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M&V Atlas Precision Pickup

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by RawOrange, Jan 31, 2014.

  1. RawOrange

    RawOrange Not really an orange

    Aug 19, 2009
    Southeast Wisconsin
    Hey, some of you may have seen this thread: http://www.talkbass.com/forum/f38/p-bass-pick-up-best-i-have-ever-tried-1040989/. Well, so did I, and I decided to purchase a set of these as well! To be clear, I have no affiliation with M&V guitars other than being a customer.

    When I saw the thread I absolutely loved the looks of the pickup, the huge magnets were super cool, and the logo was attractive. That was my first impression, and being that I had a P-bass on the way and no pickup specifically for it, I decided to take the plunge.

    I emailed M&V and quickly heard back from Joe, who was very attentive and answered all of my questions.

    The pickup arrived quickly and was packaged well.




    It looks even better in person than on their website! Very well built with a machined plastic cover, huge solid magnets, cloth push-back wiring, and a thorough instruction sheet.



    But what really matters is the tone, and this has it in spades.

    Before receiving the pickup, I first installed a Dimarzio Model P, then a Seymour Duncan Basslines SPB-2 "Hot" pickup. Here are some unscientific impressions:

    The Atlas has a much clearer sound than the SPB-2, especially with the tone turned down. Whereas the Duncan became muddy and indistinct with the tone below half, the Atlas remained articulate. It was also brighter when the tone was rolled up when compared to the Duncan.

    With this brightness it did not become harsh though, which I found the Model P to be. The Model P is very upper mid heavy, which I usually like, but it does not work in every circumstance. The Atlas has a much more "full range" tone that works very well in a band situation.

    Overall, what I noticed was the fantastic clarity of the Atlas when compared to these two popular replacement Pickups. It was punchy, clear, articulate, and never became muddy. It also responded very well to changes in plucking style, making the tone knob a secondary tone control.

    This being said, the Atlas is a P-pickup. At its roots it sounds like a Precision, and I wouldn't buy this hoping to sound drastically different from that type of tone. It isn't going to turn your P-bass into a Stingray, or a Jazz, rather a different sounding Precision. To me it is better than others that I have tried, but others may not feel the same way.

    I have spoken to and emailed with Joe from M&V a number of times, and he has been extremely helpful throughout this entire transaction. Customer service has been absolutely top notch.

    I would not hesitate to recommend these pickups to someone looking for a replacement Precision pickup, and look forward to using them for a long time to come!

    I will try my best to put together some sound clips, but I don't know how well I'll be able to do that.

    Here is the link to their website: http://www.mvguitars.com/P-Bass--3-8--Pole-Split-Humbucker-Replacement-Pickups-.html
  2. RawOrange

    RawOrange Not really an orange

    Aug 19, 2009
    Southeast Wisconsin
    Alright, so I have made some very rudimentary recordings of the Atlas.

    These are recorded using my Warmoth P pictured above wearing old-ish D'Addario Chromes Flats. It has an ash body, maple neck, and rosewood fretboard.

    The recording setup is simply the bass into the effects return of a GK head (no EQ), through a Hughes and Kettner 4x10, then recorded with a Zoom H1 about three feet in front of the cab. No effects, no compression, no skills- mistakes come free.

    No technical playing or anything, just really basic examples. The volume and tone are fully open on all the examples, and I am playing directly over the pickup.

    I can make some more recordings of different tone positions and plucking styles if it is wanted!


  3. RawOrange

    RawOrange Not really an orange

    Aug 19, 2009
    Southeast Wisconsin
  4. ctpunk


    Jan 30, 2014
    Los Angeles
    I just ordered a set of these. My intention is to build a P from the ground up. Looking for the right body, maybe an Alder or Ash.

    What other electronics are you using in yours? Stock pots, cap and switch?
  5. RawOrange

    RawOrange Not really an orange

    Aug 19, 2009
    Southeast Wisconsin
    It has CTS 250k audio taper pots, .047 tone cap (not sure of the brand), and a Switchcraft jack.

    This is a Warmoth build, so it doesn't have "stock electronics". I believe the body is ash on mine- I bought it used.

    This pickup absolutely rocks, I'm really loving mine. Plus customer service is second to none. I have never spoken to a business owner who stood behind their products more than Joe at M&V. He is very dedicated to his products, and believes in them. Not to mention, he is very knowledgeable- I tested his knowledge by endlessly pestering him with questions.
  6. Clouz

    Clouz The Ayatollah of Jack and Cola

    Jan 26, 2013
    sounds good to me.
  7. Welp,

    I couldn't take it anymore, ordered a set just now.

