Precision Players - what after market Pickups have you tried and loved or hated, and why?

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by thmsjordan, Sep 18, 2021.

  1. thmsjordan


    Jan 10, 2010
    Eschew Obfuscation
    The Precision is a popular bass, loved by many and despised by some. In this post I hope we can discuss different pickups and how they sounded for better or for worse. Maybe we can get a database of sorts going for those who need advice when switching from stock pickups. I am looking to compile information specifically on the split P bass type pickup found in stock P basses.

    I will start. My experience was with Bartolini pickups. compared to the stock pickups they were much more clear in terms of definition, higher output, nice growl and plenty of low end. On the downside, a little of the warmth of the original pickups was missing in these.

    Please feel free to share your experiences. I would love to hear what all of you have found with different pickups. Please describe what you do on bass, what you were looking for when you switched, and what you experiences were. Sound bytes and photos are very welcome here. Lets see if we can compile enough information to make this useful for those of us who play this iconic bass.
    JRA and EatS1stBassist like this.
  2. Al Rivera

    Al Rivera

    Mar 20, 2021
    I tried quarter pounders and a bad a$$ bridge in my hwy 1 precision. Changed the whole sound of the bass,not in a good way! I eventually decided to sell it ,so I took off the bridge and put the original pickups and bent steel bridge 20200502_131831.jpg back in. Took it to rehearsals one last time and fell back in love with it!
    Since then I've put Seymour Duncan's spb1 pickups in it and now its has that perfect precision bass sound.
    pcake, thmsjordan, Pocket4 and 9 others like this.
  3. JimmyM


    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Yamaha, Ampeg, Line 6, EMG
    Many folks have used a lot more and different pickups than I have, but I've tried a few along the way.


    ---EMG Geezer Butler (my fave ever)
    ---Duncan SPB-1 (very close 2nd)
    ---Fender 62 Custom Shop from the early 2000's (also a very close 2nd)
    ---DiMarzio Model P, for completely different reasons than the other 3


    ---EMG active P

    Weren't my thang but I can see why some folks might like them:

    ---Duncan SPB-3
    ---Fender 62 Original
    ---EMG PX
    ---Stock pickup I had in a 79 Precision I bought for cheap in 2007 then sold at a nice profit a few months later

    Really weren't my thing, like really:

    ---Fender V Mod I and II

    $1400 for an American Standard Precision and this is the best you can do for a pickup?:

    ---Fender American Standard pickup from 2008-2012
    thmsjordan, MJ_Sotti, mikecd1 and 9 others like this.
  4. Slater

    Slater Leave that thing alone.

    Apr 17, 2000
    The Great Lakes State
    Lindy Fralin stock wind
    Seymour Duncan Antiquity II

    Really liked:
    EMG Geezer
    Dimarzio Model P
    Seymour Duncan SPB-1

    Fender Standard (MiM) ceramic (not really after market)
    Seymour Duncan SPB-3

    There are plenty of others from pretty good to meh.
  5. C Stone

    C Stone

    Sep 4, 2020
    I usually ride out what come with the bass (unless they bother me) fortunately I have enough basses to cover all my needs, they sound different and treat them as such.

    A few I have tried and liked:
    1. EMG Geezers
    2. Seymour Duncan SPB-1
    3. Fender Original 62's
    4. 60's Classic Vibe (stock alnico)
    thmsjordan, Dubious Aa and friend33 like this.
  6. project_c


    May 8, 2008
    London, UK
    I love SPB3 pickups, I totally get why lots of people dislike them but for some reason that tone works better for me on a P than anything else. I have them in all 3 of my precisions, and I use them in combination with tapewounds, which would be a weird combination for many people but it’s what works best for me.
  7. hbarcat

    hbarcat Supporting Member

    Aug 24, 2006
    Rochelle, Illinois
    EMG Geezer P is my favorite, by far.

    EMG P is a close second.

