PJ vs JJ

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by bollefen, Aug 5, 2003.

  1. bollefen


    Mar 13, 2003
    I'd like some discussion on the merits of the PJ config

    have several fender jazz and am looking at a G&L with a P/J

    any feedback?

  2. Depends on your habits. If you find yourself playing both pickups full up all the time, the fact that a P pickup is so much louder than a J bridge pickup is probably going to drive you nuts. However if you find yourself using your J more as a P, that is, the neck pickup full up and the bridge only added sometimes as flavoring, and you want a fuller sound, then a P pickup in place of the J neck pickup makes more sense. I've been a P player forever just because I need that dense P sound from the neck pickup, however I'm going PJ for the added sounds but since I know the uneven output will drive me nuts, I'll be adding a boost-only preamp to match the output of the J bridge pickup to the P.
  3. thumbtrap


    Jun 26, 2003
    The EMG 40's will fit my Yamaha, and they make a 5 string P in that housing. I've thought about switching it over to a PJ under the covers, but to be honest - on my fretted 5 - I would probably be happy with P only - except I got an extra pickup I have to do something with. The bass tends to be a bit clangy. Like they were going for a piano string sound for slapping and didn't quite get it right.

    I've never been real happy with bridge pickups on just about any stringed instrument. With single coils though - I never ever play one pickup only. When I put EMG's on my strat - I discovered that I really like the neck and the middle by themselves. Perhaps it's time...
  4. I probably should've sprung for a new double soapbar Alembic circuit, but actually I really liked a friend's bass--had the same builder make me one and found out the killer attack didn't come from the bass, but from the PJ Activator circuit (also I really liked the sound of the J bridge pickup in that setting even all by itself; it wasn't thin like others I'd played). Anyway I ditched the bass, but finally found the circuit after watching eBay for 3 years, $200 for a well-used circuit made in 1989. Lots of string erosion on the pickups and the logos were almost gone, so I sanded them down. I need a new chip for the filter and maybe I'll spring for the conversion to volume-pan-filter from volume-volume-filter (hope I can find it used) but definitely I'll boost the bridge pickup. Since I'd ordered a Warmoth wenge/wenge J neck, I figured I'd get a black korina dinky J body made to wrap around the new circuit. If everything works out, it should have more attack than anything I've played. Got my fingers crossed; I'm almost at the point where I'm through with considering new basses to get the sound in my head.

    Oh yeah, back on topic, that's a great point, the possibility of interchanging pickups with the same form factor with different internal coil configurations. The original poster could well try out some Bart J pickups on his J that are internally P and see if he likes it. Or he could get something carved out for EMGs and try dual coil, single coil, or split P all in the same holes. Very cool.
  5. thumbtrap


    Jun 26, 2003
    Interesting way of putting it. A major reason I've not done anything with the pickups on the Yamaha is that I was concerned changing mics without changing the singer might just cost a lot of money and not actually help anything.

    I don't need to do any carving on the BB5 though - the factory pickups are the 4" x 1.5" that EMG40's use. My bridge pickup complaint has always been that they're honky in the upper mids with no fullness at all, and the J does not help this at all. I'm inclined to stick with JJ's on my fretless - though it too may get EMG's one day, but that's at least partially form factor related (it's a JJ now).