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Replacement PUPs & bridge for MIM Jazz

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by monkeybass68, Feb 8, 2013.

  1. Hey all, just picked up a '08 MIM Jazz bass last night. I want to live with the stock PUPs for a li'l while til I decide whether or not I definitely want to switch them out. Also, I've had a few MIM J's & P's over the years, and frequently have had issues with the bridges.
    For the PUPs, if I decide to swap them out, I'd prefer a vintage tone, but with minimal noise. Was thinking about the Fender Noiseless Vintage, but have never heard them up close.
    Any recommendations for PUPs or bridge?
  2. vrossi


    Jan 29, 2013
    Got an MIM Jazz 2010 i got seymour duncan basslines active pickups and badass 3 bridge. Somehow i got content with it and never looked at a US made jazz. The sound is close to a standard jazz bass sound but i'm still dialing in the sound ala randy hope taylor.
  3. Low Class

    Low Class Supporting Member

    Jul 4, 2005
    Orange Park, Florida
    Unfortunately, no one can really answer this question for you. There are a lot of very good bridges: Badass, HipShot, Gotoh, etc. The problem is that a bridge may work great on one bass and not so great on another. Variables such as wood, strings, and pickups all make a difference it how they respond. Any bridge other than what you have now will make a difference,but until you get it mounted you won't know whether it will be positive or negative.

    Pickups can be more predictable. You need to decide what it is you want in your sound and then go from there. You say you want a vintage tone without the noise. There are quite a few very good noise cancelling pickups on the market, but to my ears non of them really sound vintage. Others may disagree. Being a MIM J and not some high end bass I'd recommend the most economical quality pickups and not spend bigger money on Fralins, Nordstrands, etc. If you decide to go hum cancelling I'd recommend Seymour Duncan or Classic Series Bartolini(my first choice). If you decide to stay with a truer vintage tone single coil go with Seymour Duncan or Fender Custom Shop. Any of these pickups can be found in the $100 range if you shop around.

    Keep in mind that keeping it stock may be better than any pickup or bridge swap out. For example, I have a Squier Vintage Modified '70's J that is a very good player. Trying to make it even better I've tried every bridge and pickup in it you can think of. I found the that best improvement I could make was leaving it stock and putting on a set of DR HiBeam strings. I have basses that cost me much much more and I play that bass everyday.

    Bottom line, get a good set of strings and make sure the bass is setup properly before you do anything!
  4. Thanks Low Class, I appreciate the incite. 1st thing I do whenever I get a new bass is get a setup & put my own preferred strings on it (DR Hi-beams). Since we're about to get pelted with a snowstorm here in NY, I'll have to wait til next week to get the setup done. I'm not afraid of spending a few bucks for the right pickups though. Just wanted to see if anyone has tried those Fender noiseless vintage or could make other suggestions.
    I've had a number of P & J MIMs over the years & have had great luck with the tone of the alder wood bodies on them for the most part. The pickups I've had varying degrees of success with & the bridges are really hit or miss. I put '73 Fender P pickup & bridge in one of the P's & it's become my 2nd favorite fretted bass (1st being my custom Abe Rivera).
    So basically, I'm not sure whether or not I'll actually make any changes to the bass (other than setup & strings), but just wanted to get some other peoples ideas in case I do decide to make changes.
  5. Session1969

    Session1969 Supporting Member

    Dec 2, 2010
    I replaced my Affinity 5's pups with 60's custom shops and it doesn't seem noisy to me at all. I will say that the tone wasn't worlds apart after I installed them, but still a nice step up. I never solo one pup, though. It's always a blend, even playing reggae stuff.
  6. Andy_D


    Nov 28, 2009
    Corpus Christi, TX
    I put a Gotoh on my VM Jazz and one of these on my SX. Aside from one having a logo they are identical. For $24 it's it won't break the bank either. Pickups are a much more personal taste sort of thing.


    Shielding, and a fret leveling are where I would go next. I bought the tools and do my own fret level and dressings now. Cost me like $70-80. A very worthwhile investment in tools and time spent learning. As a matter of fact I just sold a bass locally and the guy I sold it to loved my setup on the one he bought and a few of my other basses. He asked If I might be interested in setting up his Spector and his Nathan East. I told him that I don't really need the money but would be glad to teach him if he was interested in learning to do this himself. Bring one over I said, we'll work on it together, and then you can do your others. He was very interested. Funny playing for 25+ years and never learning. t never occurred to me not to. But then again I spend a lot of time on TB so I've learned a lot.
  7. Thanks Andy. I've been playing for close to 30 years, but never really got around to learning how to do my own setups. I've got a local friend that is an amazing tech that does great work on all my basses. Since he does it out of his house & he's a friend, he charges me very little - for New York that is :)
    Anyway, I'll check that link u gave me, thanks again!

  8. Nedmundo

    Nedmundo Supporting Member

    Jan 7, 2005
    For great quality with minimal expense: DiMarzio's noiseless Area J pickups and Gotoh 201 bridge. I have the Gotoh on a project 2010 MIM J, and it's an excellent upgrade IMO. I use the DiMarzios in my G&L JB, and they're great pickups. They're in the vintage-voiced category, with zero single coil hum, and they are a real bargain compared to the boutique brands. I use more expensive noiseless J pickups too, and do prefer them, but not by much. The DiMarzios are in the ballpark for sure, and some might prefer them outright.