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Changing Pickups... Good Idea\Bad Idea?

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by Dough, Mar 1, 2006.

  1. Dough


    Dec 7, 2005
    I own an Ibanez GSR200 ( http://www.musiciansfriend.com/product/Bass/Electric?sku=519524 ) and have been scanning and searching ebay and other online music stores for another bass. But with money problems and some other things, Ive thought about just upgrading my pups.

    My main question is, is it a good idea to just replace the J pups and not the P pup or should I toss in the extra $50 or so and replace both? I will prob. be switching to DiMarzio Jazz pickups but havent done any research on new Ps

    Thanks yall!
  2. LazyBerserker


    Jun 10, 2006
    Bumping, due to the fact that I have the same question. :D
  3. Jim Carr

    Jim Carr Dr. Jim Gold Supporting Member

    Jan 21, 2006
    Denton, TX or Kailua, HI
    fEARful Kool-Aid dispensing liberal academic card-carrying union member Musicians Local 72-147
    :D Oh my god, why not drop 7 lattes, and try it?

    I would not hesitate to try this! Do both!
  4. Philbiker

    Philbiker Pat's the best!

    Dec 28, 2000
    Northern Virginia, USA
    The pickups and EQ on low end Ibanez basses are notorious for being relatively low quality. Personally if it were my bass I'd leave it alone. You should see if Reverend still has some of their P-bass pickups available, they sound fantastic and are very inexpensive. Do a search here for the thread. Before you start putting money into that bass, be aware that any upgrades you spend money on will not yield an increase in the value of the bass. Do so only for your own edification.
  5. 62bass


    Apr 3, 2005
    After trying the GSR a number of times through various amplifiers, I think the most notorious thing holding the bass back are the factory strings. The pickups aren't that bad, nor are the electronics. Just don't use extremes of boost on the eq.

    A student of mine bought one and we put on a set of TI flats. Completely changed the sound for the better. Other good quality strings will probably do the same.

    I wouldn't mod that bass much beyond strings because you'll never get your money back if you sell or trade it. You could upgrade the pickups and take them out for another project if you decide to sell the bass.

    If you do swap out pickups go for a matched set of PJ from a company you like. I'd go with Basslines myself if I did it.

    But a string change will work wonders on that bass.
  6. Minger


    Mar 15, 2004
    Rochester, NY
    I also vouch for new strings - the electronics on both my Ibbys aren't too bad. Just if you do decide to get flats, you will probably need to shim it because the tension is a lot for the thin necks...
  7. 62bass


    Apr 3, 2005
    Yes, maybe if you use high tension strings. I went with TIs which are low tension and had to back off the trussrod about 1/4 of a turn.

    One thing I don't care for with the 200 (and this is a problem common to many PJ equipped basses, including much more expensive ones) is the bridge pickup is a single coil and tends to get noisy when dialed in. Shieding won't solve that problem. A humbucking pickup would. This may or may not bother you.
  8. JanusZarate

    JanusZarate Low End Avenger Supporting Member

    Feb 21, 2006
    San Francisco, CA, USA
    I'm more fond of the EMG sound, so I'd put in EMG-HZ PJ pickups. They're passive, but great sounding.

    You could also put in the more expensive EMG PJ pickups (the active ones), but then you would have to seriously consider how useful that bass will be to you in the future.

    I've upgraded my first bass with active EMGs because A) I'm a lefty, so lefty basses are hard to come by, B) It sounds very impressive for being an "upper" low end bass, and C) I love the sound of EMG pickups.