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P pickups that cut down on mids a bit

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by JimmyM, May 21, 2011.


  1. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    it's funny how different the same pickup can sound in different basses. used to have a 62 reissue p pickup in this pieces parts pj bass i have, and it sounded great with it...nice and mellow, but with balls, too. i've currently got it in my modded 76 precision, and it's all 500-800 in that bass. i can't figure out if it's a stronger mid content in that bass naturally or what, but i think that may be what's going on. the pieces parts bass is plywood and the 76 is a beautiful 3 pc 70's ash body.

    so now i think i might want to replace it with a pickup that has less obnoxious mids, but i don't want to get an overwound pickup. might throw a set of dimarzio model pj's in there just to see what happens, but i don't think i want a really hot pickup in it. the dimarzio can get a little...um...gnarly, which is fine sometimes but probably not what i want out of this bass. the tonality would be fine minus the hot output, though.

    i've had folks recommend the duncan spb-2 to me for a vintage style replacement, but would it be more of the same with the mids?

    bear in mind i have no intention of spending much money on this, so i don't see myself going for fralins or nordstrands. i want it to sound vintage, but just with a cut in the mids. i could cut it from the amp, i guess, but i thought i'd see if there was a pickup or two that would be better for me.
     
  2. allexcosta

    allexcosta

    Apr 7, 2004
  3. SGD Lutherie

    SGD Lutherie Banned Commercial User

    Aug 21, 2008
    Bloomfield, NJ
    Owner, SGD Music Products
    Try wiring it in parallel. That will reduce the midrange. Most vintage style P bass pickups will sound about the same. It's a simple pickup, and they are all made pretty much the same way.

    If you were going to spend money, the DiMarzio Split P has less mids. Maybe a Lawrence.

    Winding the pickup with heavier wire would do it also. I have an 8-string bass that uses two P pickups, and it was very mid heavy, so re-wound the pickups with 40AWG wire. It was also under wound compared to stock. That removed the harsh midrange.

    I still wind some of my pickups that way. it gives a nice hollow-ish tone with a lot of lows and smooth highs, and not too much in the way of mids.

    Curtis Novak makes one like that:

    P-BassĀ® - Charlie Christian Style Pickup
     
  4. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    good stuff, guys...thanks! so it sounds like maybe an overwound would be the best bet, eh?
     
  5. SGD Lutherie

    SGD Lutherie Banned Commercial User

    Aug 21, 2008
    Bloomfield, NJ
    Owner, SGD Music Products
    Underwound. Overwound will give you more mids, like a Duncan QuarterPounder. P bass pickups already have 10,000 turns on each coil.

    That Novak pickup looks overwound because it uses very thick wire, so it takes up more room.
     
  6. faulknersj

    faulknersj Supporting Member

    Apr 4, 2008
    Scottsdale Az
    I have the exact same issue with one of my P-Basses and will eagerly await the results. I have just been EQing some of the disruptive mids out on my amp thus far.
     
  7. SGD Lutherie

    SGD Lutherie Banned Commercial User

    Aug 21, 2008
    Bloomfield, NJ
    Owner, SGD Music Products
    Well that's what EQ is for. You can't always expect to get the tone directly from the bass.

    And sometimes its the bass. With my 8-string, new pickups made a big difference, but in the end I made a new neck for it. That made it sound like a new bass. Originally it was a maple Fender P bass neck which I had modified. I replaced it with a maple/walnut neck, with ebony fingerboard, and graphite rods. It evened the tone out and the mid peak was gone.

    Another thing to try is strings. Back when I used GHS strings, I used Boomers on my P/J fretless, but I couldn't use them on my Rick, they sounded too harsh. So I used GHS bassics on that bass, and it sounded much better.
     
  8. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    well don't be checking in every day ;) it's probably not going to happen this week or anything.

    hmmm...so i wonder if the reason i like those sx pickups is because they're underwound compared to the fenders...might try one of them first.
     

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