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Gnarliest P pickups (also NBD)

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by playsthespace, Dec 12, 2019.

  1. playsthespace


    Aug 11, 2009
    hello all,

    Serial talkbass lurker here, (just saw I’ve been here for 10 years!) thought I’d pick your collective brains before I pull the trigger on some pickups for my new Player Series P.

    First, I want to echo some of the other great reviews I’ve read here and elsewhere about these basses. The fit and finish are really stellar, and for a bass that retails under $700 it’s even more impressive. The neck feels great, and if I didn’t know the MIM tells, I’d guess it was MIA, and I’ve played a few US made P’s over the years that I didn’t like as much as this one. Anyway, there’s plenty out there to read/YouTube about them already. Stringthrough wrote a great post about his, and reading it was the last push I needed order mine.

    All that said, I’m not in love with the pickup. I bought this bass specifically for a punk band I’m in with a bunch of other guys that are too old to be in punk bands, and I’m looking to get as aggressive a tone as possible out of it. I’m leaning pretty strongly towards the Geezers, but wanted to see if you all had any other options to check out first. I’ve always been more of a “big, fat, smooth” kinda guy when it comes to my tone so I’m a little out of my wheelhouse. I tend to like my mids, so my preference is nothing too scooped, but I’m open to any suggestions.

    Killed_by_Death likes this.
  2. Change all the pots for 500k Ohm first, those EMG pickups are far from aggressive.
    Fender uses 250k Ohm pots, which clips to top off the timbre.
  3. JRA

    JRA my words = opinion Supporting Member

    NBD pics?
    EatS1stBassist likes this.
  4. bench


    Dec 28, 2007
    if you want aggressive and gnarly and middy get a model p...
  5. playsthespace


    Aug 11, 2009

    I’ve always bought subdued/classic colors (white, black, burst, etc) and I was looking for loud and obnoxious this time. When I saw fender put this hideous green out I had to have one
  6. JRA

    JRA my words = opinion Supporting Member

    well, now: that's a classy looking P you've got there! thanks for posting that pic --- it may help some folks 'conceptualize' a response to your pickup issues. but the pic helped me identify with your NBD joy! congratulations on your new instrument! :thumbsup:
  7. Lobster11

    Lobster11 Supporting Member Supporting Member

    Apr 22, 2006
    Williamsburg, VA
    I recently was looking for a new pickup to replace a traditional Fender P, and also wanted a gnarly, nasty tone (inspired by Julie Slick):

    I wrote about it here:

    Lakland P4 "Neopunch" P-bass pickup
    Last edited: Dec 12, 2019
  8. sikamikanico


    Mar 17, 2004
    that’s a good first step! even more punk would be wiring direct to output! (And even brighter!)

    In terms of actual pickup choices, I think two standard responses are DiMarzio model p and Duncan quarter pounders, which may work well and not cost too much (also easy to find used). I would also suggest Wilde p46, it’s a very full sounding yet bright and aggressive pickup (if you want it to be) and for me it does what I thought the DiMarzio should do (but imo, ime doesn’t - I found it too dark sounding; I have limited experience with Duncans). Wilde is very affordable and they have a holiday sale going on right now for $58 (no affiliation, just a happy customer).

    aside from pickups and electronics, setup and strings are key too, and of course technique...
    slobake, DJ Bebop, MCF and 2 others like this.
  9. invalidprotocol

    invalidprotocol Supporting Member

    Dec 11, 2008
    Depends on factors like punk era, band mix, available sonic space and personal taste. Dimarzio Model P or Seymour Duncan Quarter Pound SPB3. Both are excellent for punk and fit the term gnarly but are different approaches.

    It’s hard to go wrong with either but I’m a fan of an SD + Ampeg (or simulated) combo.
    drumvsbass and DJ Bebop like this.
  10. playsthespace


    Aug 11, 2009

    There’s a head to head between the Geezers and the Neo Punch’s on YouTube and the Lakeland’s sound better to my ear. Hadn’t thought to check them out before, but they’re the front runners now.
    Lobster11 likes this.
  11. GrapeBass


    Jun 10, 2004
    Graphic designer: Yorkville Sound
    WOW! I love Adrian and this just confirms why!
  12. Evanforbass


    Feb 3, 2016
    Denver, CO
    Camarillo, DJ Bebop and MCF like this.
  13. BigBear77

    BigBear77 Supporting Member

    Aug 30, 2017
    Digging that color
    DJ Bebop likes this.
  14. NKBassman

    NKBassman Lvl 10 Nerd Supporting Member

    Jun 16, 2009
    Winnipeg, MB, Canada
    Dimarzio Model P hands down.
    Dimarzio Will Power.
    G&L MFD.
    Also, judging by their Jazz bass pickups, I'll suggest the Lace Man'O'War.

    Never used a Geezer but they're at the top of my want list.
  15. Kukulkan61

    Kukulkan61 Supporting Member

    Feb 8, 2011
    Northern Arizona
    Perfect color for the Punk Band!!
    As far as pickups someone mentioned the Lakland neo punch, these came in my Skyline P bass and I couldn't stand them, way to modern and gritty for my taste, maybe they'll work for you..
    DJ Bebop and MCF like this.
  16. non


    Aug 4, 2015
    your never to old to be in a punk band.
  17. playsthespace


    Aug 11, 2009
    Thanks guys. I’ve heard some demos, but I don’t have much experience with the dimarzio’s. I’ll look into them a little more.

    I’ve just never been impressed with the quarter pounders. Can’t put my finger on what I don’t like but I bought a bass with them a few years ago and pulled them out almost immediately. Something with the low end maybe? They sound kind of loose to me, if that makes sense.

    I am, however, a huge fan of the Duncan Antiquity II’s. I’ve got sets in both my other P’s, including the one I’ve been using in the punk band for the last few years (plus an Emerson wiring kit.) It sounds great, and I’m almost tempted to do that set up again. I just don’t want to get locked into a brand and miss out on something better. Since this bass is going to do something pretty specific I can get a little more wild than I would on a bass that I need to cover a classic country gig or something
    Zoobiedood likes this.
  18. NKBassman

    NKBassman Lvl 10 Nerd Supporting Member

    Jun 16, 2009
    Winnipeg, MB, Canada
    If gnarly is what you want, then the Dimarzio Model P (and Dimarzio Will Power) will deliver in spades. They've got a really hot output, and an aggressive, hairy/raspy midrange, and a tight but present/pleasant bottom end. When played with a pick and the tone wide open they'll get downright mean, but if you switch to fingerstyle and play softly they really clean up, so it's not all one trick pony. They can be quite versatile with varied right hand attack.

    Certainly will be very different than Antiquity 2's.
  19. austin2112

    austin2112 Supporting Member

    Jun 24, 2015
    Electron Green, only 200 made? Neat
    tindrum and PaulS like this.
  20. flatwound62p


    Apr 24, 2017
    You should try the new Lollar Precision 90 just so you can tell me how it rocks, without me having to buy one :)
    A pair of P90’s in a precision form factor :bassist: In my punk days I would have jumped straight on it, looks like it would slay.
    Precision 90

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