Fender American Professional II Precision Bass vs JMJ Road Worn Mustang Bass

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Fender American Professional II Precision Bass
Playability
72
Sound
81
Build
75
Value
71
Score
76
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Fender JMJ Road Worn Mustang Bass
VS
Playability
70
Sound
79
Build
74
Value
74
Score
74
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Reasons to Get
Fender American Professional II Precision Bass over JMJ Road Worn Mustang Bass

Frets Height
Taller vs Shorter
Easier to press down strings and bend them
Type of Frets
Narrow Tall vs Medium Jumbo
You won't feel the fretboard when pressing down the strings
Number of Frets
20 vs 19
Allows to reach higher notes
Paint Finish
Poly vs Nitro
Resistant paint that ages well
Scale Length
34'' (863.6mm) vs 30'' (762mm)
Lower action and brighter natural tone

Reasons to Get
Fender JMJ Road Worn Mustang Bass over American Professional II Precision Bass

Release Year
2021 vs 2020
From a more recent year
Type of Frets
Medium Jumbo vs Narrow Tall
You'll feel the fretboard when pressing down the strings
Paint Finish
Nitro vs Poly
Thin finish that creates aging marks faster
Scale Length
30'' (762mm) vs 34'' (863.6mm)
Easier bending, shorter fret separation and warmer natural tone
Avg. Weight
7.75lbs (3.5kgs) vs 8.813lbs (4kgs)
Tends to be lighter
Value Score
74 vs 71
Better price/quality relationship

Other Key Differences
Fender American Professional II Precision Bass vs JMJ Road Worn Mustang Bass

Middle Pickup
Fender V-Mod II Split Single-Coil Precision Bass vs Fender Custom Seymour Duncan Split Single-Coil Mustang Bass
Different Middle Pickup
Nut Material
Bone vs Synthetic Bone
Different Nut Material

Shared Features
Fender American Professional II Precision Bass vs JMJ Road Worn Mustang Bass

Body Wood
Alder
Same Body Wood
Neck Wood
Maple
Same Neck Wood
Fretboard Wood
Rosewood
Same Fretboard Wood
Headstock
4
Same Headstock
Strings
4
Same playing style
Body Type
Solid Body
Feedback free
Switch Positions
0
Same pickups versatility
Volume Knobs
1
Same volume control
Tone Knobs
1
Same tone control
Pickups
S
For twangy sounds and simplicity
Nut Width
1.625'' (41.3mm)
Same string separation at the nut
Bridge
Fixed
Good sustain and needs no set-up
Fretboard Radius
9.5'' (241.3mm)
Same fretboard comfortability
Pickups Power
Passive
Cleaner sound and no battery needed
Neck Profile Type
C
Comfortable neck that works for most people
Neck Joint
Bolt-On
Allows you to detach and swap the neck

Common Strengths

  • High-Quality Nut
  • From a High-Quality-Standards Country
  • Top Pickup Brand
  • Expensive Wood

Common Weaknesses

  • Neck-Through Build
  • Pickup Alter Switch/Knob
  • Weight Relief
  • Retainer Bar
  • High-Quality Frets
  • Compound Radius Fretboard
  • Luminescent Sidedots
  • Strap Lock
  • 21:1 Tuner Ratio
  • Active/Passive Preamp

Table of Contents

Price History Comparison

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Fender JMJ Road Worn Mustang Bass Prices

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Which One is Better?

After going through our comparison algorithm, the results show that the Fender American Professional II Precision Bass is probably the better product overall with its final score of 76 compared to the Fender JMJ Road Worn Mustang Bass's 74 score, although not by a lot.

The Fender American Professional II Precision Bass wins when it comes to sound, playability, build quality. On the other hand, the Fender JMJ Road Worn Mustang Bass has the upper hand when it comes to value for the money.

If you got small hands, none of these instruments will make a big difference when it comes to comfortability.

Which One is Better for Beginners?

If you're looking for your first bass to learn how to play, the Fender JMJ Road Worn Mustang Bass is the better choice.

The Fender JMJ Road Worn Mustang Bass meets 5 out of our 6 criteria items for beginner friendliness, while the Fender American Professional II Precision Bass meets only 4. This takes into account the type of frets, scale length, nut width, bridge type, fretboard radius, and neck profile to determine the easiest combination for new players.

