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Dimarzio Ultra Jazz Problem

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by Double E, Oct 22, 2009.


  1. Double E

    Double E I ain't got no time to play... Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Dec 24, 2005
    Location:
    Northeast Ohio
    Hey guys! I just installed a pair of Ultra Jazz pickups and plugged it up and dug the sound right away. But as I put the thing through the paces I found that, with the bridge pickup soloed, the E and A strings were significantly weaker than the D and G.

    Do I have a bad pickup or is there some mistake I can correct in the wiring.

    The bass is a 2000 MIM Fender Jazz. I left the original VVT controls in place. This is a pretty straightforward install (or so I thought).

    The pickups were NIB, though I bought them from an individual...not a store. They were brand-spankin-new though, still hermetically sealed in plastic. The plastic jewel box had not even had the seal broken.

    Will Dimarzio honor the warranty if I am not the original purchaser?
     
  2. Double E

    Double E I ain't got no time to play... Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Dec 24, 2005
    Location:
    Northeast Ohio
    Okay, I am pretty sure that the pickup is bad...

    The pole pieces for the coil in question have a much weaker magnetic pull than the others (practically non-existant). Unless one the experts here can dispel my theory and tell me what I may have done wrong to cause this I guess I am going to need a new pickup.

    :(
     
  3. narud

    narud Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2001
    Location:
    santa maria,california
    make sure your not overtightening them. since they are deeper than a single coil, the foam i had in the cavities was making the fit really really tight. when id screw the pickup down i had a coil go dead. id loosen it and it would work fine. otherwise, maybe its bad:confused:
     
  4. walterw

    walterw Supportive Fender Gold Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2009
    yep, sounds like something happened to it in or after manufacturing. dimarzio should have no problem replacing it, especially if you point out the weaker magnets.

    (edit):wait, you didn't buy them from a dealer? it might be worth pleading your case, but don't bet the farm on a free replacement.
     
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  6. mmbongo

    mmbongo Chicken Pot Pie. My three favorite things!! Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Aug 5, 2009
    Location:
    Upstate, South Carolina
    Also make sure you connected both coils. Double check your wiring...try it both series and parallel.
     
  7. Double E

    Double E I ain't got no time to play... Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Dec 24, 2005
    Location:
    Northeast Ohio
    I am pretty sure that I have it all hooked up proper - red to the center post of the pot, green to the back of the pot and the black and white connected. I think that if you miss something with series wiring, you'd have a totally dead pickup.

    Could it be a bad pot? Could any bad wiring connections actually weaken the magnet's pull?
     
  8. skeptikal

    skeptikal

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2008
    Location:
    Fort Wayne, IN
    I've put 2 sets of these in basses and have never had a problem. I did notice that it was quieter when screwing down where the D and G are. But raise it up a little bit and voila. I love these pickups!
     
  9. basss

    basss Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Aug 27, 2001
    Location:
    NYC
    +1 Same thing happened to me
     
  10. Double E

    Double E I ain't got no time to play... Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Dec 24, 2005
    Location:
    Northeast Ohio
    I have tried raising the pickup to the point where there was no pressure at all to no avail. I don't think that over tightening could cause the magnet to weaken though...I can imagine however that pinching the coil might not be good.
     
  11. basss

    basss Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Aug 27, 2001
    Location:
    NYC
    I had the D & G string side of the pickup lowered so it was pressing against a ground screw in the pickup cavity. I don't know if the pickup was shorting from touching the screw or if the coil was compacting and pressing against something inside the pickup to cause a short. The D & G strings had much less output until I loosend the pickup screws a bit. Since then it's worked fine with no issues. You could just have a bad pickup though.
     
  12. BigDaveyTwinkle

    BigDaveyTwinkle

    Joined:
    Aug 30, 2008
    Location:
    KCMO
    Having owned a couple set of DiMarzios, I gotta ask -
    How are your black and white connected? black to black or black to white on the other pickup? I have also seen these pickups goofed as black to white on the same pickup !!! Double check those wires.
     
  13. SGD Lutherie

    SGD Lutherie Banned

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Bloomfield, NJ
    Disclosures:
    Owner, SGD Music Products
    The correct way to wire them is black to white on the same pickup. This connects the two coils in that pickup in series. Red is hot and green is ground.

    Each pickup has two coils, one under the E-A strings, and one under the D-G strings. Red and black are one coil, and green and white are the other. For series operation you connect the black and white wires together for each pickup.

    They do NOT connect to the other pickup. i.e., bridge to neck.

