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Contact Mic?

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by newbold, Sep 28, 2008.

  1. newbold


    Sep 21, 2008
    Looking for a good passive acoustic pickup to blend with a passive bass. Contact/Bottlecap Mic?

    Any suggestions? I resent batteries and it'll be a texture rather than a focus of the instrument.
  2. bassobsessed


    Dec 20, 2007
    If it's a soild body your best bet will be undersaddle piezo pickups. Typical contact mics will give you too much microphonics and extraneous noise. This may require changing your bridge - but Pickup the World makes an under-saddle pickup designed for fender=style bridges.

    That being said, you will probably want a buffer preamp to achieve blending given the different impedances of the pickups (a passive blend or volume/volume will only give you either/or full on). If you don't want to install a preamp you can run both your pickups to a stereo output jack and use an external blender preamp like upright players use - there are many different brands and options of belt-clip versions.

    Dave Wendler has achieved good results doing passive blending. His system is proprietary and involves careful balancing of the capacitance and impedance of both pickups - plus he feels installing the piezo element deep in a wooden saddle is a big part of getting the sound, so his system might not work for you. Lace and Pickup the World collaborated on a passive blending system, but it only worked with pretty low impedance pickups and I heard it tended to sound thin.
  3. dave251

    dave251 Wendler Instruments

    Feb 5, 2004
    Lawrence, KS
    My ears were burning......

    I've been working on a passive setup for standard Fender basses. Works pretty well with the basic bridges. It involves two elements under the saddles and bridge plate( so you can't see them there, and makes for a VERY durable setup). It does require losing your tone pot and replacing it with the balance pot.

    It won't be as "acoustic" sounding as my electrocoustic basses, but does allow for more "acousticness", and a MUCH wider tonal pallette.
  4. newbold


    Sep 21, 2008
    If I'm going to Piezo then what about b-band? what's the diff?

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