1. Please take 30 seconds to register your free account to remove most ads, post topics, make friends, earn reward points at our store, and more!  

HAS-Sound Hot J Set Review

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by tplyons, Oct 28, 2006.


  1. tplyons

    tplyons

    Apr 6, 2003
    Madison, NJ
    First of all, this review must begin with a shoutout to Stan, who builds a darn good pickup, and gives them away. I won my choice of pickups in his monthly drawing and opted for a Hot J set (formerly known as the JuJu set -- and that's what the stickers on the bottom of mine said, but the box said Hot J ... maybe a famous transitional piece down the road ;))

    Anyway, I opted for the Hot J's to tame my favorite beast, my Marcus Miller Jazz which is a bit zingy in the top end without any sort of passive treble rolloff. So some hot pickups, in theory, should take some zing off the top and tame the beast a bit. I discussed the possibility with Stan of possibly overwinding and he basically replied saying that these are quite hot already and should do what I'm looking for. I'm glad I listened to his advice.

    First of all, the product presentation was phenominal. I was expecting to wait a few weeks for the pickups because (I believe) they're wound order by order, and mine being free, I wouldn't expect them to be any sort of priority. I was surprised one day when I got a box I couldn't figure out what it was, picked it up and lo and behold it was from HAS Sound. Boy was I happy to see this. In the big box was a tshirt and a tiny little white box marked Hot J set. I open her up and there's a buisiness card, a bag of height adjustment screws, a promotional pick, foam for supporting the pickups, and lastly, two pickups carefully wrapped in foam sitting neatly in the bottom. Once I saw how much care he put into packaging the things, I knew they were going to be something really special.

    Installation was a breeze, just needed a screwdriver and a soldering iron (Stan uses vintage style cloth covered wire which can be pushed up and doesn't need to be stripped like a plastic coated wire) and took about 10 minutes. I screwed the pickups down and unfortunately stripped five of the eight screws that came with the pickups. Luckily I had spares because I was way too excited to wait for some new screws to arrive. Once I got everything settled down into place, I plugged in and was blown away.

    Stan's Hot J set is tonally very rich across the frequency spectrum, with a hint of treble rolled off to achieve aural bliss. The fundamentals were deep and throaty, and the overtones were rich and sweet. I took the bass from a burpy walking line to a smooth, sweet improvised solo at the 12th fret by changing nothing but my right hand attack and the pickups were right along with me showing no weaknesses.

    NOTE: Stan includes a Zap Strap kit with every purchase showing concern for our safety. I did not use this at this time but might install it in the future.

    I'll see what I can do about soundclips in the near future. I'll be taking these pickups for a slightly louder whirl tomorrow evening, hopefully one on one with a slightly insane guitarist to see how they cut, but there's no doubt in my mind, these pickups tamed the beast and educated it a bit too.
     
  2. Basso54

    Basso54

    Jul 22, 2003
    Dalhart, TX
    you wouldn't happen to have a link to his website would you? How do they compare price-wise to Barts, Dimarzios or Duncans?
     
  3. tplyons

    tplyons

    Apr 6, 2003
    Madison, NJ
    www.has-sound.com is the site. They're about twice the price of Dimarzio's or Barts, but worth every penny, even if I paid for them.

    Like I told Stan, I'll be back for more :)
     
  4. thats pretty cool, Stan and I have been emailing back and forth about a custom wiring harness/control plate, and he is such a nice guy :) very willing to do whatever it takes to get you what you want :)
    I am considering that Hot J set, or at least the bridge pickup...
     
    OToloDoBaixo likes this.
  5. tplyons

    tplyons

    Apr 6, 2003
    Madison, NJ
    Dude, you know how much I loved my Marcus before.

    Now this thing is never leaving my side.

    Look, I'm even selling the stock pickups! ;)
     
  6. I couldn't praise Stan more. Once set up a deal with him on both a custom Harness and a Pickup, but my plans fell through. Stan when you read this (if you do) I'll state my opoligies here. But he's an extreamly nice guy. Very polite and willing, as said above, to do whatever it takes to make you pleased.

    I'm contemplating going back to Stan for a harness to go into my Jazz whenever I get some free cash (god forbid:rolleyes: ). Your making me think about these pickups now. How bad is the single coil buzz with them in your Marcus? Very noticable at high volumes?

    EDIT: I'm siked for these soundclips. :D
     
  7. Kenny Allyn

    Kenny Allyn

    Mar 25, 2006
    Memphis
    The man went WAY out of his way to help me on one of my projects. I wanted to convert my 93 Spector to passive. Not only did he send the pickups and a custom harness but replaced the bridge pickup when it was found that Spectors use the J neck size in their bridge position. Then when he made an improvement in the P pickup ... he emailed me to let me know he would send the new updated one gratis!



    :) ... You should hear that Spector now fat and woody ... VERY NICE!
     
  8. tplyons

    tplyons

    Apr 6, 2003
    Madison, NJ
    Actually no, the buzz isn't too bad at high volumes, and this bass isn't even properly shielded ;)
     
  9. ElBajista

    ElBajista

    Dec 13, 2005
    Sebring, FL
    Congrats on winning the contest!

    These pickups and harnesses have always interested me, and that "small business" quality has always appealed to me. A while back when I was searching for pickups (Was? Ha!), Stan was very helpful and answered all of my questions courteously, even though I never implied that I was going to buy anything. Great business policies.

    Do you have anymore info on the "Zap Trap?" I read about it on the site, but I'm still unsure of exactly what it does, and what it looks like. Where do you install it?
     
  10. bassman blue

    bassman blue

    Aug 22, 2002
    Bellingham
    Stan is top notch, just like his products. The customer service and attention to product detail he provides is exceptional.
    :)
     
  11. Basso54

    Basso54

    Jul 22, 2003
    Dalhart, TX
    i think i might have to opt for the P/J setup for my old ibanez, thanks for the website tplyons
     
  12. ElBajista

    ElBajista

    Dec 13, 2005
    Sebring, FL
    Just thought I'd ask again. :D
     
  13. tplyons

    tplyons

    Apr 6, 2003
    Madison, NJ
    The Zap Strap is an anti-shock device supposedly that will protect you in the case of a shock being carried through your instrument cable, through your bridge, to your strings shocking you as well.

    IIRC it's a simple design consisting of a resistor and a capacitor, but I didn't spend much time staring at it.
     
  14. The Zap Trap is a circuit that isolates the strings from ground in the case of your amp's chassis going "live". It is installed in series with the string ground between the bridge and the back of the volume pot. It allows only about 40v instead of 110v to pass to the strings . Please note that this mod only isolates the strings. The jack plate and other exposed metal parts (metal knobs, etc.) connected to ground can still be potentially lethal. Also, sometimes there is a slight increase in hum when using an isolation circuit. While this circuit protects against many electrical ground problems, the Zap Trap is only a safety precaution to be used in conjunction with NORMAL SAFETY PRACTICES AND COMMON SENSE! Be sure to always double check your equipment grounds and the house wiring. The only truely guaranteed way to avoid guitar induced electrocution is to play acoustically.

    ~Stan
     
  15. stan,

    on that zap trap circuit...are you using a Metal Oxide Varistor "MOV" or a zener diode?

    just curious.

    kerry
     
  16. 1/2 watt carbon composition resistor and 500v cap.

    ~Stan
     
  17. ahhh...ok...basically for transient suppression
     
  18. stitchbass

    stitchbass

    May 20, 2006
    Virginia Water
    man, science baffles the hell out of me!
     
  19. Actually, a wireless transmitter makes it pretty hard to get shocked also.
     

Share This Page

  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.