Installed some brand new emg JX pickups in my Ibanez CTB5 bass along with a BQC preamp from EMG as well. At first I was getting distortion VERY easily when playing, but was getting low output at the same time. I was really confused because I thought something was up with the amp or cable. Then I decided to try wiring it for 18v operation since I was using active pickups AND preamp. I followed all the instructions the preamp listed and double checked all the wiring. Re-did some solders as well to make sure everything was perfect. Stiiiiill had issues, then I finally swapped a few plugs and for some reason that killed the distortion, but now I have the same issue as before, very low output. It's less than a passive bass unless I have the preamp absolutely cranked, then it's almost as loud as my stock Squier CV 60's P-bass. I've heard that Bartolinis are low-output pickups but mine absolutely smoke this by a longshot. Is something wrong with the EMGs or is this just how they operate? I'm incredibly close to the strings, it doesn't sound bad but it's just such an unusable volume that I'd have to do too much just to get it in the ballpark of my other basses. Any ideas or words of wisdom before I pack these up and attempt to return them?