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low/thin output when both pickups are used

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by adammazza, Sep 5, 2008.

  1. Hi,

    I just picked up a 1999 MIM Jazz fretless bass. When I solo each pickup I get an acceptable level of output, if I use both pickups the output drops off dramatically.

    The previous owner replaced the bridge pickup with what looks like a Dimarzio Jazz pickup.

    I am thinking since this model MIM Jazz had the same size pickups for both the neck and bridge pickup he just put a neck pickup in the bridge slot and didn't properly wire it. Am I on the right path here is there anything else it could be?


  2. Ric5

    Ric5 Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jan 29, 2008
    I grow organic carrots and they are not for sale
    perhaps they are out of phase ...
  3. the low one

    the low one

    Feb 21, 2002
    Sounds like a problem somewhere. With both PU's on max it should be a full rounded sound.
  4. Cernael


    Jun 28, 2008
    I concur with the phase interpretation.

    Open it up, remove the two wires that go from the bridge pickup to wherever they go, solder one to where the other used to be, and the other to where the one used to be.

    Then plug it in to see if that's better.
  5. lug


    Feb 11, 2005
    League City, Tx

  6. Thanks, that's what I figured, will take the control plate off this evening and re-solder.

  7. Bassamatic

    Bassamatic keepin' the beat since the 60's Supporting Member

    There is a real easy way to check the phase if you have a sensitive voltmeter. Analog type works best.

    Connect the meter to your output (clip it on the cable, etc) - set the bass for one pickup only.

    Place a metal object (screwdriver, etc.) NEAR the pickup but not quite touching, then pull it away quickly.

    The meter will go UP or DOWN for a moment depending on the phase of the pup (positive or negative voltage)

    Now switch to the other pup and try again - They should both be the same.

    I had a P set of DiMarzios where the 2 halves were wired out of phase with each other and found the problem this way. One half was wired wrong at the factory!
  8. Exactly what I thought when I read the title.
  9. Just to follow up. This was indeed the problem. I reversed the wires on the bridge pickup and all is well.


  10. Cernael


    Jun 28, 2008
    ...and there was much rejoycing.
  11. SanDiegoHarry

    SanDiegoHarry Banned Supporting Member

    Aug 11, 2008
    San Diego, CA
    way yup.

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