickup and a Tony Franklin signature Jazz Bass bridge pickup with hex screw lugs and bar ceramic magnets. Other features include vintage tuning machines with a Hipshot Bass Xtender Drop D tuning key on the "E" string to get way down low, and three-way switching for maximum tonal choices.

FEATURES
  • Alder body
  • Modern C-shaped maple neck
  • Unfinished, unfretted ebony fingerboard
  • Side dot position marker
  • American Series Precision Bass neck pickup
  • Tony Franklin signature Jazz Bass bridge pickup with hex screw lugs and bar ceramic magnets
  • Vintage tuning machines
  • Hipshot Bass Xtender Drop D tuning key on the "E" string
  • Three-way switching for maximum tonal choices

Own a fretless with massive tone and showtime looks. Click or call now!

Reviews
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Review Snapshot

by PowerReviews
FenderTony Franklin Fretless Precision Bass
 
4.6

(based on 15 reviews)

Ratings Distribution

  • 5 Stars

     

    (12)

  • 4 Stars

     

    (1)

  • 3 Stars

     

    (1)

  • 2 Stars

     

    (1)

  • 1 Stars

     

    (0)

83%

of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

Pros

  • Fun to play (5)
  • Good tone (5)
  • Good feel (4)

Cons

No Cons

Best Uses

  • Jamming (4)
  • Practicing (4)
  • Recording (4)
    • Reviewer Profile:
    • Experienced (5)

Most Liked Positive Review

 

Definately Worth it

Ive owned, sold, traded, and purchased several fretless (and fretted) basses. At the time I purchased this (from Musicians Friend) I did not currently have a fretless bass. Now that...Read complete review

Ive owned, sold, traded, and purchased several fretless (and fretted) basses. At the time I purchased this (from Musicians Friend) I did not currently have a fretless bass. Now that I've owned and played this Tony Franklin model for several months I can honestly say its easily the finest fretless you can buy for well under $2K. If money weren't a concern, I would have undoubtably re-purchased a Pedulla MVP Buzz bass (about the sickest fretless bass ever made).
I had no idea who Tony Franklin was when I bought this, but I knew I wanted a quality fretless with an ebony fretboard, no fret lines, and classic-to-professional workmanship.
Before buyin this one I also looked at and played a Godin fretless (very nice), and had just traded in a Carvin LB-50 fretless (not what I needed it to be).

Between the Carvin, the Godin, and this Fender Custom shop fretless,..the Fender was easily the better purchase, the better bass,..and the sweetest looking. As mentioned in reviews above, it is neck heavy,..but thats easily solved by shortening you strap (just get used to playing it higher on your body than you other bass,..its gonna be different than your main axe and you should expect that of any bass,..they are all different).

The case it came with is exceptional for a stock case,..and the sunburst finish is just outstanding! I put a set of medium gauge DR Sunbeams on this, and it sounds epic. Sure, the nickel strings make minute marks on the finger board, but so what,..they leave no serious impact thats detrimental,...(and if you actually wear into the neck that badly then you're playing like a monster and its time to have your bass worked on,..consider that a badge of honor :-)

Its the sweetest fretless for the money. The next step up is a boutique custom fretless. If you can't spend more than 2K on a fretless,..get this one. If you can afford more,..def go with a Pedulla Buzz Bass,..(Bar-none the finest fretless ever made,..but this Fender Custom is an excellent, even supreme, second choice to that).

VS

Most Liked Negative Review

 

Disappointed in Fender

I've been playing for 40 years and have come to know what to expect from a bass. Have had this bass for 10 days. I agree in general with the other reviews here -...Read complete review

I've been playing for 40 years and have come to know what to expect from a bass. Have had this bass for 10 days. I agree in general with the other reviews here - this bass is nice to play, it has a very good feel. However, the issues so far are:
1) the G string has a dead spot around the 6th-7th 'fret' area (C#-D)
2) the D string has a dead harmonic at the 5th 'fret' area (G)
3) the E string saddle unscrews itself. After 3 hours of playing the E string was buzzing on the fretboard. After examining the instrument, I found that the saddle was down as far as it could go. A considerable change from the original setup condition that it arrived in.

If this was a lesser Squire model, I could understand issues 1+2. I've never had or seen a bass with issue 3 and it's not acceptable at any level.

I'll be contacting Fender about these issues next. With the understanding that the street price for this bass is $1700, my question is: How much do you have to pay for great bass?

Reviewed by 15 customers

Displaying reviews 1-15

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(11 of 11 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Simply Amazing.

By JWW-Ycu-o

from Grand Rapids, MI

Comments about Fender Tony Franklin Fretless Precision Bass:

I've been playing semi-pro for over 30 years, and my go-to basses have been Rickenbackers, but the stable holds some Fender and Gibson instruments, as well. Never been a big fretless player, but picked this up on a whim and it is my new workhorse. Honestly, the best-sounding bass I've ever played. The craftsmanship is Fender Custom Shop caliber, and the range of tones this beauty produces covers anything I might want to play, from rock to jazz to pit orchestras for musical theater. I picked up my Rick the other day and it felt like playing with Duplos after having experienced Legos. I honestly can't imagine myself using any other bass ever again. I love it THAT much.

