Troubleshooting electronics problems

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by LGT, Jan 19, 2014.

  1. Hi everyone, the electronics in my Squier affinity jazz bass seem to be acting up again, and I was hoping for some help.

    I made a recording and put it on soundcloud to try and give you a better idea.

    Just to sum it up, it seems like there are two issues.
    1) There's a loud crackling that happens when I play (especially low notes)
    2) When the pots are turned all the way down, there is still some volume, and when the bridge pickup is soloed, it has a very tinny sound, almost like there are some phase cancellations happening.

    One other thing to note is that I modded the bass to have a series parallel switch a while back. I don't feel like this is the issue, but it just seemed like something good to include.

    Thanks for your time
  2. Bump. Anyone anyone got any ideas?
  3. pfox14


    Dec 22, 2013
    Have you eliminated all other possible causes? Tried different cables? Diff amp? Diff room? I would try to rule these out and definitely determine that the basses' electronics are the cause. Crackling just playing low notes does not seem to indicate a problem with the bass, but the amp. Possible blown or damaged speaker.
  4. I tried the amp with the same cable with both my guitar and my upright (K&K bassmax pickup) and it was crystal clear for both of them. I also recorded my bass through my computer a little bit and still got the crackling, although it was a little less prominent because it was EQ'd a with less treble.
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  6. Anyone? I'd really like to fix this.
  7. Try cleaning the output jack first. You want to gently remove any oxide where the metal parts of the jack contact the plug. To clean the inside of the jack barrel, roll up a small piece of fine-grit sandpaper. Do your best to keep any sanding dust out of your pots and control cavity.
  8. Just tried this and it's still crackling unfortunately :meh: thanks for the suggestion though.
  9. ex-tension


    Jun 11, 2009
    You can try to connect your pickups directly to the output jack, one by one and test again. So, you can see where the problem is. The wiring, pots or a pickup. Of course, assuming the output jack is not faulty.
  10. brainburst


    Jan 10, 2012
    bronx ny
    You said you did a series parallel mod..You mean between pickups or to each individual pickup?
    If between pickups, are those 3 wire pickups with a separate shield? How are you switching? Push pull pot? Can you provide a schematic?
  11. ex-tension


    Jun 11, 2009
    In order to locate the probem, it's better to desolder the pickup and connect only the pickup to the output jack. So you should desolder rest of the wiring from the jack as well.
  12. So, fortunately/unfortunately both problems seem to have spontaneously gone away. The bright side is obviously that the bass is now working perfectly. It's also pretty frustrating however, as there is now no way for me to isolate the problem.

    Thanks for the suggestions, I'll definitely try isolating pickups and such if it pops up again.