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Active EMGs with an active preamp

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by kp_funk, Apr 7, 2005.


  1. kp_funk

    kp_funk

    Jun 9, 2003
    Hey All,

    I just wanted to know if I would be able in install Active EMG pickups with a Bartolini Preamp so I could get more tone control? I know I could buy the EMG BQC preamp, but I already have a bartolini preamp which I love and don't want to spend unnecesary money for another Preamp. These things are expensive. Please let me know if this is possible or not.

    Thanks
     
  2. adam on bass

    adam on bass Supporting Member

    Feb 4, 2002
    New Braunfels, Texas
    Endorsing Artist: Spector, GK, EMG and D'Addario
  3. kp_funk

    kp_funk

    Jun 9, 2003
    Really?...That's great to know. Thanks for the imput

    Kevin
     
  4. xyllion

    xyllion Commercial User

    Jan 14, 2003
    San Jose, CA, USA
    Owner, Looperlative Audio Products
    Actually it depends on which Bart preamp you have. There is one Bartolini preamp that requires 2 batteries and has no input blocking capacitor. If it is that preamp, then it can't be used with the EMG active pups. Well, actually it can, but it is not as easy as simply connecting the pup to the preamp.
     
  5. kp_funk

    kp_funk

    Jun 9, 2003
    I have the Bart NTMB. I use it now with my Bart pickups. It works with that
     
  6. luknfur

    luknfur

    Jan 14, 2004
    DIXIE
    FWIW:

    I wired both the NTMB and NTBT as outboards and ran active EMG's with no problem. Never tried to wire them as onboards with EMG's cuase by that time I'd concluded that onboard pre's weren't for me.
     
  7. kp_funk

    kp_funk

    Jun 9, 2003
    Well there is one problem, B/c the NTMB pre is so bulky, I have on room for 2 batteries. I only have room for 1 battery. Is that gonna be a big issue since EMG pickups also require a battery to work as does the preamp? If it can only use one battery, will it drain very quickly? Man I hope it can work.
     
  8. luknfur

    luknfur

    Jan 14, 2004
    DIXIE
    FWIW:

    I ran the NTMB 18v outboard and 9v onboard and couldn't tell the difference. The only reason I ran it 18v outboard was becuase batteries weren't an issue - space not a problem and I had a bunch of rechargeables. The additional battery is good for headroom only which was never on issue on 9v for me anyway.

    The main disadvantage with the NTMB to me is the space it takes up. The advantage is that is usually has a trim pot for gain incorporated (typically of no use but can be very convenient if the preamp has a mismatch with a set of pups) and I found the standard mid switch frequency select to be simple and effective compared to a variable mid - ala OBP-3 and BQS (which I concluded actually impede get a desired tone).

    9v is all that's necessary to run active pups and a pre. The battery life will not change significantly. Lifespan vary's depending on the setup and use. Lifespan is weeks to months at any rate. Rechargeables don't last nearly as long but you'll only ever buy one pair of them for one bass.

    The only advantage I found of an onboard pre is having control on the bass. Most contemporary amps will do the same thing and more. Running a pre with active pups gives you a pre in the amp, a pre onboard, a pre in the pups and the highest quality pre of the bunch is in the amp itself.

    I went from onboard 2 bands, to onboard 3 bands, to outboard 3 bands, to running off the amp. From a wall of basses with onboard pre's to nothing but pups run to seperate jacks that run into seperate channels of the amp - which in effect is like having a seperate onboard preamp for each pickup - plus all the switching and other tone control available in the amp. Much simpler, more reliable, more control, more flexibility, more tone options.

    I can swap pups from vintage Fender J's to active EMG PJ's to an original Ray (whatever) in the same bass in matter of 10 minutes.

    All of which sounds on the bizarre side but it works for me. You just have to find what works best for you by experimenting and trying different things untill you find your combo. You'll never know until you do it and give some trial time.
     
  9. kp_funk

    kp_funk

    Jun 9, 2003
    ok...thanks Luknfer and the rest of you for that info. So I guess it will work then. Luknfer or anyone else, how did you like the tone and versitility? Did the EMGs over power the Bart Preamp? or was it all good?
     
  10. epoxo57

    epoxo57

    Feb 17, 2005
    Perrysburg, Ohio
    I have the same question, but have a Bart NTBT in my Corvette Std with the stock passive MEC's. Does the balance pot or volume that came with the preamp need to be changed using active pickups? Any schematics to show this? And grounding to the pots?

    Thanks!
     
  11. luknfur

    luknfur

    Jan 14, 2004
    DIXIE
    FWIW:

    I've never had any issue with a preamp and active pups, it's hi output passives that will tend to pose a problem. You may need to change the volume to 25K with the EMG. Try what is has and find out. You're not going to destroy anything.