carvin hb5

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by superphat, Aug 27, 2002.

  1. superphat


    Sep 30, 2001
    carvin players~
    can anybody tell me about the carvin musicman style pickup? how does it sound?
    i'm thinking about trying it out in my mtd heir 5 as a bridge replacement.
    thanks in advance~
  2. rickbass

    rickbass Supporting Member

    It was the saddest excuse for an MM pickup I've ever had the displeasure to own.

    The only use I found for it was to augment the single coil tone of the much more powerful J99.

    "Weak", "thin", and "boxy" are the first three words that come to mind when I think of that Carvin pickup. Some people at the Carvin discussion board even suspected it was made in some third-world country. I don't think so but somebody really missed the mark with it.
  3. superphat


    Sep 30, 2001
    i guess i'm glad i asked... :)
    thanks for sharing rickbass.
  4. rickbass

    rickbass Supporting Member

    Well, there are a few people I've seen who defended it, so I'm no "supreme authority."

    But I've got a Bartolini MM on a Lakland Skyline now that will kick the Carvin MM out of the neighborhood.

    Getting the Carvin MM option was $40 and that also required getting the "rounded body option" for another $40. So, that's $80 right there. For that kind of money, you can get a serious MM pickup but have to pay to get it installed. But at least that way you've got a major-league MM pickup instead of a sad impostor.
  5. KB


    Jan 13, 2000
    Chapel Hill, NC
    I also agree that the Carvin MM pickup (HB) really LACKS tonally. It is not the normal MM sound. When I had my Carvin LB70 I switched it out for the Basslines Ceramic MM pickup and never looked back. There was a big improvement in the sound (and I kept the Carvin electronics). I have since sold the bass and moved on to IMHO better basses.

    But I am getting another Carvin in the mail soon :) (an early 80s LB50).

  6. FalsehoodBass


    Jul 22, 2001
    Denver, CO
    If you get a carvin 5 string and plan to change the pickups down the line, do NOT get the wide neck option or the BB-5 model. The pickup dimensions are different and you won't find a drop-in replacement anywhere.

    and i agree that the carvin HB pickup lacks. Abuout 4 months ago i replaced mine with a bartolini one (although the fit is ackward) and it's a million times better to my ears.