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DiMarzio Model J in Squier VM Jazz

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by michaelandrew, Feb 16, 2014.

  1. michaelandrew

    michaelandrew The bass player is always right.

    Has anyone tried DiMarzio Model Js in a Squier VM Jazz (yes, I used the search function)?

    If so:

    1. Do they fit? Are they "drop-in" replacements?
    2. How does the sound compare with the stock (Duncan Designed) pups?
    3. Is it worth installing series/parallel switches for each pup (if there's room)?
    The Duncan Designed pups sound good, but I'd like to try humbuckers. The bass is (currently) wired for Blend/Volume and separate treble (bass cut) and bass (treble cut), with a separate series/parallel switch for neck/bridge.

    Any other suggestions are most welcome.

  2. Cadfael


    Jan 4, 2013
    Germany, EU
    1.) They SHOULD ... as DDs have the standard measurement and DiMarzios, too ...
    2.) As the DiMarzios are humbuckers, they have more mids (and are more powerful).
    You won't get the ounch of a P PU, but the sound will become "more punchy" ...
    3.) NO. Parallel Js (within itself) sound as good as paralles Ps (within itself). Weak and powerless. Series/parallel can be made with "internal series Js" (without humming).

    I have a DiMarzio J in my Fender CIJ Aerodyne P-Bass Special. Even series wired it can not compete with the P PU, but it ist much stronger (and not humming). The Delanos I have in my Maruszczyk Jake (Jazz) Bass can't be ordered even in Germany (where they are made). The Delano JB HBs I have sound like non-humming Js (only a little more mids). The DiMarzios sound more "punchy" - but they have been excellent PUs for more than 35 years now ...
  3. michaelandrew

    michaelandrew The bass player is always right.

    Thanks Cadfael - I hadn't considered Delanos - I will now.

    Anyone else?
  4. Troph


    Apr 14, 2011
    Kirkland, WA
    My experience with Model J's has been pretty good, but they are significantly taller than standard J pickups. You may end up with a situation where you want to lower the pickups to maintain optimal pickup-string height, but there is no more adjustment room. In that case, you might have to make the pickup cavity routes deeper.
  5. michaelandrew

    michaelandrew The bass player is always right.

    Thanks for the heads-up, Troph, the DiMarzio web site says they are "slightly" deeper but doesn't give the dimension. No, wait, yes it does - 0.975" - now I can measure.

  6. Plucky The Bassist

    Plucky The Bassist Bassist for Michael "Epic Mic" Rowe

    Jul 30, 2010
    Houston, TX
    Yes, one of my first bass mods, in fact!

    1) Yes, mine was

    2) Waaaay more rich and full. The Duncans sound pretty tinny and harsh compared to these. Much more low-mid and bass content in these pickups. Plenty of treble sweetness, but it's balanced and isn't piercing your eardrums.

    3) Umm...that really depends on taste. I had it on my neck pickup and while there was a noticeable difference in tone, it dropped so much going from series to parallel that it made it not as useful, unless I did some volume tweaking and just solo'd the neck.

    When I got an Audere Z-Mode preamp for the bass (I HIGHLY recommend this simple, affordable, drop-in mod for any jazz bass owner) it said to wire both pickups in series if at all possible. Wired both in series and MAN does it sound sweet. If you want meaty j-bass tone and the flexibility of a preamp. it's a wonderful combo to go with. With the neck in lo-z mode (low impedance), you get an almost P-bass tone, sounding like one with the tone slightly lowered. Of course you can dial more of whatever in since you have 4 bands of EQ to work with on it too. Seriously, I can't recommend that Audere enough lol.
  7. dls119


    Jun 27, 2013
    Northern Virginia
    1. I had to shim my neck as the DiMarzios were a little taller than my duncan designed pickups. A lot of others have been able to drop them in.

    2. I found the Duncans to be a bit brash sounding. I mean they were okay, but very harsh in the mid range. The DiMarzios have given me a much warmer sounding bass. I ended up selling the Duncans online.

    3. Meh, I wired them without push/pull, but I'm not impressed with my stock pots - not getting much control out of them since I installed the DiMarzios. you may consider upgrading your other electronic components as well. I will when I get around to it, but for now I don't feel a real need to rewire since I generally play with both pickups fully on and the tone rolled all the way up.

    Overall I'm pleased with the end product. I love my VM Jazz and the DiMarzio Model Js suit it quite well, and IMHO, you can't beat the $99 price tag. I would have liked to go with a higher-end pickup arrangement, but I really couldn't justify throwing $300 worth of electronics into a $280 bass (I'm having the same problem with my Squier Deluxe Active V). The DiMarzios got me where I wanted to be with that bass at a price point that I was happy to pay.
  8. Torkk


    Jan 16, 2010
    I just installed these to my VM 70s jb. Yes they are taller than the stockers. I didnt use any foam under them, I have them wired up parallel for the moment, Im waiting on my p/p pots to come.

    They sound awesome
  9. Torkk


    Jan 16, 2010
    Stocks pots are 250k they recommend for 500k

  10. michaelandrew

    michaelandrew The bass player is always right.

    Now it's getting really interesting:).

    VanillaThundah: I have a Classic 4 Audere pre in my Yammy 765A (no Z-Mode switch on that one though). I'm already completely sold on Audere - excellent product/price/service IME.

    On the VM Jazz, I'm running a blend and master volume set-up but using both bass (treble cut) and treble (bass cut) tone controls - all 500K pots. I'll hold off on the Audere (for now:D).

    Thanks everyone for the responses - I think this will be a go once I make some measurements.
  11. dls119


    Jun 27, 2013
    Northern Virginia
    I know, I had it in my head that 500K would be too bright sounding, but 250K just doesn't cut it with these pups.:rollno:

    I'll replace them all eventually - whenever I make a reasonably sized order from stewmac or something.