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Pickup Upgrade: from Jazz(neck) to MM

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by funkysurfer, Oct 28, 2004.

  1. I have a Carvin LB75 bass that just doesn't have the sound I am looking for. It's set up with 2 Carvin jazz style pickup's and an active preamp. The basses construction is neck thru body, ALL Mahagony with an ebony fretboard.

    I would describe this basses sound as midrangy with hardly any low end. What I am looking to achieve with this upgrade is deep low end which growls. Is this possible given the construction of this bass?

    I absolutely love the sound of the MusicMan basses and I know both the woods used and construction differ from my bass. However, I was hoping to get this sound (or something similar) and have versatility by keeping the jazz bridge pickup.

    Any answers or shared knowledge is greatly appreciated.

  2. Major


    Jan 7, 2004
    Sydney, Australia
    The simplest, easiest & cheapest way to get another very different sound out of your bass is to add a series/parallel switch. Presently, when both your pickups are on, they are almost certainly connected in parallel - a series connection gives you a thicker, more powerful sound with some loss of highs (and less of that "hollow" sound that 2 pickups give). Instructions for wiring-up a series/parallel switch are available at many guitar sites. I do this to all my basses.
  3. Sounds good Major, but what is the difference between series & parallel?

    I don't mind spending the time & money to upgrade the electronics or the one jazz pickup to the MusicMan pup. Actually, I have read that the MM's pickup & location is what gives those basses that great sound I'm after.

    Here is how my stock preamp is set up:
    master volume pot, bass pot, treble pot and a pot which blends the two pickups.

  4. luknfur


    Jan 14, 2004

    if you haven't already done this, you might go to Harmonycentral.com and check through reviews on your bass. Often the reviewer's have their email addresses listed so you can email them questions. If you don't see an identifiable pattern in accord, it may not be the bass. Also, Carvinbassmuseum.com is a fantastic site and the guy that runs it is very helpful.

    Just be sure first you've ruled out the problem isn't rigging, strings, (whatever), something other than the bass so you don't waste time and money fixing something that's not broke.

    I have a Carvin MM pup and there's no problem with low end with it and I don't recall any problem with low end on a set of H50N Carvins I had. I once had a '89 Carvin LB 70 that I didn't like the tone of but I don't recall if was lacking low end or not.