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Replacing J99 pickups on my Carvin SB5000

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by LaBassGuy, Sep 24, 2012.

  1. LaBassGuy

    LaBassGuy Supporting Member

    Aug 26, 2008
    I have a Carvin SB5000 and am considering replacing the stock J99 single coils.

    I love the snappy, modern 70s jazz tone. But I feel the pups are lacking in the lows and low mids and may be bit too bright.

    What I want is to maintain most of the high end of the J99 but add some burpy low mids. I want to maintain the modern tone and don't really want a vintage sound.

    I've narrowed my choices down to Nordy NJ5 with 70s wiring.

    Will this give me what I am looking for?
  2. LaBassGuy

    LaBassGuy Supporting Member

    Aug 26, 2008
    Really, no one has an opinion?
  3. jza57

    jza57 Supporting Member

    Sadowsky HC Jazz or DiMarzio Ultra Jazz . These are almost the same pickup in fact if I am not mistaken , Dimarzio might make the Sad HC Jazz pickup . These are not traditional sounding if that is what you are after.
  4. LaBassGuy

    LaBassGuy Supporting Member

    Aug 26, 2008

    Yah but those are not single coil which is what I want. And I am pretty sure the Ultra Jazz in the SB5000 would sound even brighter--that's what happened when I put them in my marcus miller jazz once.
  5. Mystic Michael

    Mystic Michael Hip No Ties

    Apr 1, 2004
    New York, NY
    Look, if you've gotta have single-coils...yet you don't want them to be any brighter than the Carvin J99s, you may have a very narrow road to hoe - especially if you favor a modern tone. :eyebrow:

    For the record, there are a number of hum-canceling pickups now available in a single-coil form factor that sound virtually the same as the single-coils after which they're modeled...and the bonus is that they tend to have just a bit more subdued high frequency response than their single-coil counterparts. Think of it as a bonus.

    My philosophy is that it's always better to have more of a good thing than you really need, than it is to not have enough: You can always dial down the excess, but you can't always compensate for an absence.

    FWIW, here are the pickups I used to upgrade from the J99s in my SB5000:

    Delano JMVC 5 FE


    These babies generate like, the ultimate in '70s Jazz tone - with as much punch & power as you could ever dream of. Vintage they definitely are not. And if you've gotta have the real thing, Delano even makes a true single-coil version of them.

    Go ahead. Knock yourself out... :cool: :smug:

  6. LaBassGuy

    LaBassGuy Supporting Member

    Aug 26, 2008
    That's $220 for the pair, dear sir. What's wrong with the nordies? :(

  7. Mystic Michael

    Mystic Michael Hip No Ties

    Apr 1, 2004
    New York, NY
    Probably more. And worth every damn penny...

    I never said anything was "wrong" with them. If your mind is already made up, then by all means, go get what you want...

  8. jza57

    jza57 Supporting Member

    Before you try new pickups , why don't you try adding a passive tone control to your setup . It is an excellent way to control highs and you may even discover the lows have always been there. Just a suggestion.
    Frenchy-Lefty likes this.
  9. I was thinking about some EQ'ing etc. Any work in that direction?
  10. mmbongo

    mmbongo Chicken Pot Pie. My three favorite things!! Supporting Member

    Here's a nutty question..what strings have you tried on it?
  11. LaBassGuy

    LaBassGuy Supporting Member

    Aug 26, 2008
    I have DR Low Riders. Previously I had High Beams which, of course, were very bright. And the bass does have a passive tone control.

    In any case, I've ordered the Nordy NJ5 in 70s winding. I'll let you know how it sounds when I get it.

    Don't get me wrong, the Carvin pups have a very, very clean and open tone. And I might end up putting them back in if I don't like the vibe of the Nordies.
  12. Freddels

    Freddels Musical Anarchist

    Apr 7, 2005
    Sutton, MA
    If it's active with the tone control, you should be getting plenty of low mids. Boost the bass a little bit. I think those pickups and preamp are what makes that bass so good.
  13. LaBassGuy

    LaBassGuy Supporting Member

    Aug 26, 2008
    Btw, still waiting for my Nordy pups.

    But has anyone tried the Aero Type 1, Antiquity II, or the Aggie 70s pups in the Carvin SB5000?
  14. DWBass

    DWBass The Funkfather

    I put Bartolini Classic Series Single Coil Brights in my jazz. While they do have a sizzly high end, it's got some serious low end thump. I have it paired with a Bartolini 3.3A/P 2 band eq preamp. Think Larry Graham.
  15. mmbongo

    mmbongo Chicken Pot Pie. My three favorite things!! Supporting Member

    I think Bartolini Deep single coils will deliver what you need.

    You could also try some less bright strings...LoRiders are very bright. (the 'Lo' in the name has nothing to do with the sound). Maybe some Sunbeams or Pressurewounds .
  16. willbassyeah


    Oct 9, 2011
    I have the same "problem" found the pickup to be too bright, what I do is I roll off the bridge pickup a bit. I am using sb5000 too
  17. The J99a's can get bright, but I've found that SB preamp flexible enough to get just about any tone out of it that I would want. I'm assuming you've seen the Sekou videos on the Carvin channel and exhausted the preamp settings?
  18. LaBassGuy

    LaBassGuy Supporting Member

    Aug 26, 2008
    Well brightness is one issue but they are also real clean and polite. Which is nice, I really dig that.

    The J99A is the perfect clean, bright pickup. But I'd like bit more growl and rawness to it.
  19. LaBassGuy

    LaBassGuy Supporting Member

    Aug 26, 2008
    So as an update:

    I installed Nordie NJ5 in 70s wind with existing carvin preamp. I didn't like the tone. The pups sounded warm, vintage, with muted but aggressive high. This would have worked well for rock music.

    I now have sadowsky single coils with sadowsky preamp. The pups sound warm and vintage, very much similar to thw Will Lee jazz.

    I like these better than the nordies but they are still off the mark from what I want:

    marcus millerish, modern, clean, growly aggressive tone. I don't want the warmth of the sads. The stock pickups lacked that growl I wanted and were thin but were more in the ballpark than the nordies and sads.

    So, any suggestions? Aggie pickups? EMGs? Delano as suggested above?
  20. MCS4

    MCS4 Supporting Member

    Sep 26, 2012
    Fort Lauderdale, FL
    I swapped out the J99's in my Carvin LB70 for Aero's Type 1 jazz singles for reasonably similar reasons to yours, and I've been very happy with them.

    Edit: I meant the reasons you mentioned in the original post. I don't know if I would describe them as "Marcus-Millerish" or growly.