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Warwick Electronics in a Fender Jazz Bass:

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Sir Edward V, Jul 26, 2007.

  1. Sir Edward V

    Sir Edward V Not Actually Knighted... Yet!

    Dec 11, 2006
    We'll I'm doing it, I'm just waiting for the pickups and preamp to get here. ...and I kinda still need to get a Jazz bass :rolleyes: I'm having a bit of a time finding one that plays well for $200-$300...

    Well, I'm wondering if you guys think it will sound like a warwick once I do this. I think it will, which is why I'm doing it, but I'm just wondering if there is a consensus around here.
  2. Azoore


    Sep 1, 2004
    Akron, OH
    There's nothing special about the MEC electronics in Warwicks, so I don't see why they would transform a jazz into one.
  3. There's no way MEC PU's and electronics are going to make a Jazz sound like a Warwick. The sound of a Warwick (in my opinion) is mainly in the wood and possibly a bit in the bridge configuration.
  4. Sir Edward V

    Sir Edward V Not Actually Knighted... Yet!

    Dec 11, 2006
    I always heard wood didn't have that big of an effect on the overall sound, so I assumed the sound comes from the pickups.

    Well, I guess we will find out once I get this bass set up!
  5. SuperDuck


    Sep 26, 2000
    I'm in the middle of the same project as well - I've got the body and MEC pickups. I would imagine it would sound more like a Jazz with EMG pickups than it would a Warwick. I am thinking about buying a Wenge neck from Warmoth, though, to see how close that gets it!
  6. melt


    May 16, 2007
    I also feel that the wood (and general construction) is the most important part of a bass from a tone point of view. Every bass is the sum of its parts IMHO. Most luthiers that I've spoken to will tell you that just dropping in the relevant pickups won't make bass "a" sound like bass "b". It'll be an interesting experiment though!
  7. Nemesis_2509


    Aug 23, 2006
    I would think it'll sound like a Rockbass...which unfortunately doesnt sound like a Warwick, its in the woods. Should still sound good though.

    Question: Did you check to make sure you bought the right size pickups for the jazz bass...if i'm not mistaken (correct me if i am) the Warwick J-pickups are the same size, neck and bridge, and i know the neck pickup on a jazz is slightly shorter...might be wrong but just making sure...
  8. Sir Edward V

    Sir Edward V Not Actually Knighted... Yet!

    Dec 11, 2006
    the guy I bought them from said they were the right size, but its not a big deal, if it is too big I will just make the hole bigger

    knowing how to use power tools is awesome
  9. cash87


    Jun 26, 2006
    Louisville Ky
    Hm... sounds like a cool project, but I wouldnt expect it to sound anything like a Warwick. Warwicks get their sound from the woods and build specs. Thats what makes some of them pretty expensive, also their slogan "The Sound of Wood" gives a big hint to where they get their sound.
  10. Rano Bass

    Rano Bass

    Sep 9, 2006
    Tijuana Mex.
    I'm one of those who think MEC electronics are not that good, specially the preamp it kinda compresses the sound. Even warwick's sound better with different electronics if you ask me.

    BTW i've done that, i put a MEC preamp on my jazz with EMG's and went back to a Bart pre.

    To me the Warwick sound comes from a combination of the wenge fingerboard, massive bridge, and pickup location.

    IMO of course.
  11. Sir Edward V

    Sir Edward V Not Actually Knighted... Yet!

    Dec 11, 2006
    well I wasn't even that interested in the preamp, I just wanted the pickups and the preamp was thrown in
  12. I had a P copy and now I own an SSTD. Despite of P pickup being located further from the bridge than the humbucker on the WW I always had a brighter tone on the P and a darker tone with more prominent low midrange on the WW. And the WW doesn't sound as trebley even unplugged. Yes, I had fresh strings on both basses.
  13. Yeah i feel the MEC electronics kind of choke the sound of Warwicks. I got the chance to A/B my brother's stock Thumb BO 5 to another Thumb BO 5 with EMG pups and a bart pre...the mods won hands down.
  14. maxbass


    May 22, 2002
    Milano Italy
    It will sound like a Jazz with an (not so good, by the way) active circuit.

    Warwick tone comes from the woods used.

    Warwick basses have their own sound either with EMG , Bartolini, Seymour Duncan, MEC...
  15. cash87


    Jun 26, 2006
    Louisville Ky
    If you can I would suggest you put in an Audere jazz preamp. Those sound amazing on a jazz bass.
  16. Baird6869

    Baird6869 RIP Gord Downey. A True Canadian Icon.


    I absolutely hate how most Warwicks sound and it is likely due due to the funky woods they use.

    The only Warwick I liked (and owned briefly until the circuit board started picking up radio signals) was an older Fortress Masterman. And this bass had a regular lacquered finish, but the regular porus-type wood.

    To each their own but my point is that only a Warwick sounds like a Warwick. Some love 'em ans some hate 'em.
  17. SuperDuck


    Sep 26, 2000
    For what it's worth, Sir Edward, whenever it comes to projects like this or the Warwick sound in general lots of people will tell you what it might or should sound like, regardless if they have actually performed said operation. (Or even owned a Warwick.) The best way is probably to do it yourself and see what happens!
  18. Funkan666


    Jul 29, 2007
    it may not sound exactly like a Warwick, but my teacher put some Warwick MEC gold pickups in his Yamaha BB614, and now it is SO loud and sounds great!
  19. staccatogrowl

    staccatogrowl Savoring the spinning, shimmery aquasphere Supporting Member

    Jul 14, 2006
    To me, this is the best comment.

    I change PUPs all the time. After all, it is a tone quest. Sometimes what others say is accurate. Sometimes what others say is based on perception very different from mine.

    Go with your intuition (you imagined this would sound cool, right?), try it, and see what happens. Always let your ears and heart have the final say.

    Let us know! You could end up with a very good sounding J.

  20. Baryonyx

    Baryonyx Banned

    Jul 11, 2005
    Marathon Man

    The sound of Warwicks is in the wood choices, hence why they are very unique sounding basses. If anything lets Warwick down, it's the electronics! I'm not sure they'd be anything special in a jazz bass!

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