Lane Poor bass guitar pickups were produced with three basic types of coil apertures.

 

Narrow aperture pickups consist of a single coil, which "senses" a relatively narrow portion of the string. Defining characteristics of narrow aperture pickups include a somewhat "thinner" sound than wide aperture pickups. They have a detailed and interesting midrange response with good amounts of bass and treble. They can be compared to a "Fender Jazz" bass pickup whose magnetic profile is similar.

Pickups with narrow apertures Tonal characteristics of narrow aperture pickups
PlacementTone
Harmonic "sweet spot"Rich and detailed, with good fundamentals, bright midrange, and detailed high-end.
Neck (standard)Deep fundamentals, sweet warm midrange, modest high-end.
Bridge (standard)Modest fundamentals, detailed and nasal midrange, edgy high-end.

 

Wide aperture pickups consist of a single coil, which "senses" a relatively wider portion of the string. Defining characteristics of wide aperture pickups include a more well-rounded, "cleaner" tone than narrow aperture pickups. They have good fundamental response with a pleasing balanced tone across the spectrum. They can be compared to a "Fender Precision" bass pickup whose magnetic profile is similar.

Pickups with wide apertures Tonal characteristics of wide aperture pickups
PlacementTone
Harmonic "sweet spot"Balanced sound with thick fundamentals, open midrange, and pleasing high-end.
Neck (standard)Deep fundamentals, clean midrange, balanced high-end.
Bridge (standard)Modest fundamentals, detailed and thicker midrange, clean and open high-end.

 

Humbucking pickups have two coils (usually wired in series) with opposite polarity, to cancel the "hum" obtained from using one coil alone. Each coil "senses" a relatively narrow portion of the string (as compared to a narrow aperture pickup) but the combination of both coils strengthens the fundamentals and adds lots of punchy detail in the midrange. They can be compared to a "MusicMan" bass pickup whose magnetic profile and coil layout is similar.

Pickups with humbucking coils Tonal characteristics of humbucking pickups
PlacementTone
Harmonic "sweet spot"Punchy sound with deep and clear fundamentals, strong midrange, and crisp high-end.
Neck (standard)Deep fundamentals, modest midrange, compressed high-end.
Bridge (standard)Modest fundamentals, detailed and nasal midrange, punchy and crisp high-end.

 

Recommended Combinations

Lane Poor never hesitated to give his advice about how he thought his pickups would work best in various situations. Some of his recommended combinations (for 2-pickup basses) are listed here.

For a fretted bass, Lane would usually recommend a combination of a wide aperture pickup in the standard neck position, paired with a humbucking pickup in the bridge position. This combination was intended to offer the most powerful sounds for rock, funk and blues. It features the strength of the wide aperture pickup's deep fundamental tones, with the crispness and punch of the humbucking pickup's midrange. This is what Lane Poor claimed would "move pants" at a live gig, for maximum audience impact and cutting through a mix of guitars.

For a fretless bass, Lane would usually recommend a combination of a narrow aperture pickup in the standard neck position, paired with a wide aperture pickup in the bridge position. This combination was geared towards the more sensitive and detailed sounds possible with a fretless bass, in a jazz, acoustic or folk setting. It features the inherent warmth and pleasing lower-midrange of the narrow aperture pickup, combined with the vocal and sensitive upper midrange and treble delivered by the wide aperture pickup. This combination works very well and allows all the nuances of fretless bass to shine through.

Various luthiers and Lane Poor fans have experimented with other combinations of pickup apertures. The possible sounds are limited only by the imagination of the luthiers and players, but one thing remains clear: Lane Poor pickups delivered an impressive amount of detail, warmth, punch and clarity in all applications.