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Pickups vs. pickup placement

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by The Thinker, Oct 12, 2009.


  1. The Thinker

    The Thinker

    Sep 17, 2003
    Chicago, IL
    Hi, all:

    I have Ibanez lawsuit (silver series) PJ. The P pickup is closer to the neck than a regular P. I haven't measured (don't own a Fender P) but I'm guessing in the neighborhood of 1-2 inches. The bridge PUP I think is the same as a 70's Jazz--close to the bridge.

    With just the P on, the bass has a P-like growl but is thicker and bassier--very deep and aggressive. Doesn't get the classic P sound. A lot of people would probably love it, but it's just too big and bassy for the music I play. Toggling in the J cleans up the growl and lowers the output a bit, but the sound is still very bassy, only with a bright top end. Again, not quite in the P neighborhood.

    Given the position of the pickup, any thoughts about whether something like a Fender Custom Shop P would get this close to a P-bass sound? Or will it always sound noticeably deeper because of the PUP placement? If so, I don't want to spend the money and time on swapping PUPs and will just sell it and get a Fender. (Which I don't want to do because this has a J neck and looks so ridiculously cool...) :help:

    Any thoughts? Thanks!
     
  2. Your suspicion is correct- position is everything. A different pickup will just give you a slightly different flavor of what you already have.
     
  3. mongo2

    mongo2

    Feb 17, 2008
    Da Shaw
    Have you tried eq'ing the lows out some and boosting the mids/low mids? It might get you closer.
     
  4. The Thinker

    The Thinker

    Sep 17, 2003
    Chicago, IL
    Not what I was hoping to hear, but I do appreciate the reply.
     
  5. I would get a pickup custom wound to give you a good sound in that position. Something without a lot of low end.
     
  6. M0ses

    M0ses

    Sep 11, 2009
    Los Angeles
    +1
     
  7. The Thinker

    The Thinker

    Sep 17, 2003
    Chicago, IL
    I've tried but haven't been very successful. My current head has only three bands of eq and is boost only. Sounds fantastic with my other basses, but not ideal for this kind of major sound sculpting. I may try an external EQ.
     
  8. GlennW

    GlennW

    Sep 6, 2006
    I think this might be a case where a thin sounding MIM or Squier pickup would move you closer to where you want to be. They're usually cheap (under $20) on ebay because they're not popular. I'd try to find one of the MIM's that measures under 5K total (both coils) and try it.

    While position has a lot to do with it, one of these anemic P pickups might counter the location enough for the sound to suit you.
     
  9. mongo2

    mongo2

    Feb 17, 2008
    Da Shaw
    +1
     
  10. The Thinker

    The Thinker

    Sep 17, 2003
    Chicago, IL
    Thanks all for your help. I'm going to try the external eq first. I am still on the fence about a pickup change if the eq doesn't solve it. If I get this figured out I will report back.
     

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