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Area J's or Model J's

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by iambrando, Apr 26, 2017.

  1. iambrando


    Apr 26, 2017
    I just got my first MIM FSR Jazz. Long time P-Bassist. In the past my favorite bass I owned was a Mexican P-Deluxe.

    Any ways, to make a long story short I decided I definetly want to try something new. I have decided on flat wound ECB82's but can't decide on pick ups.

    Very interested in the Dimarzio Model J's and Area J's. I like the AJ's because the highs are a little crisper, but the lows of the MJ's is just so appealing. Any advice would be welcome.

    Coming from P-Bass I definetly love woody super smooth tones. Just would like to expand my skill into more funk and classic runs.

    Action is solid on this Jazz so I am not worried about a heavier string.

    Guess I am looking for advice or experience with this set up. Slightly worried I am leaning toward solid lows at cost of versiatlity. Hope that make sense.
    Last edited: Apr 27, 2017
  2. walterw

    walterw Supportive Fender Gold Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 20, 2009
    you're going by published specs? that seems backwards; the models won't have the high end of the areas, but might have a bit more low end.

    the models won't sound like a "real" jazz bass, the areas will.

    if you want "real jazz bass but with big boosted lows" then your ticket is the ultra Js, they're actually the most powerful of the three.

    if you're new to J basses and you just gotta have hum-canceling pickups, i recommend the areas as the most accurate representation of what jazz basses are all about.
    NigelD, jallenbass and iambrando like this.
  3. Stranger Danger

    Stranger Danger Feel Like A Stranger Supporting Member

    Jan 3, 2010
    I use Model Js with 50-115 Bass Boomers. Super tone. Solid and woody. I've had Area Js before and they bark hard. I like them but the Model Js are just perfect.
    iambrando likes this.
  4. JimmyM


    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    I have to agree with Walter. Sounds like you've got the descriptions backwards.
    iambrando likes this.
  5. iambrando


    Apr 26, 2017
    Yes I have them reversed. I will correct original post. Thank you Jimmy and Walter.

    I was going off this video:

  6. socialleper

    socialleper Bringer of doom and top shelf beer Supporting Member

    May 31, 2009
    Canyon Country, CA
    Based on the video, I don't hear more lows out of the Model J, but it certainly sounds like it has a more subdued attack. I guess it depends what you are trying to get out of the jazz bass. I kind of like the smoother tone of the Model J, but how it sounds with other instruments is really what matters.
    iambrando likes this.
  7. groove pump

    groove pump

    Oct 24, 2006

    I agree with our pal walterw in post #2 - if you want a tone that's got a big ol' butt, the Ultra J's likely will NOT disappoint. My J-bass is getting some work done, so I'm swapping in some Area J's just to try something different. I can say that when I would run my Jazz at gig volumes with the Ultra J's installed, I would typically cut my lows a little bit and also give my mids a little boost. Plenty of beef.

    Sorry that I can't offer any feedback or comparison concerning the Model J's, but I'll report back when I've noodled with the Area J's for a little bit. I'm expecting these to be somewhat "mid forward" compared with the Ultra J's, but curious to know just what that brings to the table for me. I can say that I've enjoyed solo'ing the neck pickup with my Ultra J's to get a fat, rich tone that's perhaps a step or two in the direction of a P-bass. News at eleven...
    iambrando likes this.
  8. iambrando


    Apr 26, 2017
    @groove pump

    I am actually leaning towards AJ now. I want some ability for more diversity of tone.

    I know a lot of people lean towards Ultra and usually suggest them, but I am not huge fan of scooped mids. My ear just leans towards a more classic mid. I get why people like Ultras, they just sound too modern to me.

    I would love to hear your evaluation of the AJ's after you have had some time with them.
    Last edited: Apr 28, 2017
  9. walterw

    walterw Supportive Fender Gold Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 20, 2009
    yeah, that's pointing you right at the area Js.
    iambrando likes this.
  10. jallenbass

    jallenbass Supporting Member Commercial User

    May 17, 2005
    Bend, Oregon
    FWIW, I have Area J's in one of my Jazz basses and Seymour Duncan SJB-1's (which by all accounts is a classic vintage sounding pickup set) in the other. I really can't tell them apart without looking. So if you're looking for traditional and DiMarzio Area's are what you want.
    iambrando likes this.

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