please help me pick PJ pickups for active bass

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by octa colombo, Jul 7, 2017.

  1. octa colombo

    octa colombo Guest

    Dec 22, 2014
    Hey guys, I'm about to give my old Squier VM PJ bass a full makeover, and I would love to see what pup's you recommend me. Have in mind I'm looking for a nice vintage sound maybe like in Pink Floyd's The Wall album, but I also want the possibility to get brighter tones for slap and funk.
    I was thinking about the SD SPB1 & SJB1 config

    the jaguar has an active boost for bass and treble, I was looking to also change its onboard preamp, if any of you have any tips I'll be really grateful
  2. And I

    And I

    Feb 19, 2009
    Witchtown, MA
    "classic bass" bartolinis are good for the vintage tones with a little treble roll off, and good for slap tones with no treble cut. i have them in my bass, and also favor the more vintage tones. i think they're a nice balance between vintagey and new-school-enough. the treble knob on my bass (i have a bart 3-band NTMB preamp) is basically the vintage / new-school knob. i don't have a lot of experience with different preamps so will leave that to someone else.
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  3. octa colombo

    octa colombo Guest

    Dec 22, 2014
    I've heard great things about Bartolini's classic series, ill have to check those out, thank you for the tip. and don't worry about the preamp, I trust this site, someone will come up with the info
    And I likes this.
  4. birminghambass

    birminghambass Supporting Member

    Sep 18, 2002
    Birmingham, AL
  5. JW56789

    JW56789 Guest

    Feb 18, 2017
    Provided there are no issues size-wise with your new pickups fitting the existing routs, the easy answer would be an EMG PJ set, and use the appropriate BTC (three knob setup with volume, balancer, and stacked treble/bass) or BTS (four knob setup with separate bass and treble pots) preamp. Plug and play.

    Past that, there are literally dozens of choices out there in pickups and preamps, it's up to you.
    octa colombo likes this.
  6. SteveCS


    Nov 19, 2014
    Hampshire, UK
    Just to add, don't feel obliged to go with the same brand or range of pickup. This is a Seymour Duncan QP with a 1980's German OBL (Bill Laurence - now Wilde) P601. They play very nicely together...
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  7. Zoobiedood

    Zoobiedood Commercial User

    Sep 1, 2015
    Writer/Ambassador/Artist/Resident Bass Expert for Seymour Duncan
    The SPB1 &SJB1 is a great set for active electronics. It is really vintage sounding, and with a preamp, can sound very modern with the EQ set right. As far as what preamp, you have to decide how many bands of EQ you want, and if the preamp you might like would fir inside the cavity.

    octa colombo likes this.
  8. Bodeanly


    Mar 20, 2015
    If we're talking about the same bass, I could get every tone imaginable out of mine. The J was always a little noisy when favored/ soloed, but still. If you're unhappy with the sound, I'd try different strings first. I'm not trying to be "that guy" (I actually hate "that guy") but I would think long and hard before sinking cash into a cheap (but well made, sweet sounding, gig-worthy, and versatile) instrument.

    Anyhoo, you came for pickup recs and I didn't give you any. Sorry. :(
  9. octa colombo

    octa colombo Guest

    Dec 22, 2014
    haha, I've tried lots of strings over the years and so far I'm sticking with the DR high beams or the Rotosound swing bass 66. I love the versatility and the tones this bass has been giving me for the past years, and that's part of the reason why I'm giving it a makeover. it's old, it was given to me already old, so I jus want to bring it back to life.
  10. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Yamaha, Ampeg, Line 6, EMG
    SPB-1 is a classic. Don't know if I'd want to pair it with a single coil J pickup like the SJB-1, though. I am not a fan of single coil noise. An SJB-1 set on a Jazz is fine because you can wire them to be humbucking when both pickups are on full, but you can't do that with a split coil P pickup since they're humbuckers already.

    Might want to also take a look at the EMG Geezer Butler PJ set. The P sounds very close to the SPB-1 but has this gentle little kick in the mids that I love, and the J is a humbucker and sounds pretty superb as well.

    As for preamps, I know EMG makes a couple preamps for passive basses but I don't have much experience with them. Plenty of experience with their active preamps, though, and they kick ass, so you might want to check out their pres for passives since they'll wire up with EMG's quick connectors instead of soldering. But you can solder the Geezers onto any preamp that works with passive pickups, though you'll have to strip the ends off the quick connector cables to do it. Honestly, I don't think they need it, but I know some folks really like their preamps with passive pickups, so I won't tell you not to do it :D
  11. octa colombo

    octa colombo Guest

    Dec 22, 2014
    I'll check out the EMG GeezerButler PJ set. And I think I'll end up with a 2-band Aguilar preamp, But thank you for the info
    JimmyM likes this.
  12. acebase62


    Jun 29, 2010
    A. Seymour Duncan SPB-1 and Seymour Duncan Apollo Jazz.
    B. Dimarzio Area PJ set DP251.

    Both sets have hum cancelling split J pickups.

    I never used the Geezer Butler PJ set, but would consider them based on positive review here.
    Last edited: Jul 15, 2017
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