The G&L CLF Research L-2000 is a modern update to the classic, yet lesser known Leo Fender bass design.
G&L is the final legacy of legendary guitar builder Leo Fender. When Leo, along with George Fullerton, founded G&L in 1979 he, in addition to re-working his old iconic designs, set about creating new ones.
Leo has many classic, popular bass designs, and the L-2000 deserves its place among them. Nearly 40 years after the original came out G&L are keeping the design alive with the CLF Research model – named after Leo’s own research company.
Body and Neck
Similar to Leo’s instruments from the early 50s, this bass has an Ash body. Ash is reasonably lightweight so it’ll be easy on your back if you need to play standing up for an extended period of time. Ash is a wonderfully resonant wood which some say has a little less midrange emphasis and a little more high-end but is overall fairly balanced.
The maple neck has a comfortable, slim, C-shape neck profile that fits well in the hand. The fingerboard radius is 9 and ½” which is common amongst Leo Fender-designed instruments and is a happy medium between flatter modern radii and vintage, more curved radii. The maple fingerboard makes for a very smooth playing experience and it has been said that maple adds a snap and brightness to the tone.
Electronics and Hardware
The CLF Research L-2000 features two Magnetic Field Design (MFD) humbuckers for thick yet versatile sounds. MFD is another of Leo’s innovations and is essentially a ceramic bar magnetic with individually adjustable soft iron pole pieces. In practical terms, this results in higher output per wind giving these a full and powerful sound.
The versatility of this bass is furthered by the switching options available to you. This L-2000 features three mini toggles:
- 3 position pickup selector
- Series/parallel switch
- 3 position pre-amp mode switch
These switches, along with the volume, treble, and bass knobs provide so many options for switching up your sound within one bass.
The bridge is a G&L Saddle Lock and features chrome-plated brass saddles and, as brass is known for its impressive sustain and resonance, this bridge definitely adds to the L-2000’s tone.
Here's what G&L says about the CLF Research L-2000:
In the late 1970s, Clarence Leo Fender was looking forward to launching his new G&L brand featuring his latest innovations including Magnetic Field Design pickups and the Saddle Lock bridge. Leo developed these technologies at his CLF™ Research company, and production of the new G&L instruments took place in the CLF Research factory on Fender Avenue in Fullerton, California, where G&L production continues today.
The new CLF Research L-2000 is a fully modern “2k” that pays homage to its roots with classic details including the early CLF/G&L headstock and neck profile, beautifully reproduced CLF knobs and '81 control plate, and color-coded mini toggle switch tips.
- Pickups: Two G&L Magnetic Field humbucking pickups
- Body Wood: Swamp Ash
- Neck Wood: Hard Rock Maple w/ Maple fingerboard
- Neck Profile: CLF/G&L 1 5/8" slim C with 9 1/2" radius
- Frets: Medium Jumbo, Jescar 57110 18% nickel silver
- Tuning Keys: Custom G&L "Ultra-Lite" with aluminum tapered string posts
- Bridge: Leo Fender-designed G&L Saddle Lock with chrome-plated brass saddles
- Electronics: Tri-Tone™ system with 3-position pickup selector, series/parallel switch, 3-position pre-amp mode switch, volume, treble, bass
- Case: Deluxe Tolex hardshell