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Lakland DJ: Aeros or Lakland PU?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by gillento, Feb 29, 2008.


  1. gillento

    gillento

    Oct 15, 2005
    Luxembourg, Europe
    Nordstrand pickups
    Hi,
    I recently got a used DJ5. The former owner stated it has Aero PUs.
    But I don't find it overly aggressive (strung w. Lakland SS). So I have been thinking it might have the Lakland PUs.
    How can I go sure? Do the Lakland PUs have exposed polepieces?
    What about the length of the PU? The bridge PU measures 4,09" (10,4cm) as opposed to 3,7" (9,4cm) on my Sadowsky MV5.
     
  2. Dan1099

    Dan1099 Dumbing My Process Down

    Aug 7, 2004
    Michigan
    Aero pups should have the Aero logo (sort of a spade) stamped on the bobbin.
     
  3. msquared

    msquared

    Sep 19, 2004
    Kansas City
    Email Lakland with the serial number. They could at least tell you what it came with and they might know an easy way to tell the pickups apart without pulling them out of the bass.
     
  4. gillento

    gillento

    Oct 15, 2005
    Luxembourg, Europe
    Nordstrand pickups
    I just got a reply from Kirk at Lakland.
    The Lakland PUs on the DJ have got exposed polepieces (I tought they didn't).
    The only visible difference is the color of the wires.

    Mine has got Aeros:)
     
  5. CElton

    CElton I'm a new note finder...

    I have a 2007 DJ with the Lakland pups. What is making you think that the Aero's are not aggressive?

    I find the Lakie pups to be aggressive.
     
  6. gillento

    gillento

    Oct 15, 2005
    Luxembourg, Europe
    Nordstrand pickups
    Well, common wisdom on TB seems to be that the Aeros are very agressive and the Laks a bit less.
    Seems that I have to work on setup...
     
  7. msquared

    msquared

    Sep 19, 2004
    Kansas City
    "Aggressive" is a matter of opinion.
     
  8. Poon

    Poon

    May 20, 2003
    Los Angeles, CA
    I'll tell you this...contrary to what many believe, I never found the Aero's to be that aggressive. I actually found the Fralin's in my JO5 more aggressive, not just my ear, but to most listeners. I replaced the Aeros with Nordstrand Single Coils and couldn't be happier.

    With that said...if you like them, who cares?
     
  9. gillento

    gillento

    Oct 15, 2005
    Luxembourg, Europe
    Nordstrand pickups
    That is what my OP was about.
    From the decriptions I read, I expected it to have aggressive, growly mids/treble but I found my DJ to sound very fat. (in a good way)
     
  10. CElton

    CElton I'm a new note finder...

    +1 and I have talked to a lot of DJ owners that had Aeros and actually like the Laklands just as much and in some cases better. So, I'm not sure how "common" the "wisdom" really is...:smug:
     
  11. Shiveringbass

    Shiveringbass

    Aug 21, 2005
    France
    Hi,

    I'm just bumping up this topic that is realy spot on my question.

    I'm in the market for a nice 5 strings jazz type and the DJ5 is on my short list.

    I realy loved the soundclips from the DJ I heard on Lakland site.

    But... I understand that Lakland changed the Aero pickups for Lakland one.

    And well, going back on the Lakland audio page and comparing the clips fromp the JO with Lakland pickups and the DJ with Aero, I realy much prefere the DJ.

    The question is are the Lakland pickups voiced differently in the JO and DJ or are they the same pickups ?

    If they are the same, should I expect the DJ to sound more like the JO of Lakland soundclip ?

    I realy loved that growly agressive DJ like it was and I hope it has still the same character.

    Thanks for your help

    Best regards
     
  12. basadam

    basadam

    Nov 29, 2005
    Sometime ago I extensively compared a DJ/Lakland against a JO/Fralin. That DJ had the sound but it was heavy. I didn't like what JO offered tonally but it was very light. I attributed the sound difference to the pickups so I swapped them hoping to get the good sound and light bass but to my surprise DJ still sounded like DJ and JO still sounded like JO.

    I also did several similar tests including a recent one with a DJ5/Lakland against DJ5/Aero and I arrived to the conclusion that given two quality pickups of the same design, it's the wood that actually defines the sound.

    If you're really clinical, I'm sure you can find differences but in a usual band setting I don't think anyone can tell a Lakland pickup from an Aero.

    Note that in the old days when JO came with Fralins and DJ came with Aeros, Lakland was using 500K volume pots. Now with Lakland pickups they've switched to 250K. That alone has a lot more impact on the sound than Fralins vs Aeros vs Laklands.
     
  13. Shiveringbass

    Shiveringbass

    Aug 21, 2005
    France
    Thanks for sharing that very interesting experience.

    It's a bit reassuring.
    ;)

    However, I think that Lakland should update their site. When I listen to a clip with a given pickup and I like it, nothing tells me that this bass will sound the same with some different pickups.

    But maybe they are afraid of the effect it could have since that bass (DJ) made a good part of its reputation thanks to those aero pickups.
    ;)
     
  14. I am one who describes the Aero's in the Lakland DJ as aggressive, but as described above, that's a pretty loose term.

    By aggressive, I mean that, through my reasonably transparent and widely voiced rigs (SS head, modern voiced cabs with tweeters), there is a very strong upper mid and lower treble response coming out of those pickups. I never could run the passive tone control more than about halfway from the 'out of the circuit' setting due to this very, to my ear, aggressive upper mid grind. I actually dug it.

    I would assume if you were using a more vintage sounding rig, this frequency response (which seemed to peak right around where the crossover point is on a typical two way cab) would probably not seem so 'overwhelming' and, to my ear, 'aggressive'.

    To my ear, the passive DJ with Aero's is closer to a 'J on Steroids' type tone than it is to a stock Fender model, and has more of what many of us think of as a 70's vibe versus a 60's vibe, even though the pickup placement is in 60's orientation.

    For context, my DK was ash/maple... I never tried an alder/RW model, nor one with the new Lakland pickups.
     
  15. gillento

    gillento

    Oct 15, 2005
    Luxembourg, Europe
    Nordstrand pickups
    After doing some setup I found the agressivness I ws looking for.
    It lies definitely in the lows: very growly on the neck PU.
    This is the first bass I actually preferred the sound of the neck PU over any other combination.
     
  16. NWB

    NWB

    Apr 30, 2008
    Kirkland, WA
    My DJ has the Lakland pickups and it definitely has an "aggressive growly" character to it. I don't think anything was lost from switching from the Aeros. Furthermore, my DJ doesn't sound much like the JO soundclip, but is much um, "edgier" if that makes any sense. With the right touch you can get smooth old-school fat tone out of it, or dig in a bit and it opens right up into a ferocious growl. I don't think I would ever change to another pickup.

    BTW I use DR Marcus Miller Fat Beams and finger-style for a reference.
     
  17. Shiveringbass

    Shiveringbass

    Aug 21, 2005
    France
    Great, thanks for all those reassuring news.
    :)
     
  18. basadam

    basadam

    Nov 29, 2005

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