Precision/musicman bass wiring help/ideas

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by Rokoko, Apr 19, 2011.

  1. Rokoko


    Nov 30, 2008

    Im finally putting together a long time bass GAS of mine, a Precision bass with a musicman pickup installed.
    What i have so far is a MIK 80's squier body + the original p bass pickup, and a SD musicman ceramic pickup. Im planning on a Truoil finished allparts neck for a musicman'ish neck feel.
    ... so far so good.

    What im pondering is the wiring.

    One plan is to have it wired straight V/V/T which is no problem doing, in this case i guess the MM would have to be wired series to have sufficient output to match the precision.

    Another option is using the Noll Mixpot 1 . Im not particularly familiar with how it works but in this case i would think a passive tone control for each pickup, a 3 way switch for the MM and then use the mixpot as blend.

    But then again i have a EBS Microbass external preamp, would this be sufficient to drive the MM to a reasonably buffered stingray sound?

    Im also tinkering with the idea of building the DIY stingray preamp and having it installed in a pedalbox and use it as a external preamp. But is it a problem to have passive electronics in the bass preceed the externally active preamp

    So basically, does anyone have bright ideas on what works best?
  2. Tommorichards


    Mar 22, 2011
    You could put a bypass switch in the bass to bypass the tone control. Thats the only problem i forsee with the passive electronics.
    And a parallel/series switch for the MM. (however, note that in the stingray basses, they are wired parallel, and in the sterlings, they are wired series)
  3. Rokoko


    Nov 30, 2008
    That sounds like a useful solution

    BTW by " note that in the stingray basses, they are wired parallel, and in the sterlings, they are wired series" you mean that the default wiring of the pickup in the respective basses is wiring parallel/series.

    A complete solution (incorporating your suggestion) could be a stacked knob (V/T) for the p bass. and 2 push/pull knobs (V+T) for the musicman so i can switch between series/parallel and bypass the electronics.
  4. Tommorichards


    Mar 22, 2011
    Yes. The default wiring in the stingray single humbucker bass is parallel. And the other one.

    And yes, you could do that for the MM pickup. Not a bad idea. But i personally dont like push/pull pots. I dont care about space saving.
  5. jpeaslee


    Feb 9, 2010
    Valdosta, Ga
    Did you ever finish this up? I'm REALLY interested in doing something similar.
  6. Rokoko


    Nov 30, 2008
    I did... almost. I first tried wiring it passive with the noname presicion pickup having a vol pot, the SD ceramic musicman pickup having a vol pot, and those two sharing a tone pot.

    The P pickup sounded like crap blended (and to some extent soloed), so i changed it to a wizard pickups "trad" p pickup. This one sounded great soloed, but as i turn the (4K) musicman pickup up, the (10K) p pickup gets totally tonesucked.

    Both sound fine on their own so i went and got the NOLL mixpot 1, an active blend pot. It now works like a charm. Only thing i need is to build a vintage type preamp for the MM pickup, i contacted "unclefluffy" regarding his production of musicman PCB's but he seems quite busy. (if any of you guys have one extra id really like to buy it)

    So Next step will be to (perhaps point to point) wire a preamp for the MM and a fixed tone/vol resistor for the p pickup so it would work like this:

    P pickup--> (resistors/cap emulating tone/vol pots) --\
    xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx Active blend -> out jack
    MM pickup --> musicman preamp)--------------------/

    This way i should be able to blend between raw P and MM tone.
  7. LowGrowl


    Jan 20, 2011
    Mexico City
    Hi! Rokoko.... Did you try this? I'm thinking about something simmilar for a franky I built.
  8. Rokoko


    Nov 30, 2008
    I kinda did it but not finished. Right now I am on a sabbatical in the US and the bass is sitting comfortably in our rehersal room in Copenhagen, Denmark :(

    I found out that i did not have room for the MM preamp, the active blend and the battery in the current cavity, and as I'm not an expert on routing i wanted to have some help expanding the cavity and putting in a battery compartment on the back of the bass.

