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Does anyone prefer pickups far from strings?

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by Timpala, Mar 31, 2014.


  1. Timpala

    Timpala Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2011
    Location:
    IOWA
    I just bought a Fender Telecaster bass with a mudbucker in the neck position and a mudbucker in the bridge position. I played it at practice with the band and it fit in the mix perfect and I loved the tone. I then played a few songs with my Precision bass and then my Jazz bass. They are different animals I know, but I found myself missing the fullness of the mudbucker. So, I was messing around tonight with trying to get a fuller sound out of the P & J when I tried lowering the Jazz bass pickups as low as they would go. Although, it isn't as deep as the mudbucker, it sounded waaay fuller. On top of that, I like High action. I play with a pick and I don't like the clank with lower action.

    So, I was wondering if anyone else sets up their basses with the pickups as low as possible? I could swear that I read somewhere that James Jamerson used to keep his pickups low and had high action to get that fat tone? I also know that I am no James Jamerson :smug:.
     
  2. faulknersj

    faulknersj Gold Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Apr 4, 2008
    Location:
    Scottsdale Az
    I don't but put the pups wherever they sound good to you!!.

    The pickups on my 74' P are about the thickness of an E string away from the pups. On my Jazz basses...My neck pup is lowered by the E String and raised higher under the G String. On the Bridge Pup, The E string side is higher and the G string side is lower.

    This gives me the sound i want....to each their own and let your ears be your guide..
     
  3. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Apr 11, 2005
    Location:
    Apopka, FL
    Disclosures:
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    I did at one time. Nowadays I put them closer but I used to feel the same way you did. You don't by any chance play hard, do you? I ask that because I used to and I disliked clanking as well, but lightening up made me appreciate pickups closer to the strings.
     
  4. wateroftyne

    wateroftyne

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2002
    Location:
    The Geordie Delta, UK
    I like 'em low, too.

    The feeling of having the pickup just under my fingers when I'm playing the string disturbs me a little bit.

    I also (wrongly or otherwise) get the feeling that a bit of daylight between strings and pickup makes the tone a bit more focussed and more even.
     
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  6. faulknersj

    faulknersj Gold Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Apr 4, 2008
    Location:
    Scottsdale Az
    Technique likely does have a ton to do with this preference...
     
  7. Timpala

    Timpala Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2011
    Location:
    IOWA
    I learned how to play on a bass with really high action. It is a little lower now, but I still like it higher than most bass players. Yes, I play pretty hard as well.

    This Modern Player Telecaster bass I just picked up is throwing a loop into what I am thinking tone should be for my current band. It just sounds so full and mixes well with the band. I have always loved the sound of my P & J basses, but since my last band practice with the Telecaster bass, I have been trying to EQ in a fuller sound with them. They sound great by themselves but are missing some OOOMMPFF when playing with the band. I lowered the pickups on the Jazz all the way, and it seems to be getting closer to what I want. My big amps are at our practice space, and I won't know until I get out there how it will sound. I am really hoping it makes a difference. Otherwise, I may have a new main bass?
     

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