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height of my pickups.

Discussion in 'Hardware, Setup & Repair [BG]' started by Bigwig, Mar 9, 2005.

  1. Bigwig


    Dec 27, 2003
    hey ya'll,
    sorry for the noob question..
    i just put some seymour duncan quater pound pickups in my p-bass, and i just realized, that im not exactly sure how high the pickups should sick out of the bass.
    is there any set height that they should stick up?
    thanks alot.

    edit: i wasnt sure whether to put this in the pickup section, or here, but i decided here, sorry if its misplaced.
  2. Bigwig


    Dec 27, 2003
    i know someones gotta know this off the top of their head.
  3. Minger


    Mar 15, 2004
    Rochester, NY
    Well, you can set them as high as you want - on fender's site (mr gearhead i think) theres the standard for Fenders set at their factory...

    but set it how you want it because its your tone, just not too high because the strings might hit the pickups
  4. Bigwig


    Dec 27, 2003
    thanks, i appreciate the response.
    could you give me a link to it? i just want the tightest / punchiest sound i can get.
  5. permagrin


    May 1, 2003
    San Pedro, CA
    You want the pickups to be slightly higher in the middle, under the A and D strings, to compensate for the radius of the fretboard.

    As for a link, see the sticky at the top, or it's mrgearhead.com or something like that. That'll give a standard setting that you should use as a starting point. The rest is experimenting - adjust them slightly up and down, and listen to how it sounds. You'll be able to find a sweet spot. Personally, I hate when a bass disappears as you go into higher registers, so I tend to have the D/G half of the pickup slightly closer to the strings.

    The sound will get stronger as the pickups get closer to the strings; the farther away, however, the pickups will "see" a larger section of the string and give a slightly different character. Find what suits your ears best.

    In the extreme case of the pickups getting too close to the strings the magnets will pull on the strings, which can cause a lack of sustain and sometimes some goofy chorus-y effects on notes. They are also too close to the strings, obviously, if you play with a heavy touch and the strings make contact with the pickups (as Minger noted). But these are really your only worries. Oh, and make sure you have enough springy stuff under your pickups so that they're nice and snug whatever height you end up at.

    BTW I had QPs in my 73P for a long time and they sounded great.