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Aguilar OBP-3 treble

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by jawzzz, Apr 3, 2004.


  1. jawzzz

    jawzzz

    May 23, 2003
    Denver Colorado
    I installed an OPB-3 in my Ibanez SR405 and it sounds great except for the treble. Is it just me or does the preamp lack the bright treble sound. My Warwick has the stock MEC pickup/pre and the treble is real bright and crisp, but the low and mid are not as good as the Aguilar. I would like to put an OBP-3 in my Warwick, but not if the treble is not as bright. So does any one else have this prob with the Aguilar, or is it just the pickups in my Ibanez.
     
  2. Aram

    Aram

    Feb 2, 2003
    New York, NY
    Wow. I have the complete opposite problem with my OBP-3...the treble is SUPER bright. I'm using Basslines pickups, and I have to roll off the treble control about 80-100% to get usable tones...

    Perhaps the OBP responds differently to passive pickups, but as of right now, I'm looking for a darker preamp because the Aggie is too bright for my taste.
     
  3. jawzzz

    jawzzz

    May 23, 2003
    Denver Colorado
    It sounds like it is the pickups then. I really like the warm,fat sound of the aggie with my Ibanez. The treble is not a big deal, I just like the brightness when I play chords.
     
  4. hey are there caps on your treble control?
     
  5. JOME77

    JOME77 Supporting Member

    Aug 18, 2002
    Georgia
    If you're looking for a darker sounding pre try the Demeter. You could also change the Basslines out with Bartolini's. I installed the OBP3 in my G&L and it was very bright. I changed the G&L MFD P/U's out for Bartolini soapbars and the sound really warmed up significantly.
    I think the Aguilar pre is just bringing out the characteristics of you Bassline P/U's (just as it is in the Ibanez P/U's).
     
  6. Aram

    Aram

    Feb 2, 2003
    New York, NY
    Joe -- thanks for the input. So the Demeter is definitely darker-sounding than the Aggie? How is the flat sound of the Dem? Another big problem for me is the zero-coloration of the Aguilar when it is set flat, so that's something else I'd like to remedy.

    Jawzzz, sorry about the thread hijack.
     
  7. Hey Aram, instead of buying a whole new preamp, you should try wiring up the aguilar with a passive treble roll-off and see if that does the trick for you. Also, you could just wire a capacitor in which will attenuate some of those treble frequencies... just some things to save you some bucks as a cap costs cents while a new pre can cost in the hundreds. Also, one thing I noticed about the aguilar was that I thought it was WAY to bright when I played solo, but with a band that brightness can really go ways to helping you cut through. (and I play funk and prefer a fat low- midrange tone for most fingerstyle settings)
     
  8. Aram

    Aram

    Feb 2, 2003
    New York, NY
    That's a good call Groovecenter -- I will see about the passive tone control. As far as the caps, I had actually called Aguilar about that and tech support said that it would require resistors and some other stuff that sounded really complicated because the Basslines are all active. But the passive tone is a good idea.

    I also lowered my pickups last night, which did help, and I'm switching to nickel strings which should help even more.

    Thanks again!
     
  9. JimK

    JimK

    Dec 12, 1999
    I'm with you.
    I only use a 'pinch' of treble.
    (I'm using 18VDC with Jazz Barts that are easily 10+ years of age).
     
  10. jawzzz

    jawzzz

    May 23, 2003
    Denver Colorado

    No, there are not any caps on it. The Ibanez never really had a good treble sound to it with the standard pre that came with it. I never noticed it until I bought the Warwick.
     
  11. JOME77

    JOME77 Supporting Member

    Aug 18, 2002
    Georgia
    The Demeter is definetly darker sounding than the Aguilar. The Aguilar OBP3 IMO sounds very close to the Bart 3-band pre's in my Roscoe's. I do slightly prefer the Mid choices of the Bart. The down side of the Demeter is that it isn't a real aggressive pre. Primarily it doesn't offer much control of the high frequency's. But it does really bring out the natural tones of your bass, as it's capable of producing a very flat sound.
     
  12. Aram

    Aram

    Feb 2, 2003
    New York, NY
    Hmm, so the Aggie might be a better choice than the Demeter for mid-boost and for cutting through in a mix? I really am starting to like it better since I lowered the pickups, but I have yet to try it again with my full rig.
     
  13. JOME77

    JOME77 Supporting Member

    Aug 18, 2002
    Georgia
    Aram,
    Did you wire up a Mid switch with your OBP3? If not, I'd definetly recommend installing one. That makes a tremendous difference in obtaining some great cutting mid tones. I really like the OBP3 installed with the Barts in the G&L. Totally different sound than the std. G&L.
    Also, I think if the Demeter was installed with the Mid sw. it would add a great deal more versatility to the preamp. One problem with the Demeter is that it uses 100K pots (EQ) and 100K pots are not readily available in a concentric and push/pull configuration. In order to not vary the design intent of the Demeter, you pretty much have to go with separate bass, mid, and treble controls. But you should be able to wire the Mid sw. to a push/pull vol. control.
     
