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What do you think about this new pickup idea by Fishman?

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by FunkyMan, Jan 15, 2014.

  1. FunkyMan


    Nov 27, 2007
  2. Hopkins

    Hopkins Supporting Member Commercial User

    Nov 17, 2010
    Houston Tx
    Owner/Builder @Hopkins Guitars
    Very interesting, I would love to hear how they sound.
  3. Wow thats interesting.. Thanks for sharing
  4. Isotonic

    Isotonic Supporting Member

    Oct 19, 2011
    Round Rock TX
    Thanks for sharing. I can't wait to hear the Jazz Bass model.
  5. RobbieK


    Jun 14, 2003
    That's brilliant. Why didn't I think of that!?
  6. walterw

    walterw Supportive Fender Gold Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 20, 2009
    the manufacturing is a brilliant workaround, but so far as i can tell the design goal (stacked pickup with a "neutral" inherent sound, a preamp EQ used to create the various pickup "characters") is straight out of the '80s, only EMG and even ultrasound were there first.
  7. Jim C

    Jim C Spector#496:More curves than Sophia + better sound Supporting Member

    Nov 29, 2008
    An original and modern take on such a simple product
    First came conventional pups; then on board pre-amps; this is by far the next big possibility
    Thanks for posting
  8. bassbenj


    Aug 11, 2009
    I'm pretty sceptical about this. First is the "printed" coil. Because of the insulation spacing between layers and between turns while they may be more consistent unit to unit, they will not have the number of turns you can get with wire in the same space. This will make a low output, low imedance pickup. Also I don't thing the "via" connections are going to be especially reliable in a stack that thick. There is trouble plating them with 6 or 10 layers let alone 48. And the fewer turns means lower impedance so all the tone shaping will need be done in a preamp so there is only an active choice here.

    It may be a way to cop the classice vintage pickup tones, but I'm thinking it's a bit too late with digital modeling getting better and better.

    Time will tell. I haven't seem much of that "game changer" pickup coil switching system lately. I don't think it gained much popularity.
  9. Jim C

    Jim C Spector#496:More curves than Sophia + better sound Supporting Member

    Nov 29, 2008
    The "Game Changer" was a way to store pup selections for convenience.
    An interesting idea for a limited market IMO.
    It did not represent any new pup or preamp tonalities although still an original idea.

    Bassbenj; you could be right although there are some pretty serious guys at Fishman who have had a history of great design and implementation.
  10. Totally agree. The only real innovation here is in replacing wire coils with printed wire coils, which is really interesting. The rest is just basically building an active pickup around the coil with some tone-shaping onboard, something that has been around for years.

    I think they missed the boat in not offering bass pickups as part of the initial run. Bass players in general tend to be way more accepting of new technology than guitarists.
  11. I think the beauty of this concept is consistency...
  12. pfox14


    Dec 22, 2013
    Neat technology but....the basic design of a pickup hasn't changed that much in decades - still wire wrapped around a magnet, etc. Don't think I'll be switching.
  13. Dogghouse


    Jan 25, 2011
    Santa Barbara
    Bass Guy @ Seymour Duncan
    I remember when CD's first came out and got the pitch about their "perfect" sound and "unscratch-abilty"...NOT.
    Now the industry standard seems to be MP-3's. NOT.
    Damn some of our "modern" music technologies!
  14. walterw

    walterw Supportive Fender Gold Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 20, 2009
    big +1 here.

    i have no idea why a guitar player would want any of that, i don't see it solving any problems for him. hell, not being a "classic" design he would probably very much not want that.

    for bass it could be a neat way to get more flexibility or fidelity, say if the same-sounding coil could be made smaller than normal to leave room for other stuff like preamps or other coils.
  15. SirMjac28

    SirMjac28 Patiently Waiting For The Next British Invasion

    Aug 25, 2010
    The Great Midwest
    I disagree about bass players liking new things ask Fender? how many companies are still doing "their" take on P and J basses?. I have a line 6 Variax that is one incredible bass and it was too much for the bass world but the guitar version is still going strong.
  16. Johnny Mac

    Johnny Mac Riff-finder General Supporting Member

    Sep 28, 2005
    Springfield, MA
    IMO the coolest thing is the USB-rechargeable battery. Can't believe no one thought of that already.

    If they release a model that can replace the EMG-HZs in my Spector I'm totally on board.
  17. khutch

    khutch Praise Harp

    Aug 20, 2011
    suburban Chicago
    It appears to be a low turn count, stacked coil, hum canceling pickup. People have been doing things like this for years, this seems to be a combination of techniques that have never been combined in this way before. So not ground breaking but sometimes new combinations of old things achieve remarkable results. And sometimes the market says, meh. Everything they are doing is good, solid engineering, including the 48 layer pcb. Only the market can say if it will succeed or not.

    Low turn count, amplified pickups do have a very hi-fi sound from what I have read. The hi-fi sound is often described as sterile by tone junkies who are seeking some specific lo-fi tonal characteristic produced by a classic instrument and its pickups. However a hi-fi sound right out of the pickup can be tonally shaped to emulate any lo-fi pickup just as Fishman claims to be doing so it will be interesting to see if guitarists agree. Musicians are a funny bunch, they tend to believe that only tubes and paper/oil capacitors connected with cloth covered wire can produce a decent sound. This Fishman design has the potential to bring the Variax concept to the masses, but mjac28 may be right, bassists may just be too conservative to buy into it.

    I love the line about symphony orchestras being cover bands. I've been saying that for years but then I am not one to dismiss a group of excellent performers as a "cover band". Yeah, it's nice to write your own material, but only if you can write good material. Well performed material is a sublime delight no matter who wrote it.
  18. pfox14


    Dec 22, 2013
    I was reading "The Bass Book" and it was pushing the idea that all the boutique bass makers have been successful because bass players like new and unusual stuff much more than your typical guitar player. I'm not sure if I really buy it.
  19. Stealth


    Feb 5, 2008
    Zagreb, Croatia
    This is a cool idea. Wonder how it stacks up (no pun intended) to a Wal-like multi-coil pickup which is usually wired to have as low an impedance as possible.
  20. walterw

    walterw Supportive Fender Gold Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 20, 2009
    compared to guitar players?

    i don't think it's even a question.

    sure, Ps and Js are the most popular, but there's a lot more innovative or even wacky bass stuff that actually gets used than guitar stuff out there.

    compare the popularity of 5-string basses vs. 7-string guitars, for instance.