(8 of 8 customers found this review helpful)

 
2.0

Disappointed in Fender

By Mark bass

from Syracuse, NY

About Me Experienced

See all my reviews

Ask me a question

Verified Reviewer

Pros

  • Good Feel
  • Good Tone

Cons

  • Flat Sound
  • Poor Pick Up
  • Poor Quality Craftsmanship

Best Uses

    Comments about Fender Tony Franklin Fretless Precision Bass:

    I've been playing for 40 years and have come to know what to expect from a bass. Have had this bass for 10 days. I agree in general with the other reviews here - this bass is nice to play, it has a very good feel. However, the issues so far are:
    1) the G string has a dead spot around the 6th-7th 'fret' area (C#-D)
    2) the D string has a dead harmonic at the 5th 'fret' area (G)
    3) the E string saddle unscrews itself. After 3 hours of playing the E string was buzzing on the fretboard. After examining the instrument, I found that the saddle was down as far as it could go. A considerable change from the original setup condition that it arrived in.

    If this was a lesser Squire model, I could understand issues 1+2. I've never had or seen a bass with issue 3 and it's not acceptable at any level.

    I'll be contacting Fender about these issues next. With the understanding that the street price for this bass is $1700, my question is: How much do you have to pay for great bass?

    (7 of 7 customers found this review helpful)

     
    5.0

    Sweet Fretless

    By RevGreg

    from Farmington, NM.

    See all my reviews

    Comments about Fender Tony Franklin Fretless Precision Bass:

    A very playable fretless bass with classic Fender tone. Switch it to the bridge Jazz pickup & plug the bass into a Cry Baby wah & see what happens. Play it with both pickups & it is full & bright. Play it on the neck pickup & you have the classic P-Bass tone. This thing is smooth & has a lot of punch. I LOVE IT!!!

    (7 of 8 customers found this review helpful)

     
    5.0

    A Fretless For Rock Players

    By BassHowLowCanUgo

    from Jersey

    See all my reviews

    Comments about Fender Tony Franklin Fretless Precision Bass:

    This is my first fretless I have the black on black just like Tony's orginal. I am a Rock/Pop/Reggae player and I'm partial to P-basses. The ebony board is essential for rock playing because you can use roundwound strings and dig in really deep. It has all the growl and dirt of any fretted P but man or man does it grind hard.

    (6 of 11 customers found this review helpful)

     
    5.0

    Not bad

    By RG-OPQ2E

    from Eastern USA

    See all my reviews

    Comments about Fender Tony Franklin Fretless Precision Bass:

    Very heavy neck dives all the time. Center of gravity is located on the neck beyond the area of the body. Ebony still shows wear from round wounds fairly quickly. Probably the best you can do, however. Flats might be cool on it and the range of tones is nice. Good overall workmanship for Fender but the value drops with the neck. This is, unfortunately, the only unlined Fender bass currently in production. I may have to make my own from parts to get it right.

    (5 of 5 customers found this review helpful)

     
    5.0

    Simply Beautiful

    By Eric-aeEp1

    from acton ont.

    Comments about Fender Tony Franklin Fretless Precision Bass:

    Just awsome. The bass plays like a dream and the growl is just sweet. I don't think I can ever go back to frets after playing this... I highly recommend it to anyone who is considering a fretless, there's nothing better.

    (5 of 5 customers found this review helpful)

     
    5.0

    Tonyrific Fretless Bass

    By 5stringer

    from Omaha, Ne.

    See all my reviews

    Comments about Fender Tony Franklin Fretless Precision Bass:

    This is easily the best fretless bass that I have ever played. The electronics and ebony fretboard are great additions to the P-Bass. The Hip shot D-tuner is awesome.

    (5 of 10 customers found this review helpful)

     
    3.0

    There's better for cheaper

    By Rev. Jake

    from D.C.

    Comments about Fender Tony Franklin Fretless Precision Bass:

    The neck on this instrument is not very responsive. The range of tones is unusual, and better than a fretless P-Bass, but not as good my fretless jazz. The drop D works fine, but I doubt I'd use it. Too expensive for what you get.

    (5 of 5 customers found this review helpful)

     
    4.0

    Great Fretless

    By raygunriot

    from Las Vegas, NV

    See all my reviews

    Comments about Fender Tony Franklin Fretless Precision Bass:

    I sat and played one of these and was really impressed! If you like fenders, and are in the market for a fretless, this should be on your list of try-outs. The neck and fretboard felt like butter. I'm still thinking about the experience. My only setback is the price.

