Dismiss Notice

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

EMG pickups tone act as volume?

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by MAD2X, Oct 15, 2005.


  1. I just finished installing my EMG-J set in my bass. It all works well beside this: The tone pot, when cut all the way almost mutes the volume. It does cut the treble like supposed to, but there is a lot of volume loss when cutting the highs. It does it using either pickups or even both. Is this normal?
     
  2. luknfur

    luknfur

    Jan 14, 2004
    DIXIE
    FWIW:

    it's normal to have some volume loss in cutting trebles because higher frequencies are more audible and lower frequencies take a lot more power to get apparent equal volume. Virtually any tone control adjustment will vary apparent volume (especially active controls with boost/cut) but a tone control is not a volume control. EMG uses all 25K audio pots (volume) for their harnesses but the tone control will have a cap wired in. If it's a major variation there's likely a wiring/component problem. Emg has wiring diagrams on their site.
     
  3. ducaticarl

    ducaticarl

    Oct 16, 2005
    I have used nothing but emg's in a few of my basses for years and have never really noticed a change in volume when changing the tone. I do notice that when playing through my passive input of my hartke 3500 the volume is signifigantly louder than when playing through the active input, and other than that I have had to replace one emg j-style that burned out.
     
  4. Tone and volume are very intricate things, another element is our psychological makeup etc, and not to get too "Altered States" on everybody, how we "feel" at the time. EQ content can substantially change our perception of how loud something sounds as well as change the actual output of an instrument. You have a couple things to looks out, the size of the cap on the tone pot for instance, the potentiometer used, and also the pickup style itself. The coment about highs being more noticable are spot on too, for instance we "hear" a child screaming as being louder than a mans, do not only to social conditioning but treble content as well. Alternately our ears "fill in" the bass sound of a mans voice on a telephone when in reality that sound is not there, percieved, but not real.

    I'm not really happy with the EMG's I used in my J J configured JAzz bass, they seem a bit lifeless.
     
  5. The pots are the linear or exponential? The roll of will really change depending on these...
     
  6. I figured out the problem it was something really stupid in the end. The mid, treble and contour on my practice amp was all the way up, because my old pickups sounded muddy. It's a small 8 inch speaker amp and when cutting the tone on my bass it would cut the volume because most of the sound coming from the amp was treble, now that these pickups are nice and clean. I tried it on my big rig today and WOW what a change, I'm really satisfied with my upgrade. These new pots increments proportionally unlike before. I can finally hear how good of an amp I got. My amp can color the sound as I want.
     
  7. Stoked that you found the issue. It is often times a simple thing that eludes us. Additive eq is super addicting, when we think we can "fix" something we are often breaking it. I'm as guilty as the next. Merry Shred-mas to you !
     
  8. luknfur

    luknfur

    Jan 14, 2004
    DIXIE
    FWIW:

    The first thing to do in trouble shooting is to isolate the problem to the signal chain component: amp, cab, bass, etc. and not assume it's somewhere till that's demonstrated.

    It's very easy to make the assumption that since something has been changed recently that's the source of the problem. Though the majority of time that will be the case, jumping to such a conclusion can result in unnecessary grief, expense, and loss of playing time. And we've all done it - hopefully only once.
     
  9. luknfur

    luknfur

    Jan 14, 2004
    DIXIE
    In accord and addition to comments above, just altering volume can create considerable variation in tone or apparent variation in tone even though only volume has changed.