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5 string P pickups. Let's have some symmetry to save the aesthetic..


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I keep seeing non matching P pickups in 5ers. It's one half does 3 strings,  the other does 2. Sure, they work fine, but they look squiffy.

Would it be possible (body rout permitting) to fit two "3-string" pickup halves to a bass, shortening the magnets so they no longer cover the A string polepieces for one pick up half? (so it doesn't get twice the output)

Is shortening the magnets enough? Would it necessitate a re-wind around only the G&D polepieces?

Save me from my OCD, Basschat!

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1 minute ago, Geek99 said:

I count myself fortunate that stuff like this does not bother me 

You are very fortunate, CDO (I have to put the letters alphabetically) is a rotten affliction for some of us.

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Posted (edited)

I’m sure, that’s exactly what I meant. I’m grateful that I don’t suffer from it as I imagine it would be maddening. My partner moans if things are slightly wonky on a washing line, or they are hung upside down to how you’d wear them. It really doesn’t matter 

Edited by Geek99
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Posted (edited)

Certainly possible, I am guessing there isn't a big enough market of people who think it is a problem.

I kind of like the offset thing, especially on an offset bass

Or you could get a 6 string P pickup and just have it sticking out at the end, would that be better? :)

 

Edited by Woodinblack
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Posted (edited)
15 minutes ago, Woodinblack said:

Certainly possible, I am guessing there isn't a big enough market of people who think it is a problem.

I kind of like the offset thing, especially on an offset bass

Or you could get a 6 string P pickup and just have it sticking out at the end, would that be better? :)

 

As long as they don't have visible circular polepieces, yes! 🤣

Blades or blank covers would be fine!

Looking at my own collection of instruments,  I have one with a 4 string P, and it's in the loft. The rest are a mix of soapbars, single coils, TwinJazz and MMHB. None have exposed polepieces. Its not by design, but nor is it coincidence 🤔

Edited by Lfalex v1.1
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15 minutes ago, fretmeister said:

Do you mean the size of the parts or the different number of pole pieces?

 

If the latter - just tape over them. Nothing more to see!

Either/Both! 

I think I've seen some with equal-sized halves, but 2 less polepieces; they're less offensive!

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1 hour ago, Lfalex v1.1 said:

I keep seeing non matching P pickups in 5ers. It's one half does 3 strings,  the other does 2. Sure, they work fine, but they look squiffy.

Would it be possible (body rout permitting) to fit two "3-string" pickup halves to a bass, shortening the magnets so they no longer cover the A string polepieces for one pick up half? (so it doesn't get twice the output)

Is shortening the magnets enough? Would it necessitate a re-wind around only the G&D polepieces?

Save me from my OCD, Basschat!

Would probably sound really strange... the A string would effectively have a weak humbucker pickup and the other four strings would have standard single coils

My OCD wants the strings to sound like they are all on the same instrument!

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1 hour ago, Geek99 said:

I’m sure, that’s exactly what I meant. I’m grateful that I don’t suffer from it as I imagine it would be maddening. My partner moans if things are slightly wonky on a washing line, or they are hung upside down to how you’d wear them. It really doesn’t matter 

Thankfully I don’t have a washing lube or that would be added to the list. You’re right it doesn’t matter, but it would bug me rotten until I’d dealt with it.

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Isn’t the answer for this simple ? Three sets of pole pieces per pup half, the A gets two sets under it, one half are dummy. But you get visual symmetry 

 

 

Edited by Geek99
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On 09/07/2021 at 17:04, Lfalex v1.1 said:

Save me from my OCD, Basschat!

Above our pay grade, I'm afraid. Try to remember that music is not a visual artform. If it sounds right, it is right. If that doesn't help, seek professional psychiatric assistance. It will likely improve other areas of your life, too.

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I fitted this Delano pickup in a mini bass for @owen recently and I like that the two halve are the same size (they're the same size as a standard P if I remember right). Satisfies my OCD for things being balanced/in line, etc.!!!

s1brbNx.jpg

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13 hours ago, Dan Dare said:

Above our pay grade, I'm afraid. Try to remember that music is not a visual artform. If it sounds right, it is right. If that doesn't help, seek professional psychiatric assistance. It will likely improve other areas of your life, too.

Strictly, music on its own isn't, but the whole performance and spectacle of the music, how its presented, the bits of banter in between each song, the visuals, "the show" certainly makes a difference to the perception of how its received.

I remember way back in my uni days a number of bands playing at the Student Union. We saw it all - some terrible free bands on Sunday evenings and some brilliant stuff. For the start of term/year party, they could afford a decent pro band and the guitarist and bassist used matching wireless rigs with matching height amp/cabinet stacks and matching aerials on top, for example.

