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The DarkStar P bass awakens!

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Dr. PhunkyPants, Jan 16, 2006.

  1. Dr. PhunkyPants

    Dr. PhunkyPants Guest

    Aug 11, 2002
    OK, finally wrapped up this project after waiting 2+ months for a DarkStar pickup from Fred Hammon. [BTW, I liked the results so much I tried to order another and Fred said he's had to stop taking orders altogether to meet Lakland's demand! Looks like I got one of the last for a while!]

    Here's the skinny. I pulled the nicest Fender neck I've ever seen off one of these new active Fender P-bass Specials. Absolutely perfect fretwork and neck contour--no humps at all.

    The body is an aftermarket MIM suburst alder body off Ebay. Had to rout the sucker pretty good for the DS pickup. I sheilded it with copper, too.

    Pickguard was a custom no-pickup-rout from Chandler. Black three ply. Also copper shielded. Bridge is vintage Fender. Knobs are black square-shouldered. The pickup is wired through a Bayou Cables harness which has Hammon's recommended capacitor and 500k pots. Strings are TI jazz flats.

    I...um...reliced the body. Yeah, I know, I'm sorry guys. (don't throw cans). It actually came out really well. The body has great 'mojo' now--befitting the earthy monster it contains.

    For those of you who haven't heard the sound of a DarkStar, you don't know what you're missing. It is about twice as loud as my loudest active bass. I simply cannot keep the tone control wide open--the highs are overwhelming.

    With flats, it is hands down the ultimate vintage tone experience.


  2. RoVaughn


    Oct 8, 2005
    You know what they say.....if you dont post a sound clip, it doesnt exist....

    Well noone really says, that but should.......Lets hear what it sound like!
  3. BurningSkies

    BurningSkies CRAZY BALDHEAD

    Feb 20, 2005
    Syracuse NY
    Endorsing artist: Dingwall Guitars
    Looks great!

    No heat on the relic'ing...I have a beautiful homemade relic tele.
  4. ElBajista


    Dec 13, 2005
    Sebring, FL
    Looks great! I really want to try one of these pups.

  5. How does your tone compare to a normal P's tone? I was thinking of doing an olympic white and black P with a Darkstar in it, in the nowhere-near future. The clips on their website sound phenominal, does yours sound anything like those?

  6. tim oconnor

    tim oconnor Supporting Member

    Oct 29, 2002
    Mooresville. NC USA

    Uh oh, please rephrase for me as you're scaring me away... you're describing every Spector I've ever tried :meh:
  7. Dr. PhunkyPants

    Dr. PhunkyPants Guest

    Aug 11, 2002
    Take the quintessential P-bass tone, make it twice as loud and throaty, then add an extra two notches on the tone knob in the direction of brightness. Hence, you don't need to use it 'wide open'--you get everything a P-bass is known for at about 8, just a hell of a lot of it. There's a big difference in my mind between the sterility of a Spector and the rootsy snap of a Hagstrom.
  8. Fuzzbass

    Fuzzbass P5 with overdrive Gold Supporting Member

    Dayum. :eek: Nice job, and excellent review! When Fred gets his 5-string version done, omma get one and build a bass around it.
  9. Very nice I say. I'm not sure about the relic-ing. I would have put it through a hundred bar gigs and get some real relic-ing going on which would make the bass even more personal. But very nice bass nonetheless.

    I have one comment to make. The vintage look you're going after screams for chrome hardware. I think the black knobs are out of place, even bearing in mind the black of the Dark Stars. The black control knobs give it a modern look which is incongrous with what you're going after. My opinion only of course:bag: .
  10. ElBajista


    Dec 13, 2005
    Sebring, FL
    Wow, that's a great description. Thank you for making the GAS pains worse....
  11. DigthemLows


    Oct 10, 2003
    Sacramento CA
    I'll Join In!
  12. Fuzzbass

    Fuzzbass P5 with overdrive Gold Supporting Member

    Not only do I not disapprove, I fully approve. It's yo thang, do whatcha wanna do! :bassist:
  13. Fuzzbass

    Fuzzbass P5 with overdrive Gold Supporting Member

    Some of us aren't that crazy about the shiny new look, but are too careful with our instruments to scuff 'em up fast enough. :p

    I agree about the knobs... I also would've gone with chrome to match the bridge and pickup. Not a BFD, though.
  14. DigthemLows


    Oct 10, 2003
    Sacramento CA
    Love that maple neck!
  15. watspan


    Nov 25, 2002
    madison, wi
    except for the knobs and DS, it looks exactly like my '74 P I bought brand new. Hmmmm....should I DS a 100% vintage P---nah, but I dig yours!
  16. hot corn! that's a spicy meatball.


    Oct 16, 2002
    New Orleans
    I'll play. Dscf0504.jpg
  18. Christian Waiau

    Christian Waiau

    Jun 16, 2005
    las vegas/maui, nevada/hawaii
    Endorsing Artist: Spector, Aguilar, Darkglass
    that is my goal this year!@!!!! DARKSTAR PBASS.... that tone.. is .... magic? haha
  19. Fuzzbass

    Fuzzbass P5 with overdrive Gold Supporting Member

    Excellent. :)

    Interesting: you chose to put the polepieces towards the bridge rather than the neck. You wanted more growl?

    That leads to another question: is there any reason why the pickup couldn't be rotated 180 degrees depending on the player's preference? (I know there wouldn't be a huge difference in tone, but it would be noticeable.)
  20. That DS pickup looks like it sets really close to the body... Is there adequate enough room to comfortable rest your thumb when playing?

  21. Primary

    Primary TB Assistant

    Here are some related products that TB members are talking about. Clicking on a product will take you to TB’s partner, Primary, where you can find links to TB discussions about these products.

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