New Player Friendliness

Fender American Professional II Precision Bass
  • Comfortable shape
  • Comfortable fretboard
  • Tall frets
  • Comfortable neck
  • Narrow nut
  • Short scale

New Player Friendliness

Fender JMJ Road Worn Mustang Bass
  • Comfortable shape
  • Comfortable fretboard
  • Tall frets
  • Short scale
  • Comfortable neck
  • Narrow nut

Nevertheless, when it comes to choosing an instrument, you should pick the one more compatible with your personal style. Still, below we'll try you to give you our results as objectively as it's possible to help you decide.

Fender American Professional II Precision Bass Overview

  • From Fender's 2020 American Professional II series
  • Made in United States
  • 4 strings
  • 34"'' scale
  • 9.5" Fretboard Radius
  • Alder body
  • Maple neck
  • Rosewood fretboard
  • Bridge pickup: (/)
  • 1 volume and 1 tone Dome knobs
  • 4-Saddle HiMass Vintage (String-Through-Body or Top-Load) bridge
  • Bass 1963 C Bolt-On neck
  • 20 Narrow Tall frets
  • Fender Lightweight Vintage-Style Keys with Tapered Shafts tuners
  • Weight between 8.688lbs (3.9kgs) and 8.938lbs (4.1kgs)
  • Compare Specs >

Fender JMJ Road Worn Mustang Bass Overview

  • From Fender's 2021 Road Worn series
  • Justin Meldal Johnsen Signature
  • Made in United States
  • 4 strings
  • 30"'' scale
  • 9.5" Fretboard Radius
  • Alder body
  • Maple neck
  • Rosewood fretboard
  • Bridge pickup: (/)
  • 1 volume and 1 tone Bell knobs
  • 4-Saddle Mustang Bass Strings-Through-Body bridge
  • Bass C Shape Bolt-On neck
  • 19 Medium Jumbo frets
  • Hipshot HB7 with “Lollipop” Keys tuners
  • Weight between 7.625lbs (3.5kgs) and 7.875lbs (3.6kgs)
  • Compare Specs >

Sound Quality Comparison

The wood used in an electric guitar or bass is not as important to determine the final tone. However, some people prefer specific wood types, so we'll take a look at those first. Then, we'll take a look at the electronics to determine the versatility and sound quality of each instrument.

Woods Used in Both

Maple wood pattern used for guitar building
Maple
Rosewood wood pattern used for guitar building
Rosewood
Alder wood pattern used for guitar building
Alder

Maple is one of the most popular necks for good reasons. It is a strong wood that is relatively cheap to make and looks beautiful. The highest quality maple is the hardest that comes from North America. Find out more about Maple.

Rosewood is an almost purple-looking wood that is used mainly for fretboards since it's heavy, rare, and expensive. It's sometimes used on acoustic guitar bodies to create stronger warm tones. Find out more about Rosewood.

Alder is the most popular wood that Fender uses in most of their guitars nowadays. Even though they say it's because of its balanced tone with an emphasis in the upper midrange, it probably is because it isn't too expensive, and it's also pretty lightweight—more than Mahogany. Find out more about Alder.

Winner: Tie.

Pickup Configuration

Both pickup configurations are S. A single single-coil pickup is not a configuration commonly found in modern electric guitars because it lacks versatility. But if you only want a guitar that sounds very thin and twangy, this might be good enough.

Pickups Quality

Both come with some of the top pickups on the market. You can't go wrong with either of them. You'll probably never need a pickup upgrade.

Both use Passive pickups. This is what's used for most music genres. They have a regular output and will serve you for both high-gain and clean tones. The alternative (Active pickups) offer a higher output that is mostly used for heavy music.

Preamp Circuit

A preamp in an electric bass functions as an electronic circuit that acts as an interface between the bass's pickups and the amplifier. Its main purpose is to amplify and customize the bass's initial signal before it reaches the amplifier, offering enhanced control over factors like tone, volume, and sound attributes. Preamps typically come equipped with tone adjustments, equalization options, and sometimes built-in effects, empowering bass players to fine-tune their sound to suit their personal preferences and the musical environment.