I imported a Fender Jazz from Japan and it needed to be subtly modified to more closely blend in with the "black" of the band (our shoes, shirts and trousers were black; all accessories such as music stand, stand covers, instrument stand etc was too) (it is a big band so I'm allowed to read music at gigs). With everything in black except for the brass/sax instruments in their shiny polished brass finish, it adds a little sparkle and professionalism. My OCD treatment is going well, thanks.

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4 hours ago, Jabba_the_gut said:

I fitted this Delano pickup in a mini bass for @owen recently and I like that the two halve are the same size (they're the same size as a standard P if I remember right). Satisfies my OCD for things being balanced/in line, etc.!!!

s1brbNx.jpg

Beautiful - I am getting into mini-basses (for my GF) - what is the scale length of this?

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14 minutes ago, paul_c2 said:

Beautiful - I am getting into mini-basses (for my GF) - what is the scale length of this?

I think it was 23”. Mini basses are great! Ive built a few - details are in the Build Diaries. Really enjoy playing them!

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5 hours ago, Jabba_the_gut said:

I fitted this Delano pickup in a mini bass for @owen recently and I like that the two halve are the same size (they're the same size as a standard P if I remember right). Satisfies my OCD for things being balanced/in line, etc.!!!

Having a look at the P pickups I have here, one in an ibanez Talman (budget as hell), and one in a Maruszczyk which is a Nordstrand P5, but before that was either a hausel or delano, not sure (probably the former), they were all equal sizes - I didn't even check with the replacement to see if it fit but it did.

Is it not normal that both halves are the same size, I think the issue is you just want another dummy polepiece on the side that only has 2. Couldn't you just stick a silver dot on the half that has 2? Actually thinking about it the original Hausel pickup in my P didn't have pole pieces.

Can't find a pic of my hausels, but here are some delanos, would this not be ok?

https://www.delano.de/pc_5_he_m2/pc_5_he_m2_details.html

 

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  • 2 weeks later...

701D0C2F-DA22-4DC1-B2DD-80DB87B388E2.thumb.jpeg.9860b5b37260afc6d1d91e62cfe7a45c.jpegBartolini five string P pickups are in equal sized shells for those of us who suffer from OCD 😎

Edited by JPJ
To add explanatory photo
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Last fiver I saw with P pickups had both shells the same size, one with only four poles.

But that makes the two halves of the pickup different in windings or sensitivity. My OCD would want a six-stringer with two six pole pickups.

Better still, like my one fiver - sensiblejazz pickups with ten poles 😉

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AFAICS the design of the P-Bass split pickup requires an even number of strings to make it work effectively (and look right).

 

In order for it to act as a humbucker but without the loss of extreme top end characterised by guitar humbuckers which have both coils under all the strings, it has one coil detecting the E and A and the other the D and G strings. The off-set split nature also allows a "fatter" wind of the coils similar to the guitar P90 pickup.

 

Unfortunately as soon as you try to design a version of the split P pickup for an odd number of strings you run into all sorts of problems both technical and aesthetic.

 

The best aesthetic solution I can see would be to use a "soap bar" cover and have whatever coil arrangement you want hidden underneath. Unless you need to be able to adjust the pole-pieces there is absolutely no reason have them visible. However if having the split off-set pickup shape is an important part of the over all look of the instrument this might not be acceptable. In that case it's just a question of finding the least offensive looking (to you) solution of all of those already mentioned above.

 

However none of these solutions address what is happening electronically and magnetically with a split pickup working with an odd number of strings. In order for the pickup to be perfectly humbucking both coils must be equal but opposite in polarity, but what do you do when one coil covers an extra string compared with the other. The strength of the pickup depends on the strength of the magnets, the number of coils of wire and the overall resistance. And here's the problem. IIRC the resistance of both halves being equal is the important factor in making the whole pickup hum-cancelling, but the number of coils in each half dictates the tonal characteristics and output level of the pickup. When both halves work for the same number of strings everything balances out, but as soon as one half has to deal with one extra string either the whole pickup will no longer be completely hum-cancelling or the tonal and output level of the halves will not be identical. Putting both halves underneath the centre (A) string means that the tonal and output characteristics of that string will be different to the others.

 

The only solution I can see would be for both halves to be the same (3 string) size, but instead of having them overlap in the middle, would be to have the half only detecting two strings to stick up or down beyond the lowest or highest string. But then you're back to poor aesthetics again...

Edited by BigRedX
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