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Ken Smith

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by Balor, Jan 4, 2003.


  1. Balor

    Balor

    Sep 24, 2000
    Montréal, Québec
    hi there

    Is there anyone who can compare the tone of a Ken Smith to any other brand of pickups? Are they closer to bartolini or EMG's? Also, are they usually bassive or active devices?

    thanks
    PL
     
  2. Balor

    Balor

    Sep 24, 2000
    Montréal, Québec
    anyone?
     
  3. Peter Parker

    Peter Parker Banned

    Jun 10, 2001
    The p/u's are passive and I would say they are more Bart like in that they are very warm and have a nice midrange.
     
  4. Balor

    Balor

    Sep 24, 2000
    Montréal, Québec
    I've read somewhere that they work very well for fretless bass. Why and how would that be?

    thanks for the reply by the way
    PL
     
  5. Peter Parker

    Peter Parker Banned

    Jun 10, 2001
    I think they would be great for fretless because of their pronounced midrange. They would have great growl and mwha if the bass they are in is decent.
     
  6. Saint

    Saint

    Mar 2, 2000
    DC - USA
    First, are you talking about the ken smith soapbar or jazz style pickup?

    I have alot of experience with the soapbar style pickups, much less with the stacked j-pickups, so I'll confine my opinions to the soapbars.

    They are ceramic magnet, passive pickups that sound great with or without a preamp. They don't sound anything like emg's. While they are much closer to Bartolini's, they don't sound like bartolini's. Similar to Peter Parker's comments above, I find them to be very midrangey, without the bottom of a bartolini (although they seem to give more bottom end on a neck-thru than a bolt-on). They are very, very, very growly and have their own unique "boing" when plucked hard or slapped. Personally, I think they sound more like Wal pickups than anything else.

    IMHO, because of the midrange growl, I think they would be outstanding pickups for a fretless bass, especially if the bridge pickup is located as close to the bridge as Ken puts his.

    If I had to find a fault with them at all is that they could use a little more beef at the bottom end. But then again, they would probably lose something in the midrange if you added more bottom.

    I'll try to upload an mp3 sample tonight.
     
  7. Balor

    Balor

    Sep 24, 2000
    Montréal, Québec
    thank you very much for the input! It's very informative.

    It really is the soapbars that i'm interested in. I'm looking around for pickups that should go in 7 string fretless. I haven't worked out the details of this one yet, both it should be a maple neckthrou with an ebony fretboard and 35 inch scale... not much different than a Smith, but not quite the same.

    To tell you the truth, I already have a 7 string in the making. I've ordered a set of Seymour Duncan for this one... not sure if I should stick with that choice for the next project :confused:

    thanks for the reply
    PL
     
  8. Saint

    Saint

    Mar 2, 2000
    DC - USA
    here's the MP3 of my old Smith BSR4MG.
    Not my best bass work, but it should give you a good idea of the sound.
     
  9. geshel

    geshel

    Oct 2, 2001
    Seattle
    The link/file didn't show up.
     
  10. KeithPas

    KeithPas

    May 16, 2000
    Poulsbo,Wa
    Geshel
    I checked out your gear. Those Hanewinckel basses are two of the nicest looking basses I have ever seen. The Clover looks great too.
     
  11. geshel

    geshel

    Oct 2, 2001
    Seattle
    Thanks Keith. Yeah, I love 'em.
     
  12. geshel

    geshel

    Oct 2, 2001
    Seattle
    Was in a hurry there, hence the short post. Yep, I'm trying to decide right now if I want a third Hanewinckel bass, or if I want him to build me a guitar to replace my PRS (which is very nice but has a few things I don't like).

    The Clover sounds very good but I don't like playing it. 36" scale, the back of the graphite neck could be better (satin finish would be nice), spacing is too wide, and it's not a 6. The overall shape doesn't fit my body as well as the Hanewinckels either.
     
  13. jongor

    jongor Supporting Member

    Jan 11, 2003
    Maine
    So where would someone buy Ken Smith pickups anyway?

    I was just at their web site and didn't see anywhere that they are available....