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EMG Preamp/35HZ, can i switch pickups and keep the preamp?

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by DiscoRiceJ, Oct 9, 2019.


  1. DiscoRiceJ

    DiscoRiceJ

    Oct 15, 2018
    I have a bass with the EMGHZ pickups. While for the most part I've been able to coax some decent sound out of them, I am thinking I might want to get something with a little more throaty mids and umph. (very technical description I know)

    Is it possible to just get a set of Nordstrand Big Blades or something else (maybe Delanos), and put those in? The bass has two batteries, (18V total). I don't want to spring for a whole new electronics set yet.
     
  2. MPU

    MPU

    Sep 21, 2004
    Valkeala Finland
    Yes it is. HZ’s are passive and you can swap them to any passive pickups you like.
     
    Reedt2000 and DiscoRiceJ like this.
  3. DiscoRiceJ

    DiscoRiceJ

    Oct 15, 2018
    What concerns me, is that these pickups don't work in any sense, outside of active mode. I have a similar bass, (same brand, etc.) that can be run in passive mode. You just lift the volume knob, it is a push pull. This bass doesn't have that, nor will the pickups make any sound if the battery drains.
     
  4. MPU

    MPU

    Sep 21, 2004
    Valkeala Finland
    If battery is empty, preamp does not work, hence no sound. If they are HZ they will work without battery if you get sound out of the bass with battery. Active/passive switching is not too difficult to make.
     
  5. ctmullins

    ctmullins fueled by beer and coconut Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 18, 2008
    MS Gulf Coast
    I'm highly opinionated and extremely self-assured
    As @MPU said, it's entirely possible, and likely a great idea! If yours is newer, it may have the EMG solderless connectors, and swapping to non-EMG pickups will probably mean having to splice and solder some wires, but it's still no big deal.

    It sounds like this will also be a great opportunity to add an active/passive switch.

    Can you post photos? Usually two batteries means they're wired in series for 18V, but yours might not be.
     
  6. DiscoRiceJ

    DiscoRiceJ

    Oct 15, 2018
    I will take some tonight. I actually have an extra preamp because it was assumed that the first one was faulty, but it was just killing batteries because the pre was touching the cavity side with shielding paint causing a constant voltage leak. I will pull everything and take pictures tonight.
     
  7. DiscoRiceJ

    DiscoRiceJ

    Oct 15, 2018
    IMG_20191009_202424870.
    So the pre is a B64 which apparently works with active or passive. Now I guess I just search for something aggro and grindy with sufficient mids. It'd be nice if SD made a soapbar sized QP like model. I have little familiarity with Nordstrand. There have been some Delano's I've heard that sounded good.
     
    ctmullins likes this.
  8. ctmullins

    ctmullins fueled by beer and coconut Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 18, 2008
    MS Gulf Coast
    I'm highly opinionated and extremely self-assured
    Thanks. How about the volume and blend knobs? Are your current pickups soldered or do they use the quick-connect plugs?
     
  9. DiscoRiceJ

    DiscoRiceJ

    Oct 15, 2018
    IMG_20191009_202911713.
    Volume/Blend and pickups have a connectors. You just disconnect the two plugs and the preamp comes out. Sorry for the terrible picture.
     
    ctmullins likes this.
  10. ctmullins

    ctmullins fueled by beer and coconut Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 18, 2008
    MS Gulf Coast
    I'm highly opinionated and extremely self-assured
    Ok, so you can either solder your replacement pickups straight to the blend, or splice them into the existing wires that are already connected to the blend.

    Nordstrands are great. So are Delanos. Can’t go wrong with either.
     
  11. catcauphonic

    catcauphonic High Freak of the Low Frequencies Supporting Member

    Mar 30, 2012
    Seattle WA
    @agedhorse, I'd be astonished if you were one of all people to overlook a battery test/replacement 2-3× per year, or at least carry a spare. (Depending on how much you play per week.) Unplugging is a habit that you'll develope in no time :smug: Active is usually more tonal options, no?
     
  12. SactoBass

    SactoBass A retired civil engineer who likes all-tube amps! Supporting Member

    It's not @agedhorse. The OP just happens to have the same avatar as agedhorse! :)
     
  13. Cowboy in Latvia

    Cowboy in Latvia

    Mar 1, 2015
    Yep, threw me off for a second too. Now I can't just look at the avatar, I'll have to read the username too. :help:
     
    catcauphonic, BOOG, MVE and 1 other person like this.
  14. SactoBass

    SactoBass A retired civil engineer who likes all-tube amps! Supporting Member

    I too thought it was Andy at first! His avatar is ingrained in my brain! :thumbsup:
     
  15. DiscoRiceJ

    DiscoRiceJ

    Oct 15, 2018
    Sorry, not Andy. Will switch that back today.

    I don't want to switch to passive tone controls.. I was just trying to ascertain that with the pre I have, what were my options.

    Thanks
     
  16. catcauphonic

    catcauphonic High Freak of the Low Frequencies Supporting Member

    Mar 30, 2012
    Seattle WA
    :meh::rolleyes::p
     
    SactoBass and Cowboy in Latvia like this.

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