Difference between the Baja 50s and Baja 60s

tochiro

Member
Messages
2,672
Hi,

I see the neck is not the same wood but apart from what did you think were the differences when you compared them? I wonder what's the most comfortable neck, the lightest guitar, their differences in sound?

Would it be useful to have both or are they redundant? Thank you.

Cheers
 

GK34

Member
Messages
304
I have had both. The 50's neck is chunkier, soft V. Chunkier than the Clapton neck, closer to a '52 Reissue neck (modern radius and frets though). The '60s has a slimmer neck, also comfortable to me.

The pickups in the '50s are Twisted Tele neck pickup and Broadcaster bridge pickup. I love the neck pickup in my Baja '50s. Very Stratty to me. Love the other positions also. The pickups in the '60s are (I believe) a '52 neck pickup and '58 bridge pickup. I liked the set in tue '60s quite a bit as well.

I had both at one time and enjoyed both. I may get another '60s one day. I actually like my Baja '50s so much and was playing it so exclusively that I have sold all my other electrics at this time.
 
M

Member 1963

maple and rosewood necks sound VERY different. It puzzles me, but some say they hear no difference. I guess it depends on your experience because early on i couldn't tell either, but now it's huge to me and i love both. (tho prefer rosewood) But they are easily different enough that i must have both. Whether you will hear it i don't know, but if you do it's not redundant at all.
 
Messages
23,988
The neck is the difference.

The thickness of the 50s neck is substantial - the section of the 60s is not too different from the MIM Classic 60s necks.

50% of all guys who get handed the Baja 50s will laugh after playing it, if you tell them it is a V. The other 50% will detect just the tiniest amount of keel from the first to the 6th or 7th fret. No disrespect, but people who say the Baja 50s neck is a V, read the specifications page for the guitar BEFORE they played it and they're highly suggestible guys, basically.

The Baja 60s is really a Classic Player 60s Tele - there's nothing baja-ish about it, if you ask me. This 60s is going to go through a transformation now, IMO, as East Indian Rosewood boards give way to Pau Ferro - I think all the MIM models with rosewood get the transition.

If there's any difference in sound, between the two models it is (in this order, assuming same player, same room, same amp, same settings)

1) Different Pickups;

2) Different Neck Girth;

3) Different type of neck construction (glued on fretboard versus one piece with skunk stripe construction);

4) Different setup, one guitar to the next in line;

5) Different type of finish on fretboard (none versus a layer of poly);

6) I think the fretwire is effectively larger on a guitar without a finish ( using the same wire on all of them) and that impacts the feel and thus the sound;

7) All other factors besides the choice of wood used for the fretboard.

Since we won't know when we see a 60s Baja, in the future, which board wood it even has (and sometimes the rosewood and pau ferro will look a lot the same), with all due respect I think it is Ludicrous to emphasize the impact the rosewood might have. When tropical wood has an impact, IMO it is because the wood can absorb hand sweat and we can sometimes get through a late afternoon outdoor show in sweltering heat and humidity better than we could with a maple board with a hard finish and noplace for the sweat to go - that's the limit of it insofar as human ears go. Conversely if a tropical wood board is left out in a forced air heated Northern house in winter, unplayed for weeks and then we pick it up, the fret sprout may bite or our already dry fingertips might be chapped when playing too many hours on a bone dry unfinished board.
 
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candid_x

Member
Messages
9,667
I don't think owning both would be redundant at all, other than both being Teles.

Weight varies widely, perhaps more on the ash body 50's, which go from very light to very heavy and everything in-between. My new one (in transit) weighed 7.75 on a UPS scale. I've seen them as low as 6.5 to 8 lb 13 oz. My first one originally weighed 6 lb 13 oz.

I see an ever so slight V in the first couple frets but I can't call it a V neck really. I love the carve of my first and hope my new one is the same.

I was a bit tempted to go for a 60's, but since the 50's neck is the main attraction for me, I chose it again. Since my original was converted to a straight 3-way with Lollar Special T pickups, they're not redundant either. Both have or will have comp saddles added. On this new one, that's the only mod I'm planning on. Though if it's as nice as my first, that's always an option down the road.

