I am VERY new to the bass. So .. i know this is dumb... but .. what do pickups do!?!?

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by Punk_Princess19, Sep 19, 2001.

  1. Yes yes.. i know what ur saying " how dosnt she know what pickups are".. well i dont.. so please tell me what they do and what the difference between a p pickup and a j. :confused:
  2. Hey. I need to know what to look for in pickups.. and what they do.. anyone there ??:cool: :confused: :eek:
  3. Freakapotamus9

    Freakapotamus9 Guest

    Jun 20, 2001
    a pick up is like a "microphone" for the strings. it basiclly just magnifies the sound. thats about the simplest I can put it... if somebody else would like to further explain this one ......
  4. The pickups are the things between the bridge and the neck. They have magnets inside them that transfer the vibrations in your strings into an electrical pulse that your amp interperates as the correct notes that you are playing. There are a couple diffrences between the P and J pickups. The pickups that look offset and are touching each other are the P-Bass pickups. They offer a heavier, more thump like sound. The Jazz bass pickups are longer, do not touch each other, and strectch the width of the strings. They can be used with P-Bass Pickups, or by themselves. If you any other questions, feel free to e-mail me at [email protected], or IM me at GCM86. Thanks

  5. Do you have an amp?
    A J pick up and P pickup are just different styles of Fender-type pickups, they arent standard in all models.
    I think you also mean Active pickup's and Passive pickup's.
    There are different styles like exposed coil pickup's and soapbar pickup's and they each offer a different type of sound.
    What type of bass do you own?
    But like RadomeInsanityBass (I hope I got that right:D) if you have any specific questions just get in contact.

    [email protected]
  6. Oops, I did get the name wrong:p
  7. Im thinking of getting a Squier Jazz or a Squier Affinity. And yes i will have an amp. i am buying my bass on Friday. I jus wanna get as much information as possible before i get it.:)
  8. Ahhh, Okay.
    Which do you like more after your first impression?
    I'm a fan of the Jazz models, and personally like the jazz tone more.
    The Precision pickup's are a bit more thumpy, the Jazz pickup's are more noiseless pickups.
    Many people like the J basses but the P pickups.
    I'm not sure if this has helped:D
  9. I've got to say though, I don't have much experience with P basses. I've played one on a few occasions but like the feel of the Jazz much more.
    I own a 4 string Jazz bass, but my main bass is a Cort Artisan 5 string which uses Bartolini mk-1's.
  10. My advice is plain and simble. JAZZ BASS!!!
    I've played many a bass in my limited years of playing (i'm rather young), and the jazz has the best, most killer tone. Our band has a gig later this month, and we're covering Maxwell Murder. I would not think of attempting this solo without my new baby. If this helps, all the better to you. Talk to you later.
  11. I'd probably agree, but it depends what you think.
    The Squier P bass has a split P-bass pickup and a J bass pickup near the bridge if I'm not mistaken, played one?
  12. Suburban


    Jan 15, 2001
    lower mid Sweden
    - Well in case like this, said the judge in his most serene professional voice, there can be only one solution:
    JAZZ, JAZZ, JAZZ!!!!

    Sort of....

    The Jazz will add some electronic aids to different sounds, as the pickups are far apart and can be mixed according to your wishes. The different placing makes a difference in sound. In short, a Jazz is versatile.
    A P is OK, but all sound versatility is then in your technique.

    Bottom line: which item feels best, hangin on you?
    Chose that!:cool:
  13. CS


    Dec 11, 1999
    Heres some general and specific answers for you.


    2 pickups wired to cancel hum when both are on
    Volume Volume Tone (treble cut) knobs
    Two piece pick guard (knobs mounted on metal plate)
    slim neck
    sleeker body shape
    More common with rosewood fingerboard


    1 split pickup wired to cancel hum with it self
    Volume Tone (treble cut) knobs
    Generous neck
    Slab body shape
    One piece pickguard (white or black)
    Rosewood board but often has a one piece maple neck with frets on it

    Subjective stuff-(this is all IMHO) the Jazz is more versatile. The Precision has a thick sound. For punk/hard rock I would favour the P. For anything else I would favour the Jazz.

    Squier stuff

    The affinity and standard Squiers are good for the money but the woods and pickups can be improved (certainly on the Affinity) I am not dissing the Affinity series or owners (I had an Affinity Strat and loved it). I would recommend a secondhand Mim J or P. You will get a much better bass but pay more money. If the budget is tight look around for a second hand Squier but the following series…

    Silver Series made in Japan and are excellent value for money. I had a student who had a Silver Series P and it is better than SOME of the CBS Fenders I have owned/played, I kid you not.

    Pro Tone-these are very good instruments (as good as Mim) and were the same cost. They 'suffer' from the Squier logo so they should be a good buy second hand.

    Fender Squier-these have a large Fender logo and a small Squier one. Just to make it confusing there are (at least) two versions. Fender made these in the early 90's in Japan and included them in the Fender Catalogue. The Jazz has a one-piece scratchplate. These are good instruments. The second one (actually the first cos they were introduced in 1982) are reissues the basses consist of a 62 jazz a 57 precision and a 62 precision. They all came in sunburst and the 62's had a tortoiseshell (swirly brown) pickguard. The 57 p had a white scratchplate (instead of the more accurate gold one). These are rarer than rocking horse excrement and most sellers want serious wedge. However if you do see one going cheap you know what it is and knowledge is power.

    Hopefully this info will get you tooled up. A lot of it is subjective. Don’t rush into a purchase and try loads and loads of basses as quality varies. It normally takes me a year to buy an instrument and all of mine are keepers.

    Happy hunting
  14. U guys helped me alot.. and ill keep ur info in mind when im gettin the bass tomorrow. Right now im going for the jazz but ... ill see when i get there. Thanks! :)
  15. jcranny

    jcranny Guest

    Jun 5, 2001
    I have allways played Jazz Basses ever since i started learning i was lucky enough to have one to practice on, but lately i keep wanting to go back to the P bass just to get that solid deep tone only a P bass seems to give.
    Anyway the point i am trying to make is that it all comes down to personal preference, but what ever you play im sure you will enjoy.
  16. As far as I know pickups are those little black thingies under my strings...
    They seem to say "bartolini" down the side...

    Nah pickups are where the sound come from, and to test this I always like to get a remote controls nad point it towards them then press the button and hear my amp pick it up....hehe

    Optical pickups, now there's a story, does anyone have these?