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A couple of general pickup configuration questions

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by Taylor Livingston, Mar 18, 2003.


  1. Taylor Livingston

    Taylor Livingston Supporting Member Commercial User

    Dec 25, 2002
    Louisiana, US
    Owner, Iron Ether Electronics
    I wanted to put a humbucker/MM pickup on my next bass, in the neck or middle position, and a jazz in the bridge position. I have seen a few basses with this combo, but the hum is usually at the bridge and the jazz is in the middle. Which of these would allow me to cover maximum sonic ground (go from heavy rock thickness to bright, and everywhere in between)?

    What is the difference between a Musicman pickup and a humbucker?

    Finally, do noiseless jazz pickups sound like regular jazz p/us (I'm talking about Fender's Noiseless)? I want that bright sound, but without the hum, but I've read things that made me believe that Noiseless jazz p/us have more mid-range and are warmer (which I don't want; I want that razor sharp tone that regular jazzes give). So are they the same sound but without hum, or a different beast altogether?
     
  2. geshel

    geshel

    Oct 2, 2001
    Seattle
    An MM pickup is a humbucker. What makes it different is the size: both the size of the pole-pieces (large) and the width of the p/u between the two coils. Because of these, the pickup "sees" a broad swath of the string, which is a big part of the way it sounds. I'm not sure if it's typically wound more/less than a typical HB though.
     
  3. Petebass

    Petebass

    Dec 22, 2002
    QLD Australia
    I'm no expert but it looks like you're trying to create a bass with one active pickup (MM humbucker) and one passive pickup (Jazz)? Is that possible? Wouldn't the passsive pickup have a lower output that the active. And wouldn't it make it worse again if the active pickup is a humbucker?
     
  4. geshel

    geshel

    Oct 2, 2001
    Seattle
    I don't know where you get that from - most MMs are passive. Figured all in question here were passive.
     
  5. Petebass

    Petebass

    Dec 22, 2002
    QLD Australia
    maybe I'm reading the abreviation wrongly. I assumed MM was short for Music Man, yes? No?
     
  6. Isn't a MM pickup a passive type, with an active, on-board preamp? My G&L work this way.

    I think the best way to mix and match is by using an adjustable active preamp, such as the J-Retro. Each pickup is isolated on its own high-impedance channel, which preserves the tone. Each channel is individually gain-adjustable to balance a weak J and strong MM pickup combination.
     
  7. Taylor Livingston

    Taylor Livingston Supporting Member Commercial User

    Dec 25, 2002
    Louisiana, US
    Owner, Iron Ether Electronics
    Well, I can't afford an on-board pre, so if I need one for an MM, then forget it. Can anybody offer insight regarding my other questions?
     
  8. geshel

    geshel

    Oct 2, 2001
    Seattle
    Don't worry, you don't.
     
  9. Petebass

    Petebass

    Dec 22, 2002
    QLD Australia
    Really? I didn't know that.

    I guess the question is how will the pickup sound without the pre-amp? If it sounds just like a stingray but with less output, that would suit this project beautifully.

    But my gut instinct tells me that pre-amp has a big part in achieving that stingray sound.
     
  10. Taylor Livingston

    Taylor Livingston Supporting Member Commercial User

    Dec 25, 2002
    Louisiana, US
    Owner, Iron Ether Electronics
    bump
     
  11. hujo

    hujo

    Apr 18, 2001
    Stockholm, Sweden
    Well, a MM pickup without a preamp will sound like a MM pickup through a preamp with all the controls set flat (if the preamp doesn't have a preshaped EQ, but if i remember correctly, the MM-preamp is pretty flat). How high the output will be depends on what brand you'd use. Bartolinis are known for their low output, but for example SD:s have higher output. And besides, if you don't put the MM-pickup in the standard MM position (like CJ implied), it won't sound like a stingray anway.

    EDIT: Warriors have the configuration that you're talking about - J at bridge, MM at neck/midddle - but I don't know how they sound.

    http://www.warriorinstruments.com/
     
  12. stroy05

    stroy05 Supporting Member

    Feb 21, 2001
    Houston, TX
    Endorsing Artist: Fodera Basses, Noble Amps, Aguilar Amps, JHAudio Inears
    Mark White of the Spin Doctors has this configuration on a couple of his basses. They sound great. THis setup has athority written all over it...very strong in your face type sound.

    There is no hummmmmmmmmmm with this setup.