Carvin LB70 preamp swap

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by imdkoz, Dec 13, 2019.


  1. imdkoz

    imdkoz Supporting Member

    Nov 16, 2006
    Tennessee
    I have a Carvin LB70 that I'm thinking about swapping the pre for a Darkglass tone capsule. Has anyone changed out the preamp and kept the stock pickups? Just wondering if the pickups are worth keeping. Also what preamps have you tried?
    Thanks!
     
  2. MynameisMe

    MynameisMe Be kind. Supporting Member

    Dec 31, 2018
    Jax, Florida
    I have a Carvin 5 jazz model that was probably a kit but was well put together.
    It had EMG pickups and the preamp was wonky.
    I replaced it with an Audere preamp and it sounds muck better.
    However I do not like the pickups so that is on the list down the road eventually.
    Audere makes preamps in many different configurations and their support is superb.
     
    imdkoz likes this.
  3. MobileHolmes

    MobileHolmes I used to be BassoP

    Nov 4, 2006
    Iowa
    I posed this question last year here
    Carvin electronics weak link?

    there wasn't much consensus. Ultimately, I still haven't gotten around to swapping anything, but I've found that I like it better with slightly brighter strings (DR Hi Beams) and that in the end, it's probably good enough for gigging
     
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  4. MobileHolmes

    MobileHolmes I used to be BassoP

    Nov 4, 2006
    Iowa
    I think, to a large extent, it depends what kind of sound you want out of your bass. I tend to like a fairly traditional J Tone, and the audere does a great job of that. I don't even use the EQ much on the bass that has an Audere. Mainly, I like it because it has a good pickup blend. But the EQ is nice and useable too. But that is the sort of goal I have so it might not be what you are looking for.
     
    MynameisMe likes this.
  5. MynameisMe

    MynameisMe Be kind. Supporting Member

    Dec 31, 2018
    Jax, Florida
    I had been playing this bass for years.
    At that point I wasn't into swapping out pickups and electronics on a bass.
    Someone was over looking at one of my other basses to trade and he pointed out to me that the preamp was completely bypassed so it was only volume volume on the pickups and that was it
    Changing out the preamp to the Audere was much better.
    I don't know that it was the original electronics that were on the inside anyways.
    Here is a picture of my bass.
    It's got either fat beams or high beams on it right now.
    Floppy B string and all.
    IMG_20191214_091954.jpg
    I need to put the truss rod cover back on I just found it after it being missing in action for a couple years.
    Somehow I ended up in one of my briefcases.
     
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  6. imdkoz

    imdkoz Supporting Member

    Nov 16, 2006
    Tennessee
    I'm in a 3 piece rock cover band, so I like the heavier bass tones. While the bass isn't terrible it just seems blah, no real life to the tone. That's why I'm leaning to the Darkglass preamp.
     
    MobileHolmes likes this.
  7. MobileHolmes

    MobileHolmes I used to be BassoP

    Nov 4, 2006
    Iowa
    I haven't used one, but based on samples I've heard and whatnot, the darkglass sounds like a really good fit for you. I also find mine a little blah, but I'm more of a funk/r&b guy, so I'm looking for a more trad sound with just a little extra punch and snap
     
  8. MynameisMe

    MynameisMe Be kind. Supporting Member

    Dec 31, 2018
    Jax, Florida
    I really prefer my P-basses over anything.
    I had a real nice MIM jazz that I traded off for a Jack Casady. That jazz was minty as they say and I miss it. Played perfectly.
    I traded it when I acquired an American Standard Jazz, which I thought was the more superior one.
    Then traded the Amer. Jazz for an American Standard P when I found out I really didn't like it.
    I rarely play the Carvin. I just can't get a sound out of it I like. Too much mid range honk on the middle string. Changing the preamp helped tremendously but the search for the right tone continues.
    I will try changing out strings to nickel first then move on to the pickups later.
    I had a set of Fender 5 flats on it and the B flopped so bad it was unusable.
    Sometimes it is hard to give up on an instrument that you've had a long time.
    You keep plugging away with components looking for the holy grail of tone.
    The search never ends, except it kind of ended with the P bass for me.
    Note: nothing against the Audere. They make terrific preamps!
    This bass sound so much better, even with the EMG's on there.
     
  9. MobileHolmes

    MobileHolmes I used to be BassoP

    Nov 4, 2006
    Iowa
    I have found with mine (looks like similar vintage, but Koa and Maple), that it really likes bright strings, and a relatively fat B. I use DR High beams, and do custom sets from fretnation. You need to get shorter B strings (at least mine does), which he has if you contact him directly. Also, I think this bass sounds better if you move the pickup balance just slightly either side of equal
     
  10. MynameisMe

    MynameisMe Be kind. Supporting Member

    Dec 31, 2018
    Jax, Florida
    I
    I will take a shot at that and see if it sounds any better.
    Steel strings are just too clanky for me. The only thing currently with rounds on it is that five string.
    I've been getting good mileage out of the LaBella low tension flats and I just installed some Ernie ball cobalt flats on my American P.
    However I have enjoyed the DR Pure Blues on my Lakland 5 when I had it.
    I think those may be my favorite roundwounds.
     
    MobileHolmes likes this.
  11. MynameisMe

    MynameisMe Be kind. Supporting Member

    Dec 31, 2018
    Jax, Florida
    There are no serial numbers or anything like that on my bass which makes me think it was a kit. How you doing today
    Someone else commented on it didn't particularly look like any of the lines from Carvin but a kit.
    I'm holding on to it though.
     
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    Primary TB Assistant

    Here are some related products that TB members are talking about. Clicking on a product will take you to TB’s partner, Primary, where you can find links to TB discussions about these products.

     
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