Fender is a company generally associated with what is for quite some time branded as classic sound, classic vibe and classic looks, and we have such -classic- instruments as the Stratocaster and Telecaster to thank for that. But Fender is sometimes just pure class, just look at this cool beast known as the Starcaster!
This bass is pure old-school vibe that offers various neat sound patterns to be utilized in clever ways in a vast array of genres and musical styles. A lot of things about this instrument are unconventional, whether it’s the looks, the sound or the components, but they are all high-quality stuff. But we’re getting a bit ahead of ourselves here, more details in our Fender Starcaster bass review below.
The bass utilizes a laminated wood semi-hollow body, a nice and a “C” shaped 95. Inch radius chunky maple neck to give you a massive feel while jamming away, and a maple fingerboard with a total of 22 medium jumbo frets, a set of sleek black dot inlays and the instantly recognizable curvaceous Starcaster headstock.
In the electronic department, the instrument features a set of two Fender Wide Range humbucker pickups with a three way toggle switch, along with four skirted “amp” style knobs to control volume and tone for each of the pickups.
Also included in the mix is a three ply black pick guard, and an AdjustoMatic bridge with an anchored tailpiece. The bass is available in three various color gloss finishes – Natural, Aged Cherry Burst, and Black.
The sound is certainly not conventional, but far from avant-garde as well. The bass packs a rich set of middle frequencies and a healthy load of load end, while still retaining a well-rounded sound with enough brightness. It’s a gritty thing if you want it that way, but it can also be very flat and toned down if that’s your style.
The punch we are talking about isn’t the classic type, but more of an overdrive fueled one, meaning that the punching tone is wider and more raw than a classic middles-packed punch of a Fender Jazz bass. This allows unique expression, but still enough versatility for the bass to be adjusted to fit the classic standards and deliver the basic groove and lines.
What we like
We like the unconventional aspect very much. The possibilities brought by this instrument are obviously much different that the things brought by a standard jazz bass or precision bass. We need the experimental vibe and we need instruments like this on the market. So overall, we like the sound very much, and we also like that the components of this instrument are very reliable and the complete package is more than durable and capable of taking a punch or two.
As noted, we also like the looks. It’s a cool combination of old-school jazz charm from way back in the day and a modern headstock to deliver a bad boy vibe. Finally, the price is fair and square, you definitely get the quality to justify the price tag, if not more.
What we don’t like
As noted, it’s not a bass for everyone, and the lack of drastic versatility might be a turn-off for some customers. The thing you must be aware of is that this bass requires a well developed musical personality and character. Not recommended for beginners at all, but wholeheartedly recommended for proper customers. Test it out – if it’s for you, buy now; if not, don’t buy now, it’s as simple as that.
Fender Starcaster Review – Conclusion
And we’ve reached the conclusion. To sum up our thoughts, we have to say that this is a great bass, but also the type of product you have to test out to see if it fits your needs.
It’s not a beginners’ instrument you can buy and then endlessly adjust to new interests, it is what it is, and if that suits you once you test it out, you’ve found your match. Give it a spit, you are not likely to regret it. A very solid thumbs up from here.