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Parallel wiring for split coil humbucker?

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by randysmojo, Jan 8, 2012.


  1. randysmojo

    randysmojo

    Jan 14, 2008
    Austin, TX
    Can you take a split coil humbucker like a P-bass pickup and wire it parallel with a good come out? What would it sound like compared to series?
     
  2. The general consensus is that it sounds like crap. You end up with what is essentially half a pickup.

    Go try out an S1 equipped P bass.
     
  3. Darkstrike

    Darkstrike Return Of The King!

    Sep 14, 2007
    When Fender done it, it wasn't popular, but I've heard of other basses doing it and people digging them.
     
  4. randysmojo

    randysmojo

    Jan 14, 2008
    Austin, TX
    Is it thinner and weaker? That's kinda what I thought it would do, but I get easily confused by the tech stuff with pickup wiring
     
  5. Jazz Ad

    Jazz Ad Mi la ré sol Supporting Member

    It doesn't change much to the sound, it's just half as loud.
     
  6. randysmojo

    randysmojo

    Jan 14, 2008
    Austin, TX
    Well that sounds like a good reason to NOT do it!!! Thanks for the info, guy!
     
  7. parsons

    parsons

    Feb 22, 2008
    Maryland
    It actually does change the tone. Any coils wired in series always have a bump in perceived mids.
     
  8. Jazz Ad

    Jazz Ad Mi la ré sol Supporting Member

    Not in the case of split coils. The bump happens when 2 poles sensing the same string are wired series.
    With a split coil, it's still one pole sensing one string so there really is no change in tone.
     
  9. Try it anyway. I am doing a dedicated '66 slab P-bass recreation, one of the twenty-something that Entwistle ruined, pictured having had a "pickup" switch of some kind, so I am making that a series/parallel. I have played around with it, and I really like it in parallel, but then again I like EB-3's, flat radiused fingerboards, and blue cheese, so I'm the anomaly :cool:. The bass is currently in the "shop"- consisting of a 7'x4' tool shed- so I can't give a tone example, but I will be able to in a few days to a week.

    I honestly really like the tone, because it has a bit less mid, and smoother highs (the bass has steel flats on it, so the highs can get a bit grating at times, and parallel smooths it out), and a small drop in bass. To be fair, the volume drop from series to parallel is probably somewhere between 10% and 20%, because of the loss in mids, but if you don't want a bass with a super "hot" sound, you can probably put a resistor after the series side, and make the volume drop less noticeable.

    I think it's a way to make a two-tone bass a bit more versatile, but you might not like it. It's a very easy thing to try, and change back, so spend ten minutes with the bass, and see where you stand. :)
     
  10. randysmojo

    randysmojo

    Jan 14, 2008
    Austin, TX
    Don't feel out. I like Blue Cheese too!
     
  11. SGD Lutherie

    SGD Lutherie Banned Commercial User

    Aug 21, 2008
    Bloomfield, NJ
    Owner, SGD Music Products
    It works fine. It sounds brighter and with less mids. EMG Ps are wired in parallel and they don't sound like crap. Not as fat as wired in series, but it's nice to have that option, which you don't get with an EMG.

    I used to do put a series/parallel switch on all my P equipped basses.
     
  12. SGD Lutherie

    SGD Lutherie Banned Commercial User

    Aug 21, 2008
    Bloomfield, NJ
    Owner, SGD Music Products
    There is a change in tone because you have changed the impedance of the pickup. With a P bass pickup, you will go from 11k series to 2.75k parallel. That brings you into Music Man humbucker territory.

    It really doesn't have anything to do with both coils sensing he strings unless you are comparing series to single coil. Even standard humbuckers sound different in parallel.

    Here's my Neo Jazzbucker in series/parallel/single
     
  13. Stealth

    Stealth

    Feb 5, 2008
    Zagreb, Croatia
    You don't get that option with EMG because the signal ground is tied with the preamp ground, right?
     
  14. SGD Lutherie

    SGD Lutherie Banned Commercial User

    Aug 21, 2008
    Bloomfield, NJ
    Owner, SGD Music Products
    Right. The two coils are wired in parallel, with each one going to one of the two inputs on the op amp.
     

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