Best Replacement OB Preamp For Lakland 55-94

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by g4string, Mar 12, 2003.

  1. g4string

    g4string Supporting Member

    Sep 19, 2002
    Melissa, TX
    Just wondering. I do not think that the Bart preamp on my Lakland does the SD's any justice. I feel that the Bart preamp sounds thin and transparent. Looking for a more deep and maybe scooped sound. I dunno. I want to get me new Demeter HBP-1 in first before I make any descisions. But, I still would like your opinions. Thanks.
  2. JRBrown


    Jun 21, 2000
    North Carolina
    Are your SD's the Alnico pups? I'm changing my Barts out and putting in SD's alnico pups. I've got one in so far. I need to identify and purchase the SD J-bass pup that best matches. Maybe all you need to do is change the pups?
  3. Fran Diaz

    Fran Diaz

    Mar 28, 2002
    Santander, Spain
    I'll get my my new Lakland next Monday. It's a 4-94 Std, natural/mp, SD alnico pickups and the bart preamp.

    I went with the SD alnico pu's bc I replace the stock pickup and preamp in my '94 SR with those and I love the tone.

    I'll A/B both basses to check the differences between both preamps with the bridge pickup. (we have to take into account that they are two different basses, but both are natural ash/maple)

    I'll post back in a couple of weeks

    keep groooovin'
  4. jdombrow

    jdombrow Supporting Member

    Jan 16, 2002
    Colorado Springs, CO
    The Bartolini preamp is pretty versatile. Have you tried experimenting with the DIP switches in the control cavity to change the midrange frequency that you're adjusting? That can make a big difference. Also, maybe you just need different strings.

    Changing the preamp is pretty drastic, especially when you have tone controls on your amp to work with too.
  5. David Wilson

    David Wilson Administrator Staff Member Administrator Supporting Member

    Oct 14, 2002
    Lower Westchester, NY
    Opening up this old thread... don't usually hang aroung the basses forum too much (I get all the GAS I can handle from Amps and Effects!).

    I just got a used 55-02, and while I do love it, I'm having the same issues with the Bart preamp as I did with the 2 band Bart preamp I had installed on my Thumb a while ago when the MEC preamp died. The bottom end is kind of wooly, and it's hard to have a lot of bass boost onboard without it seeming boomy.

    Has anyone replaced the onboard preamp on a 02 or 94 model?

    I'm sure replacing the preamp will have more of an effect than replacing the pups, that's certainly what I noticed on my Thumb when I pulled the Bart pre out, leaving the Bart pups in, and put a U-Retro pre in.
  6. narud

    narud Supporting Member

    Mar 15, 2001
    santa maria,california
    id try a stock bart pre rather than the one lakland specs out. the basses ive played with stock bart pre's sounded more alive than the electronics in the lakland i had.
  7. bikeplate

    bikeplate Supporting Member

    Jun 7, 2001
    Upstate NY

    Just a thought. Try a Sadowsky preamp/DI. They're great for all your basses and I'm sure you'll love the tone. It will keep you from altering your bass and keep the resale strong if you decide to sell some day.:)

  8. Nino Valenti

    Nino Valenti Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 2, 2001
    Staten Island NYC
    Builder: Valenti Basses
    Arent thier dials inside the control cavity for the ouput level of the pre-amp? If their is, you might want to try to adjust the output level of the pre-amp. If not, sorry. :)

    I have a USA Lakland 55-63 with BassLine single coild pick-up & Lakland Bart pre-amp. The bass sounds really nice but when I run it passive & run my Sadowsky pre-amp, it sounds better. More bite & clearer & crisper. The notes seem to be alive.

    I also tried the Sadowsky onboard with a Lakland SkyLine 44-02 that has the BArt J/MM & Lakland Bart pre-amp & I found the opposite to be true. IMO, it seemed that the Bart pick-up & pre-amp seems to work very well together.

    Hey g4string, Usually when I feel that my basses aren't sounding too hot & I think of doing expensive mods, I put a fresh set of strings on the bass. This might be an inexpensive fix to your problem. :)
  9. bben


    Feb 28, 2002
    Santa Fe, NM
    FWIW, I took all the Bart preamp stuff out of my Lakland 55-01 and put a Sadowsky preamp in there. I like the Sadowsky preamp a lot, just a couple of field effect transistors, no integrated circuits. It gets a big, hi-fi sound.

    I did this before Roger started selling his preamp separately, so I took my old-style outboard Sadowsky preamp apart and bought some new pots with longer shafts to go in the bass. I also did a shielding job with copper tape, and paid a lot of attention to star grounding.

    Personally I don't miss the midrange controls. Having played a P-bass for 30 years, I tend to find one sound that I like and stick with it. The Sadowsky bass control is lower than most at 40Hz, and is quite effective at dealing with room boom.