Didn't notice if it was mentioned, the 60's has an alder body rather than the 50's ash, which is pretty much period typical.
 

mr zurkon

Member
Messages
444
I own both and besides the visual aesthetics and different tech specs, I think the 50s version is slightly brighter sounding all around. Both pickup configurations sound great, with plenty of options from the 4-way switch and S1 push button. Great feel/playing necks on both.
 

Otto Tune

Member
Messages
3,852
I got the 60's even though I'd have preferred not to have a rosewood fretboard.
But I already had a tele with the broadcaster and twisted tele pickups and I wanted to try something different.
The 60's have '52 and '58 pickups.
 

cutaway

Senior Member
Messages
18,211
maple and rosewood necks sound VERY different. It puzzles me, but some say they hear no difference. I guess it depends on your experience because early on i couldn't tell either, but now it's huge to me and i love both. (tho prefer rosewood) But they are easily different enough that i must have both. Whether you will hear it i don't know, but if you do it's not redundant at all.
i'd say the neck size plays exponentially more into whether or not someone would like the guitar than the (perceived) minute difference in tone. ALL rosewood neck Bajas are not warmer than ALL maple neck Bajas. to state that is simply false and misleading. play two maple neck Bajas and one will be brighter. it's just how wood works.
 

Madison

Member
Messages
7,554
I bought both and returned the rosewood 60s. The 50s has become my number 1, but not without a few mods. It is light, 7 lbs, I sanded the neck very slightly to reshape it, pulled out the S1 wiring, and added Rutters bridge and saddles. The stock pu's are great, I now have a four way switch.

I gigged it with a Mark V yesterday and both were closely inspected by some musicians afterwards, it's a super cool tele.
 

adam_l

Member
Messages
677
I don't think owning both would be redundant at all, other than both being Teles.

Weight varies widely, perhaps more on the ash body 50's, which go from very light to very heavy and everything in-between. My new one (in transit) weighed 7.75 on a UPS scale. I've seen them as low as 6.5 to 8 lb 13 oz. My first one originally weighed 6 lb 13 oz.

I see an ever so slight V in the first couple frets but I can't call it a V neck really. I love the carve of my first and hope my new one is the same.

Is there any way to predict the weight of the Ash body Bajas, like certain years were lighter than others, or does the weight vary from one guitar to the next, thru all production years.

Are all Tele models, w/ Ash bodies, inconsistent weight wise?

I'm not that experienced with the Tele, but am I wrong to think that the Ash is needed for their trademark 'twang'?

I already have a kinda heavy LP. I want an Ash Tele to compliment it, but would prefer it not being as heavy.

Thanks
 

dividedsky

Member
Messages
4,354
Is there any way to predict the weight of the Ash body Bajas, like certain years were lighter than others, or does the weight vary from one guitar to the next, thru all production years.

Are all Tele models, w/ Ash bodies, inconsistent weight wise?

I'm not that experienced with the Tele, but am I wrong to think that the Ash is needed for their trademark 'twang'?

I already have a kinda heavy LP. I want an Ash Tele to compliment it, but would prefer it not being as heavy.

Thanks

I've owned a couple Baja models. No way to predict the weight in my experience. Just gotta ask the seller. And no I don't think ash is a requirement for twang. I've had alder body Telecasters that twanged just fine. I think the bridge, saddles, and pickups are what's important there.
 

edward

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
5,589
Is there any way to predict the weight of the Ash body Bajas, like certain years were lighter than others, or does the weight vary from one guitar to the next, thru all production years....
No way to predict via years or wood species. Not a whole lot of them in the wild that I've seen, but I've read more than a few folks who report them to be 8+ lbs, fwiw. I had a 50s Baja for a several years (great guit, but alas just wasn't my style ...the neck was the best thing about it!), and mine was likely in the mid-7lb range. Very nice, IMO.

Edward
 




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