Spector P/J, TWs, DCs?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by nikki271027, Nov 19, 2013.

  1. nikki271027


    Oct 7, 2012
    I'm looking for a Spector euro.
    There are three different type pickup, P/J, TWs, and DCs(Alex Webster)
    I'm stock here.
    Could someone tell the pros and cons of these pickup configuration?
  2. P/J:Allows for some P and Jazz bass tones on top of your standard Spector tone. You can even slap on a P/J if you play your cards right.

    TW's: Extremely versatile, but some think the tone is too dark in dual-coil mode. Allows for almost any imaginable tone, from metal to reggae to slap. There's actually a youtube video demonstrating all these different applications, but they may have taken it down.

    DC'S: Designed by EMG to be a musicman sounding pickup, so obviously a ton of clang, punch, and zing. Huge range, tons of highs, tons of lows. May be a little to "wild" for your tastes, depending on which genre of music you play. They run super hot, so you may want to run these at 18V for extra headroom.

    May I ask what music you plan to play? You mentioned Alex Webster, so perhaps Death Metal or some other sort of metal. DC's for the Death Metal tone, P/J's for a Rex Brown type of tone, and some older metal bass tones (Queensryche, Judas Priest, Kiss Etc.)

    What models are you looking at? The EuroLX models or the straight Euro models?
  3. bunkaroo


    Apr 25, 2003
    Endorsing Artist: Spector Basses
    I have owned all three. A big determining factor on how these pickups will sound is the preamp. The newer Euro LX's come with the trimpot-equipped TonePump. The trimpot is important as the preamp is VERY hot out of the box. Most guys dial it down to between 30-50%. This preamp is designed to emulate the "classic" Spector sound.

    Paired with the P/J's, you can get a very bright aggressive tone. Paired the TW's, in dual mode it will be beefier but not as much brightness in my opinion unless you crank the treble. Single coil mode has a noticeable drop in level in comparison to dual. I've seen several players use single coil then crank the bass and treble all the way. This actually sounds better than you'd expect. I think there are a lot of usable tones from the TonePump in dual mode; I typically had my treble up most of the way and the bass bumped a little.

    My only experience with the DC's on a Euro is in the Webster bass which pairs them with an 18v EMG BQC preamp. I've been using this bass for a year and a half, and I would not characterize it as wild myself. The EMG preamps are known to be pretty clean sounding. It has a lot of clarity and is very good with the low B. The BQC also adds a mid-sweep control so you can really dial in the EQ. I also don't find the output any hotter than my TonePumps were. Again this is just my personal experience using GK amps and various preamps at home (RBI, REDDI, U5). I would imagine the DC's with a TonePump could be a very aggressive sound.

    I also use the DC's in several of my US Spectors, and paired with the Spector 18v preamp, they are my favorite. Just enough aggressive to get you in the same ballpark as the classic US 9v Spector preamp with P/J's, but it gives you a thicker bottom as well. Some guys (myself included) have experimented with mixing the DC with a soapbar P. I do this on my NS-5XL with the US 18v preamp and it is a very good balance between the aggressive sound of an NS-2 and the full sound of a XL bass.
  4. mmbongo

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

    I'm not a big fan of P/J's for one reason...it will always only be a P/J. If you get a TW you can always make it whatever you want because you are not limited by the pickup routes.

  5. Listen to this guy. He's spot on about the preamp being a huge factor on the tone, lately i've been experimenting with different on board preamp on my NS-4CRFM.

    My personal experience with DC's was that they were pretty damn wild, I had those plus an EMG BTC preamp in my razorback, and I had a lot of distortion and clipping, except at the lowest of volumes. But it handled the Low B better than any bass or pickup I've ever seen before, so if you're going for a 5 string, the 40DC is king. I tried running it at both 9V and 18V, but 9v worked better for me. On Spectors though, 18V works better from what I hear. I'm planning on doing an 18V mod on my current BTS pre.
  6. I have EMG 40Js paired with a BQC in my ReBop 5DLX.
    Amazing tone! Very versatile.
  7. I have an EMG 35p in the neck and an EMG 35dc in the bridge along with a trimpot tonepump, and I get a spectacular tone through my ns-94. I've been gasing for a euro forever, but with the tone I'm getting, honestly, I still want one, but only if it comes to me at the right time. And that's merely for aesthetics. I used to have both dc's in both with a haz copy pre when I first had it. And it sounded good, but compared to the tone I have now, I really enjoy what's in it now. Especially live!
  8. How does one go about tracking down a HAZ or haz copy? I can never find any around these parts.
  9. bunkaroo


    Apr 25, 2003
    Endorsing Artist: Spector Basses
    Another wildcard for the Euro - the Aguilar preamp. I have played with an OBP-2 and it seems to be somewhere between the TonePump and EMG. Not quite as clean as the EMG, but not near as aggressive as the EMG. Just another flavor.
  10. bunkaroo


    Apr 25, 2003
    Endorsing Artist: Spector Basses
    This is similar to what I'm doing, albeit with the 40P5 and 40DC and 18v US Spector preamp. This is actually my ADGCF bass now that I tune to ACGCF a lot. Very ballsy sound but still great low end.
  11. bunkaroo


    Apr 25, 2003
    Endorsing Artist: Spector Basses
    Was thinking the difference in our experiences could very well be due to pickup height. Mine are not very close to the strings because I tend to pick hard.
  12. I tried several different heights. When it was close to the strings it was way too harsh, because I also pick hard. Then I basicaly sunk the pickups into the wood, and that worked a little better, but still too much "zing". I found that cutting both bands of the eq favoring the bass helped a lot too. It was semi-workable for metal, but I found it a lot better for doom because it gave a more resonant tone, plus the DC's handled the low end extremely well.

  13. Good luck with that one. :) When I bought it from Limaguy, it had one in it already. The thing I didn't like was the treble was too shrill for me with the active pups.

    I still want to try out the 18v on mine, but I love the growl and low end I get from it now. In fact, I keep mine between 50-60 % because it's really heavy. Must be all that wonderful maple. :bassist::bassist:
  14. Are you sure you didn't have the non trim tp? That's what that sounds like to me.
  15. I'm talking about my Dean Razorback. It has an EMG BTC preamp with 2 EMG 35DC's. I strung it up for BEAD since it was a 35" scale bass. My NS-4 CRFM has a BTS with EMG P/J's.
  16. Ah. My bad! I forgot about that part.
  17. bunkaroo


    Apr 25, 2003
    Endorsing Artist: Spector Basses
    You know what they say....if it ain't broke....
  18. grendle


    Mar 4, 2011
    Central FL
    what he said.

    I'm a big fan of P/J's and "leave it alone if it already kicks ass". I've played them all and gone back to the P/J setup with the pump at 18v.

    The DC / TW shape is cool because you can swap what you want in there. I don't much care for the other pre's myself other than the HAZ and the pump. I think the pump is a little better for pick players actually, but thats just me.

    Some didn't like the TW's because of the volume drop. Also it's not and never will be a fender so don't expect it to sound like one reguardless of pup config.

    I say run the original FTW! P/J! and let it eat / rip /snot/ and make stink like it was ment to :bassist: . Just a brutal tone with p/j and the pump @ 18v. just my .02
  19. grendle


    Mar 4, 2011
    Central FL
    it is! 18v opens it up a bit. it'll take ya about 5 min, a soldering iron, and an extra battery. and if you just make the harness it's reversible back to 9v in seconds. different animal at 18v. you clearly get all the lows, highs, and everything in between pretty much no matter how hard you hit it, that's the key. it's not any hotter, and it sounds a little grittier at 9v, but i like 18v best.