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Fender Orig. '62 P Pickups -- First Impression

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by cmhgreg, Jun 1, 2007.

  1. cmhgreg


    Oct 26, 2004
    Columbus, OH
    In a word -- wow. I picked up a Highway 1 (Pre-Upgrade) P bass a few months back in honey blonde. I put a Badass II on it and then went on a string odyssey looking for "that sound." To make a long story short, I couldn't find it. Everything sounded thin, nasally and colored with honk. It wasn't anything like how a p bass should sound to my ears. So I decided to try the Original '62 pickups in it. I gave some thought to Fralins, SD's and Nords, but I really wanted to keep Fenders in it and see if "that sound" might be found in the horse's mouth (so to speak).

    I put the '62's in today and the difference is stunning. The tone is monstrous compared with the stock pickups. I will not be looking back. I have found "that sound." The '62's are more articulate, particularly on the D and G strings, which is where most of my dissatisfaction with the stock pickups was. They are also deeper from string to string. They seem to growl a LOT more and transmit the resonance of the wood better (if that is possible). What was really surprising to me was the difference in output. The '62's are noticeably hotter.

    I feel like I just got a whole new bass. :)
  2. BillMason


    Mar 6, 2007
    Cool - I just did a pup replacement also, and feel the same way. Best upgrade possible, and a steal at the price!
  3. jdbutz


    Feb 10, 2007
    Indianola, Iowa
    Thanks for the review! I just bought the exact same bass a couple of weeks ago and had been thinking about the exact same pickup. How big a difference did the Badass II make?
  4. cmhgreg


    Oct 26, 2004
    Columbus, OH
    To be quite honest, I didn't play it very much before putting the Badass II on it. I had tried it on my Jag and didn't like it, so it was just laying around. I figured since the upgrades were selling with Badasses already on them I would just slap it on the Highway 1.

    However, I can say that I don't remember the difference being nearly as detectable and noticeable as when I swapped the pups.
  5. Jo6Pak


    May 2, 2007
    I bought one for my Jag that I have yet to install. Before I do, what didn't you like about it? THANKS!
  6. Where'd you get 'em and how much? I've seen Angela ads for them but they're "temp out of stock".
  7. Jo6Pak


    May 2, 2007
    Fender Original '62 P Bass Pickup - $69.99 - Musicians Friend
    Fender Original '62 P Bass Pickup - $69.99 - GuitarCenter.com
  8. cmhgreg


    Oct 26, 2004
    Columbus, OH
    Musician's Friend.
  9. cmhgreg


    Oct 26, 2004
    Columbus, OH
    First of all, I'm a fan of the Badass and I have one on two of my four basses (it's on the Highway 1 and an RKB900, which came with one stock). But on the Jag I felt it took some of the natural growl/bite and mellowed it out a bit. It didn't sound bad at all. I think the way I would describe it is like this: with the Badass the Jag purred like a kitten; with the stock bridge, it seems to growl more like an alley cat, and that is what I want out of that bass.

    I would go ahead and try it if I were you. Plenty of guys have made this mod and love it.
  10. Showdown


    Jan 21, 2002
    Honolulu, Hawaii
    I put an Original '62 in my SX P and it really sounds great. I think it sounds better than my Fender with a Nordstrand P. Great pickups!
  11. cmhgreg


    Oct 26, 2004
    Columbus, OH
    Just as a follow up, I took my Highway 1 (affectionately named "Blondie") to a gig last night. We played a private party for a friend's 50th birthday celebration. I really wanted to see how it sat in the mix and whether "that sound" would shine through in a live setting.

    I took along Blackie, my RKB900, which has been my #1 bass for some time. He ended up watching most of the show from the bench. I put Blondie on to start the first set and she was still strapped on at the end of it. We played 30 songs total and I think I ended up using Blondie on 26 of them. I was grinning from ear to ear. The difference these pups make is even more noticeable in a live setting than I anticipated. I have attained P-bass nirvana. I am madly in love with Blondie and can't get her off of my mind.

    These original '62's are the shiznit. I guess 1962 was a hell of a year (hint: I will be 45 in July).
  12. Mad Tango

    Mad Tango Supporting Member

    Apr 18, 2006
    Pearland, Tx.
    I have a Fender 62RI and a Nordstrand NP4 pups. I also get to play on a 62RI w/Seymour Antiquity II. I like all three pups. The 62RI is a tad more raw and growly, while the Nord and SD II are more smooth.
  13. Primary

    Primary TB Assistant

    Here are some related products that TB members are talking about. Clicking on a product will take you to TB’s partner, Primary, where you can find links to TB discussions about these products.

    Feb 25, 2021

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