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Amplifying an upright

Discussion in 'Amps, Mics & Pickups [DB]' started by Keepitcoolidge, Sep 18, 2005.

  1. I picked up an upright earlier this week and am in desperate need of a decent/good pickup. Could I install it or will I need to take it to a luthier? About how much do they run?
  2. jrduer


    Jun 27, 2005
    Georgetown, TX
    I use a Fishman BP-100 with a Fishman Pro-EQ Platinum Bass preamp/EQ/DI. The pair will run about $300 (130 for the pickup, 170 for the preamp).

    The pickup just clamps onto the bridge, between the E and A strings and D and G strings. (It has two ceramic transducer elements.)

    Happy hunting!

  3. ctxbass

    ctxbass Supporting Member

    Nov 6, 2003
    Central Texas
    Take a look around the "amps and pickups" forum. You'll find plenty of options and opinions there.
  4. drurb

    drurb Oracle, Ancient Order of Rass Hattur; Mem. #1, EPC

    Apr 17, 2004
    In my opinion, the best bang for the buck, by far, is the Revolution Solo. $99 and no pre-amp required (assuming a Hi-Z input). It's more than just "decent/good." It's excellent. Take a look:


    You sure don't have to take my word for it-- read the reviews:

  5. Ric Vice

    Ric Vice Supporting Member

    Jul 2, 2005
    Olivette, Missouri

    I took the liberty of looking at your current amp cab rig. You can't beat the SVT for that vintage sound but it may not be the ideal set up for Double Bass. Since you just bought a an upright I guess it depends on what kind of music you're going to use it for. It's not that you can't use it, but it will be fairly prone to feedback with that 410 cabinet. I'd seriously consider investing in some kind of unit to control feedback. The Upton's a very good value and has the advantage (in your case) of having a lower output. I think it's a good match.

    Ric ;)
  6. I recommend a underwood pick up and an acoustic image a mp. The only feedbck you get is from other musicians on the killer tone. You just plug your bass straight in, the EQ is built in . The bass speaker is underneath the casing with a tweeter and smaller speaker at the front. You can plug in at the studio too. It's got 200w of power. It's not a loud amp, however it's loud enough to be used in a Big Band set up. The price is also outstanding.
  7. JimmyM


    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    I second the recommendation for the Rev Solo. Great sound, easy to install, and only $99. And since you'll be running through an SVT (which is not as uncommon as you'd think---rockabilly players love the SVT), it's the least feedback-prone pickup I've ever used.
  8. KSB - Ken Smith

    KSB - Ken Smith Banned Commercial User

    Mar 1, 2002
    Perkasie, PA USA
    Owner: Ken Smith Basses, Ltd.
    I use the Shadow which is an Underwood copy. I have used both and can't see the much difference. The Shadow is a bit less$$.

    I fit all my Basses the same as I do not know in advance which Bass I will bring to which gig.

    It is simple.. Using a flat object like a thin file I wrap sand paper around it and take off the bulk to fit the Pickup Tabs. Some bridges require very little. I use a dial caliper to make sure what I use is under the thickness to fit it and try the fit as I go. When all done, I oil the fresh wood slightly to make it swell and fit snugly as it slides in and out smoothly with firm pressure. I get them to fit nice and tight. I play in 2 Symphonies so I do not leave the pickup in. I keep it n a small bag and slide it in when I need it in the Bass I will use for the Gig. Often, as I am setting up, I put the pickup in with the same effort as pulling out my rosin and rosining my bow.

    No preamp required. Plug it straight into the amp. I usually turn the treble way down or off depending on the amp. I like a thick sound and don't want and screetching treble when I bow with the amp either.

    Pickup installed in these pics; http://www.kensmithbasses.com/DoubleBasses/BatchBass/Batch.jpg
    and; http://www.kensmithbasses.com/DoubleBasses/BatchBass/Batch1.jpg

    Not great pics but you get the idea.
  9. hdiddy

    hdiddy Official Forum Flunkee Supporting Member

    Mar 16, 2004
    Richmond, CA
    I'm surprised Ken, you don't notice the Shadow pickup choking your arco tone? :eyebrow:
  10. KSB - Ken Smith

    KSB - Ken Smith Banned Commercial User

    Mar 1, 2002
    Perkasie, PA USA
    Owner: Ken Smith Basses, Ltd.
    I have played 3 Symphonic Concerts amplified.

    1) Batchelder Bass with EBS 350 head and 2x10 cab.. Treble rolled out.. It was a 60 piece concert band and we did a Stoch..vich? and Trach..skys 4th.. It sounded like a 10 bass section on the live recording.

    2) We did a pops concert with the main Orch I play in. Since I'm principal, I played the Jazz part with a rhythm section on the opposite side of the stage. Mainly pizz but had a few Bowed parts with the Section from across the stage. I used my Gilkes Bass and an EBS 15 Drome combo.. Treble mostly off.. Sounded HUGE but to the conductors liking and blended well..

    3) Summer closing concert free to the community.. We repeated some of the Pops things but also repeated the 1812 overture we did last year opening the season. We were short 3 Bass Players due to conflicts. The Conductor asked my to play the 1812 with the Amp and play loud in the end with the Cannons firing.. I used my Martini bass and the EBS amp..

    With the Batchelder I would also use my old sliding mute to take some edge off the Bow. I used Obligatos with that Bass. The Martini had Orig Flexocors and the Batchelder had either Orig Flat Chromes or regular flexs.. I can't remember.. Also, I EQ the Amp slightly and prefer a 15" speaker over the 2x10 for bowing tone..

    Choked tone? If it was getting choked, I didn't notice. The Basses I use are quite plentiful in the tone department so maybe that has something to do with it.

    I have also Bowed and plucked in Jazz and B'way settings with the Shen, Dodd, Gilkes and Batchelder with great success.

    AMJBASS Supporting Member

    Jan 8, 2002
    Ontario, Canada
    I don't see how the Shadow/Underwood would really affect the acoustic tone that much. Certainly not nearly as much as a BP100, or in some cases the Realist. Interesting that you find the Shadow good for arco Ken. I may have to check one out.....
  12. Pacman

    Pacman Layin' Down Time Staff Member Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 1, 2000
    Omaha, Nebraska
    Endorsing Artist: Roscoe Guitars, DR Strings, Aguilar Amplification
    Moved to Amps and Pickups...
  13. hdiddy

    hdiddy Official Forum Flunkee Supporting Member

    Mar 16, 2004
    Richmond, CA
    Well, It'd prob be safe to assume that one of Ken's vintage basses will have gobs more tone than my Chrissy. Still, even to my virgin ears an underwood still kinda choked up my acoustic sound if I kept the pickup on. Taking the pickup out of the wings made a big difference IMO. I got a bigger, more open sound with the underwood off. I'm not the first to notice it... similar opinions can be had here on TBDB just by doing a couple of quick searches. Something more to do with jamming something up the bridge wings more than adding mass to the bridge.