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american jazz series S-1 switch

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by MCBTunes, Feb 9, 2005.

  1. How much difference does this new S-1 switch make? Will it really make the J bass sound like a P bass when ingaged?

    Also, how different is the american with the S-1 and the J-Delux with the active pickups? And what difference?

    I like a nice deep tone(that isnt muffled) how do the jazz's fare in this dept? I know the P can do it, but I just dont like the neck.
  2. MOR_Lio


    Sep 9, 2004
    Good question, and I am not sure I have an answer. I just got my new Jazz Bass MIA and for now I play most of the time with the switch engaged because it gives me a deeper, mellower tone. But I am proably gonna mess around with the parallel configuration some more and explore the variety of tone.

    If anybody has any comment about the utility of the switch and especially the parallel configuration, please let me know.
  3. I've played one a couple of times and I noticed a dramatic increase in 'thickness' of tone with the switch engaged, if you get my drift. It wires the pickups into what's effectively a humbucker, and if you think how much space there is between those now series wired poles, thats where the phatness comes from. I seem to remember a bit of a bass boost and slight loss in treble when it's engaged too.

    I think/hope I'm right, nothing worse than being told you're completely wrong lol :bag:

    [Edit]: I also thought I might mention that the S-1 seemed to work best when the pickups were on full.
  4. Nedmundo

    Nedmundo Supporting Member

    Jan 7, 2005
    I have a 2003 MIA Jazz with S-1, and you're exactly right. It's no more than a parallel/series switch, which wires the pickups into a series humbucker when engaged. This adds a few db of output, boosts bass (and probably low mids), and rolls back the treble a bit.

    It doesn't replicate a P-bass tone, nor could it with the different picukp spacing. But it definitely sounds a lot more P-like than a typical J. I also have a Precision with S-1, so I have a good basis for comparison. I find the switch much more useful on the J. Why would anyone want to thin out the tone on a P? :confused:

    When the S-1 is engaged, only one volume pot works. It effectively becomes a single humbucker with widely spaced coils.

    I've written a fair amount about this topic in reviewing this bass on harmony-central.com. I'm the one who had the neck replaced. I think it's an awesome bass. I have four, and it's my number one overall.

  5. Wahey! I was right. Love these basses too, just gotta save up for one!
  7. Mike McGibney

    Mike McGibney Not impossible ... Inevitable

    Apr 13, 2005
    Essex, UK.
    I was hugely impressed with the S1 switch. Changed an already great bass into an even more versatile one.
  8. Alexander


    Aug 13, 2001
    Seattle, WA
    I like having it as well - I upgraded the stock PUPs to Antiquity IIs and this thing sounds amazing. It does give a tone very similar to a P, I think, especially with a bit of treble rolled off. Whenever I play a song and can't seem to get a tone that works, I engage this and that fits the bil nicely.