Soapbar or Humbucker

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by relman, Apr 5, 2002.

  1. Alright...i'm designing my future DP bass, and i need some input on the pickups. I am building a fretless five string (alder or similar body, walnut top, maple neck, rosewood board) and i want a warm, smooth tone. I have decided on bartolinis...but which ones? which are the pros and cons of Humbuckers vs Soapbars???
  2. I'm not too familiar with it exactly, so i can't give you any insight on that, but i just want to add, that you may also be interested in just getting J pickups for a fretless. That's just an opinion, and so it can be taken in whatever way you want to.
  3. chamigo


    Oct 7, 2000
    I agree with 'Fortune cookie guy' Try the DiMarzio DP123's nice, fat sound...(I have a fretless Jazz)...I would also suggest looking into an ebony board. ...Sorry that I did'nt address the Bartolini question. :cool:
  4. mikezimmerman

    mikezimmerman Supporting Member

    Apr 29, 2001
    Omaha, Nebraska
    I'm not sure I understand the question. "Humbucker" means a pickup with two or more coils in an arrangement that eliminates noise. "Soapbar" is a generic term for pickups with rectangular shaped casings, as opposed to P- or J-style shapes.

    So talking about the pros and cons of a humbucker vs. a soapbar doesn't make sense.

    As for the Barts, "warm and smooth" is a pretty good description of the Bartolini sound.

    Don't get overwhelmed looking at the Bart catalog ( of the large number of bass pickup shapes there are designed as replacements to fit it the holes for other pickups, so if you wanted to put Barts in your G&L or Yamaha or Musicman or whatever, you wouldn't have to route the body. If you're having something custom built, you'll probably want to go with one of the "standard" stapes--the J-style, the M4 soapbar (which fits the same hole as the EMG soapbars), or possibly the Musicman.

    You still have options in terms of deciding which coil arrangement you want, but that will partly depend on which shape you choose. The wider soapbars will generally give you more options that the J-style pickups, but the narrower aperature J is sort of the "classic" fretless sound.

  5. i think i'm going to go for the soapbars...i don't want it to be like every other fretless or sound like every other jaco wannabe...