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2014 ESP Custom Lab Navigator 5 String Fretless Active J Bass N-JB Blue w/ Nordstrand & Bartolini


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Up for sale, a 2014 ESP Custom Lab Navigator N-JB 5 string fretless bass in near mint, 100% original condition and in perfect working order, complete with a hardshell case. A custom ordered Japanese-made ESP instrument from their Navigator line, this bass boasts a pair of Nordstrand NJ5SE hum-cancelling Jazz Bass pickups paired with a Bartolini XTCT three-band active preamp.

Tonewoods include an ash body, maple neck, and thick slab lined ebony fingerboard, and the bass offers plenty of natural sustain and authority, weighing 10lbs 5oz. The Nordstrand pickups are a split coil hum-cancelling design, with tonal properties engineered to be faithful to a traditional single coil with similar clarity and bottom end. Coupled to the Bartolini XTCT preamp, the pickups have a particularly broad tonal range, with clean growl, exquisite detail, and plenty of midrange variability. We've had this Navigator bass dialed in here at Mike & Mike's Guitar Bar with easy-playing action and fresh 45-125 roundwound strings.

The maple neck has an asymmetrical profile carve with more shoulder on the bass side of the carve and rolled fretboard edges for added comfort, measuring .860" deep at the 1st fret and .965" at the 12th. The bass plays cleanly up the lined slab ebony fingerboard with a full 34" scale and straight neck. The nut measures 1 7/8" in width, and the headstock features lightweight clover button tuners that turn very smoothly.

The electronics all function as intended, with the Nordstrand NJ5SE pickups wired to the Bartolini active preamp with three-band EQ and dedicated Volume knobs for each pickup. Hardware includes the heavy-duty top-loader bridge, control plate, and ESP Custom Lab neck plate. The semi-gloss blue factory finish was applied thin enough to see (and feel) the grain of the ash body below the finish. Cosmetic wear is limited to just a couple extremely tiny nicks on the body as a whole, while the satin finish on the neck profile is flawless.

A Fender-branded molded hardshell case is included, with a couple splits at the corners that don’t affect the case’s integrity.