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Please cure me of my ignorance

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by Tizzle, Jun 22, 2005.

  1. Tizzle


    Jun 19, 2005
    I was wondering, what would some new pick-ups do to my GSR200. I know that might sound like a weird question, but I have no idea how a new set of pick-ups would change my basses sound. How will it change the tone?? Will it get rid of some of the humming?? Just tell me anything, I need to learn more about my bass.

    (man asking this question makes me feel so retarded, swallow the pride.) :)
  2. JimmyM


    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    Not knowing how your pickups sound, it's hard to say. Quite frankly, to me, all that new pickups seem to do is change EQ points, change volume output, and get rid of noise. I wouldn't hesitate to get rid of noisy pickups, but I wouldn't change pickups for any other reason.

    This point of view makes me very unpopular in this forum.
  3. David Wilson

    David Wilson Administrator Administrator Supporting Member

    Oct 14, 2002
    Lower Westchester, NY
    No one is claiming that you can totally transform the sound of your bass with new pickups.

    But, you *can* find the right eq point, volume output match for your bass.

    I can speak from personal experience, as can other people here, about how some pickups just don't work in certain basses.

    For example, Barts sound great in my Elrick which has an ash body. They didn't work so well in my Warwick Thumb 5, sounded too dark.
    Conversely, EMG's were the best match I found for the Warwick, but I wouldn't use them in the Elrick which is already a very bright bass.
  4. David Wilson

    David Wilson Administrator Administrator Supporting Member

    Oct 14, 2002
    Lower Westchester, NY
    Tizzle, too many unknowns and variables in there to give a blanket answer.

    Could you say a bit more about the current pickups, what you don't like about the sound, and what you'd be looking to do.

    If all you're looking do is get rid of humming, then maybe all you need is some shielding work.
  5. Tizzle


    Jun 19, 2005
    Alright, with my current pickups, they sound fine, but it's very thin sounding whenever the bass booster is turned down, and whenever it's turned up it gets a very noticeable buzzing sound. Also whenever the tone knob is turned up the buzzing gets pretty bad too.
  6. 62bass


    Apr 3, 2005
    I know that bass and may be able to help. The buzzing is when you turn up the bridge pickup, right? It's a single coil and prone to hum and will do this even though that bass has some shielding. A humbucking design would cure that.

    The P style pickup in the neck position is a little thin sounding for my taste. I'd replace it with a Basslines-Quarter pounder or something like that. Proper pickup height will also help your sound.

    The upgrading of pickups can cost you a fair bit of money and may not be worth it for such a low cost bass. Have you tried any of the SRX models? Not a lot more money and very nice sounding basses.
  7. Tizzle


    Jun 19, 2005
    actually yeah, whenever I use the one closest to the bridge it does get a bad hum too. I don't quite like it's sound though(regardless of hum) and rarely have it on at all.

    I don't have the money to get a new bass anytime soon, I was just wondering if getting some decent new pickups would give my bass a fuller sound without costing too much.
  8. 62bass


    Apr 3, 2005
    New pickups will improve the sound some but will not be cheap. Around here (Canada) a new Basslines Quarter Pounder is $125. I don't know how much a humbucking bridge pickup would be, but probably over $60.

    I've played the GSR200 a bit and think the main problem is with the stock strings. Very bright and zingy. With a bit of work on the EQ of the amp I was able to get a good sound out of it. With flatwounds (say Thomastics) I think it would be fine, at least for me. And there's nothing wrong with using a little of the onboard bass boost. The GSR200 is not a bad bass at all.
  9. luknfur


    Jan 14, 2004

    I play low end Ibe's and have 3 GSR 200's among them. Older models without the preamp and I don't know if they changed the pups or they're the same.

    I'm glad strings were mentioned cause I've read consistent accounts regarding the stock Ibanez strings being among the most worthless on the planet. I only use TI flats so I can't remember what the originals were like myself. TI flats are not for everybody but one of the many reasons I use them is because low end Ibe's are known for their rubber necks. The extremely low tension of the TI's reduces the stress on the neck. However, one reason many players don't like TI's is becuase of their low tension - like playing rubber bands is a frequent comment. There's a terminal thread called "What kind of strings do you use" you can pull in a search that probably has more feedback on strings than you have time to read. You should be able to pull a good choice from there. Lot's of players like DR Hi Beams.

    Most any pups with treble boosted will either yield or increase noise present when it's not otherwise. Not common with bass boost in my experience but I wouldn't be suprised on lower end electronics.

    As for pups, in the U.S. you can pickup used quality PJ sets for around $70 off ebay. Often however they're split up and you'll end up paying a little more but at least you can get them shipped together for one shipping price if a single seller is splitting them up. P's alone around $45 and J's alone around $40. If you keep the original pups and stick them back in when you sell the bass, then sell the replacements, it basically costs you nothing in the long run for the use of the pups.

    You can read my experience with various PJ pups in Dimento's PJ experiment, currently on the first page of this forum. As you would see, my experience with the original Ibe PJ pups was better than I'd expected but they weren't quite there.
  10. Tizzle


    Jun 19, 2005
    Thank you to everyone who responded.

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