    Looking forward to the new setup, hopefully it gives me some more tonal options than the stock MIM Fender pickup.

    All the best,

  8. Teacher


    May 3, 2012
    Anybody know if he'll overwind? These might make a hell of a double p bass.
  9. RawOrange

    RawOrange Not really an orange

    Aug 19, 2009
    Southeast Wisconsin
    Definitely shoot Joe an email or give him a call. He is quick to respond!
  10. brock29609

    brock29609 4 strings, 2 wheels

    May 11, 2003
    Greenville, SC
    So far the M&V Atlas comparisons here haven't been against any pickups I'd consider. Any one else have comments on these? Perhaps a comparison vs. the Fender "Original" '62 or the Seymour Duncan SPB-1?
  11. Stonetown Lows

    Stonetown Lows Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jan 23, 2014
    Ringwood NJ
    Owner, M&V Guitars &Pickups
    Hi Brock,
    Vintage1 started a Talkbass thread about these pickups. He has a lot of experience with many aftermarket, boutique and original P bass pickups. Maybe you will find it helpful.


    one other consideration:

    Sound clips and video clips, for evaluating pickups, especially bass pickups, are imho pretty worthless. Vintage1 contacted us after listening to the various Atlas sound clips out there, and confessed that if he had listened to/watched the clips first, he never would have purchased our pickup.

    There really is no substitute for trying them out yourself, with your own axe, your own rig, your own band and your own hands. Period. I have to agree. When we did the video demo, everything in the room sounded great, and it was done by a professional video/sound engineer. Honestly, the difference didn't translate AT ALL to the video.

    Everybody is looking for their own thing, and it is truly VERY individual. The point has been made on Talkbass that there are enough potential buyers on Talkbass who want to try pickups that it is entirely possible to try them each yourself, and have a ready market to easily sell them on Talkbass. I mean, some people love the stock MIM pickups, so really it's all 100% personal opinion.

    That being said, I've tested several stock MIM P Pups, and their resistance is usually on the very low side, not to mention the WIDELY variable capacitance (503Z!) of the caps that come with those basses. That doesn't typically make for the best, bassiest sound. Fine copper wire and human being beings winding or attending to winding machines costs $, and the MIMs are all about price. (by the way, I am the owner of M&V pickups)
  12. I wonder how they compare to the Delano PMVC's, which are the only other P pups I've seen to use the oversized poles.

  13. Stonetown Lows

    Stonetown Lows Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jan 23, 2014
    Ringwood NJ
    Owner, M&V Guitars &Pickups
    Although the overall configuration is the same, M&V pickups are less aggressive sounding and less metallic than Delanos. There is another post on Talkbass discussing "wolftone" type distortion and clipping with Delanos. Chances are that player has the Delanos way too close to the strings.
  14. The MV's are passive, correct? And Delanos can be set up either way?
  15. jmceachern36


    Nov 13, 2005
    Cambridge MA
    Just thought I'd add to this thread because I because of it, I recently bought up the 5 string version of it. This is a great pickup! Sounds just like a P pickup should but is just a little thicker, louder and more punchy. I can now hear myself loud and clear on the stage and I've gotten a number of unsolicited compliments on the sound of the bass. Highly recommend!!

    Arvin likes this.
  16. Stonetown Lows

    Stonetown Lows Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jan 23, 2014
    Ringwood NJ
    Owner, M&V Guitars &Pickups
    Hey, I just came across this thread and wanted to let you know that Atlas pickups are used in both active and passive settings. We'll wind them weaker for active set ups if it's requested, but it's really not necessary in most cases.
  17. engedi1

    engedi1 Supporting Member

    Sep 16, 2005
    Sorry to resurrect a zombie thread, but how are you still liking these over a year later? I especially want to know how the B string performs.
    DevinWard369 likes this.
  18. DevinWard369

    DevinWard369 Supporting Member

    Apr 30, 2012
    I just got some MV Atlas p's in my 4 string and I don't doubt that they would beef up any string.. I've played with them only one night so far in my band setting and only in drop d, the pickups are just thick and amazing! ALLL of my basses are active and these made my only passive nearly active sounding.. I didn't even have to turn up my amp after swapping basses. So much more volume out of them it really is amazing. It just became one of my new favorite basses. I'm gonna get more sets now I know it. IMG_1943.JPG