Both basses have a Passive preamp.

Passive: A bass with a passive preamp lacks an onboard electronic circuit for tone shaping and signal boosting. Instead, it relies solely on passive pickups and basic tone controls, typically consisting of volume and tone knobs. Passive preamps don't require an external power source like batteries, making them low-maintenance and dependable. While they offer a simpler and more straightforward tonal character, passive basses are appreciated for their warm and vintage sound, often favored in genres like classic rock, blues, and funk. They are an excellent choice for musicians who value the simplicity and timeless appeal of their instrument's tone without the need for active electronic components.

Winner: Tie.

Versatility Comparison

Some instruments offer you more ways to explore your creativity than others. Below you'll find how both compare when it comes to versatility.

Switch Options

Both are equal when it comes to the pickup switching option.

Neither of them come with some kind of coil split or pickup mod option. This makes both lacking in terms of versatility.

In this case, both of them lack pickup selector.

When evaluating versatility, we also take into consideration bridge and neck joint type, number of frets, switch options, amount of pickups and more.

Winner: Tie.

Final Sound Quality Scores

Fender American Professional II Precision Bass
Pickups 100
Sustain 75
Versatility 70
Tuning Stability 80
Sound 81
Fender JMJ Road Worn Mustang Bass
Pickups 100
Sustain 65
Versatility 70
Tuning Stability 80
Sound 79

Build Quality Comparison

When it comes to build quality, we like to take into account everything used to build the instrument. This includes materials, hardware and the quality control expected depending on the country where it was built. Let's see how the Fender American Professional II Precision Bass compares to the Fender JMJ Road Worn Mustang Bass.

Country of Origin

The manufacturing country can tell a lot about the build quality of an instrument. Both in this comparison where made in United States.

The United States is considered one of the best electric guitar manufacturers in the world. A guitar made in this country is supposed to have world-class quality control. Nowadays, guitars made in other countries can beat some of the ones made in the US, but most of the time, this country offers the best you can get. Of course, that comes at a price.

Winner: Tie

Nut Material

If you want your bass to stay in tune and sound good, you need a well cut nut. Nut quality can be inconsistent even when comparing two copies of the same model. The best way to make sure you're nut will be well done is by getting a nut made by an expert company like TUSQ or Micarta.

The Fender American Professional II Precision Bass has a Bone nut. It's a type of nut found in high-quality instruments. They sound similar to Ivory since they give a lot of sustain and a bright sound (at least when striking open strings). The only problem they can run into is that you may get a bone piece that simply doesn't sound as well as others because that's just how natural materials are.

On the other hand, the Fender JMJ Road Worn Mustang Bass comes with a Synthetic Bone nut. Bone is the best natural material for guitar nuts. However, its tonal properties can be inconsistent. That's the problem that synthetic bone fixes. This is much better than using a plastic nut because the nut is more slippery—which helps with tuning stability—, and it gives your open strings rich harmonics.

Winner: Tie.

Fret Material

Most fret wire is made of nickel silver. This material eventually wears down after a lot of use and most instruments end up needing a complete fret replacement. However, some expensive models come with stainless steel frets. This is what you should aim for if you can afford it.

Unfortunately, none of them come with stainless steel frets.

Winner: Tie.

Tuners

Both come with regular tuners. The Fender American Professional II Precision Bass's are Fender Lightweight Vintage-Style Keys with Tapered Shafts while the Fender JMJ Road Worn Mustang Bass's are Hipshot HB7 with “Lollipop” Keys

Winner: Tie.

Neck Joint

Contrary to popular belief, the difference in sustain and tone that some neck joints give to a bass is simply unperceivable—if they're all well built. However, some of them do have advantages over the others.

Both have a Bolt-On neck joint. This neck is joined to the body by 4 bolts that you can simply unscrew. This allows you to replace the neck or take it off for travel. It's the most common and cheapest way to build a guitar.

Winner: Tie.

