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Upgrading Help - Electric Cello

Discussion in 'Electric Upright Basses (EUB's) [DB]' started by Broccolli1500, Jun 23, 2013.

  1. Hello all, I wasn't sure where this thread would fit best, so I put it here.
    If there's a better spot, mods please move it, thank you!

    I'm a cellist,starting in Junior High and going through HS. After graduation, I switched to an electric cello, a Cecilio, it being cheaper and smaller. The problem is, it's cheaper, and so the pickup isn't the best. It's workable, but it has some annoying moments.

    I'm running it through a old Vox Pathfinder 10, and I believe it's on its last legs. It's also being run through an effects loop. I'll put pictures at the end.

    Now for my question (sorry for the long explanation):
    What should I upgrade first? The pickup, preamp(I think), or amp?

    Now, I'm new to all this gear stuff, being taught in an orchestra setting. I have read other posts about amps, and talked to a couple guys in some local music stores about it, but I'm still completely lost as to what I should be looking at. I need a larger sound, but should that be my priority?

    Thanks for reading, and your comments!

  2. Francois Blais

    Francois Blais Supporting Member

    Dec 11, 1999
    Québec, Canada
    I'd say the most important component in the signal chain is the transducer.
    If you put a good piezo pickup on the bridge, you'll need to a good preamp to act as an impedance buffer between the pup and the amp, whose input impedance may be too low for a piezo pup. (which needs at least 1 megohms)
    However, if you use tone-altering devices, I'm not sure you need a better pickup or amp.
    As I see it, a better transducer and amp is to get a more natural tone.
  3. I would also start with the pickup. In case you can use a better amp it helps most. Also you don't have too many choices in pickups, so better get the pickup first and find an amp later that sounds well with your pickup.

    You might want to try a Shadow NFX for Cello. I cannot remember the exact product name, the Cello pickup has smaller foils than the bass pickup. It also has an impedance buffer built-in, so you don't need a preamp for your amp. Only take a spare battery with you and plug off the cable (from the pickup, not the amp) if you don't need the pickup, otherwise the battery will drain over a few days. The Shadow NFX sounds very nice bowed. YOu might want to try one foil under the C string bridge leg or one under both legs. You can simply plug one into the battery adapter or both to compare.

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