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is my understanding of preamps correct?

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by harmonic, Dec 23, 2006.

  1. harmonic


    Dec 19, 2006
    from the myriad of searches I did, this is what I've gleamed thus far regarding preamps and noise.

    i'd like to consider getting a good outboard preamp but am still a bit confused. currently i have a Squier vintage modified p-bass with Duncan Designed pups, but plan to get a Fender next year. the Squier sounds really good with the treble on the bass and amp turned down low. from mid setting onward the annoying buzz becomes obnoxiously apparent. am I correct to conclude the following?

    so: a good outboard preamps (for ex: Sawdowsky DI) will cancel noise in any setting...

    but good preamps still cannot combat bad grounding in home outlets...

    if one has not yet adequately shielded the electronics, a good outboard preamp will eliminate the noise (noise defined as the buzz heard when the treble is turned up all the way)...

    a good outboard preamp can combat all noise in all settings if one desires to not replace the pups with, say, EMG active pups?

    pardon these amateurish observations. i've been an acoustic guitarist for many years, and have recently switched to playing bass so there's a new learning curve. thanks in advance. Jack.
  2. A preamp isnt to cancel noise.

    Its to amplify the signal your bass produces.

    Some preamps can be noisy, some arent

    Just as pickups can be noisy or not.
  3. bongomania

    bongomania Gold Supporting Member Commercial User

    Oct 17, 2005
    PDX, OR
    owner, OVNIFX and OVNILabs

    Depending on the specific preamp, and the specific bass, you MAY get improved signal-to-noise ratio. But I have removed the preamp from one of my basses because the bass was quieter without it!

    If you want to improve the noise or ground hum of your setup: fully shield the cavities of the bass; use hum-cancelling pickups; use a high-quality instrument cable; and do whatever you can to eliminate ground loops in your amp rig.
  4. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Retired Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
    If your bass is the source of the buzz, a good preamp will amplify it for you. Get a bass with humbucking pickups.
  5. +1 Noise just adds up. To get the lowest noise possible you've got to minimize it at every step of the way.
  6. harmonic


    Dec 19, 2006
    Thanks for all your awesome views:bassist: . the room i play in is full of electrical connections as well as my PC, etc, so i'll keep my ears out for its affects. i'm using a friend's zoom b2 pedal right now and it's helped greatly. happy holidays! jack.
  7. harmonic


    Dec 19, 2006
    hi again people. okay, was able to try out a Zoom bass pedal this entire x-mas weekend. i was also able to receive today my Bayoucables. i've been playing and practicing for hours now.

    let me just say "wow!" :hyper: !!

    no longer do i have to place my hand on a metallic area of my bass to eliminate hum or noise. at this point, with all my monitors and television on, along with two halogen lamps and a portable heater on there is virtually no noise (by "no noise" i mean at the 30 different sound settings i've programmed). there are 30 preset sounds (which imo don't sound that great) that where some patches still contain noise, but who uses preset sounds?)

    i'm actually very impressed and surprised that careful tuning of the Zoom pedal (esp. the compressor and noise reduction settings), coupled with excellent cables, along with careful and judicious balance of gain versus volume, has made playing an absolutely different experience now.

    i appreciate all your advice, pointers, and tips. jack.:bassist:
  8. bongomania

    bongomania Gold Supporting Member Commercial User

    Oct 17, 2005
    PDX, OR
    owner, OVNIFX and OVNILabs
    Awesome, enjoy!

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