Here is the list of features that were considered when choosing the winner in the Features subcategory:

Strengths & Weaknesses
Fender American Professional II Precision Bass
  • Made in United States
  • Expensive Wood
  • Bone Nut
  • Top Brand Pickups
  • Cheap Fret Wire (NS)
  • No Locking Tuners
  • No Neck-Through Build
  • No Push Knob or Extra Switch Option
  • No Weight Relief
  • No Luminescent Inlay
  • No Active Preamp
  • No Compound Radius Fretboard
  • No 21:1 Tuner Ratio
  • No Retainer Bar
  • No Strap Lock
Strengths & Weaknesses
Fender JMJ Road Worn Mustang Bass
  • Made in United States
  • Expensive Wood
  • Synthetic Bone Nut
  • Top Brand Pickups
  • Cheap Fret Wire (NS)
  • No Locking Tuners
  • No Neck-Through Build
  • No Push Knob or Extra Switch Option
  • No Weight Relief
  • No Luminescent Inlay
  • No Active Preamp
  • No Compound Radius Fretboard
  • No 21:1 Tuner Ratio
  • No Retainer Bar
  • No Strap Lock

Final Build Quality Scores

Fender American Professional II Precision Bass
Quality of materials 66
Features 70
Quality Control 90
Build Quality 75
Fender JMJ Road Worn Mustang Bass
Quality of materials 66
Features 70
Quality Control 85
Build Quality 74

Playability Comparison

Let's now compare their playability. Bear in mind that the instrument will feel different depending on your hand size and play style. That's why you should always test before buying. But if you can't or want a second opinion on it, we can still take a look at each of the important measurements of the instrument for you. This way, we can predict how easy a bass might be to play, or how different it will feel compared to the other.

Remember that, even though the difference might seem small, every inch counts when it comes to feeling of the instrument in your hands. Any variation can completely change how comfortable a bass feels in your hands.

Nut Width

Fender American Professional II Precision Bass Nut Width
Both Guitars Have The Same Nut Width

The nut width will affect the separation between strings at the nut. In this comparison, both have a nut width of 41.3mm (1.625'').

This is considered a wide width for a 4-string bass. It gives your fingers the extra space you need to play without muting accidentally, but this also makes bar chords harder to perform, especially if you have small hands.

Scale Length

Fender American Professional II Precision Bass's Scale Length
Fender American Professional II Precision Bass's Scale Length
Fender JMJ Road Worn Mustang Bass's Scale Length
Fender JMJ Road Worn Mustang Bass's Scale Length

The scale length is one of the things that influences playability the most. This is the distance between the nut and the bridge and will affect everything from low action allowance, difficulty to perform bends, fret separation, and even tone.

The Fender American Professional II Precision Bass has the longest scale: 34". The Fender JMJ Road Worn Mustang Bass is only 30" long. This is a 4'' (101.6mm) scale length difference.

This longer scale means that the strings need more tension to get in tune. This is good if you want to avoid fret buzz, which can happen when the strings are too loose and touch the frets while vibrating. This is especially important when playing in lower tunings. This will also let you reduce the gap between fretboard and strings (low action) to make them easier to press down. However, this higher tension will also make it harder to perform bends and vibratos as the strings will feel stiffer.

This also means that the frets have a longer separation between each other, so this will make it harder for people with smaller hands when playing some chord positions.

Another characteristic of a longer scale is that it makes the bass sound 'snappier' or brighter. This is due to the extra separation between harmonics and overtones produced by the tension. This influences tone more than any other factor (except the pickups).

Lastly, remember that you can also affect the tension of the strings by changing your string gauge. You can use a thicker gauge for more tension and a lighter one for less tension.

Neck Profile

Fender American Professional II Precision Bass Neck Profile
Fender American Professional II Precision Bass's neck profile
Fender JMJ Road Worn Mustang Bass Neck Profile
Fender JMJ Road Worn Mustang Bass's neck profile

No single neck shape is better than others. However, most people tend to prefer a thinner necks because it doesn't get in their way when playing fast and most hand sizes can adapt to it pretty well. However, some people still prefer thicker necks for a better grip, especially if they have big hands.

Both the Fender American Professional II Precision Bass and the Fender JMJ Road Worn Mustang Bass have a C-shaped neck. This is what you'll find in most modern guitars. Most people feel like the thickness of a C neck is simply the less intrusive one for playing fast, while at the same time allowing you to grab the neck easily for resting if you want to.

