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Basslines or Barts in a Lakland 55-02 ?

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by Kurt M., Aug 12, 2002.

  1. Kurt M.

    Kurt M.

    Dec 11, 2001
    Reading, PA
    Considering a Lakland 55-02. This model uses the MM humbucker at the bridge and the J style at the neck. There is a SD Basslines option. Anyone have any experience with the Bassline version? This would be the same in the more expensive Lakland 94 series bass. I've heard the Basslines are grainier and more aggressive. I've also heard that depending on how you eq things the Barts can be made to sound about the same. The Basslines are a $100 upgrade. I play in an aggressive hard rock band so the more grind the better in the pickup department.

  2. Kurt M.

    Kurt M.

    Dec 11, 2001
    Reading, PA
    Well, I just played the Lakland with Barts today. I liked it. The 3 band tone controls really kick it up a notch.

    Still, I wonder what the Basslines bring to the mix. Nobody playing the Basslines? Come on guys. I know somebody has em.
  3. lowfreqguy


    Oct 18, 2000
    Baltimore, MD
    I have a 5502 with the Barts installed. I can get lots of great tones and don't know that the basslines are necessary. I think the 5502 is a great bass (especially for the money) and play mine pretty often. BTW, I also have an F bass, MTD, and Pedulla and think that the 5502 can keep with the others as well. Happy hunting.
  4. Kurt M.

    Kurt M.

    Dec 11, 2001
    Reading, PA
    Thanks. I'm pretty much thinking I'm gonna go with the 55-02. Did you feel the 55-02 was worth the extra money over the 55-01? Obviously you did. Can you explain what sold you on the 55-02 as compared to the 55-01? I played them both. The 55-02 seems a bit more aggressive which is a good thing. But, for the $300 difference they're darn close.
  5. rickbass

    rickbass Supporting Member

    "Real" Bart components, not the MK "sorta Barts."
  6. Kurt M.

    Kurt M.

    Dec 11, 2001
    Reading, PA
    Ahh OK. I'm new to the whole Bart thing. I've always played EMG's. So the MK's are sort of like the EMG HZ's probably. Thanks for the heads up.
  7. Showdown

    Showdown Supporting Member

    Jan 21, 2002
    Honolulu, Hawaii
    I have the 55-01, and I don't care that it doesn't have "real" Bart components. The quality of the Korean Barts is very good. In fact I have another bass with a "real" Bart preamp, and the Lakland with the "fake" one sounds better (I suspect the difference in woods/construction, etc. makes more difference in the sound than the preamps). Plus I like the two soapbar configuration better than the MM/Jazz.
  8. Gil Escalera

    Gil Escalera

    Jan 17, 2002
    Upland, CA
    Actually, the defining differences between the 55-01 and the 55-02 are the electronics:

    55-01 Dual Bartolini MK-1 split-coil soapbars are coupled with an MK-1 onboard 3-Band buffered, active preamp. Controls: Cut/Boost for Bass, Mids and Treble, along with a Pickup Blend Pan (center-notched) and Master Volume.

    55-02 Bartolini MM/J pick-up configuration and the Bartolini/Lakland custom 3-Band preamp used in the USA-Made 55-94. The controls on the 55-02 are the same as on the 55-01 and 55-94: Cut/Boost for Bass, Mids and Treble, with a Pickup Blend Pan (center notched), and a Master Volume that can be pulled to bypass the preamp. The 55-02 adds a 3-way toggle for coil splitting. The onboard Bartolini/Lakland preamp features a Midrange Frequency selector that can be accessed through the battery cavity and adjusted to suit your tonal tastes. There is also an internal Master trim pot.

    My personal asseessment is that the 55-01 sounds more similar to the EMG sound, and the 55-02 sounds like, well, Bartolini's. The 55-02 is basically an affordable 55-94. :) I have a 55-02 and like it very much.

