The Ibanez "Phat II" is their OEM branded version of the EMG EXB. If you look at an EMG EXB, it is identical, and the leads coming off of it in my SRA305 say EMG on them.
The function of the EXB/Phat II is unique: it simultaneously boosts lows and highs, while dipping at 1 kHz. I find it to be a most useful, versatile control. I can add a bit of depth, or go on a variable basis from straight ahead to a slap-and-pop setting, or in conjunction with the tone control rolling off some of the highs get some good thickness. It also buffers the outputs of passive pickups, which you can use with it, and gives a good clean signal to the amp, DI box, effects, etc., whatever you need.
Great control. I wish all basses had them onboard.
If a person simply cannot live with it, Ibanez wires all of their passive pickups and controls first in the signal chain, then to the input of the EXB/Phat II. So unsolder the input leads from the pots, and instead wire the bass conventionally passive, which for most Ibby models would be V-V-T, effectively J-bass wiring. Make sure to take the battery out of the box so it doesn't corrode.
BUT BEFORE YOU DO -- fully counterclockwise is effectively "off," and out of the signal chain, leaving only the buffered version of the passive signal. This is most useful for matching impedances better down the line, and it uses so little current you may not have to change a battery for several years if you don't use it.
So consider leaving it in. You will probably find a use for it someday.
Last edited by iiipopes : 08-28-2013 at 04:15 PM.