Fretboard Radius

Fender American Professional II Precision Bass Fingerboard Radius
Both Guitars Have The Same Fretboard Radius

Most bass fretboards are not flat; they usually have a curve or arc across their width. A curved fretboard will make it easier to perform chords without muting strings, while a flatter one will make it easier to play single notes, which is good for bending and soloing in general. The best fretboards have a compound radius that varies across the fingerboard, but they're not common since they take a lot more work to build.

Both the Fender American Professional II Precision Bass and the Fender JMJ Road Worn Mustang Bass have the same fretboard radius of 9.5". This is the most common radius for Stratocaster guitars. It's considered curved when compared to most other models. This allows you to play chords very easily without muting strings accidentally and gives you more space between strings for fingerpicking. However, this curve also gives the guitar less allowance for lower action. If you bend too hard at the high frets, some of your notes might get muted because the curve will make the string fret out.

Hand Size Comfortability

Everyone has a different hand size, and that's why it's recommended to try a bass before buying, even if others tell you that it's comfortable to play. However, we can know whether a bass favors small or large hands just by knowing its exact measurements.

After taking into account the scale length, nut width, neck profile and fretboard radius, we can conclude that both in this comparison favor large hands .

Fender American Professional II Precision Bass:
Big Hands
Small Hands
Fender JMJ Road Worn Mustang Bass:
Big Hands
Small Hands

Fret Size

Fender American Professional II Precision Bass Frets Size
Fender American Professional II Precision Bass's Frets Size
Fender JMJ Road Worn Mustang Bass Frets Size
Fender JMJ Road Worn Mustang Bass's Frets Size

The Fender American Professional II Precision Bass has Narrow Tall frets, which should be taller than the Fender JMJ Road Worn Mustang Bass's Medium Jumbo frets.

Some people prefer taller frets because they result in more sustain since the strings get pressed cleanly without interference from the fretboard. However, if they're too tall—like Jumbo frets—, you might change the pitch of the strings accidentally if you press too hard because you won't be touching the fretboard with your fingers. This is also why some guitarists with a heavy grip prefer smaller frets. They like to feel the fingerboard to avoid pressing down too hard and getting out of pitch.

Final Playability Scores

Fender American Professional II Precision Bass
Bending & Vibrato Ease 75
Chord Playability 70
Solo Playability 70
Playability 72
Fender JMJ Road Worn Mustang Bass
Bending & Vibrato Ease 80
Chord Playability 70
Solo Playability 60
Playability 70

Specs Side-by-Side

Fender American Professional II Precision Bass vs JMJ Road Worn Mustang Bass
General Fender American Professional II Precision Bass JMJ Road Worn Mustang Bass
Brand: Fender Fender
Year: 2020 2021
Configuration: S S
Strings: 4 4
Made in: United States United States
Series: American Professional II Road Worn
Colors: Sunburst, Black, Blue, Green, Silver, Red Black, Blue
Left-Handed Version: Yes No
Body
Type: Solid Body Solid Body
Body Material: Alder Alder
Bridge: 4-Saddle HiMass Vintage (String-Through-Body or Top-Load) 4-Saddle Mustang Bass Strings-Through-Body
Neck
Neck Joint: Bolt-On Bolt-On
Tuners: Fender Lightweight Vintage-Style Keys with Tapered Shafts Hipshot HB7 with “Lollipop” Keys
Fretboard: Rosewood Rosewood
Neck Material: Maple Maple
Decoration: White Dot Aged Pearloid Dots
Scale Size: 34" 30"
Shape: Bass 1963 C Bass C Shape
Frets: 20 Narrow Tall Nickel Silver 19 Medium Jumbo Nickel Silver
Fretboard Radius: 9.5" 9.5"
Nut: Bone Synthetic Bone
Nut Width: 41.3mm (1.625'') 41.3mm (1.625'')
Electronics
Bridge Pickup:
Middle Pickup: Fender V-Mod II Split Single-Coil Precision Bass (Single Coil / Passive) Fender Custom Seymour Duncan Split Single-Coil Mustang Bass (Single Coil / Passive)
Neck Pickup:
Switch: 0 Way 0 Way
Knobs: Dome Bell
Pickup Mods: None None
Volume Controls: 1 1
Tone Controls: 1 1