Squier PBass Update Suggestions?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by skin, Nov 27, 2005.

  1. skin


    Jun 22, 2003
    Baton Rouge, LA USA
    I have decided to spend some time on making my backup bass better. I took off the pickup cover and found just a small piece of tape for shielding. I think the cavity should be shielded completely!

    What else can I do to make it better without spending lots of money: New wiring, new jack?

    Thank you for your help, in advance! All ideas are welcomed!
  2. XIbanez4lifeX


    Nov 15, 2005
    When I ask that question, people tell me that since its winter Squier P basses make great firewood.

    just joking , I play my I play my P bass to this day.
  3. That depends on what you're trying to achieve and how much you have to spend. Better pots/wiring/shielding will usually improve a Squier and those are relatively inexpensive upgrades.

    If you are looking to improve the sound, new pickups will definitely help but again, you need to know what you are trying to achieve.

    I have a Squier P-Bass Special V that I recently did some upgrades to and I am VERY happy about it. (See this post for details.)

    If you are looking to go this route, I would suggest the following:

    1) Determine the sound you are looking for. (Assuming you don't like the sound you are getting.)

    2) Do some research about which P-Bass pickups will give you that sound. (Between TB and Harmony Central there is a lot of available info.)

    3) Check eBay to see if the pups you are looking for are available. (You can find some excellent bargains on pups there.)

    To my way of thinking, in order to successfully upgrade, you have to have a firm idea of what you are looking for and a focused approach on how to get it. If you upgrade "for the heck of it," you may learn some things but you will probably be less-than-pleased with the end result.

    The last thing you want to do is spend a lot of time/money on upgrades but end up feeling that you are right back where you started.

    One last thing - and this is strictly my opinion: The Squier is an inexpensive intrument to begin with and you need to be careful not to "over-modify" it. If you aren't careful, a pickup here, a setup there, a new pickguard over here, and all of a sudden, you're approacing the price of a good used MIM P-Bass.

    You can do quite well for yourself by upgrading but know what you want, be realistic in your expectations, and do your homework first.

    Just my .02
  4. skin


    Jun 22, 2003
    Baton Rouge, LA USA
    I just want to improve it modestly- not overbuild it. I have currently started playing with a bluegrass group and it's sound is better suited for it than my Ibanez SR 480. If this becomes more solid, I'll get another bass. Bluegrass requires a low and solid bottom without the midrange and higs the Ibanez dishes out.

    I put flatwounds on it to get a deeper sound.

    Let's keep it under $ 25 or $ 50.
  5. kazuhank

    kazuhank Supporting Member

    Nov 12, 2002
    Portland, OR
    It sounds like the flatwounds are a step in the right direction looking at your latest post. In keeping with your budget and desire to not 'overbuild,' I would recommend replacing the pots and wiring. New US pots don't cost that much and you could mess with different capacitors to get more/less highs and bass etc. $25 in pots, caps, and shielding tape will go a LONG way in improving the cost cutting elements common to Squiers. Good luck.

    BTW--I have a Squier that I gutted and spent too much money on only to find that it was okay as it came to me. In contrast, my brother had a Squier that we replaced the bridge, pots, capacitor, and roundwound strings on, and it is now a great player!
  6. skin


    Jun 22, 2003
    Baton Rouge, LA USA
    And where might me a good place to get these? Any particular values I should consider for pots and capacitors???
  7. kazuhank

    kazuhank Supporting Member

    Nov 12, 2002
    Portland, OR
    If you stick with CTS pots, any supplier like allparts, wd, or stewmac should suffice. i'd stick with 250k on the pots and try some different caps. i believe that .22 and .47 are the most common capacitors. check the luthiers and pickup forums for more info.