1. Please take 30 seconds to register your free account to remove most ads, post topics, make friends, earn reward points at our store, and more!  
    TalkBass.com has been uniting the low end since 1998.  Join us! :)

bought a used bass with Barts - couple questions

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by telekaster, Oct 27, 2005.

  1. telekaster


    Feb 14, 2005
    San Diego
    I walked into my guitar shop at lunch earlier today and ended up walking out with a used MIJ Marcus Miller bass! As soon as I picked it up I noticed it was pretty light. This bass felt special and I thought it was my lucky day. It came loaded with Bartolini jazz pickups. After I plugged it into one of the many Genz Benz amps they had, I had to buy it. The sound and playability of this bass was excellent.

    I have 2 questions:

    1. How do I identify which model Barts I have? I took one out and didn't notice any markings. Maybe I need to look harder?

    2. I searched for this to no avail... What is an ideal height for these pickups? They are set with about 2/32 string clearance when fretted at the last fret. Is this too close? I did notice that they don't have much magneic pull.

    They bass was set up absolutley perfectly in the shop. I assume the previous owner knew what he/she was doing. So I'm thinking that the pickup height is OK. I just want to check since Bartolini's website doesn't offer much help on pickup height.

    Any tips appreciated. thanks.
  2. mahrous


    Aug 13, 2005
    pickup height is all about preference. if ur into the sustain thing, lower ur pups and let ur strings vibrate freely. if u want the fast response and aggressiveness, keep the pups high.

    experiment with both and find out which suits u more. it differs form one bass to another, from each pickup to another.
  3. Brad Maestas

    Brad Maestas Gold Supporting Member

    Nov 26, 2003
    Oakland, CA
    Congrats on the new bass!!! :D :cool:

    1. You most likely have the standard single-coil Barts (#9S) in there. The newest version is called the 9CBJS. They have two main jazz bass pickup models. The 'S' at the end stands for single-coil and a 'D' would be for dual-coil. You should be able to tell pretty easily whether you've got the single-coils or the humbuckers. If you have any doubts play a bass that you know has single-coils and compare the two. I've installed many sets of the 9S and it is, by far, the more common of the two.

    2. Pickup height partially depends on action and the radius of the fingerboard but here's a good place to start. Right now the pickups in my J are set like this: Neck at 12/64ths of an inch and bridge at 10/64ths without pressing anything down. That's the top of the pickup casing to bottom of the E string. When adjusted for similar output between the two pups and between the individual strings themselves you'll commonly find the neck pup slightly lower than the bridge pup and the bass side slightly higher than the treble side.

    Have fun and report your findings!

  4. telekaster


    Feb 14, 2005
    San Diego
    I went ahead and took a pickup out last night. I had to take some sticky foam off the bottom of the pickups to identify them. Trying to make out the hand-etched writing, It appeared to say "9J 81".

    After searching, I don't think a 9J 81 existed. I had a hunch that they were dual coil since they were so quiet and they appeared to be wired as such. Maybe the writing read "9J#1"? That would make sense, plus the sound is consistent with the tonal description of these pickups. The neck is well-balanced (kind of a bright neck pickup) and the bridge has this incredible intrinsic growl to it, much like these are typically described on the web. I'm pretty sure that I have the 9J#1 set.

    For now I have the pickups set at 3/32" when depressed at the last fret. They sound great there so I'm going to leave them there for now - at least until I settle on a set of strings I want to commit to.

    So far so good. I'm enjoying the hell out of this bass. It's got to be a good pound or 2 lighter than my MIM Deluxe Active Jazz, which sounds great in its own right.