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18 volt upgrade?

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by MODNY, May 2, 2005.

  1. MODNY

    MODNY Guest

    Nov 9, 2004
    i've heard of people upgrading their active pre-amp to 18V to add headroom etc

    i was thinking of doing this to my f bass studio 5

    is it easy? costly? worth it?
  2. Kelly Lee

    Kelly Lee Yeah, I'm a guy! Supporting Member

    Feb 17, 2004
    Marana, AZ, USA
    I just did the 9v to 18v upgrade on my Virgin with P/J EMG actives. No onboard pre. I can say that for me it was a worthy upgrade IMO. My harmonics seem to really come alive now.

    Easy? Yep! Cheap? Yep again! Ofcourse thats with EMG's. You can make a simple little battery connector for under $5 not counting the extra battery. I would contact Fbass to see if their preamp can be upgraded to 18v before trying it! You don't want to kill anything!

    BTW, if they say you can, here is a link to a site that will show you how to make a cheap connector without modding your bass:Getting More "Oomph" from Your EMGs . Just go to the last diagram and follow it. It will work the same for any setup provided it can handle 18v.
  3. MODNY

    MODNY Guest

    Nov 9, 2004
    no dice with the f bass pre-amp
  4. EricTheEZ1


    Nov 23, 2004
    Clawson, MI
    Thanks for the link. I've also been wanting to soop up my bass a little and a cheap 9V to 18V conversion might do a lot for just pocket change...hopefully! :smug:

  5. iriegnome

    iriegnome Bassstar style Supporting Member

    Nov 23, 2001
    Kenosha, WI 53140
    All of mine are 18V. I love it. Easy to do. You can go to EMG and get a wiring diagram for it. I just love the difference.
  6. EricTheEZ1


    Nov 23, 2004
    Clawson, MI
    My adventure with wiring was an interesting one. I made some 9V clips using finger style, then chords, then slap techniques with 3 EQ settings for each style to see what the difference would be at 18V.

    I had to buy a Cold Heat soldering tool which I had to learn quickly how to use. The first mistake I made was using a cheap Radio Shack 9V battery clip. After wiring it in (poorly) my output was at about 15-20% what it usually was.

    I rumaged through my old EMG pickups and extra jacks and whatnot and found a good 9V clip. I did a good job soldering it, this time, and it works perfectly. I did my soundclips and A/B'ed them. They really don't sound any different. If I were blind folded I couldn't tell the difference.

    Keep in mind that I use V/V/T/T not Bass/Treble or anything AND I have dead strings.

    I'd love to hear some A/B clips anyone has of 9V vs. 18V. I'd post mine, but I don't have any webspace.


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