for bass guitar!
Off Kiltertron multi-voice pickups for bass bring the multi-voice madness to the four string scene. Same design as the guitar versions, but with four pole magnets instead of six - shocking, isn't it? The OKTs for bass bring the brightness and the beef you need with six voices; that's a lot of choices!
MULTI-VOICE Pickups - HUH?!?
Bass guitar pickups are transducers, turning the energy of the plucked string into an electric signal that can be amplified. There are a number of classic pickup designs behind the defining tones of electric guitar. This isn't one of them. Rather, ours grew out of our desire for a pickup that does more. Unburdened by the goal of replicating a particular structure, the options opened up. Through several years of experimentation, we created a pickup that is many pickups - the Off Kiltertron.
The rotary voice selection settings are:
- Clanky - rod coil (Ric/Hilo-ish)
- Spanky - rail coil (Tele-ish)
- Cranky - rod and boost coils (Dyna-ish)
- Clunky - rail and boost coils (Filter-ish)
- Funky - rail and rod coils (Gibby hb-ish)
- PUNKY!!! - rail, rod, and boost coils (Arrrrrgh!!!!)
Why the name?
We’ve long been fans of guitars (and basses!) with unique character, and Gretsch guitars have always been a big part of that. Not long after designing the pickups for our own guitars, we started fitting them in Filtertron covers. Our pickups being a bit unusual/peculiar/eccentric, they seemed to be an off kilter variation on the classic ‘Trons, hence Off Kiltertron.
We scatterwind our pickups one coil at a time and assemble them by hand. We build them using AlNiCo magnets, enamel coated magnet wire, shielded backplates, and custom covers - available as a standard sized humbucker, a dogear, a soapbar, Jazzmaster and Filter'tron. The hookup wire is four conductor plus ground.
With Off Kiltertrons, you can saddle up, sling your six string and cover the ranch, the range and the whole back 40.
Pickups are $200 each including rotary selector switch. Head on over to our SHOP to get one!
There are a number of ways to wire up OKTs in your instrument. Here are two examples.
Wow, these seem like pretty impressive pickups. How do they sound? Check out these hack-tastic videos showing OKTs in a a Jazz Bass and a Ricky clone. Enjoy them all. Or enjoy not listening to them. Who am I to judge?
I'm particularly proud of this next video, since the video freezes about half way through. The audio continues while you get to stare at me looking like a putz while you check out the dulcet tones of the Off Kiltertron...
So how does this work?
The magic is in the OKT rotary, which allows you to quickly switch between the three single coil and three humbucking voices. Shown here in a Jazz Bass, the rotary is located electronically between the pickup and the pickup selector switch. Each rotary can control up to two pickups, where both pickups will be in the same voice at the same time. To have pickups switch voices independently of each other, a rotary per pickup is required.
The Bar-Belle is a single coil pickup with an alnico bar magnet voiced to match Off Kiltertrons on the "twangle" setting. These are medium output single coils with a tight, focused tone.
Currently, these are only available on the Clam Shack guitar.