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precision sound from a jazz bass... is it possible?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by andbaggio, Mar 15, 2014.

  1. andbaggio


    Dec 16, 2011
    Treviso, Italy
    Mine is just a curiosity since I've got my guitar player that asked me to get more of a precision bass sound but I've got a jazz bass sound.

    Since I don't really know how a Precision sounds like (he says more "woody"), how can I get that sound from a jazz bass?

    only use the bridge pick-up with a closed tone? please I need some advice. thank you
  2. prd004


    Dec 3, 2010
    Solo the neck pickup, it is very close to a precision.
    Flats + solo'd neck pup, even better
  3. Phalex

    Phalex Semper Gumby Supporting Member

    Oct 3, 2006
    G.R. MI
    It's not possible to get the exact same sound from a J PUP.

    Pacman will claim that solo'ing the neck PUP on a J bass is better, but he's wrong. :bag:
  4. Session1969

    Session1969 Supporting Member

    Dec 2, 2010
    No, it would be using the neck pickup. Adjust tone to your liking and your good to go. I'd take your bass to a music store and try to replicate the tone by a /b'ing your bass with a P. It won't sound exact but you'll get close enough.
  5. This is TB right? Fire the guitarist.

    "More woody" is nonsense.

    I'd truly be amazed if the gui**** could tell the difference in basses in a blind test, especially in any sort of a mix (live or recorded).

    That having been said, you can get close (maybe) by getting a neck humbucking J pup and scooping out your mids in your EQ section.
  6. Fat n Fretless

    Fat n Fretless

    Feb 21, 2014
    prd004 got it. Don't go anywhere near the bridge pickup if you want a "precision" tone".
    Also depends what sort of precision tone your buddy wants. One is the thuddy sound on flats, the other would be like Steve Harris - neck pup wide open and add some treble & grit.

    BTW rolling back the tone doesn't remove "hum". That is at 60Hz (USA) and harmonice, 120Hz etc. What you are getting is RF interference. You can mitigate that by shielding your bass and keeping away from fluorescent lights , TVs and PC monitors.
  7. bluesblaster


    Jan 2, 2008
    add a series/ parallel switch
  8. bucephylus

    bucephylus Supporting Member Commercial User

    Aug 18, 2002
    General Manager TecPadz LLC
    Roll off the bridge about 30% will get you close. If you have the Sadowsky preamp, you can roll off the VTC and that gets you even closer. The neck pup alone will sound a lot like the early single coil P but not like the split. That's why, IMO, you do need to have some of the bridge involved to get a bit more depth to the tone.

    The other big difference is that the larger neck on the P has a big impact on the tone. What you can get with then J is close to the tone you get with the A neck P's. Close enough so most other players won't notice; not close enough so a P preferential bassist or sound guy will give it a pass.

  9. Malak the Mad

    Malak the Mad Over the River and through the Looking Glass Supporting Member

    Before buying a lot of gear, I would try out a set of nickel-plated flats. Much cheaper and easily reversible.

    I also like Session1969's suggestion of going to a music store and experimenting alongside other Precisions.
  10. FerK

    FerK Supporting Member

    Dec 11, 2011
    gui****s will be gui****s. Mine says that my Ibby 1200 is "only" for Jazz, and my MM Stingray is for metal, and when we play together, I should always play with my P, because we "play rock".:rollno:
  11. Danno1985


    Aug 27, 2012
    Milwaukee, WI
    It wasn't exactly the same, but I was able to get damn close with the neck pickup soloed on my MIJ Jazz, which had Antiquity II pickups and some worn-out Fender Flats on it. Close enough that I'd probably call "BS" on any guitarist who could claim to tell the difference in a blind test.
  12. Matt Dean

    Matt Dean Supporting Member

    Jan 2, 2007
    SF (North) Bay Area
    Phalex got it right. Js and Ps sound different... you can get close, but not the same. Both basses sound good IMO though.
  13. Papersen

    Papersen Supporting Member

    Mar 22, 2002
    Well, you can put flats, pluck the strings closer to the neck and roll tone off.

    A post 2001 Fender Jazz with the S1 switch could help too.
    You can get close, but not identical to a true Pbass sound.
  14. Bongolation


    Nov 9, 2001
    No Bogus Endorsements
    Upstream EQ.
  15. bassdog


    May 23, 2005
    Atlanta, Ga
    Won't really sound like a P but a J has lots of tonal variety and can be P like by using mostly, if not all neck pup, with the tone rolled back a bit. Maybe foam mute under the strings to settle it down a bit. String choice is important too but doesn't have to be flats. Just not aggressive sounding steel rounds. Maybe nickel rounds from Fender. Sometimes a J may not be grabbing the "right " sound and needs to be manipulated into it. Flats on a J are great but that eliminates the growly aggressive tone that a J can do so well. Just not the right sound for some stuff. Very versatile bass. Ever thought of getting a P too? MIM is a very nice P bass. My son has an '06 with that modern C neck. Sounds like a P should and can be found in the 400.00 neighborhood.
  16. Caca de Kick

    Caca de Kick Supporting Member

    Nov 18, 2002
    Seattle / Tacoma
    Rewire the pickup leads in series instead of parallel and slay the P sound because you'll have the added snap of the rear coil with the fatness of the forward coil. I left my Jazz wired this way, it kills!
  17. krovx

    krovx Supporting Member

    Mar 11, 2003
    Michigan, USA
    Haha, I just posted about this. I solo the neck pickup, play with the tone, and bump the mids on my amp's EQ

    Any idea where you can find a schematic to this? I think it would be killer to install a 'S1' style switch that could go from series to parallel.
  18. esa372

    esa372 Supporting Member

    Aug 7, 2010
    Los Angeles, CA
  19. coldwar1977


    Aug 1, 2012
    Noooooooooo! Don't scoop the mids. Bump 'em, that's the way to go.
  20. I'd say that a Jazz neck pickup soloed gets closer to a Precision sound than two Jazz pickups in series do. Series is thicker in the low mids, but it still has some of those peaks and dips in the upper mids and treble that come from combining two widely spaced pickups, so it still sound Jazz-ish to my ears.
    For the OP, I bet that soloing the neck pickup will be close enough for your guitarist. It won't totally nail a Precision sound, but it'll nudge you in that direction.