Which pickups for jaco tone?

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by Linas, Dec 7, 2005.

  1. Linas


    Jan 6, 2005
    I have baught an SX bass and am planning on installing a new set up pups. I would like as close to jacos tone as possible. I have a friend that works at a music shop and can get discounts so all i have to work with is

    Noiseless J.Bass
    Original J.Bass
    Custom Shop 60's

    Thanks for the help.

  2. basstruck

    basstruck Guest

    Nov 25, 2005
    Just keep dreaming, That's why Fender is asking close to
    $3000.00 for a bass with that kind of sound. Jacos was playing a pre CBS Fender jazz bass so really think about it. Do you really think that you can have that sound with an SX bass and by buying a set of pickups at a reduced price?
  3. Linas


    Jan 6, 2005
    Im not looking for a dead on $3000 copy of jacos exact tone, just the closest i can get with an sx bass and new pickups. Im sure one of these pickups is more in the tone of jaco then the others.
  4. Any single coil pickup would do.

    I would suggest DiMarzio Ultra J's though.

    Apparently, Seymour Duncan Antiquity 2 pickups match Jaco's specifications... so who knows.

    Crank the bridge volume, kill the neck volume, boost the mids to be extra nasal, and work on your attack from the bridge pickup and kaboom.
  5. Moo

    Moo Banned

    Dec 14, 2002
    Oakland, CA
    In contrast to the opinion that the Jaco tone only comes at retail price I think an SX is very similar to a pre CBS Fender, minus the collector value. But the bass Jaco is famous for using had non humcancelling single coils. So the noiseless would probably be the farthest from the tone you want. But still pretty close.

    Of all the bass hero tones I think Jaco has one of the simplest to capture, a passive j style bass and you're there. Sounding like Jaco is a different story ;)
  6. With your choices, i would think the Custom 60's with one hell of an attack coming from your fingers. Play like jaco for a few minutes first time around and your fingers will be on fire.
  7. basstruck

    basstruck Guest

    Nov 25, 2005
    If an SX that retails for $299.00 is similar to a pre CBS Fender,
    Leo Fender must be turning over in his grave and he must be very insulted. I wonder how come Fender is still in production and still in business manufacturing basses. If it is this way everybody should buy an SX. What is the use of buying a professional Fender bass when you can get an SX for $299.00 if they are similar like you said minus the collector value
    Only an opinion
  8. mahrous


    Aug 13, 2005
    i believe Jaco's pickups were rewound by Seymour Duncan back in the day!
  9. keyboardguy

    keyboardguy Supporting Member

    May 11, 2005
    From the Seymour Duncan site:

    11044-05 & 06 • antiquity II™ pickup for jazz bass®, neck & bridge

    "The Jazz Bass pickup is made to the specifications of the mid ‘60s production instruments and is very similar to the pickups I re-wound for Jaco back in the early ‘80s. The pickup is wound for the right amount of output and brightness without being too muddy or thin."

    I have them on my carvin B4 sound nice.



  10. draginon


    Oct 4, 2004
    due to advance in technology and child labor, crafting a bass similar to jaco's isn't very difficult?? (i pulled that out of me arse)
    You get what you like... if you try out and sx and like the tone, get it. IF u try a fender and like the tone, get it. if not... don't.
  11. What's your problem with the stock pick-ups? I think Jaco's tone came from his technique more than his pick-ups, to be honest.
    Roman5150 likes this.
  12. Moo

    Moo Banned

    Dec 14, 2002
    Oakland, CA
    I understand the emotional attachments one can make to their brands but besides the emotional argument can you tell me a tangible difference between one mass produced bass and the other? Details about Fender's extensive tone research division or how they got maple that was different from all the other maple in the forest or something? Pre CBS's are dogs for the most part, it's SX that should be insulted ;)

    And I'm not aware that Fender is still making pre CBS basses. How is that they are still in business today relative to something that hasn't been made in 40 years?
  13. If Jaco were with us today, I would place a safe bet that he could play the poster's modest bass... and it would sound like Jaco.

    The point being, a lot of his tone was in him.
  14. Moo

    Moo Banned

    Dec 14, 2002
    Oakland, CA
    I agree, I watched Jaco play a Jaydee through an old Peavey amp and it sounded like Jaco. Jaco also managed to get his sound with a Guild bass and Hartke aluminum speakers. I think his sound has very little to do with the headstock decal.

    In regards to the Duncan rewind, that was after pretty much all his famous recordings, he was also playing a lot of fretted then. Not really the classic Jaco tone.

    One thing I know Jaco liked was high action, if you've ever seen the clip of him and the Corn Flakes bass, shortly after that clip he asked for a different bass because the low action wouldn't let him play the way he liked and he said he couldn't get his tone from it.
  15. Moo

    Moo Banned

    Dec 14, 2002
    Oakland, CA
    Sarcasm aside, though I do appreciate it :), you're right. Recreating a 50 year old Fender process is not difficult, which may explain why Fender has used so many different companies to make Fenders. People will bag on a Tokai Fender knockoff built one month and praise the same production bass made a month later with a Fender decal.

    Also, Jaco's particular Fender was a rather abused hunk any ways. He played crap with a bad setup, it's what worked for him. I can't imagine SX couldn't match that quality.
  16. agreed.
  17. basstruck

    basstruck Guest

    Nov 25, 2005
    How many did you make so far?
    Can we see some pictures?
  18. keyboardguy

    keyboardguy Supporting Member

    May 11, 2005
  19. Dennis Kong

    Dennis Kong Supporting Member

    Sep 1, 2004
    San Mateo CA
    Actually he liked med to low action. (and now: someone gonna ask:what's do I consider as low - med action?)

    I originally posted this a couple years ago- and sadly--
    got greeted with much "skeptism from some TB's."

    Everything being relative: If my memory holds up:( being
    a senior-- these days) I measured height/ action of strings as: 3 business cards under the 3rd fret. As low or med?
    I don't know.
    Anyways- that's what my guitar maker measures it when he puts strings on my bass.
    And that's approx what the action was on that bass.
    (according to memory).

    I tried one of his '62 jazz basses in the Last Day Saloon in San Francisco in '86 when I loaned my equip to him (with Brian Melvin). It was one of the easiest basses to play-
    like " greased light'n"- I could start on the F note on the
    E string almost fly to the g note or higher (12th fret) with
    no effort.

    To make a long story-- short-- having jazz bass pu's help--
    "it's in the hands"...
    at that time I could not make the bass sound as good as he did. Nowdays- I 'm getting closer.
  20. Moo

    Moo Banned

    Dec 14, 2002
    Oakland, CA
    I'm only going by the words out of his mouth, he didn't bring one of his basses.