    -- Gil
  9. Gil, can't remember if I've asked you before, but have you messed around much with the EQ switches or the master trimpot? I know that several people have mentioned not being thrilled with barts (not a huge fan of them myself), and were planning on having them swiched out to the duncans, only to have john or dan at the factory make minor adjustments to the preamp settings, and all of a sudden the midrange jumps. As you likely know, I've got a 44-02 with my name on it, so it's time to start info-gathering. Don't want to call Lakland just yet, they'll likely be very busy this coming week!

    dude's roadie
  10. Gil Escalera

    Gil Escalera

    Jan 17, 2002
    Upland, CA
    Hey Mike,

    I did play with the mid range eq switches (250, 500, 700, 850Hz) and determined that I liked the stock position (500Hz) best for my needs/taste. I didn't do anything with the input gain trimmer since it is set at the factory for optimum and I didn't have any issues with the output gain.

    The funkycarnivore had a bass with the Barts and another with the Seymour Duncans and said basically the Barts were warmer (midrangy) and the SD's were brighter (scooped). Jerome prefered the SD's. The MM on the SD's was more MM sounding.

    From the Lakland site:

    Q. What are the tone differences between Bartolini and Duncan-Basslines pickups?

    A. Firstly, Bartolini are installed on 95% of the Basses Lakland produces. The sound differences practically speaking are as follows: Bartolini pickups have a warmer sound due to a more complex midrange response. They are well suited for most types of playing. Duncan Basslines are considerably hotter and have more of a modern "mid-scooped" sound that is popular with players that play a lot of "slap" style bass.

    Overall Impressions
    As I was completing the live comparison of these pickups, I was jotting down descriptive words that came to mind. The BTs caused me to write "mellow, natural, earth tones, clean fundamental and clarity'. The SDs elicited "scooped, processed, extreme, aggressive and biting". These descriptions seem to sum up my impressions regarding these pickups. If I were doing lots of slapping or any sort of aggressive playing, I'd choose the SDs. If I were primarily playing more mellow material, I'd go for the BTs. Lastly it's important to note that with selective use of the on board EQ you can make one set of these pickups get within spitting distance, tone wise, of the other. So in the end, you aren't completely boxed in by what pickup option you choose for your Lakland.

    -- Gil
  11. Yeah, I've read the stuff at the Lakland site, had it posted on the Pit when somebody asked about the barts/duncans difference. Mainly curious as to how much difference the preamp twiddling makes in the character of the sound, as somebody (can't remember here or there) had mentioned a quick preamp adjustment making major differences. And it's funny, but a lot of people have had really different experiences with the barts, and the duncans. One of the guys in here describes his 55-02 as being rude and in-your-face, and not very warm and fat. Not my experience with barts overall, and certainly not the 55-02 specifically, but who knows? I'll have to play around with the preamp on the 4-94 deluxe we have in right now. Man, I so want that bass! The birdseye on the fingerboard is just sick, but it's out of my price range really, I'll be just fine with a 44-02 that I won't have to worry about scratching.
  12. Brad Johnson

    Brad Johnson

    Mar 8, 2000
    Gaithersburg, Md
    DR Strings
    Same here. I thought the 55-01 sounded more aggressive than my US 55-94.
  13. KB


    Jan 13, 2000
    Chapel Hill, NC
    I have this Same question.
    I am about to buy a Lakland 44-02 and was trying to decide between the Basslines and the Barts. The Basslines is a small upcharge.

    I am looking for a sound that is defined but does have some nice growl when needed, with a defined low end and sweet top end and that sound good when playing finger style. I don't slap much, but I do tap. My band is a 3 piece that plays ecclectic orignal rock, jazz, polka waltz, some funk, and some weird stuff. My rig is a SWR SM500 with two Auilar GS112s. My main bass is an '82 G&L L2000E (very aggressive and growly) so maybe something like barts could be a nice compliment??

    Everytime I decide to go one way, I end up changing my mind and going the other. I've read the lakalnd comparison and I just looking for as many "real world" comparisons as I can get before I plop down the money on one.

    Please give me more input.



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