Thinking of buying/installing John East Mid Sweep in my Carvin Bunny 2-band
Thinking of buying/installing John East Mid Sweep in my Carvin Bunny 2-band from the mid 90s. You guys know the bass.... Blue 5 string Carvin BB75 Bunny Brunel model with 2 humbucking J size pickups (they're h50N models) that used to belong to Mikebass and he has amazing youtube videos demoing the instrument.
So it's my bass now and I love it to pieces, but considering I want it to become my #1 (my USA sub 5 is my current #1) I'm looking to make the final little upgrades that I really want.
Playability is insane on it, not touching that.
Bridge is great - anyone complaining about the older Carvin Wilkinsen bridges won't get my sympathy... if you think this is bad, try adjusting gibson bridges.... this bridge is fully adjustable, stable and sounds great.
Pickups? they're incredibly in-your-face and modern super hifi with an intense edge. pretty amazing really! can't tone them down though, so it's not going to do a vintage thing any time soon. Also not the most flexible tone around - my old ibanez BTB basses with their vari-mid systems had inferior fundamental tone but could be made to sound like almost any bass model out there due to the extreme versatility of the vari-mid 3 band eq.
So the pre in this thing is a 2 band carvin. I like it, but it's not ever going to give me the power to alter the fundamental tone of this bass should I choose to.
So what do you guys think about adding the John East mid-sweep moduie to it? Seems like a really great device, entire circuit is on the dual-shaft mid control, can run off existing battery power of my stock 2 band and just goes before or after it (I'm guessing either is possible). I would think after would be easier...basically taking output to jack and routing it through the mid-sweep module first.
Since I'm known to like ibanez vari-mid, would this be an option that makes sense? am I still going to find the insanely aggressive h50n pickups in this bass to be super bright and in your face or will it let me tone things down a bit more?
by the way the bass is maple neck through with what we think is alder or ash wings (although for all I know it has maple wings under there... hard to see through this finish). So yea, it's bright and intense. :-D
I've had this mid contol in one of my basses, it sounds great. Top notch as everything John makes. I used it with his 2 band (treb/bass) module. I removed them before selling that bass....it's awaiting for the next host bass to funk up.
I'm not sure if it will or not, but you can email him. He's good about answering questions. The only "bad" thing is...his products tend to be on the expensive side due to the exchange rate. I bought mine from Best Bass Gear, which had to be ordered. Took about 2 weeks or so. Although, they may have one in stock as they ordered an extra mid module with my order.
Any similar competing products that are cheaper or north American or Asian?
EMG has a vari mid control. Probably very similar.
hey guys, thanks for the heads up about the emg VMC.
I talked to my local Long and McQuade musical instruments store and they had never heard of it nor had it in their database. However the awesome bass guy (thanks J!) at the terminal-main store contacted their head office followed by their EMG supplier with the following results:
- Thanks to my inquiry from your guys' suggestion, the EMG VMC (variable mid control) is now part of the Long-mcquade inventory database, with a price of just under $100 CDN.
- They have it in stock at their supplier and it should be in my hands in a week!
Now I just have to figure out how/where to get the knobs for it (in black specifically) to match my carvin bass.
EDIT: looks like black knobs come with it! perfect!
Now - if you guys were doing this, how you do setup the control layout?
Attached is a pic of my bass (v/p/t/b)
Should I try and find another dual concentric control with identical values to the current preamp's treble and bass separate pots so I can move treble/bass to one concentric control and the dual shaft vari-mid to the other remaining open hole (where the bass or treble control was previously)? Or should I drill a hole and have 5 controls like ibanez vari-mid systems (volume/pan/treble/bass/vari-mid)?
which is cosmetically better? which is easier to control? should I drill a hole in my carvin bb-75 at all?
I'm leaning toward finding a dual concentric pot for the treble/bass since drilling sounds awfully permanent in case I ever want to flip the bass and keep the emg... not to mention just being drastic and scary.
edit: the schematic for my main 2 band carvin preamp looks like the treble and bass pots are already dual concentric, unless I'm mis-reading the schematic.
If they are already duals then sharing one might be impossible with this preamp design.
However the volume and pan pots both appear to be singles.... so that might be an option for sharing two controls on one.
Would be strange to do it like that, but whatever... if it saves drilling a hole, and possibly without even having room for an extra hole/pot/circuit in the bass without routing too...
Or maybe I'll just lose the bass control (setting it with fixed resistors or just wrapping the pot and leaving it set how I like in the compartment) and go volume/pan/treble/vari-mid.... might be the easiest solution. seems like a waste though...
I'm assuming my mid 1990s bass has the following preamp - the features match perfectly:
I was just looking into both of these mid controls. Funny!
Okay, so I studied the hell out of some Carvin catalogs back in the 90s. The preamp is pretty unmodifyable, as far as I can remember. The controls are mounted to a board, so swapping a pot isn't easy.
That said, I'd probably consider a new hole in the bass.
Feel free to post a pic of the control cavity to confirm or deny my suspicions.
Otherwise, a stacked volume-bass-treble-mid stack would work.
BUT... consider the EMG BQC control. It's the mids AND the stacked B/T control, it's $108 (at bestbassgear, at least), comes with knobs.
(If you want metal knobs, you'd have to buy those separately)
The bass has the cavity space, it's not much more than the VMC, and it would be EASY to install, by comparison to modifying the Carvin preamp.
yea, good call, I just came across this:
I suspect that's my preamp, without the extra switch module on either side of the 2 primary boards.
So there ought to be room to add this as another hole easily... otherwise I'll have to unsolder a pot from the carvin board, rotate that board a bit out of the way, and install the vmc in place of the other pot. Just because the current pots are soldered to the board (most likely) doesn't mean they have to be .... so I "could" move them, but it's a fair bit of work just to see how this thing sounds... you know, that excitement after getting it and wanting it hooked up as fast as possible LoL
The BQC is I'm sure great but I like my preamp already the way it is... the carvin preamp is actually quite advanced, even this old 9v one, compared to the pre-1990s models. in fact it's advanced compared to many current preamps.... buffered individual pickup connections, active pan pot, and the unity gain tone controls (which I guess explains why the schematic for the preamp (again assuming that is the preamp in my bass) has dual gang pots for treble and bass.... one for tone, the other for make-up gain.)
I could always toast (sorry, my hackish word for "remove") the make-up gain part of the current tone controls and just set them to unity gain when flat like a normal preamp... then I could replace the treble/bass with stacked versions and use a 4 knob layout with 2 dual controls.
hmmm... I guess I'll have to take a look and see just what it's like in there...
edit: oh yea and black stacked knobs are supposed to come with all EMG addons like the VMC so that should work well to match my black carvin controls. I'll probably just drill a hole.... scary thought on a visually flawless "vintage?" bass (ok well it's like probably 17 or 18 years old). But it's not like it's a highly valued instrument. I actually would think that if I ever did want to resell this the vmc would add to the price enough to make it not a big deal to keep it in the bass. So maybe a permanent install like an extra hole is ok.
Not that I ever plan to sell... but you know how that goes...
note: the bqc appears to basically designed only for use with emg pickups (or so it says on their site). However when you click on it there is a link in tech docs area for a HZ version, which tells me it might have a version that works with normal high impedance pickups like in my carvin and like in most other basses.
Not that I'm about to get the bqc as noted, but I'm trying to help understand the tech and it's intended use.
The VMC is clearly designed (based on it's input impedance) to work with any pickup or after an existing preamp (which is exactly how I intend to use it). I'll just have to snip off the emg specific connectors.
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