    So right now it's wired as a p bass and has a MM pickup mounted just for show. When i return to Denmark and get some time on my hands (as i have all the parts bought) I'm definetly going to do the mod finished.... probably in May or June

    Stay tuned!
  9. DERB


    Jan 14, 2013
    I did my "P-Ray" passive, letting my pedals(ZoomB3)do the work shaping the tone.
    MightyMite "Musicman" bucker>500k pot>output jack.
    The tone is really unique, dig the way it sounds distorted.
  10. Rokoko


    Nov 30, 2008
    Did that as well, but disliked how the impedance mismatch between the P and MM pickups made it difficult to achieve any kind of useful blend. The low imp MM pickup somehow sucks the P out of the mix when blended... hard to describe.

    I'm probably more of a "active bass" kinda guy, unless we're talking classic Fender J, P or Ricks.
  11. LowGrowl


    Jan 20, 2011
    Mexico City
    Hi there!
    I'm just about to give this idea a try.

    I'm going
    A: Nordstrand P -> Tone Styler
    B: Nordstrand MM -> John East MM preamp
    A+B via Noll MixPot -> Volume-> Output

    I'm still not shure how but I'm intending to have a Les Paul type Switch Passive P/Active MM/Blend.

    Still have to do a lot of trial and error stuff and really not shure about the pickup placing. They are so close (even with the P reversed) that any combination gets kind of crowded in the low mids.

    If I can´t get to a good result with the blending thing I would rather have a two way switch without any blending. Having my two favorite sounds in my favorite bass shape and neck was the original purpose anyway....

  12. Rokoko


    Nov 30, 2008
    I have acually planned to have my project bass (which started this thread) routed to accomodate the MM preamp and the Noll mixpot. I've been on a visiting researcher at UM the last half year but after a longer vacation i will return home to Denmark and finish the bass.

    That is i can give you electronic tips and soundclips sometime in late April.

    Your project does look fantastic, my Allparts neck, Squire body is much more a scruffy player bass. I just got a warmoth Jazz, and the quality is impecable. If you figure out the electronics im sure you will get a killer bass.

    And please keep me posted if you get the project finished, would be nice to hear how it turns out.
  13. Rokoko


    Nov 30, 2008
    BTW if you use the NOLL you should be warned that it is not unity gain, but more like CW is Pickup A, CCW pickup B, and mid notch is volume of A+B, eg the blended sound i louder than either soloed... not a big problem, but it should be noted.

    Apart from that it worked fine. I wired the pickups straight to the NOLL MIXPOT so the MM sounded a bit strange. it really needs a MM pramp... which is why i need to route more space to accomodate both circuits.

    Again i will keep you posted.
  14. LowGrowl


    Jan 20, 2011
    Mexico City
    I'm putting all together now, made some tests and it's working! The MM channel gain in the noll pot is almost all the way down and the p side is halfway. That compensates for the john east pre high output.

    the only thing I'm missing now is a general volume pot that should be after the noll pot. Any idea of the correct value for that?

  15. Old thread, but any updates on these projects?
  16. Rokoko


    Nov 30, 2008
    As always other stuff got in the way, a phd thesis, new job, another kid, a new band, recording sessions, mix sessions... enough with my excuses :

    After a lot of debating how to do this (and a Noll mixpot failing on me) i have decided on using a stacked pot for the P, and followed by a small Jfet buffer from
    The musicman pickup will get the DIY preamp and both will go to a bypass switch where i can go a passive P all active electronics disabled.

    My issue (apart from reliability) with the noll unit was that a true passive p option was not easily accesible, and that the number of pots can get out of hand.

    Im not sure how the gain levels match up but if there are problems i will try and mod the buffer and MM preamp to match .

    (but first i need to reshape the neck, and route a bit of space for the PCB's and drill a side jack)

    Will definetly keep you all posted :)