    (4 of 4 customers found this review helpful)

     
    5.0

    Definately Worth it

    By jave brown

    from Maine

    About Me Professional Musician

    See all my reviews

    Pros

    • Fun To Play
    • Good Tone

    Cons

      Best Uses

      • Jamming
      • Practicing
      • Recording

      Comments about Fender Tony Franklin Fretless Precision Bass:

      Ive owned, sold, traded, and purchased several fretless (and fretted) basses. At the time I purchased this (from Musicians Friend) I did not currently have a fretless bass. Now that I've owned and played this Tony Franklin model for several months I can honestly say its easily the finest fretless you can buy for well under $2K. If money weren't a concern, I would have undoubtably re-purchased a Pedulla MVP Buzz bass (about the sickest fretless bass ever made).
      I had no idea who Tony Franklin was when I bought this, but I knew I wanted a quality fretless with an ebony fretboard, no fret lines, and classic-to-professional workmanship.
      Before buyin this one I also looked at and played a Godin fretless (very nice), and had just traded in a Carvin LB-50 fretless (not what I needed it to be).

      Between the Carvin, the Godin, and this Fender Custom shop fretless,..the Fender was easily the better purchase, the better bass,..and the sweetest looking. As mentioned in reviews above, it is neck heavy,..but thats easily solved by shortening you strap (just get used to playing it higher on your body than you other bass,..its gonna be different than your main axe and you should expect that of any bass,..they are all different).

      The case it came with is exceptional for a stock case,..and the sunburst finish is just outstanding! I put a set of medium gauge DR Sunbeams on this, and it sounds epic. Sure, the nickel strings make minute marks on the finger board, but so what,..they leave no serious impact thats detrimental,...(and if you actually wear into the neck that badly then you're playing like a monster and its time to have your bass worked on,..consider that a badge of honor :-)

      Its the sweetest fretless for the money. The next step up is a boutique custom fretless. If you can't spend more than 2K on a fretless,..get this one. If you can afford more,..def go with a Pedulla Buzz Bass,..(Bar-none the finest fretless ever made,..but this Fender Custom is an excellent, even supreme, second choice to that).

      (4 of 4 customers found this review helpful)

       
      5.0

      Thanks to Fender and Tony Franklin

      By HYGYEI

      from Fredericksburg, Va

      Comments about Fender Tony Franklin Fretless Precision Bass:

      This bass plays incredibly smooth right out the box.The variety of tone combonations through use of tone knob and pick-up selection are unmatched. I own several precisions, I think they are getting lonely.

       
      5.0

      Best bass I own

      By Ron in FL

      from Jupiter, FL

      About Me Experienced

      Pros

      • Fun To Play
      • Good Tone

      Cons

        Best Uses

        • Jamming
        • Practicing
        • Recording

        Comments about Fender Tony Franklin Fretless Precision Bass:

        I've gone through several basses over the years and always wanted this bass but it was on the high side of my price range. Eventually I caved in and bought it and I'm glad I did. Great look, feel and sound. The combo p and j pickups give it great versatility. Solid as a rock with no blemishes, weak spots or workmanship issues. It is on the heavier side because it's solid wood. The ebonite fretboard is slick and smooth and will not scratch like wood does. It has a thick sound, you can get it to growl or you can ease back and get jazzy. I've learned that American made is the was to go on instruments if you want the best, and I highly recommend the Tony Franklin model.

         
        5.0

        stick your throbbing hot knife in the butter

        By vollkat

        from minneapolis, mn

        About Me Experienced

        Pros

        • Fun To Play
        • Good Feel
        • Good Pick Up
        • Good Tone
        • Solid Electronics

        Cons

          Best Uses

          • Jamming

          Comments about Fender Tony Franklin Fretless Precision Bass:

          if you have any commercial motivations or want to play someone else's stuff the just way they like it. This probably isn't the bass for you. You should probably stick with a bass by numbers (frets). If you want to explore the caves of your own mind thru the tones only a bass can, This is the tool. I think its actually cheap! get yourself a 15 or 20% coupon. No sales tax if your outta state.Use a airlines or cashback credit card. Plus a great case.. Again, a great value....spelunk thyself

           
          5.0

          Greatest Bass I've Ever Touched

          By RitzCracka

          from Low Town, Gallifrey

          About Me Experienced

          Verified Buyer

          Pros

          • Fun To Play
          • Good Feel
          • Good Pick Up
          • Good Tone
          • Solid Electronics

          Cons

            Best Uses

            • Jamming
            • Practicing
            • Recording
            • Rock Concerts
            • Small Venues

            Comments about Fender Tony Franklin Fretless Precision Bass:

            This bass sounds so good that, honestly, I don't ever want to go back to playing fretted basses again. I was worried that there might be a "neck dive" problem but there isn't one. If there is a complaint, it's that the factory set up is terrible...but then again a) that's what I expected from a "big name" maker and b) had planned on getting it re-set to my preferences anyway. (...IMHO, anyone who buys an instrument that costs over a grand is going to want it "personalized" so there you have it).

             
            5.0

            great product and fast shipping

            By thecrimsonking55

            from Port Haywood, VA

            About Me Experienced

            See all my reviews

            Pros

            • Beautiful Construction
            • Fun To Play
            • Good Feel

            Cons

            • Fret Buzz

            Best Uses

            • Practicing
            • Recording

            Comments about Fender Tony Franklin Fretless Precision Bass:

            The bass is a joy to play and after a little setup the buzzing ceased

            Displaying reviews 1-15

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