  14. Aram

    Aram

    Feb 2, 2003
    New York, NY
    I actually don't have a mid-switch...that's an interesting idea. Do you have suggested frequencies? Maybe I will try that. I think my mids are fixed at 250hz right now, but I'll check when I get home.
     
  15. JOME77

    JOME77 Supporting Member

    Aug 18, 2002
    Georgia
    Aram,
    I think the Aguilar Mid can be set at fixed freq's of 400Hz or 800Hz. A DPDT on/on sw would give both. You can do it with either a micro-sw or a push-pull pot (typically vol @ 250K). I think that you'd really like the option to change center freq's. It gives some great mids! The diagram is available on their web site.
     
  16. luknfur

    luknfur

    Jan 14, 2004
    DIXIE
    Won't go into detail but I can pretty much isolate the source of a sound in my rigging. My experience to date has been the following so you can take what you need and leave the rest:

    Each bass has an inherent tone acoustically (roughly waht I call thudder, mid, bright) that directly affects anything you do to amplify it.

    Popular onboard preamps (Aggie, Bart, EMG, MEC - that I know for sure personally) are essentially transparent and just boost or cut (though some don't cut depending) your signal - don't alter tone much that I can tell. Different frequency accents produce some variation from one to another but it's a subtle variation to my ears. To my ear, such preamps (perhaps because of the pots, don't know) actually muddy the signal up some relative running the pups direct out through a jack into the amp. I've converted all my onboards to outbaords and it's a pretty obvious observation when they are ran both ways.

    Pups are the key ingredient to alter tone. For me, always the starting place after the bass is selected acoustically.

    The more pots, switches, and junk that runs between the pups and amp, the more a pure signal is degraded. (although it doesn't mean they're not necessarily useful - splitting coils through a DPTT switch in HBs I find dramatically improves tone and versatility, and to a much lesser degree mid switches).

    Changing pot sizes as a rule results in a subtle to no discernable variation.

    Dead strings create dead tones.

    I had an OBP 1 with a Duncan P and hotstack in a bass that is low-mid acoustically and you could practically crack crytal with it.
     
  17. luknfur

    luknfur

    Jan 14, 2004
    DIXIE
    Jumped back on the bass and was thinking about your post. Any time I make an alteration or repair I always go with the cheapest, simplest, reverseable, non-invasive procedure I can think of.

    If the bass put out the highs before the Aggie then you know the pups and strings and bass are good to go, which probably narrows things down to the one known change, preamp. Since your concern is with highs then messing with mids won't change that in my experience. I can't imagine the problem being with the Aggie so I'm guessing you're getting too much treble bleed off for whatever reason.

    I assume you've turned the bass and mids down to check your not getting much treble, since bass and mids can mask the treble your're getting. Otherwise, you may just need to back off the bass a mids some.

    I'm assuming a harness came with the Aggies otherwise check to make sure the pots are within Aguilars recommendation - cause it might make a difference. Check the treble pot for sound wiring and grounding (and check the pot itself whether it's new or not). And double check all wiring to make sure no bare wires are grounding out and that EVERYTHING is wired correctly. There's a good chance the problem's in the wiring. Even throw a new battery in it. Anything you can think of that's cheap and easy.

    If everything checks out, I probably would get a capacitor and stick it on the treble pot. That should work if you had highs before. They're cheap and easy to install and you can buy several and play with them a little to see how the different capacitors affect tone.

    It could also be an impedence mismatch between the pups and preamp which a buffer may resolve. Passinwind (the windsurf image guy) seems pretty up on buffers so you might contact him if you head in that direction.

    All I can think of at the moment - remember cheap and easy.

    =============
    Don't go buying someone's answer if your question was for free (Goose Creek Symphony).
     
  18. jawzzz

    jawzzz

    May 23, 2003
    Denver Colorado
    Thanks for the insight, it is very helpful. The main reason I am concerned with the treble, is that I was thinking of installing an OBP-3 in my Warwick, and I don't want to lose the the "crystal shattering "treble that it has, but I want the mid and low end boost that the OPB-3 has.

    With my Ibanez, the treble was comparable to the way it is after I installed the aggie. This proves your observation that the aggie brings out the natural characteristics of the bass. I had the low and mids with a weak treble sound, it was just not nearly as loud as the aggie.Going off of the other posts, and your observation, I will have the treble that I desire. So, i will most likely install an OPB-3 in my Warwick.
     
  19. With the OBP3, you can also wire a pot to be a swept mid! So basically you can choose your mid frequency de jour for whatever you're playing, and if you're a little more ambitious you can do sweeps while playing and can do something similar to a flange(not exactly granted, but it can be a cool effect!)
    :smug:
     
  20. Aram

    Aram

    Feb 2, 2003
    New York, NY
    That's awesome. Can that be done with a stacked pot on the OBP? If not I might try the 400/800 switch like Joe suggested.