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Replicating a set of Cheap Pickups?

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by SwimP, Feb 27, 2016.

  1. SwimP


    Feb 17, 2009
    Charlotte, NC
    I want to find a set of jazz bass pickups that will match the sound of some stock passive pickups that came in a cheapo Bridgecraft jazz bass. It is by far the best sounding bass I own (for playing live in a loud mix) and its also the one that cost me the least ($20 on Craigslist). It's a very cheaply made J bass copy from the late 1990s (or early 2000s?), but all my bandmates (in 3 bands over the 2 years I've had this bass) agree that it sounds amazingly good. No matter what amp I'm using (Markbass, GK1001rb, Peaveys, Fenders, etc.) this bass stands out. I use roundwounds (mostly fingers, some pick) and it has a good amount of growl/grunt, a bit of high end sparkle, and no mud. I mostly play hard rock and metal (reliving my high school days from the 80s). Some of my other 30+ basses (yes, I suffer from GAS) include a stock 1972 Fender Jazz, an Aria Pro ii SB1000, Yamaha bb2004, many other Arias, Fernandes, G&L, Rickenbacker 4003, and Squiers, but the Bridgecraft sounds best. I have many basses with active setups, but I prefer passive and recently put a set of EMG PJ GZRs in one of my Aria Pro ii basses and was impressed at home, but at band practice even those weren't as good as the cheapos in the Bridgecraft (and yes, I appreciate the difference between the P snd J pickups). Any ideas for matching these Bridgecrafts scientifically? Might a sound engineer be able to measure the frequency tone print (or something) to enable me to try to find something comparable? (And, yes, I tried a new Bridgecraft bass and it wasn't the same.) Thanks
  2. Snaxster


    Nov 29, 2008
    Hello. Search and search until you find another Bridgecraft J bass with its original pickups intact; that will cost you time and 50 bucks.

    Alternatively, have a reputable pickup maker clone your current Bridgecraft pickups; send them the pickups to study, plus a concise description of what you like about them. That will cost you 150 bucks (for example).

    Caveat: Probably even another set of Bridgecraft pickups will not sound the same in a different bass. But I understand your motive. :) Good luck!
    Growlmonkee and jallenbass like this.
  3. Growlmonkee


    Jan 30, 2013
    Florida, U.S.
    Snaxster has some good ideas, just wondering something though, wonder if the Bridgecraft has a set of ceramic bar magnet pickups in it, they normally do not sound like alnico at all, and are used in a lot of low-end basses, I'm not even putting them down, but some ceramics can sound brash, and will certainly cut through well, might be a thought worth checking into, there's lots of those for sale, who knows, one might fit the bill. It wasn't my cup of tea, and I changed them, but my SX bass ($119 new) with ceramic pickups had no problem making it's presence known on a full stage, and it did not need to be loud to do it. a musician in the audience , on it's first outing, said he could hear me clearly that day, and liked it. (Bridgecraft might have upscaled to alnico) I think Dimarrzio makes some good ceramics, probably others too.
    Last edited: Feb 28, 2016
  4. phillybass101


    Jan 12, 2011
    Artist, Trickfish Amplification Bartolini Emerging Artist, MTD Kingston Emerging Artist. Artist, Tsunami Cables
    Artec? GFS? ebay?
  5. Yahboy


    May 21, 2008
    Anyone have experience with Wilkinson WBJ Alnico V 60's Jazz pickup?

    I found a good price from china seller, just need RMP 235.


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