The Best Jazzmaster for Jazz (2023 Edition)

Table of Contents

If you’re looking for the best Jazzmaster for Jazz, you’ve come to the right post!

Fender American Professional II Jazzmaster

JAZZMASTER REVIEW #6: Fender American Professional II Jazzmaster + Demo!

In case you’re looking for the best Jazzmaster, not just for jazz but any other genre, I’d recommend Professional II.

These days, it’s the ultimate variant of the model and the most expensive one.

It also comes with some incredible finish options, as well as two fretboard options: rosewood and maple.

Aside from the standard maple neck and alder body, Professional II Jazzmaster also has other classic traits.

This includes a top-notch Jazzmaster bridge and a floating tailpiece.

Along with this we also have Jazzmaster V-Mod pickups with the old-school controls.

What’s also incredible is that the bridge pickup has two modes.

You can make it scream and sound “throaty.”

But there’s also an option to lower the output and make it feel more vintage.

Be it jazz-rock, fusion jazz, or old-school stuff, this guitar can handle it.

Fender Player Jazzmaster

Player Series Jazzmaster | Player Series | Fender
Fender Player Jazzmaster

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Don’t ever get confused by Fender Player’s lower prices.

These guitars can deliver quite a punch, as is the case with the Player Jazzmaster.

With this guitar, we have a bit of a different deal and a slightly more modern twist to the old model.

The bridge and the tailpiece are your expected Jazzmaster-style ones.

And there’s, of course, the regular Jazzmaster body design.

However, a noticeable difference is the pau ferro fingerboard packed onto a maple neck.

But what makes it really different is the inclusion of two Alnico II Jaguar humbuckers.

There are regular volume and tone controls on it.

However, the tone knob lets you split the bridge pickup.

This gives you a pretty unusual single in the bridge and humbucker in the neck formation.

Other than that, it has the same basic feel, including the 9.5-inch fingerboard radius and a 25.5-inch scale.

There are also a few other details that make it different from the high-end US-made Jazzmasters.

This also includes a synthetic bone nut.

Fender Vintera ’60s Jazzmaster

Vintera Series '60s Jazzmaster | Vintera Series | Fender
Fender Vintera '60s Jazzmaster
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In case you want a US-made Jazzmaster but with a simpler layout, I’d suggest Vintera ’60s.

Of course, in the style of the 1960s Fenders, we don’t have a maple fingerboard.

But it’s also not rosewood but rather pau ferro, giving it that lighter shade of chocolate brown.

There are also some tasty finish options, although I think that the 3-color sunburst looks the best.

Along with this, we have a nice tortoise shell pickguard.

It comes with your regular Jazzmaster-style pickups, 9.5-inch radius fretboard, and regular Jazzmaster hardware.

Overall, I’d say that this is a more toned-down version of the Professional II model.

Nonetheless, it brings all the things that you want from a Jazzmaster.

Squier Mini Jazzmaster HH

the Fender Squier Mini Jazzmaster HH is tiny!
Squier by Fender Mini Jazzmaster HH
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I’d also like to give a couple of Squier Jazzmasters a shoutout.

Yes, the Mini Jazzmaster HH might seem like a controversial mention.

It’s a beginner-friendly budget guitar with a shorter scale, only 22.75 inches.

There’s also a hard-tail bridge with 6 vintage-style saddles.

We also have stock humbucker pickups with a 3-way switch and standard controls for volume and tone.

However, you may be surprised at how great this instrument is, especially for its price.

It’s a pretty great one for jazz or blues beginners.

Or just beginners of any kind.

But at the same time, it can come in handy as a backup or just a budget guitar for jazz and blues.

And due to its price, it’s also a great platform for modding.

Replace the pickups and you’ve got yourself a simple yet very effective guitar.

Never underestimate a cheap Squier.

Squier Classic Vibe ’60s Jazzmaster

Squier Classic Vibe 60s Jazzmaster Review
Squier by Fender Classic Vibe 60's Jazzmaster
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And another Squier that I thought was worthy of mentioning here is the Classic Vibe ’60s Jazzmaster.

This is one of the brand’s more expensive guitars, although it still keeps the price at fairly affordable levels.

Overall, if you want all the classic Jazzmaster controls and traits without spending your savings, this is a go-to model.

It’s a poplar-body guitar with a regular maple neck and an Indian laurel fingerboard.

It even has that 9.5-inch fretboard radius for a more vintage-ish feel.

Along with that comes your regular C-shape neck profile.

Its 21 frets are tall and narrow, which I find to be very useful for a lead instrument.

This Squier also has a pretty awesome pair of Fender-designed single-coil Jazzmaster pickups.

And the most surprising part is that it also has a real bone nut.

Why would you even need to consider a Fender when you have this one?

Is Jazzmaster Good for Jazz?

A weird question, but it’s one worth asking, so let’s go from the beginning.

Fender introduced Jazzmaster back in 1958.

At that time, the company wanted to experiment with new concepts and ideas.

As its name suggests, the model’s main commercial focus was on jazz musicians.

In particular, it was the offset body that allowed more comfortable playing in a seated position.

Additionally, the guitar had an abundance of controls, giving it an abundance of options for the era.

The instrument had two separate circuits called “lead” and “rhythm.”

And this was more than just pickup switching.

Additionally, it had a pretty unconventional control layout and even a so-called “floating” bridge.

As for the pickups, Fender went with a different design.

Although appearing similar to Gibson’s P-90 single-coils, Jazzmaster pickups were something else.

However, their design and winding still gave a warmer and slightly thicker twist to the tone.

Overall, these features were pretty useful to jazz guitarists of the era.

But, for some reason, Jazzmaster ended up as a go-to surf-rock or psychedelic rock guitar.

It could be that jazz musicians just preferred hollo-body or semi-hollow-body guitars.

Or they found the controls to be too complicated and just didn’t want to bother.

Nonetheless, Jazzmaster can be a pretty great choice for jazz, depending on what you’re looking for.

These days, you have plenty of options by both Fender and Squier.

Some of these come with old-school complex controls while some are simplified and even have two humbuckers.

So yes, if you need a jazz guitar, Jazzmasters are worth checking out.  

The Best Jazzmaster for Jazz: Conclusion

I hope this article has helped you think through the best Jazzmaster for you!

And if you want to read more about guitars on this blog, then check out:

Lastly, feel free to leave a message in the comments below if you have questions about this or another guitar-related topic!

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