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  • Bass pickups in series, active network

    Hey there.

    I got a passive P bass type with a added switch to put both pickups in series. I totally love that sound. It's different than a regular HB, because the two pups are relatively far apart.

    Anyhoooo... The P bass neck is a bit wide so I'm ogling a new one with a smaller nut width. Only catch is that it's an active one. I have the schematic here:


    Click image for larger version

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    Theoretically I could cut the wires and install a DPDT switch to toggle the pups in series, like a humbucker. This will of course make for a louder signal.
    My question is, will the preamp start clipping when it gets a hotter signal?

    Anyone have any experience with series switching mod in active basses?
    Last edited by WDeeGee; 05-09-2020, 06:58 PM.

  • #2
    Re: Bass pickups in series, active network

    The diagram makes that look like a J bass. A P has two small pickups the overlap more or less mid way between the neck and bridge, which are usually wired in series.
    "Patience is key. Hard work is obligatory. And itís the decisions you make right now, not the habits of the past, that will shape your success in the future." - Janek Gwizdala

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    • #3
      Re: Bass pickups in series, active network

      The black bits represent the plastic casing of the coaxial wires that go to the pickups. The pickups aren't actually pictured I think.
      Thanks for the help. But indeed, the new one will be a J bass.
      Last edited by WDeeGee; 05-10-2020, 02:07 PM.

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      • #4
        Re: Bass pickups in series, active network

        A pickup being a humbucker has nothing to do with the coils being wired in series. A MusicMan humbucker is wired in parallel.

        Itís a humbucker because it has two coils. The split P bass pickup is a humbucker.

        You canít run an active pickup in series with a passive pickup. You donít have access to the coils in the active pickup. You only have the output of the preamp. You also canít mix active and passive pickups and have them work well together due to the different impedance.


        Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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        • #5
          Re: Bass pickups in series, active network

          I think the OP wants an Ibanez with an active EQ
          then he wants to know if he can modify the active system to run the pickups in series
          a sound he likes

          is this correct, WDeeGee?
          EHD
          Just here surfing Guitar Pron
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          Carvin Belair / Laney GC80A Acoustic Amp (a gift from Guitar Player Mag)
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          • #6
            Re: Bass pickups in series, active network

            if you are using passive pups with active electronics, i dont think it should be an issue. if you are trying to use two active pups then i dont know if that can be done. youd be feeding the output of one pups preamp into the next pup which may cause issues

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            • #7
              Re: Bass pickups in series, active network

              Originally posted by ehdwuld View Post
              I think the OP wants an Ibanez with an active EQ
              then he wants to know if he can modify the active system to run the pickups in series
              a sound he likes

              is this correct, WDeeGee?
              Indeed. But the pups are passive.

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              • #8
                Re: Bass pickups in series, active network

                Originally posted by WDeeGee View Post
                Indeed. But the pups are passive.
                Oh I didnít see that. [emoji2359]

                Yeah you can wire the pickups in series.


                Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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                • #9
                  Re: Bass pickups in series, active network

                  Originally posted by jeremy View Post
                  if you are using passive pups with active electronics, i dont think it should be an issue. if you are trying to use two active pups then i dont know if that can be done. youd be feeding the output of one pups preamp into the next pup which may cause issues
                  Well, I went ahead and done it. The pups are passive and it works well, I like it.

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                  • #10
                    Re: Bass pickups in series, active network

                    ^ cool
                    "Patience is key. Hard work is obligatory. And itís the decisions you make right now, not the habits of the past, that will shape your success in the future." - Janek Gwizdala

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