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Custom Jazz - Electronic Selection?

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by Hambone, Aug 6, 2000.


  1. I would like to hear the boards views on what selection of electronics they would use for a completely new custom Jazz bass project. A wonderful Walnut Jazz project from a contributor on the FDP has inspired me to finally get off of my duff and I am proceeding with the design of my own. I've been thinking about this project for about 6 months and will be initiating it within the next 2.

    The project will likely be a fretless with a composite mahogany body. I won't be building my own neck as I don't have the confidence yet to do that type of work. The neck will probably be a Stewart MacDonald Fretless Jazz with an ebony fingerboard. The body will be a back routed design without a pickguard. These design elements are firm in my mind but the electronics are another thing.

    The pre-amp systems offered by Vintage Bass Trading Co. are fascinating as I have grown to love active electronics. But I have read of using other things like MM pickups and the like and this is where it all muddles up on me.

    So - without price consideration what would each of you like to see in a real custom Jazz?
     
  2. john turner

    john turner You don't want to do that. Trust me. Staff Member Administrator

    Mar 14, 2000
    atlanta ga
    i would think that a music man style pickup in both standard positions would be idea - 2 music man pickups in all. give each one a 3-way switch ala sterling/stingray, and then you have the ability to have 2 single coils at their proper positions, like a traditional jazz, but also get the p-j'ish sorta humbucking neck thing going, plus all those great stingray tones...

    i really dig the music man style pickups. i got custom seymour duncans on my 8 strings - i love em, biggest pickups i've ever seen - 16 pole pieces :D. sound incredible, and then the basses also have 3 band eq, and a fully parametric, sweepable Q eq. and piezos. and synth pickups. and... :D

    anyway, i always thought that a dual mm style setup would be cool, sorta like the l-2000 style g&l basses.
     
  3. Christopher

    Christopher

    Apr 28, 2000
    New York, NY
    For safety's sake, I'd start off with routs for some quality passive jazz pickups such as Lane Poors, Lindy Fralins or Kent Armstrongs. A mahogany body produces a lot of midrange, which would be nicely accentuated by the j's. If you're not satisfied, you can always subtract more wood for soapbar or MM pickups, active electronics etc.

    The MM is something of an acquired taste. With roundwounds and frets, it produces a stringy piano-wire tone which is great for slapping. Pino Palladino gets a good fretless tone out of it with a Musicman (made of ash?); I don't know how it'd work with your wood selection, though. Two MMs sounds like a cool idea (and always looks kick-ass), but the magnetic constriction may rob the bass of sustain.

    One thing I don't understand about the newly popular MM/J combo is why the J is in the neck position. It would seem more logical to put the j near the bridge for access to the classic Jaco (or Rocco) burp. As far as I know, Warrior is the only maker which follows this placement scheme.