I've found that most Fender's stock pickups are actually quite nice while their stock pre-amps can be... lacking in certain applications.
If you are dead-set on upgrading something, I would definitely suggest installing the preamp before even considering pickups. The sadowsky pre is a fantastic option which will definitely open up the sound of the bass and harness the full potential of the stock pickups.
However, how is sounds and reacts to you should be the only deciding factor. I use the stock Marcus Miller pre-amp and have never wanted for tone or versatility, despite the bad reviews that it gets online.
DIY Effect Makers #24
Last edited by Gabeja15 : 08-30-2013 at 08:12 AM.