Precision Bass Sound From Dual Inline Hum-Cancelling Jazz Bass Neck Pickup

What's Hot
jaymenonjaymenon Frets: 65
edited April 14 in Bass

I have a cheap but rather nice five string Vintage AV4+1 Bass Guitar (One of the Trevor Wilkinson ones). It t incorporates a precision bass neck with a jazz bass body. My tech also installed a bone nut.

I wanted hum-cancelling pickups and we therefore installed a pair of Bartolini 57J1 L/S split coil pickups - these have side-by-side dual inline hum-cancelling coils (but look like Jazz Bass pickups - without the 'offset' of the Precision Bass pickup).

I’ve always liked the sound of the precision bass and I was particularly impressed by the sound that Wayne Banks got at the Classic Rock Show gig in Norwich. Pretty much the best bass sound I've heard at any gig - period.

Given the architecture of my pickups, I find myself wondering whether the neck pick up will give me a close enough approximation of a Precision Bass...?

57J Technical Details

Coil Structure:
Dual Inline Hum-killing
Magnetic Circuit:
2 types of carbon steel powered by ceramic (ferrite) magnets
Opposite polarity for bass and treble coils for neck and bridge pickups

57J-S1 - Neck

  • DC Resistance: ~7.1KΩ
  • Resonant Frequency: ~5.7KHz
  • Sensing Width: 3.07" [78mm] Max 2.32" [59mm] Min

57J-L1 - Bridge

  • DC Resistance: ~8KΩ
  • Resonant Frequency: ~4.9KHz
  • Sensing Width: 3.19" [81mm] Max 2.36" [60mm] Min
0reaction image LOL 0reaction image Wow! 0reaction image Wisdom · Share on Facebook Share on Twitter

Comments

  • FunkfingersFunkfingers Frets: 4170
    The short answer is no.

    Part of the classic P Bass pickup sound comes from the dimensions of its coils. Another important feature is rod magnet polepieces.

    In order to extract similar tones from your Barts, it will be necessary to employ active equalisation to further manipulate the low and midrange frequency bands. Even after doing this, the bar polepieces of the Barts will not cop the transient attack of a vintage Fender pickup.

    In my opinion, you should enjoy the Barts for what they do. 



    On reflection, your best short cut to vintage bass guitar tones from your instrument could well be flat wound strings.




    "It's no wonder the Pacific Ocean is blue."
    0reaction image LOL 0reaction image Wow! 1reaction image Wisdom · Share on Facebook Share on Twitter
  • ICBMICBM Frets: 36847
    You'll probably get close with an EQ pedal, but as Funkfingers said the pickup is just not similar enough to nail it exactly.

    The pickup positions are also quite a bit different - the P pickup is closer to the bridge, more or less in between where the Jazz pickups are - and that makes a surprisingly large difference.

    A possible option is to connect the two Jazz pickups in series instead of parallel - that will give more of the fatter, punchier tone of the P.
    "Take these three items, some WD-40, a vise grip, and a roll of duct tape. Any man worth his salt can fix almost any problem with this stuff alone." - Walt Kowalski

    "Just because I don't care, doesn't mean I don't understand." - Homer Simpson
    0reaction image LOL 0reaction image Wow! 1reaction image Wisdom · Share on Facebook Share on Twitter
  • fretmeisterfretmeister Frets: 10374
    I was going to suggest getting a new scratchplate and then routing it for a P pickup.

    But after looking at the bass model itself and seeing that one sold used on basschat for only £125 - the cost of a good pickup and the work would be more expensive than the bass.

    Even then the P pickup wouldn't be in quite the right position. I've had a few basses where the P is either a bit forward or back - often by only half the width of the pickup and it does make a difference.


    But if you only use the neck pickup and then EQ it with a mid boost and cut the bass a surprising amount and cut the treble a bit then you will get as close as you can with what you have.

    Old skool P pickups are surprisingly low on real bass freqs - it's all about the mids instead. No doubt that was the aim as a Double Bass doesn't really have lots of bass freq either.

    That's why people who put in SD Quarter Pounders etc as an "improvement" then moan their beloved bass doesn't sound like a precision anymore. Of course it won't! They just picked a new pickup with boosted bass and cut mids - the opposite to a vintage P pickup!

    "Guitars are just basses for kids"

    Gregor Fris

    0reaction image LOL 0reaction image Wow! 0reaction image Wisdom · Share on Facebook Share on Twitter
  • FunkfingersFunkfingers Frets: 4170
    Even then the P pickup wouldn't be in quite the right position. I've had a few basses where the P is either a bit forward or back - often by only half the width of the pickup and it does make a difference.
    My solution would be to rout for a wide "soapbar" shaped pickup with the P coil arrangement inside.

