Squier VM Jaguar Active Electronics Bypass / Phase Issues

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by cthbass, Feb 16, 2021.

  1. cthbass


    Feb 16, 2021
    Hello all! I am new to this forum, so I apologize if this isn't the right place to post this! I've had a Squier Vintage Modified Jaguar bass for around 7 years now, and have never felt the need to upgrade or buy a new bass. I love it, and I love the way it sounds and plays. It is the active model with 4 knobs, one being the "boost" circuitry. However, the way I play is quite simple. I only play the P pickup with the boost turned all the way down, adjusting the tone to taste.

    For as long as I have owned the bass, I never really used the pickups together because turning both pickups all the way up results in a major loss of low end and volume. Of course, it sounds to me like they're out of phase with each other, but is that really possible for the instrument to come with such a mistake stock from the factory? I've never changed the wiring, and the bass was new when I got it. Or is it just some other strange pickup interaction that reversing the polarity on the J pickup wouldn't fix? I haven't heard this issue mentioned anywhere else, so I felt like it might just be a phase issue with mine.

    I have quite a bit of soldering experience and wanted to ask anyone who owns one of these basses whether trying to reverse the polarity of one of the pickups would be worth it. While I had the bass opened up, I was also considering completely bypassing the active boost circuit. I never turn the boost up, and I have heard good things about bypassing the boost circuit improving this specific bass's tone. Is it even worth doing that if I play with the boost knob turned all the way down anyways? It could be cool to put another switch or some circuit where the knob used to be - maybe even making it a kind of "strangle switch" putting the J pickup in and out of phase!

    Overall, I would be perfectly happy just playing the P pickup as I have been. I'm still super excited about this bass, and I've been playing shows with it for years with absolutely no problem. It's actually been pretty nice not having an abundance of tone options. I think it's helped my creativity for sure! However, I would be really happy if some of these mods could expand my playing horizons. Thanks in advance to anyone who has any advice!
  2. Hi,

    A bit of a late reply but it is great to find another lover of this bass! I have one as well and it is one of my favorites! I originally bought it as an upgrade platform, however I did not find the need to upgrade it.

    Anyways, I bypassed the preamp and I definitely prefer the sound. I also use the Precision pick up soloed. In my opinion it will sound like any of the precision basses that came out at that time, which is very close to how the new Squier Precision bass sound. I found it much easier to use with pedals as well.

    Hope this helps.