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Low output from Bartolinis + Aguilar OBP-3 on Modulus Q5

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by Plaz, Feb 25, 2016.

  1. Plaz


    Sep 7, 2006
    North-Central NJ
    I have a Modulus Quantum 5 with Bartolini pickups and an Aguilar OBP-3 running at 18v.

    I like the tonal characteristics of this setup, but my overall output is just too low compared to my other basses (Sadowsky NYC Will Lee, Pedulla Pentabuzz with jazz bass profile Bartolini pickups and Bart NTMB). My frame of reference is subjective, but the Sadowsky seems kind of hot, and the Pedulla is at what I consider a standard output level, but the Modulus is so much quieter at the same levels on my amps.

    Are there any realistic options for boosting the output from the OBP-3 short of replacing it with an NTMB pre or something else? I wish the OBP-3 had a gain/trim pot I could tweak.

    In doing some searching, I saw one thread here where someone with a similar situation said switching to a 500k volume pot cured their issue. But that seemed odd to me... don't two pots of differing resistance allow the same amount of signal through when wide open? Am I misunderstanding how that works?

    Thanks in advance for any insight, there seems to be a great deal of good collective wisdom here.
  2. mmbongo

    mmbongo Regular Human Bartender Supporting Member

    Aug 5, 2009
    Yeah I really wish they would put a gain adjustment on the OBP preamps, I'd use them a lot more if they did. But, Bartolini's are also fantastic.
    bass nitro, JustForSport and Plaz like this.
  3. JustForSport


    Nov 17, 2011
    I agree-
    and a slower taper on the bass pot, too.
    Plaz likes this.
  4. JustForSport


    Nov 17, 2011
    Don't know how the 500k vol pot helped much unless the bass had passive pickups but somehow had a 25k or 50k vol pot previously.

    500k + 500k = 250k.
    250k + 250k = 125k
    500k + 250k = 187.5k
    Plaz likes this.
  5. Plaz


    Sep 7, 2006
    North-Central NJ
    Doesn't make sense to me how that could have been the issue. But I'm admittedly not an electronics guru.

    I'm really leaning toward just ripping out the OBP-3 and replacing it with the Bart system at this point. Was just hoping maybe there was some other less drastic option. It sucks going into a backline-equipped rehearsal studio and having to practically run their amps at full steam just to be audible over the drums when my other basses can do the job with no similar issues.
  6. DWBass

    DWBass The Funkfather

    Put in a Bartolini preamp. They work best with Bartolini pickups, in my honest opinion. They have a gain adjuster.
    bass nitro and Plaz like this.
  7. 4StringTheorist

    4StringTheorist Supporting Member

    Another option is a Nordstrand pre. Gain trim pot, and a more polite bass control.
    Plaz likes this.
  8. Plaz


    Sep 7, 2006
    North-Central NJ
    I went ahead and ordered the Bartolini HR-4.6AP/918. Seemed a safe bet. Looked at the Nordstrand, but I already know I like the Bart NTMB in my Pedulla, and the standard mid frequencies of 250 and 800 seemed more to my taste than the default 1k and 400 on the Nordy, and I just want to plug and play, not spend a bunch of time trying out different capacitors.

    Thanks everyone for the input.
    Afc70 and 4StringTheorist like this.
  9. Jason Donfris

    Jason Donfris Supporting Member

    Feb 12, 2016
    Chetopa, KS
    I'm having the same issue with my Warwick streamer stage 1 6 string. I purchased the bass used and it was already equipped with a Seymour Duncan 3 band preamp with Seymour Duncan basslines pickups.

    The output I'm getting reminds me of the level of output you would expect from a passive bass.

    I was told the issue could possibly be caused due to having the wrong wiring harness. I was told if you don't specify active, or passive pickups when you order the preamp you could possibly get a system which is meant for only passive pickups.

    Does this sound like it could be the issue? Any help, or suggestions would be appreciated!
  10. JustForSport


    Nov 17, 2011
    The Baselines are passive?
    What is the value of the vol/bal pots?

    As long as the pots are the correct value for the pickups, their output can usually be fed to any preamp, no problem.
  11. Jason Donfris

    Jason Donfris Supporting Member

    Feb 12, 2016
    Chetopa, KS
    I believe the basslines are active. Possibly the ASB-6 phase 1 pickups.

    I don't know the value for the pots Though. I've looked and there is no markings which I can see to determine.
    Last edited: Mar 22, 2016
  12. Jason Donfris

    Jason Donfris Supporting Member

    Feb 12, 2016
    Chetopa, KS
    Also how can I verify whether the pickups are active or passive?
  13. Afc70

    Afc70 Supporting Member

    Feb 2, 2004
    Northeast Arkansas
    My 1995 Modulus Q-5 has Bart pup's & the 18v Bart pre. Super hot output, killer tone & it's even hotter than my Status Empathy w the status 18v preamp.
    Jason Donfris likes this.
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    Here are some related products that TB members are talking about. Clicking on a product will take you to TB’s partner, Primary, where you can find links to TB discussions about these products.

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