    Old skool P pickups are surprisingly low on real bass freqs - it's all about the mids instead. No doubt that was the aim as a Double Bass doesn't really have lots of bass freq either.
    There is also the matter of early Fifties electric stringed instrument amplification not being able to deliver the really low end.
    "It's no wonder the Pacific Ocean is blue."
    0reaction image LOL 0reaction image Wow! 0reaction image Wisdom · Share on Facebook Share on Twitter
  • ICBMICBM Frets: 36847
    Funkfingers said:

    There is also the matter of early Fifties electric stringed instrument amplification not being able to deliver the really low end.
    Nor even the 60s - the first bass amp to produce 'modern' levels of low-end was the SVT, and even that's a bit of a cheat because it purposely rolls off the fundamentals and relies on the 'human brain synthesis' to put them back. It wasn't until the late 70s and long-travel high-power bass speakers that there was any *true* bottom end in a bass sound.
    "Take these three items, some WD-40, a vise grip, and a roll of duct tape. Any man worth his salt can fix almost any problem with this stuff alone." - Walt Kowalski

    "Just because I don't care, doesn't mean I don't understand." - Homer Simpson
    0reaction image LOL 0reaction image Wow! 0reaction image Wisdom · Share on Facebook Share on Twitter
  • jaymenonjaymenon Frets: 65
    Or buy a P Bass - not many 5 string models though...
    0reaction image LOL 0reaction image Wow! 0reaction image Wisdom · Share on Facebook Share on Twitter
  • fretmeisterfretmeister Frets: 10374
    jaymenon said:
    Or buy a P Bass - not many 5 string models though...
    The Sandberg VS 5 string is a cracking instrument.
    Nicer neck shape than a Fender too - little narrower at the nut and is far more comfy.

    "Guitars are just basses for kids"

    Gregor Fris

    0reaction image LOL 0reaction image Wow! 0reaction image Wisdom · Share on Facebook Share on Twitter
  • guitarfishbayguitarfishbay Frets: 7494
    Sandberg necks are very nice.
    0reaction image LOL 0reaction image Wow! 0reaction image Wisdom · Share on Facebook Share on Twitter
  • guitarfishbayguitarfishbay Frets: 7494
    Old skool P pickups are surprisingly low on real bass freqs - it's all about the mids instead. No doubt that was the aim as a Double Bass doesn't really have lots of bass freq either.
    I think this is why I didn't like the EMG GZR.  Took it out pretty quickly, too much mids and not enough bottom - I'm using Pro Steels too so it's just not a pickup that works for me.  Have an SPB1 in there and that's a bit more relaxed in the midrange with some more low end, and less upper mid gank than the stock Fender pickup.
    0reaction image LOL 0reaction image Wow! 0reaction image Wisdom · Share on Facebook Share on Twitter
  • fretmeisterfretmeister Frets: 10374
    I've got the Aguilar 60s wind P in my PJ-Ray.

    Controlled bottom, tons of clank - but is very reactive to the tone control so it backs off the clank beautifully.
    It's now my favourite P pickup.

    "Guitars are just basses for kids"

    Gregor Fris

    0reaction image LOL 0reaction image Wow! 0reaction image Wisdom · Share on Facebook Share on Twitter
  • guitarfishbayguitarfishbay Frets: 7494
    edited April 15
    That was on my radar, it was Shuker that recommended I try the SPB1 and it does work pretty well.

    To be honest I'm mostly using my Dingwall Combustion.  I did try a P-Tone and I didn't love it, a little too bright with steels.  I think the stock pickup wired series sounds closer to what I'd want out of a P.  I need to get some series/parallel switches fitted at some point.

    Well, what I'd really love is a Super P.  I hope they'll do an import version one day.
    0reaction image LOL 0reaction image Wow! 0reaction image Wisdom · Share on Facebook Share on Twitter
  • KeefyKeefy Frets: 414
    ...

    Well, what I'd really love is a Super P.  I hope they'll do an import version one day.
    I recently acquired a Super PZ5 - it's a phenomenal instrument!
    0reaction image LOL 0reaction image Wow! 0reaction image Wisdom · Share on Facebook Share on Twitter
  • jaymenonjaymenon Frets: 65
    jaymenon said:
    Or buy a P Bass - not many 5 string models though...
    The Sandberg VS 5 string is a cracking instrument.
    Nicer neck shape than a Fender too - little narrower at the nut and is far more comfy.
    Thanks Fretmeister - what I like about the Vintage is however, what Trevor Wilkinson calls the 'man-size spacing' of the Precision Bass :-)

    Perhaps a 4 string will be fine - just tune it down a tone to get that low 'D'
    0reaction image LOL 0reaction image Wow! 0reaction image Wisdom · Share on Facebook Share on Twitter
  • guitarfishbayguitarfishbay Frets: 7494
    Keefy said:
    ...

    Well, what I'd really love is a Super P.  I hope they'll do an import version one day.
    I recently acquired a Super PZ5 - it's a phenomenal instrument!
    Awesome! I haven’t played one, the few clips I can find sound great though 
    0reaction image LOL 0reaction image Wow! 0reaction image Wisdom · Share on Facebook Share on Twitter
Sign In or Register to comment.