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I there a difference between neck and bridge Pickup?

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by keytthom, Oct 23, 2010.

  1. keytthom


    Jun 10, 2010
    Besides size, is there a difference between bridge and neck pickups, e.g tone, output, etc...

    I ask because on my squier jazz active deluxe, both pickups are 91mm, meaning i would have to buy 2 neck pickups
  2. corinpills


    Nov 19, 2000
    Boston, MA
    You mean as far as replacing them? There's a big difference in tone between the two because of where they are on the bass. Some pickups are voiced specifically as a neck or bridge pickup, but they function the same way.
  3. You need to make sure the pickups are RWRP from each other if you want them to humcancel.
  4. BrBss


    Jul 9, 2010
    Albuquerque NM
    I believe most bridge pickups are wound for a higher impedance, but I could be wrong.
  5. keytthom


    Jun 10, 2010
    So, if i were to replace the bridge with a 91mm (Neck) Pup, would it sound rather strange??

  6. Ric5

    Ric5 Supporting Member

    Jan 29, 2008
    Some jazz basses use the same exact pickup in both locations. Most jazz basses the pickups are different sizes, the bridge pickup is wider. Most jazz basses the bridge pickup will be wound hotter and the neck pickup will be reverse wound. Most jazz basses the pickups will be single coil but when both volumes are full on they act together as a humbucker. Some jazz basses will have one or both pickup as individual humbucking pickups. There may be another scenario that I haven't thoght of.
  7. It will sound fine, but the pickups will not humcancel, and the neck pickup will probably be louder than the bridge pickup.
  8. keytthom


    Jun 10, 2010
    I'm thinking I'm just gonna' Have to make a 95mm Fit :p

    only problem I can think of is the bits where the screws go through, might not line up with the originals :D
  9. Why not just have an overwound, RWRP neck pickup made?
  10. keytthom


    Jun 10, 2010

    Because I dont have a clue what one of those is :help:
  11. You will want an over-wound pickup if it is neck sized, because the string vibrates less closer to the bridge, and thus, the pickup has a lower output than a pickup at the neck position. Because of the size difference between traditional neck and bridge pickups, bridge pickups always have more wire than necks. Winding a neck-sized bridge pickup with more wire than usual will give it a hotter output, so that the two pickups will match.

    You will also want a pickup set with pickups that are reverse wound and reverse polarity. This ensures that the 60Hz hum picked up by each coil is 180 degrees out of phase from the other coil. The opposing phases cause a destructive interference that cancels the 60Hz hum out.
    If the pickups are not RWRP, they will not humcancel when used together.
  12. SXplayer5707


    Feb 28, 2013
    What If Both The Neck Pickups Were Individually Wound For Hum Cancelation?( I.e Dimarzio Area J Pickups) Would You Still Have To Have The Windings Going Opposite Each Other?
  13. No. If the pickups are humbuckers, there is no hum at the output.
  14. Lownote38


    Aug 8, 2013
    Nashville, TN
    Use a file, or a dowel with sandpaper wrapped around it to make the pick up cavity bigger, and then drill new holes for the screws. It's not a hard project. I had to do this on a Fender MB-5 (MIJ) as the bridge pick up cavity was too small for the EMGs I put in it.
  15. JTE

    JTE Supporting Member

    Mar 12, 2008
    Central Illinois, USA
    It depends on the instrument. On your bass, the factory pickups were identical- it's one less SKU to track, inventory, and add to the BOM, so it's cheaper. Nothing in particular wrong with that either- Most guitar pickups have never been different units- the classic Gibson arrangement (Les Paul, ES-335, SG, ES-175, etc.), Stratocasters, Jaguars, etc. all used the exact same part number for bridge and neck pickups until people started worrying about stuff like this in the mid to late '80s.


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