    DiMarzio Color Code Wiring

    This sounds like a magnet came loose from the bottom, and might have been stuck back on with the pole facing the wrong way. They magnet's poles must face the pole pieces the same, so it would be both Sound in, or both North in (they repel). Each half of the pickup is reversed, so one coil is North, and the other is South.

    Did a magnet seem loose when you were installing them?
     
  14. Double E

    Double E I ain't got no time to play... Supporting Member

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    Dec 24, 2005
    Location:
    Northeast Ohio
    Nothing seemed out of sorts with the pickups prior to installing them. The magnets were adhered to the pickups quite soundly.

    If it may be as simple as removing the magnet and reinstalling it, I may try that myself (if Dimarzio will not warranty).
     
  15. BigDaveyTwinkle

    BigDaveyTwinkle

    Joined:
    Aug 30, 2008
    Location:
    KCMO

    Beg to differ. If they were meant to wire black to white on the same pick up, why would they give you 8" of wire lead off each pick up?

    Common sense should tell you that the cost savings of eliminating 2 1/2 feet of wire per set would have the manufacturer wiring these internally IF they were meant to be connected.

    Having personally installed DiM Model J's in a Warmoth and a set of DiM Ultra Jazz in an SX, black to white on the same pickup is NOT the way to go.
     
  16. Double E

    Double E I ain't got no time to play... Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Dec 24, 2005
    Location:
    Northeast Ohio
    I believe that they give you the extra wire so you can hook up the pickups in series or parallel or a switchable combo.

    The Dimarzio wiring instructions are pretty clear that you connect the black and white from the same pickup for series wiring.
     
  17. SGD Lutherie

    SGD Lutherie Banned

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    Because you might want to wire the pickup to a series/parallel switch????

    Is that hard to figure out? They even show this in the instructions!

    On the pickups they don't intend to be wired in parallel, like the Virtual Vintage Solo, they connect the black and white at the pickup and only give you two connections and ground.

    This is how they have always made their pickups, way back with the Model P and J.

    Common sense says to RTFM! It's for connecting to a switch. Just as it says on the instructions that come with the pickups.

    You are wrong. If you wire the two pickups together then you can never solo one pickup!

    I've been installing these pickups since 1976. How about you?

    I also use the same color codes on my pickups.

    Let's see the way DiMarzio says to do it.

    Dimarzio.com 4-conductor wiring (PDF)
     

    Attached Files:

  18. georgestrings

    georgestrings Banned

    Joined:
    Nov 5, 2005

    It's amusing to see people so sure of themselves when they're obviously so wrong...


    - georgestrings
     
  19. Double E

    Double E I ain't got no time to play... Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Dec 24, 2005
    Location:
    Northeast Ohio
    Back to my issue...

    Is it safe to conclude that there is indeed a problem with the pickup itself, either a bad or mis-installed magnet? I don't think anything else could cause the pole pieces to have a weak magnetic pull.

    The magnet does not rely on, or is affected by the wiring or other devices attached to it, am I right? I mean the magnet should always be equally powerful regardless of how the coil is attached to the rest of the electronics (the coil reacts to the magnet not vice-versa).
     
  20. SGD Lutherie

    SGD Lutherie Banned

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Bloomfield, NJ
    Disclosures:
    Owner, SGD Music Products
    I would say there is a problem with one of the magnets.

    The way DiMarzio does it, is on either side of the poles, there is a magnet facing in, and each magnet has the same pole facing in.

    What generally happens is while someone is handling the pickups, one magnet pops off, and not knowing any better, the person sticks it back on the wrong way. This is easy, since that's the way the magnet wants to stick (opposite poles attract).

    Since this is a new pickup, I'm guessing it was a mistake at the factory.

    Usually the magnets have one side painted so you can see which pole is which. I'd start by looking to see if they have them marked like that, and if you see an obviously mismatch.

    Other than that you need a device to see which pole is which, a cheap compass will work, and then check on each side to see if they have the same pole facing out the side of the pickup.

    Keep in mind that each coil will be opposite.

    Having said all that, you might want to have Dimarzio replace it... they are good about that stuff.
     
  21. wyleeboxer

    wyleeboxer Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Apr 28, 2005
    Location:
    Orange County, CA
    I can’t imagine a magnet being bad, and if you look at the bottom of these pups they are very well sealed, and if I recall can be difficult to open to investigate? If you can open them I would check to make sure the very thin lead wires coming off the coil/s are connected to the base of the pick up. In this case if there are 2 individual coils then it could be the problem your having with the one side? This happened to me once and I was lucky enough to be able re-solder and the pick up worked fine.

    And go with whatever SGD sez… ;)
     

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