Sire V7 vs Fender Player Jazz Bass – Which Is Better?

The Jazz Bass is synonymous with Leo Fender — the man and namesake company that first created the model more than 60 years ago. But there’s a new challenger on the block, with plenty of modern appeal! Can the Sire V7 bass steal any of the limelight?

Cian Hodge

Cian Hodge

What is a Jazz Bass? Well, the legendary Fender Jazz Bass arguably set the standard for ergonomic bass guitar design in 1960 and beyond. It quickly became a viable and equally popular alternative to the Precision Bass, which was released a few years prior in 1951. From its tapered neck to the curvy body and elegant cutaways, the Jazz Bass guitar just oozes class. It’s also supremely versatile, thanks to a flexible dual pickup configuration. Trust us, you’ve heard Jazz Bass players everywhere — recorded on countless blues, rock, metal, folk and jazz records!

Despite its long lifespan, the Fender Jazz Bass has retained pretty much the same specs from over 60 years ago — with only a few minor adjustments made in the years since for certain product series, signature models, etc. So, in what new direction can you take such an all-encompassing and successful design?

Well, bass manufacturers Sire might have something to say about that! They teamed up with former Fender signature artist Marcus Miller to create the V Series. This suave line-up of 4-string, 5-string, fretless and left-handed bass guitars don’t try to hide their origins — but do put a new twist on proceedings. Miller is a renowned composer, producer and multi-instrumentalist — so he knows what makes a good Jazz Bass — and Sire definitely picked the right man to help them through the creative process! For this head-to-head, we’re going to take a look at the Sire V7 bass model in particular, which is closest in price to the popular Fender Player Series Jazz Bass.

What Features Will We Compare?

  • Pickups
  • Electronics
  • Neck & fretboard
  • Design
  • Build quality

Fender Player Jazz Bass

Fender Player Jazz Bass Black

Most bassists know the Fender Jazz Bass specs off by heart, so you could have a pretty good guess at what the Player Series version has to offer! This replaced the venerable Mexican Standard model in 2018 (where it is still made), but comes overhauled with modern updates that include a satin-finished neck and redesigned pickups for improved playability and sonics respectively. The alnico single-coil pickups sound great using either a pick or playing fingerstyle; producing a tight and punchy tone that you could easily use across a spectrum of musical genres.

In essence, this is a real workhorse of a bass. It’s not overflowing with premium features, but it is packing serious Fender tone and feel — all from an affordable instrument to boot. Its predecessor was the benchmark for quality at a modest price point, and the Fender Player Jazz Bass continues the trend. It has the same unmistakable feel, from the Modern “C” Maple neck to the 21 medium jumbo frets, slim 1.5″ nut width and 34″ scale length.

What more can you say about a bona fide legend? It’s a no brainer if you want that classic Fender name on the headstock without spending big bucks. Fender have an excellent reputation for quality control, so you know it’s going to be a well-made and superb-sounding instrument.

Shop Fender Player Jazz Basses

Sire Marcus Miller V7 Bass

Sire V7 Bass Sunburst
At first glance, there aren’t a drastic number of features that set the Sire V7 Marcus Miller apart from a Jazz Bass Fender. They look fairly similar, with the only three major cosmetic differences being block inlays instead of classic dots, neck binding, and a contemporary headstock design.

However, the Sire Bass V7 received a few appreciated updates in the 2nd run that really stepped things up a notch. It now features a smooth rolled-edge fretboard, so no more nasty nicks on your fingers as you glide around the neck. It’s essentially a Custom Shop feature on a £500-£600 bass! The neck also gets a satin finish like its Fender equivalent, while all rosewood fingerboards are now a darker, higher quality Ebony.

sire v7 pickups

Despite all these player-centric improvements, the biggest difference still remains. The Marcus Miller Sire Bass V7 comes with a fully-fledged, extremely-flexible onboard preamp for its updated pickups. But let’s start off with the Sire’s inspired Jazz Bass pickups. These bad boys were designed in conjunction with Marcus Miller, and they’re an excellent blend of vintage character and modern clarity. They got a whole lot better with improved magnets and coils, for a higher resolution and clearer sound.

The Sire V7 preamp system provides a massive amount of tonal control, making it even more versatile than the original. It includes a 3-band EQ, with volume, tone, middle frequency and pickup blender dials. It’s a great feature for playing live, as you’re able to adjust where the bass sits in the mix, or in the studio as you experiment with your unique sound. There are so many possibilities!

Should You Buy a Fender or Sire?

You can’t go wrong with either of these basses, honestly. Both are extremely well-made, pack tons of tone into the reasonable price point and have been made by experienced hands.

The Fender has the iconic name on the headstock, and Mexican Fender models have been around since forever — so you know they’re more than just trustworthy. Sire Bass Guitars, on the other hand, is still a growing brand. But with the backing of the highly-respected Marcus Miller, you know that they’re going to be phenomenal to play. These bass guitars have loads of flair, versatility and play just brilliantly. The sophisticated preamp system they come with is like something you’d see on a bass that’s two, three, or even four times the price! It’s no surprise why they’re best-sellers at Andertons.

Sire V7 Bass vs Fender Player Jazz Bass

Want to Learn More?

We hope that this blog has made it easy to discern the differences between a Fender Player Jazz Bass and Sire V7. If you’re interested in finding out more about music gear and expanding your knowledge, click here to view all of our Labs articles! For more information on Sire basses and guitars, check out our related articles:

Cian Hodge
Cian Hodge
Cian is a writer for the Andertons team. He shares his birthday with Muse frontman Matt Bellamy and believes he will one day reach the same level of stardom. Cian is a big metal fan so naturally loves Bare Knuckle pickups and pointy guitars.

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