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P/J Balance mod w/Jazz Humbucker

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by marwady, Sep 21, 2005.


  1. marwady

    marwady Supporting Member

    Jul 9, 2005
    Northern Michigan
    Hello all,

    I believe this will work but I need advice from the experts here at TB.

    I would like to mod my Fender P/J so I can use a balance pot for pickup switching/blending. The question is, if I go to a Jazz Humbucker (SD, Fender Noiseless, etc.), will I experience any bad effects such as loss of gain, noise etc. I want to use a Humbucker because of noise on the standard J.

    This is a passive setup and I want to keep it that way, love the tone. Here is a schematic that I think will work:

    http://www.guitarelectronics.com/product/WDUSS2102

    Thanks in advance!
     
  2. Once you've connected your humbucker in series (or parallel, for that matter) you'll essentially end up with two wires to connect just like a standard single coil (like your linked diagram). Just connect it up and away you go...should not be a problem in the least.

    As a matter of fact, I've been considering a humbucking J for my P/J for the very reason you describe.

    I'm considering a DiMarzio Ultra-Jazz

    With this mod, I was also considering changing the tone pot to a push/pull so that I could switch the Jazz pup between series and parallel for more tonal variation, yet again.
     
  3. DavePlaysBass

    DavePlaysBass

    Mar 31, 2004
    CO
    If you really dig your tone with the single coil, you could try shielding the bass before going to a humbucker.

    Dave
     
  4. 4Mal

    4Mal Supporting Member

    Jun 2, 2002
    Columbia River Gorge
    You could also try the Bill Lawrence P46 & J45 set. Very well balanced and dead quiet.
     
  5. In my case, I've shielded my bass and it's gone a long way to quieting the noise of the bass, but there's still just that little bit...but in my case, I'm NOT digging the sound of my single coil (too thin sounding for my taste) and am shooting towards that humbucking sound.
     
  6. marwady

    marwady Supporting Member

    Jul 9, 2005
    Northern Michigan
    Thanks all,

    One more thing, I looked at the threads concerning 250K vs 500K pots and I am still not sure what is the real deal.

    I think I gathered that I will lose some highs with the 250K.

    I do not like a really bright tone from this bass anyway so am I correct in assuming that it really won't matter?

    Thanks
     
  7. DavePlaysBass

    DavePlaysBass

    Mar 31, 2004
    CO
    Technically, you don't really lose highes going with 250K pots because their is funky resonance going on. You just have more of a resonance with the 500K pots. The 250Ks are better behaved. On the other hand, some like the resonant hump in the treble range that is exaggerated with 500K pots.

    Dave
     
  8. marwady

    marwady Supporting Member

    Jul 9, 2005
    Northern Michigan
    Okay,

    So I wired a 250K balance pot in just like the diagram (see first post), checked it twice, and this is what I got:

    Center detent shuts both pickups off, panning will act as a volume for each pickup (clockwise is bridge and counter is neck).

    Do I have a reverse taper balance pot or is the diagram wrong?

    Thanks in advance
     
  9. seems to me that you are using the grounded lead from your pickups connected to your center wipes of your balance pot and have the start (or hot) leads connected where the grounded leads should be...

    in other words...you have your pickup polarity wrong...

    time to pull out the trusty ohm-meter and sort this thing out.
     
  10. marwady

    marwady Supporting Member

    Jul 9, 2005
    Northern Michigan
    Shazaam!! :bassist:

    Swapped polarity at the balance pot and everything works fine. Thanks Pilbarabass for the knowledge and advice.

    This P/J setup sounds really nice as a fretless, dead quiet, nice m'wah and growl however, the SD standard stack humbucker J bridge pup is noticeably softer in volume than the stock Fender P pup. Not a big deal but any ideas?

    Thanks