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geoham

Tonerider pickups - any good?

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My main bass for the past 12 years has been a MIM Jazz. It's currently equipped with Fender CS 60's pickups and Rotosound flats. I love it, and no matter what else I try, this is what I keep going back to.
I also own a MIM P that I really want to like, but I struggle to get a decent tone from it live - although I do like the feel of it. I find the tone quite harsh at the high end, and just a bit non-descript otherwise. The output is significantly louder than all my other basses, which I find strange given the DC resistance of the pickups is only about 4.7k.
It's currently strung with Fender roundwounds, though I tried flats and didn't like them at all.

I'm considering changing the pickups. I have a gift voucher for Amazon that would cover the cost of a set of Toneriders (£35). Has anyone tried them? A good investment, or would I be better with something mainstream like Fender vintage or Seymour Duncans? (Obviously a little more expensive!)
I'm looking for a traditional, general tone, something that would work well in my covers band. Think Pino!
The plan would be to use this instead of my Jazz at some gigs, or for longer sets switch between both.

Opinions?

George

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I've not tried the Tonerider P pickup, but the Tonerider Jazz pair I have are astonishingly good. NOT just for the price either, these are simply great Jazz pickups.
The neck pickup in particular has a punch and "precision-ness" about it that I find is very lacking in most other J neck pickups. In no way is it exactly like a Precision, but it's much less woolly and vague than most Jazz neck pickups I have used. The only other J pickups I have used which are comparable in tone are Fralins.
The Tonerider bridge J is rather less honky and simply more "funky" than many other J bridge pickups I have used.
THey are a really well balanced and articulate set.

Edited by hamfist

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I've read that the Toneriders are what Fender use for the Squier Classic Vibe series - I've also read that the Squier CV Precision is a warmer sounding bass compared to the Squier Vintage Modified P (though I like my VM, haven't heard a CV P). Might be just what you need.

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[quote name='geoham' timestamp='1400955788' post='2458598']
A good enough endorsement for me! Worth a punt at £35 I reckon!
Will report back......
[/quote]

Don't forget the Wilkinson Alnico P pickup, which at about £30 posted is right up there in quality and tone too !

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[quote name='hamfist' timestamp='1401004089' post='2458892']
Don't forget the Wilkinson Alnico P pickup, which at about £30 posted is right up there in quality and tone too !
[/quote]
This is going to sound really petty - but I really don't like how the Wilkinson pickups have their name on them. If I could get a plain cover, I'd be happy to try them.

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[quote name='geoham' timestamp='1401015794' post='2459074']
This is going to sound really petty - but I really don't like how the Wilkinson pickups have their name on them. If I could get a plain cover, I'd be happy to try them.
[/quote]

You could probably scratch it off (or paint over it) if you liked the sound.

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[quote name='geoham' timestamp='1401015794' post='2459074']

This is going to sound really petty - but I really don't like how the Wilkinson pickups have their name on them. If I could get a plain cover, I'd be happy to try them.
[/quote]

http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Pair-of-PICKUP-COVERS-in-BLACK-CREAM-or-WHITE-to-fit-Precision-P-Bass-guitar-/190980490847?pt=UK_Guitar_Accessories&var=490217062454&hash=item2c7753065f

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[quote name='HowieBass' timestamp='1400956443' post='2458609']
I've read that the Toneriders are what Fender use for the Squier Classic Vibe series - I've also read that the Squier CV Precision is a warmer sounding bass compared to the Squier Vintage Modified P (though I like my VM, haven't heard a CV P). Might be just what you need.
[/quote]

The difference in warmth is probably due to the different body woods used more than anything (bright maple on the VM vs balanced basswood on the CV)

That said if the CV basses do use Tonerider pickups I can attest to their quality. The CV basses sound fantastic. Wilkinson are also worth a look - for the sake of an extra couple of quid for plain black covers you could be on to a winner.

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[quote name='hamfist' timestamp='1401017370' post='2459104']
http://www.ebay.co.u...=item2c7753065f
[/quote]
Easy peasy then. Do the Wilkinson ones come out the casing easily enough?
I'll try to locate some sound clips or reviews of both.

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[quote name='geoham' timestamp='1401039048' post='2459408']
Do the Wilkinson ones come out the casing easily enough?
[/quote]

I don't have an Alnico Wilkinson one currently but have had in the past. I'm almost certain the covers just lift on and off.
I DO have Wilkinson Ceramic P bass pickups at the moment, and the covers also lift straight on and off on those.

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Yep - the alnico version covers just come off (I've championed them a few times on here - great pickups and sound more expensive than they actually are. The logo wore a little on my last set, so I just rubbed it off with a nail brush and a bit of soap as it's a transfer.

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I finally settled on the Tonerider and ordered it today.
Once I've got it fitted, I'll do a before and after recording and let you all hear it!

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So, Toneriders now fitted. Rather happy with them. Gone is the harsh top end, and overall the tone is just warmer than the stock Fender pickups. I also notice a significant difference in how the tone control behaves - It's now actually useful! Also, the output is lower - which in this case is a good thing. Previously my P was significantly louder than both my Jazz and active Ibanez.

Edited by geoham

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Looking at buying a set of Toneriders for my P-bass. Are you all still  happy with the sounds? How do they compare with Fender Vintage pickups? Any info gratefully received.

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Not directly bass related - I built a Tele partscaster a while back. I ordered some ludicrously expensive pups from the states, but lead time was about three months. I ordered some toneriders as a stopgap.

I haven't got round to fitting the expensive ones.

P.

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On 29/03/2018 at 15:34, DrParners said:

Looking at buying a set of Toneriders for my P-bass. Are you all still  happy with the sounds? How do they compare with Fender Vintage pickups? Any info gratefully received.

Sorry for the slow reply on thIs one!

The P was rehomed a few months ago, it wasn’t getting enough use. However, it did get plenty of use for a while and I was always happy with the results. I played in a 2 guitar, loud drums and electric violin Celtic rock band, and found it sat naturally in the mix with little tweaking.

To me, the sound was very close to the vintage pickups used in US Fenders. You can hear it recorded on Spotify (etc) - lookup Scarlets, Little Rumours. (Rotosound flats, Zoom B3 Ampeg sim, otherwise untouched)

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Thanks for the update @geoham, I`ve been looking for some pickups to get near the sound of my US Fenders - the actual pickups that come in them are £120+, and I`ve had two dodgy ones where I`ve had to return them for replacements, so my faith in the aftermarket ones is pretty much zero.  Like you I`ve found that the stock MIMs are harsher on the top end compared to the US pickups, seems like these Toneriders will fit the bill quite nicely.

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And an update to this, I`ve now used my MIM Precision with the Toneriders in a couple of times and have to say I`m really pleased with them. My sound nirvana is the Fender Custom Shop 62 Reissue, as per my US Standard Precisions, and these Toneriders are very near to those indeed. I`ve just ordered another set for my other MIM Precision, and am now going to gig my MIMs rather than take my US basses out on the road.

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