Looking to upgrade P-bass

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by floatmyboat, Jul 19, 2000.

  1. floatmyboat


    Jul 10, 2000
    I am looking to get new pickups of my Fender P-bass, and i dont now very much about pickups. Maybe you people out there can help me out and tell me what is good and what is not. Any help is appreciated.
  2. gweimer


    Apr 6, 2000
    Columbus, OH
    Put a Bartolini in it...and never look back. You won't regret it.
  3. Or, perhaps you might regret it. I regretted the Bart I put on my MIJ Squier a year or so back.

    Bartolinis are highly variable...I mean there are a lot of different models. Some are clean, some are powerful, some really need preamps.

    To make suggestions, we need to know:

    Whta kind of P bass do you hvae? Fender? MIM? MIA?

    What sort of msic do you want to play and what kind of sound are you after?

    And so on...

  4. Mark Gollihur

    Mark Gollihur Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jul 19, 2000
    Gloucester County, NJ
    Owner/President, Gollihur Music LLC
    I guess the real question is: Why do you think you need new pickups? Does it currently sound lame? Are you looking for a little more "something?"

    If you want more of the P-bass tone, get something passive - maybe a Seymour Duncan Quarter-pounder. If you want a modern sound, get something active - Barts, EMGs, etc. I personally don't care for Bartolini p'ups, but that's my preference.

    Go to your local store(s) and play some basses with P pickups. Play 'em all through the same amp (preferably one like yours) and see which ones you like best. Now, I know that sound has to do with a lot more than just pickups (wood type, construction, the person holding the bass) but it should give you a rough estimate of what you like. Find out what type of p'ups are in the basses you like and make an informed judgement based on YOUR preferences. Just 'cuz I like EMGs and Lane Poors doesn't mean you will.

    Mark Gollihur
    Bassist, Second Story
  5. floatmyboat


    Jul 10, 2000
    I have a MIM Fender P-bass, i play mostly rock and punk, adn i want a low sound. Thanks guys.
  6. gweimer


    Apr 6, 2000
    Columbus, OH
    I'll rephrase the answer - put the Bartolini passive P-bass pickup in...and don't look back. If you drop in on Miscellaneous, I just posted pics of the Green Lantern bass I whipped out; I basically say that the Bart made this project work, and it covered up a lot of little bugs.
    sixandeightstringer has good advice; try them out, and let your ears make the call.
  7. With all due respect to Gweimer, Bartolini make about 4 different passive P bass pickups. They vary in output level, EQ (whether they are bassier or treblier) warmth and clarity.

    What's wrong with the MIM pickup?

    I have a stock pickup on my MIA P bass and wouldn't change it...

  8. gweimer


    Apr 6, 2000
    Columbus, OH
    Sigh....ok, Andy. The box says Bartolini exact replacement pickup for P-Bass. There is a number (8S) in the corner. Man, you guys are killing me here, making me think and read and all that....Since you guys are beating me up, I know that they list the different models on the Bartolini site (www.bartolini.net), but can you tell me which models they are?
  9. No, I don't know what they are. Bartolini's highly complex way of classifying its enormous number of products has always been completely impenetrable to me!

    Not meaning to beat up on you! But I made the mistake of buying the wrong bart on the assumption that a bart is a bart....



  10. gweimer


    Apr 6, 2000
    Columbus, OH
    I decided to look over there, and you must not be the only one who has this problem. They now have descriptions for each model. The 8S is listed as a standard replacement - deep tone, high output. They don't list any descriptions for the variations on any other bass besides Fender, however. You're right; it sure would help people out.
  11. Old Blue

    Old Blue

    Mar 18, 2000
    The 8S is the Bartolini that I put in my MIM P Bass a few months back. It has wonderful tone (I suppose you could consider it "vintage"; heavy on the lows) and very high output for passive pups. I use flatwounds on this particular bass, and it's super.
  12. DW


    Jun 22, 2000
    Does the Bart 8S have polepieces (exposed or not) or does it have a bar magnet or blade? I might be interested in trying one in a particular bass which has non-standard (narrower) string spacing, where separate polepieces would never line up but a bar or blade would be fine.
  13. Old Blue

    Old Blue

    Mar 18, 2000
    The magnet in the 8S is covered, so I don't know if it's a bar or separate pole pieces. Try checking their website to see if they might have some of the info you're looking for. www.bartolini.net
  14. Rumblin' Man

    Rumblin' Man Banned

    Apr 27, 2000
    Route 66
    These are the current designations for the P pickup flavors from the Bart website.

    8S - deep tone - high output
    8ST - brighter tone - high output
    8SU - brighter, near vintage tone - high output

    add an "R" to the designation for P/J matching to their 9W4-L or 94J-L J pickups

  15. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Total Hyper-Elite Member Gold Supporting Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
    Our sound man put BassLines (Seymour Duncan) Quarter-pounders in his MIM P-Bass, and it really increased the output and fidelity a lot. I got them for him at GC for $46 ... I think they list at about $95. Shoot, pop 'em in there, if you don't like 'em, pop 'em out. But you'll like them, trust me.
  16. DaveB


    Mar 29, 2000
    Toronto Ontario
    I put a set of Bartolini 9S's in my Jazz and it made a big difference. I would highly recommend them. I also have a newly acquired '75 Precision and I like the original pickups that are in it. But if I were to put new pickups in the P it would be Barts.