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Review of Seymour Duncan Quarter Pounder PJ Bass Pickups

The Quarter Pounder PJ Bass Pickup Set from Seymour Duncan is an interesting pickup - both sonically and visually. The pole pieces are huge, and eye catching. The sound of the pickup is huge, the output is huge.

A few years ago, my wife and I were visiting family in the midwest, and I found myself in a situation where I would be wiring up a large quantity of preamps for one of the manufacturers we work with. Since I wasn’t at home, I didn’t have a bass available to me for testing.

While I started in on my wiring work, my wife headed to Eau Claire, WI (the nearest city with a couple music stores and pawn shops) and picked up an Ibanez Soundgear PJ bass.

This particular bass was one of Ibanez's lower end models, but that was fine. I simply needed a bass with pickups that I could connect into the preamps that I was wiring - in order test my wiring work quickly.

Body and Closeup of Seymour Duncan Quarter Pounder PJ Bass Pickups

Unfortunately, there was an issue with one of the pickups in the bass, so I grabbed a set of Seymour Duncan Quarter Pounder PJ Pickups that I luckily had with me. After a mental lashing of the shop that sold her the bass with non-working pickups, I popped the new pickups into the bass.

These pickups blew me away!

I was extremely impressed with how good they sounded - how good this bass sounded! The tone was very punchy and aggressive. Immediately, I thought about how I would have benefited from these pickups playing in a rock band a decade ago. 

When I was with this band (which had a loud drummer, two guitars and the occasional keyboard), I was often in a difficult sonic field - one that I struggled to be heard in. These pickups would’ve helped to bring the bass significantly forward in the mix.  Having heard some basses in similar situations with the Quarter Pounder PJ's, I really regret not having them back in the day.

Cheap Basses & Good Pickups  

Commonly, we can find a decent playing bass, but the tone is thin, without character or simply undesirable. For so many mass produced instruments, the pickups are the weak link. That was definitely the case with this instrument.

The bass is not one that I thought would come off of the wall except for testing preamps. However, with the new Quarter Pounder PJ set, I’ve had a lot of fun playing this bass. The playability is good, the neck is comfortable and now the tone is excellent. Very forward, full, fast and strong.
We have A LOT of pickups, view all of our bass pickups.

Who are these pickups best suited for?
Bassists who play rock and metal….including the derivatives in-between. Some blues depending on the ensemble. Anyone who needs to push through a wall of sound.

Which genres are not a great match for these pickups?
Genres that are more mellow, light or require a lot of versatility and dynamics.

These pickups are not sparklingly articulate, ultra-defined, vintage era or crisp. But they are very punchy, snappy and powerful.

Here is what we hear regularly from customers who have picked up a set of these:
  • Great lows and punch
  • Will bring a bass to life
  • Beefy, with plenty of growl
  • Hot
  • Aggressive
  • Bright/Punch
  • Loud, aggressive, hard hitting, but not vintage.
  • Modern

*Note: Yep, we know that the true name of this pickup (SKU 11402-57) is  'Quarter Pound PJ', but pretty much everybody, even Duncan themselves, refers to these as 'Quarter Pounders' :)