Can certain pickups increase string tension?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by bongostealth, Dec 7, 2012.


  1. bongostealth

    bongostealth Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Jun 3, 2011
    Location:
    Atlanta, GA
    I just swapped out the split coil Seymour Duncan Basslines 6 string soapbars on my bass. I replaced them with Delano dual-coil pickups. The sound from the Delanos is just awesome. I paired it with an Aguilar OBP-3 and the bass sounds just like a Roscoe but even better plus the girth and muscle of the Aguilar preamp.

    However, I have noticed that there seems to be more string tension than when I had the split-coils in there. I'm using the same set of strings and have not changed them. (D'Addarrio XL nickel). I particularly like D'Addarios because they have less string tension than most others. Nothing else about my bridge setup or action is different and its all the same as before. Is it possible that because the Delanos are dual-coil that they will exert more magnetic pull on the strings thus increased tension?
  2. meatwad

    meatwad

    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2008
    Location:
    Middle Tennessee
    It would take one heck of a magnet, it seems.
  3. bongostealth

    bongostealth Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Jun 3, 2011
    Location:
    Atlanta, GA
    These Delanos are passive pickups but even in passive mode they have major output. WAY more than Bartolini dual coils.
  4. megafiddle

    megafiddle

    Joined:
    May 25, 2011
    Magnets can and do affect tension. If the pickup is too close to the string,
    the magnet can pull the string enough to throw it out of tune (sharp).

    Now whether this is enough to perceive while playing is another matter.
    A 10 cent pitch increase is only 1 percent increase in tension.

    Also, stronger magnets would reduce the perceived tension, since they would
    aid in pulling the strings down (assuming it's noticable at all).

    I would say that something else must have changed in the process of changing
    the pickups. And that's always one of the problems in assessing the effect that
    a change has actually made to an instrument. It's difficult to change only one
    thing at a time.
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  6. VintageBoutique

    VintageBoutique Banned

    Joined:
    Dec 6, 2012
    There's the whole low impedence thing of the pickups having a weaker magnetic pull but being boosted by a preamp. Lace Sensors/Kubicki and Alembics are some examples.
  7. ReiPsaeg

    ReiPsaeg

    Joined:
    Dec 1, 2012
    Location:
    Rochester, NY
    I doubt it. Maybe the new pickups aren't as hot as your old ones thereby making you dig in harder to get the same output you're used which would in turn make your strings feel more tense. Or your pickup height could be causing the same thing.
  8. vin*tone

    vin*tone

    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2008
    Location:
    Ballaarat, Ostraya
    Sounds like an awesome urban myth anyway ..... I'm running with it.
  9. walterw

    walterw Supportive Fender Gold Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2009
    haha, no.
  10. SolarMan

    SolarMan Supporting Member

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    Aug 2, 2011
    Location:
    Marlborough, MA
    Delano makes some amazing pickups. First pickup that ever made me go, "Woah, what is THAT!"

    Your perceived change in string tension, however, is just that. The same string on the same scale length tuned to the same pitch will have the same tension. Even if you string through vs top load - the tension must be exactly the same to get the same pitch.
  11. pacojas

    pacojas "FYYA BUN" Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2009
    Location:
    MEXICANADAMERICA
    your strings proably have stretched and you have tighten them more to tune to pitch. (just guessing)
  12. bongostealth

    bongostealth Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Jun 3, 2011
    Location:
    Atlanta, GA
    Yeah, that sounds about right. Either way, I'm very happy with the overall sound.
  13. ggunn

    ggunn

    Joined:
    Aug 30, 2006
    Location:
    Austin, TX

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