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For Matt Schmill: Villex system?

Discussion in 'Luthier's Corner' started by Balor, Mar 23, 2003.


  1. Balor

    Balor

    Sep 24, 2000
    Montréal, Québec
    This is for Matt. Have you received the Villex pickup you where suppose to install in the #049? If so, could tell us what you think of these pickup. I know Emmet Chapman seems to have only good words for the Villex system, but what about you?

    thanks
     
  2. SoComSurfing

    SoComSurfing Mercedes Benz Superdome. S 127. R 22. S 12-13.

    Feb 15, 2002
    Mobile, Al
    Great question! I'm wondering the same thing. Please share when/if you have these pickups, Matt.
     
  3. FWIW, Modulus uses the Villex pickups in some of the Flea J basses.
     
  4. FBB Custom

    FBB Custom TalkBass Pro Commercial User

    Jan 26, 2002
    Maryland
    Owner: FBB Bass Works
    I have received the pickups and have installed them. The first thing that I should mention is that after looknig at the wiring diagram, and then wiring the pickups, I have no idea how these things work. The pickups have 3 leads plus shield. The knob setup is 2 volumes, a passive treble cut, and an a50k "mid" knob.

    I do like the sound very much. It is a fuller, larger sound than I think I get from other passive pickups. The mid knob doesn't sound quacky like some active mid boosts. I like the sound best with both pickups on 100% and the mid knob all the way up.

    I don't think that these pickups make active EQ's obsolete, but they are the best sounding passive setup to my ear. I will recommend them to anyone who wants to go passive. The dual coil setups get expensive, especially on wider packages, but the jazz and MM setups are quite reasonable. In the not-too-distant future, I may crank out a run of basses to sell through BunnyBass that will be possibly based around the Villex MM pickup.

    This bass used to have EMGs and I need to go back and ground the bridge. When I have done that, I plan on using this bass for some recordings. I will be sure to note the songs that I use the Villex system on. I'll try to post something here when I do that, as well as on my web site. I know there are a lot of people interested in this new pickup.
     
  5. Holy Smokes!! I didn't realize FBB was located in the same town I go to school in. I would love to visit the shop sometime and check out how a luthier works. And maybe try some of those cool basses.:D

    edit: FBB has PM!
     
  6. Balor

    Balor

    Sep 24, 2000
    Montréal, Québec
    Thanks for the review:)

    Since your bass originaly had EMGs on, could describe some of the tone differences?

    thanks
     
  7. SoComSurfing

    SoComSurfing Mercedes Benz Superdome. S 127. R 22. S 12-13.

    Feb 15, 2002
    Mobile, Al
    Go play those Single-Cut 6 and 7s! Give me a report! FBBs are incredible, totally custom basses for a fantastic price.
     
  8. FBB Custom

    FBB Custom TalkBass Pro Commercial User

    Jan 26, 2002
    Maryland
    Owner: FBB Bass Works
    Well, the EMG jazz pickups didn't have good string-to-string balance. Not sure why the EMGs weren't balancing well, but the balance on the Villex pickups is right on.

    The EMGs are active pickups, but I guess they are a little barky sounding, a little thin and hi-fi. These Villex pickups are not active, and I feel like they have a fuller, meatier sound. I found myself compelled to add a preamp with the EMGs in this bass so that I could add some bass boost when I things got heavy in band situations. I feel pretty confident that I won't need that with the Villex pickups.
     
  9. joetiii

    joetiii

    Oct 27, 2002
    Oh that's just great Matt !!!

    I have you building a Bass for me and you don't even know how these pickups work. :D

    Seriously now, you mentioned these pickups to me for #66 a few weeks back and I thought I had my mind made up but now that this discussion has started????

    I'm curious how these compare to the Aero's . The Aeros are said to have an extremely flat and broad dynamic range as well.

    #66 will have a MM/J setup with a series/parallel switch, and if I remember correctly we were going to have a problem with canceling hum on the J p/u by itself on the Aeros. The Barts have a double coil in the J and a phantom triple coil in he MM.

    How's the MM/J Villex wired and setup?

    BTW, I wouldn't mind swinging by to test these out if they can do what we want 'em to do.;)
     
  10. FBB Custom

    FBB Custom TalkBass Pro Commercial User

    Jan 26, 2002
    Maryland
    Owner: FBB Bass Works
    I don't think the Villex will do all the things you want the Bartolini pickups to do. I do not believe series & parallel are an option for the MM pickup, and the J pickups are not hum cancelling on their own (like the Aeros).

    Part of what is confusing with the wiring is that different wires from the different pickups seem to do different things in the schematic. I think -- and this is just a guess -- the basis of how the mid circuit works has to do with the pickup coils interacting with each other, and so you need the coils in pairs to get control over the mids. I don't see how you could wire these up with only one coil.