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Ultra Jazz on a P bass?

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by bassbenj, Dec 31, 2011.

  1. bassbenj


    Aug 11, 2009
    P-bass noob here. I've been Jonesing for a 5 string P-bass forever. But an Am. P-bass 5er is just too much cash. So I bought a 5 string Squier P/J-bass off a TBer and previously I had bought a Genuine Fender 5 string P-bass pickup set from some surplus place. The plan was to put the pickup in the Squier and build a kind of poor-man's P-bass 5er.

    First about the Squier P/J-bass 5er. Positively the WORST bass I've ever played! The pickups (which are two JAZZ pickups) are WAY too short for the string spacing which makes the B string much quieter than the rest which really makes the bass sound bad! Plus they are single coil and hum like mad!

    OK. Looks like the original plan was good. So I figured replace the neck Jazz with my surplus P-bass 5er pickup and get some kind of "noiseless" J for the bridge. I look up Dimarzio Ultra Jazz 5s. Good reviews. Great price. Seem perfect! Almost a perfect fit and side by side coils for humbucking!

    But here's where the problem comes in: I'm thinking why not just get a SET of Dimarzios and replace BOTH pickups with them and return it to the Jazz/jazz configuration it already has. This would mean I could avoid a lot of routing and getting a custom pickguard. Just a bit of dremeling ought to do it.

    Now here's my questions:

    1. What's the deal with the Squier P-bass with two Jazz pickups anyway? Is it really a P-bass with Jazz pickups? Is it going to sound like a P-bass? Or is this just going to be one more Jazz bass with slightly different neck and body?

    2. Since the Dimarzio pickups are side by side coils, they are VERY similar to the split P-bass pickups only the coils are in a line rather than offset. Would the offset coil pickups (my original Fenders) really sound THAT different from the side by side coil Ultra Jazz pickups? The idea is to end up with a P bass, not one more Jazz bass.

    3. I presume I'll be using a Dimarzio for the bridge pickup of the P/J anyway, so my next question is how does the output level of the Dimarzios compare to that of the Fender split p-bass pickup? I'm thinking an advantage of two Dimarzios would be the levels would be automatically matched.

    Anybody have any idea about these things before I get out the router?
  2. Check the J bass pickup comparisons in sticky's, I think you will find that Ultrajazz is supposed to sound just like a jazz, I have read the DiMarzio Model J is probably the most P like jazz pup. Have not tried one yet, but plan to in my own P/J bridge position.

    I have no answer about outputs matching, but I'd say if you want the P sound, get out the router.
  3. bassbenj


    Aug 11, 2009
    I was afraid this would be the answer! Thanks.

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