    I can't say exactly why I like them. I just do.
  8. Killens84

    Killens84 Supporting Member

    Sep 3, 2008
    I’ve tried several. My top 3 are
    1. Arcane 65 Experience
    2. Lollar standard
    3. Aguilar AG 4P-60
  9. cdwthunderfoot


    Nov 29, 2015
    I have been really enjoying the Lollar precision 90.
    armybass, thmsjordan and 75Ric like this.
  10. Jefenator

    Jefenator Supporting Member

    Aug 22, 2008
    Lollar for traditional done just right to my taste. (Ditto their J & SCPB models - I just really seem to smell their cooking.)
    Aero for something more neutral in a potent, full-range sense. I opted for their 4A model with one pole under each string, just to shake things up a bit and appropriate the response of a SCPB.
    armybass and thmsjordan like this.
  11. codiak


    Mar 16, 2017
    Madison, Wisconsin
    It depends on the type of music you play as I seem to favor the high output ones. My favorites I’ve tried have been-
    1. Seymour Duncan Quarter Pound both P and PJ
    2. DiMarzio Model P
    3. EMG Geezer GZR both P and PJ
    thmsjordan and Operation Ivy like this.
  12. JeezyMcNuggles

    JeezyMcNuggles Supporting Member

    Feb 23, 2018
    Santa Maria, CA
    I suck, but nobody really notices
    A bunch of them. Yes, they are all different. SWAPPING YOUR PICKUPS DOES EFFECT THE SOUND. There are some who just refuse to believe that. For some reason.

    My favorites are


    Power Blade



    Fralin standard.
  13. WoodyJ

    WoodyJ Supporting Member

    Jul 29, 2008
    Kansas City
    I've used others but Lollar Standards are my all-time favorites.

    My previous favorites were Seymour Duncan Quarter Pounders (P and J)
    thmsjordan and EatS1stBassist like this.
  14. SLPimp

    SLPimp An Injury to One is an Injury to All Supporting Member

    Sep 27, 2020
    Santa Fe, New Mexico
    EMG Geezers: Loved in one bass, but in my current build ( I sent the pups back) I had bad noise issues)
    Aguilar 60s: The. Best.
    Fender cheapy MIM ceramics from mid 2000s: I still have a set I pulled from my mini P. Really gnarly in a good way for cheap pickups.
    The Naylor P Blade pickups in my WattPlower.

    Currently, about to install a set of Nordstrand NP4s. Hoping I love those too.
  15. lermgalieu

    lermgalieu Supporting Member

    Apr 27, 2000
    Bay Area
    I have a 1996 MIM that has either SPB-1 or SPB-2 (whatever is stock for that model) and I love them. They are FANTASTIC for a little aggressive action. A little noisy, but that's ok.

    I had the custom shop '62 pickups in my 2014 MIA, which were good but a little mellow for my tastes. I bought some Bill Lawrence pickups to replace them, but never put them in. However, just this week I put in some G&L MFDs and they seem like winners so far.
  16. mike57


    Feb 12, 2009
    Our Fair City, MA
    Rio Grande Muy Grande.

    The very essence of P bass goodness.
  17. bigdaddybass12


    Feb 26, 2021
    EMG active EQ. Dont like the sound. I want to remove and replace with a passive setup. Looking for a complete set of PU, wiring, pots etc to replace. ​
    thmsjordan and EatS1stBassist like this.
  18. I put Artec's large pole P in a Squier bass recently. Thick, meaty sound from that pick up. Love it.
  19. 2112

    2112 Supporting Member

    Apr 30, 2005
    Another vote for the EMG GZR... its big and strong with flats, and good with rounds too.

    A Dominger Thumper mated with a Tom Brantley Geddy bridge pup in a PJ is pure tonal bliss.
    Last edited: Sep 18, 2021
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    Here are some related products that TB members are talking about. Clicking on a product will take you to TB’s partner, Primary, where you can find links to TB discussions about these products.

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