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I don't want my active bass to sabotage my gig

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by tresdirnt, Jul 16, 2001.

  1. I have an active bass. An Ibanez SR300DX. If the battery inside dies will the whole thing die? Can't I just use it as a passive or whatever? It is actually imposibble to play with a dead battery? Thanks. Also, after how long do you stop being a new member? Thanks again.
  2. After 100 posts. I would just try to keep a a good battery in your bass, plus keep a good one in your case. Some basses have a passive mode, but I'm not sure about yours. Mine doesn't. :(
  3. 100 posts? I take it replies count as posts then. Also, my bass works when I turn down the EQ, so does that mean it works passive? If no-one knows then Mr. Ibanez will be getting an e-mail from me......................
  4. BenF


    Mar 29, 2001
    Boston area
    The vast majority of active basses won't work if the battery's dead, which sucks! Some basses have an active/passive switch, but even in passive mode the bass still might need a battery. The only way to check is to pull the battery out of the bass, plug it into an amp, and see if anything comes out.

    If you play a lot you might want to change the battery every month or two - sounds crazy, but you'll never really have to worry about a dead battery. And, as a backup, always keep a spare battery in your case or gig bag. Better yet, carry two!
  5. barroso


    Aug 16, 2000
    one of the good reason for which i like old passive stuff...
    rusty and trusty
  6. I have an Ibanez active bass, and nope it doesn't do nuff'n without a battery. But it the past 2 years, I replaced the battery twice. I play 8-10 hours a week. If you have a volt meter (or you can lend one), you can check the battery. Replace it when the voltage is below 7.5 volts. Boss pedals can be used as a battery check too. If the check light doesn't light as bright as with a fresh battery, it's probably almost empty.

    Important: always disconnect the cable from the bass when you're not playing for more than, say, fifteen minutes. The active circuit is switched on by inserting the signal jack.
  7. As has been said, but just a recap, just like a set of strings you should always carry a battery. Yank it plug in and see if you get any sound. I have one bass that will play with out the battery and one that will not. Both are active.
  8. brewer9


    Jul 5, 2000
    I've heard of worry warts but this takes the cake. Your battery should last for many months. Just make sure you change it periodically.

    I prefer the sound of active, but if the stress about the battery is too much, then go passive. As you can see, many like that sound better.
  9. The Navigator

    The Navigator

    May 17, 2001
    Tucson, AZ
    the 2 batteries in my B-quad would die overnight if I accidently left a cable in my bass. I got rid of that bass, but I had to change batteries every 2-3 weeks.

    And no it would not work if the batteries are dead.

    Just change 'em before the gig and you'll be dandy.
  10. Cat


    Apr 5, 2000
    Penn State
    if your bass was using up 2 batteries in 2 weeks then there must have been something wrong like a bad connection. the batteries are supposed to last 6 months of normal use. besides they aren't hard to change. i don't know what the big deal is. if i was that worried about the battery going dead i would just put a fresh one in before each gig.
  11. The Navigator

    The Navigator

    May 17, 2001
    Tucson, AZ
    I talked to a guy at peavey about it and he said that's just the way it is with those basses. They run really hot. I played a few shows with it plugged straight into the PA without any sort of preamp. Sounded like crap, but it worked.
  12. john turner

    john turner You don't want to do that. Trust me. Staff Member

    Mar 14, 2000
    atlanta ga
    if i'm not mistaken, the b-quad has a piezo buffer preamp in it as well. these draw a lot more current from the batteries than the regular active preamp does.
  13. I just have to say, its a real pain in the ass to have to unscrew plates to put in batteries. All manufacturers should have some of quick release machanism for their battery compartments, ala Ernie Ball. Those battery holders rule!
  14. xush


    Jul 4, 2001
    mobile AL
    I've got a BQuad, it doesn't consume batteries any faster than any other basses I have.
    I agree that the pop-up compartments make more sense, I'm not a fan of the unscrewing either.
    A lot of basses would sound like crap thru a PA, I don't think that's exclusive to the Peavey...
    It's not my favorite bass, but it does some interesting things.
    ever run that thing stereo? I put nylon tapewounds on mine and it really made a difference with the piezos, much more friendly tone...

  15. My Ray 5 is one of the older ones with a metal battery cover held on with screws. :( Oh well, not that big of a deal.

    I'd say to bring a spare battery along to your gig.. but it shouldn't be that much of a problem if you unplug your cord from your bass when it's not in use. You may want to test the battery that's in there right now just to be sure.
  16. nunk6


    Jul 29, 2000
    is it possible to boost the signal from the pickups then split the signal and send one straight to a
    1/4 jack
    and then the other half of the signal to an active preamp and to a separate 1/4 in output?

    using a toggle to select which signal is sent?
  17. Brad Johnson

    Brad Johnson Supporting Member

    Mar 8, 2000
    Gaithersburg, Md
    DR Strings
    Playing a passive bass because of a fear of battery failure is pretty misguided, especially if you like the sound of the active bass you're not playing. If you're unplugging the bass when not in use, getting two weeks of use is very abnormal.

    I put a new battery in my Lakland when I got it...in the Spring of 2000. I think my Zon is on it's second battery and I've had it over three years. The "worst" bass I have is my 78 Tobias which has two 9v's for the full circuitboard custom preamp and another 9v for the EMG soaps. The preamp batteries under constant use lasted "only" about six months.

    -unplug the bass when not in use
    -use a good quality battery. If you're buying cheap standard 9v's guess what?...you get what you pay for.

    Learn how your bass works, carry spares and you too can minimize the trauma of "active" :eek: basses.
  18. ldiezman


    Jul 11, 2001
    Yeah Battery port on my stingray is the best idea ever.. just pop out the old and one two three you got a new battery in there. as long as it took you to read this i just put a new battery in my stingray.. pretty tasty I think
  19. This is why you should have some extra 9v's in your "oh $hit" bag that you take to shows. Along with all the little screwdrivers/strings/allen wrenches/big macs/soldering iron that you normally carry to gigs....right? I also carry a battery tester, takes up nearly no space at all.

    I usually wind up accidentally leaving either of my active basses plugged in after a practice. Happens prolly twice a month. Sometimes leave it in 2 days. And we play out 1-2 times a week. And batteries still last 3 months. I check/change the battery when I notice a large variation in sound as I'm playing. Volume changes and variations in attack. The carvin's no prob, (Battery box) but the Gibson/Tobias takes a screwdriver, and them screw anchors in the wood get a little worse each time. One has already pulled out. Time for some superglue!

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