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should i lower my pickups?

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by kyo, Oct 15, 2004.

  1. kyo


    Jul 6, 2004
    OK so i play mostly metal, with a pick. now if i stay right under the end of the neck (like within half an inch), the bass rarely, if ever clips. however this gives me NO breathing room, and of course i cant do any palm muting or anything like that.

    so, the options are either to get thicker gauge strings or lower the pickups. now i know most people will probably say to get the strings. but the thing is, i really, really hate thick gauge strings. i love the feeling of my skinny little standard gauge strings.

    so i'm thinking about lowering the pups. how would this effect the sound? would i just have to crank the amp a notch or so louder, or will it have bad effects on the tone all together?

    while i dont like the thick guage strings, i hate clipping and crappy tone a whole lot more. so, what do you think i should do?
  2. David Wilson

    David Wilson Administrator Staff Member Administrator Supporting Member

    Oct 14, 2002
    Lower Westchester, NY
    I think you should lower the pickups a bit , see what difference it makes and adjust to taste.
    Bringing the pickups down a couple of screwdriver turns shouldn't change the characteristics of your sound, only bring the output level down a bit.

    One question though: is the clipping on the amp or your bass? Have you tried taking the input gain down a bit to give you a bit more dynamic headroom. If it's definitely on the bass, does your preamp have an adjustable input gain (bartolinis have this feature for example)

    Your profile doesn't list what type of bass or amp you're using, so without more information I'm conjecturing.
  3. kyo


    Jul 6, 2004
    thanks. made the pup adjustments and it works well.

    by the way i use a yamaha RBX and a hartke 2000 head with a crate 115 cab. cheap stuff but i love my sound :bassist:
  4. luknfur


    Jan 14, 2004

    I'd say you made the right choice and I wouldn't bother with this post except your implication you might try another set of string's before lowering the pups.

    Some basic rules I use for trouble shooting are:

    Never assume anything in terms of "it's probably not or can't be this." Eventually (and probably sooner than later) it will cost time, money, frustration, and downtime.

    In a building with proper grounding, start from the wall receptacle when isolating the source.

    Go with the quickest, cheapest, easiest, least invasive procedure first.

    Any permanent alterations to a stock bass usually result in loss of investment and decrease resale value - and could proably be made reverseable with a little thought beforehand.