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Help with V-Bass and RMC piezos

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by FretNoMore, Jan 7, 2003.

  1. FretNoMore

    FretNoMore * Cooking with GAS *

    Jan 25, 2002
    The frozen north
    I'm working on the specifications for a fretless Overwater J-Series bass, and this time I will include V-Bass interfacing. The best bet seems to be RMC's piezo saddles and Poly-Drive preamp. The bass will have a U-Retro preamp which according to RMC doesn't go that well with the piezos (they prefer passive pickups and their own eq unit). My thinking is however to keep the front of the bass as clean as possible, as few controls as possible. If I use the piezos for the V-Bass only (no blending with the magnetic pickups) the minimum integration should be to supply the magnetic signal on the right pin in the 13 pin connector and have a synth volume pot next to the U-Retro controls.

    Do you think I'm sacrificing anything by not using the piezos for the analog sound?

    Should I have some more controls on the bass (patch up/down etc)?

    Is there someone with experience from the RMC/V-Bass combination, does it work at least as well as the GK2B pickup?

    Any info or comments would be appreciated.
  2. xush


    Jul 4, 2001
    mobile AL
    Don't know, I'm sorry to say, but I'll be watching with much interest...

    I'd like to try a LW or RMC setup, but they're both pretty pricey without having tried either one up front.
  3. mikestack


    Sep 17, 2002

    I'm no expert on the RMC systems, but I've been in touch with them in the past when I was evaluating options, and I'm familiar with V-Bass and 13-pin applications, so here goes.

    Controls: V-Bass supports the following controls through the 13-pin connector:

    * synth volume: volume of the 13-pin output

    * step-up/step-down : two push buttons, often used as a pickup toggle switch

    * synth-blend-analog switch: allows you to select 13-pin "hex" output, regular mag pickup output, or a blend of them.

    You may find you want these controls, they're likely rather useful, but then again, I know that I personally rarely use any of them, and tend to leave the switch in blend and control it through the Roland device.

    As far as output goes-- I don't see why you couldn't run your preamp and the RMC preamp, as a matter of fact, looking at the installation specs, it looks like it should be of minimal difficulty to do it. My guess is that you'd have a hard time running the RMC piezo output for analog into the U-Retro, you'd rather have to use the U-Retro for only the magnetic pickups.

    If you contact RMC, they'll give you installation specs if you're persistent.

    Hope this helps.

  4. FretNoMore

    FretNoMore * Cooking with GAS *

    Jan 25, 2002
    The frozen north
    Thanks for your replies.

    As I've not been able to find much info at all and RMC's replies indicate they are only interested if I use their preamp/EQ unit as well, I'm giving up on this idea for the moment. Given the prices I'm not too keen on being the first to try this.

    The Lightwaves are cool, but too expensive and wouldn't look right on a Jazz bass IMO.

    It would be great to have some working option, the GK2B is a real eye-sore. Maybe I'll wait and hope for a GK internal kit for bass from Roland.

    So, my next bass will not have GK functionality built-in.

    Over and out.
  5. Jazz Ad

    Jazz Ad Mi la ré sol Supporting Member

    You may want to ask John Turner who has them mounted on one of his basses (I think).
  6. DarkMazda


    Jun 3, 2000
    fhodson (Fred) did it to his Zon Sonus Lightwave too..