Psst... Ready to join TalkBass and start posting, make new friends, sell your gear, and more?  Register your free account in 30 seconds.

EMG cheap and easy upgrade

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by Mark Gollihur, Jul 19, 2000.


  1. Mark Gollihur

    Mark Gollihur Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jul 19, 2000
    Gloucester County, NJ
    Owner/President, Gollihur Music LLC
    I'm new to TalkBass, so apologies if this has been discussed before. If you have a standard set of EMG pickups, here's a cheap (under 5 bucks) and easy (just a little soldering skills will get you by) upgrade that will open up that "80's sound" that EMG's are often accused of.

    Click the link below to visit a page I set up for bassists/guitarists to do a simple 18v upgrade. I've done it to about 6 basses so far (some mine, some not) and everyone has been very happy with the improvement.

    http://members.home.net/mgollihur/emgmod.html

    Hope this is useful to someone!

    ------------------
    Mark Gollihur
    Bassist, Second Story
    http://www.second-story.net
    http://www.mp3.com/secondstory
     
  2. Rockinjc

    Rockinjc

    Dec 17, 1999
    Michigan
    This really works... I did the last solution a wile back. Perhaps from seeing it at TBL. Seems to have more dynamic range.

    jc

    [This message has been edited by Rockinjc (edited July 19, 2000).]
     
  3. Doug

    Doug

    Apr 5, 2000
    Buffalo, N.Y.
    Hey Mark, I noticed that this mod was questionable with the HZ pickups. Have you found out elsewise since? I would love to try this, but I don't want to fry them either. Thanx
     
  4. Mark Gollihur

    Mark Gollihur Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jul 19, 2000
    Gloucester County, NJ
    Owner/President, Gollihur Music LLC
    <BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote:</font><HR>Hey Mark, I noticed that this mod was questionable with the HZ pickups. Have you found out elsewise since? I would love to try this, but I don't want to fry them either. Thanx<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    I think it's ok. This is what's on their site concerning adding batteries, which doesn't rule out their HZ series:

    <BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote:</font><HR>Can I use multiple batteries?

    Yes. If you've got room for multiple batteries in your guitar, you can use two batteries wired in series to power your onboard circuitry at 18 volts. The output level will not appreciably increase, but you'll have increased headroom and crisper transients. This is especially useful for percussive/slap bass styles where you can generate enormous instantaneous power levels across the entire frequency spectrum.
    You can also wire two batteries in parallel to provide a regular 9 volt supply but with much longer lifespan between battery changes.

    Although most of our products are rated for 27 volts, we recommend a maximum of 18 volts. The additional benefits of 27 vs. 18 volts are negligible.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    Just to be sure, though - were I you, I would send out an email to mgtek@emginc.com or place a call to them at (707) 525-9941. I've emailed them before, and found them to be helpful and cordial.


    ------------------
    Mark Gollihur
    Bassist, Second Story
    http://www.second-story.net
    http://www.mp3.com/secondstory
     
  5. Doug

    Doug

    Apr 5, 2000
    Buffalo, N.Y.
    Thanx again Mark. I sent them an email on this. Awaiting their response. If they say it's ok, then I'll go ahead with this and I'll let you know how I make out.
     
  6. Doug

    Doug

    Apr 5, 2000
    Buffalo, N.Y.
    Well EMG got back to me rather quickly. Here's what their tech. had to say regarding the HZ pickups.


    "The EMG-HZ pickups are passive, not active.

    There is active tone circuitry in some (maybe all?) LTD basses that requires a
    battery.

    You can run the circuitry on 18 volts without damage to the circuitry as long
    as the modification is done correctly."
    Best Regards,

    Gary Rush

    EMG INC.
    P.O Box 4394, Santa Rosa, CA 95402
    Phone: 707-525-9941 Fax: 707-575-7046

    On our web site at http://www.emginc.com/

     
  7. Mark Gollihur

    Mark Gollihur Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jul 19, 2000
    Gloucester County, NJ
    Owner/President, Gollihur Music LLC
    Well, I dunno what sort of improvement you'll see - I've never done the HZ model electronics. What I would recommend is to do the easily reversible version of the mod at the bottom of my page - just a three pack of 9v connectors. Make sure that you look carefully at the instructions, though - one of the connectors is wired in parallel, one in series.

    Let me know how you make out if you try it!


    ------------------
    Mark Gollihur
    Bassist, Second Story
    http://www.second-story.net
    http://www.mp3.com/secondstory
     
  8. Doug

    Doug

    Apr 5, 2000
    Buffalo, N.Y.
    I'll try it when I get some spare time. It's easy enough to remedy if this mod doesn't work or if for some reason I don't like the sound. I'm a sucker for trying out new things, such as this. [​IMG]

    I'll let you know the results.
     
  9. Well this post inspired me to get my 77 Fender Jazz out of the case clean her up, put new strings on.....and start trying to figure out how to fit a 2nd 9v. battery in that tiny compartment. As it is now the one 9v fits in there snugly. I have no idea what I am going to do, but this is possibly the idea I have been waiting for.
    I have circa 1990 EMG Jazz p/ups in and the bass has -always- sounded really dark, I keep the treble at max just to have a hint of top end in the thingit's kind of like what it would be like if it was tuned B,E,A,D! Anyway I am going to pursue this very soon. I keep everyone posted. Thx again for sharing!!!
     
  10. Mark Gollihur

    Mark Gollihur Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jul 19, 2000
    Gloucester County, NJ
    Owner/President, Gollihur Music LLC
    I imagine you've got your work cut out for you. What I might do, were I you, would be to try the temporary version that's listed at the bottom of my page. If you do that, you can quickly and cheaply see if the mod is worthwhile for you before you bang your head against the wall trying to get another battery in there. You can try it out with the bass half apart and see if it "opens up" your sound.

    If you sense an improvement, then start thinking about how to get it in there. If you don't notice enough of a change, well - no big loss. [​IMG]

    Good luck!

    ------------------
    Mark Gollihur
    Bassist, Second Story
    http://www.second-story.net
    http://www.mp3.com/secondstory
     
  11. Skips

    Skips

    Feb 19, 2003
    That link doesn't work---just a whole bunch of pop-ups. :bawl:
     
  12. David Wilson

    David Wilson Administrator Staff Member Administrator Supporting Member

    Oct 14, 2002
    Lower Westchester, NY
    it's pretty simple. Take 3 battery clips, and wire them so you have a daisy chain.
    So, if we think of them as clips 1 to 3.
    Connect clip 1 hot (red) to clip 2 cold (black)
    Connect clip 2 hot (red) to clip 3 cold (black)
    Connect clip 3 hot (red) to clip 1 cold (black)

    Remember to tape off the connections.

    Then plug in two 9v batteries to any two of the clips and plug the third clip to the existing battery clip. Voila, your reversible 18v upgrade.
     
  13. wow, this is an old thread....i just put in the second battery connector in series with the one that's in there. if you decided you don't want the 18V, just take another connector (which you'll probably have, since they come in packages of 3), connect the wires coming off of it to each other, and put it in place of one of the batteries.
     
  14. doc540

    doc540

    Jul 28, 2003
    Beaumont, Texas
    Just wired up another 9v into the Bastard Beater's EMG's.

    The Bastard Beater is a "photo flame" Essex Jbass.

    No problems.

    I just used a small, round cutting tip on my Dremel and slowly deepened the control trough. Laid in the two batteries, set the control plate on them, cut a little more out and in no time they fit just fine.

    I can't tell any difference in the sound through the Tascam Bass Trainer, but it's gotta be better, right? Two batteries have to be better'n one, like turbo's on a rat motor!