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Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by SirManGuyDude, Feb 17, 2014.

  1. Hello bassists,

    I have a technical problem. Here is my story. I recently brought a used Ibanez SR375m (5string). I have it as my profile picture and he is a link http://www.ibanez.co.jp/products/u_...4&cat_id=2&series_id=51&data_id=77&color=CL01

    Anyways, once I got it, last week on the third, I tested it out. Since I don't have a bass amp. I play it through a Focusrite Scarlett 2i2, using Reaper as my DAW and toontrack ezmix. The bass worked fine for a few minutes, but then I heard my sound fade a bit. I turn the volume know and I hear popping and faint hissing. So next day I take it to Guitar Center (where I purchased it) for the tech to check it out. He said it was some dust, opened it up, cleaned the pots and I go home to try it. (luckily I brought warranty so they didn't charge me $50 to dust it off.)

    Same popping and hissing happened. I took a look at my guitars innards and i saw some bare wire sticking out in some parts that where soldered. I have some experience with soldering (with my guitar) but I have no idea with bass components. (unless you have a diagram). So I go to GC again, this time a different tech is there. I tell him about the bare wire and if that had to do anything with my problem. He said it didn't because the solder connections are the only thing thats important not the slightly exposed wire. He takes a look and finds out that there are 2 loose wires that were not previously connected (that I missed) that needed to be connected to the input jack. He solders them, I test it on their bass amps, sounds fine. Go home.

    Same popping and hissing again. This time I decided to see for myself. so I open the compartment, and while I was trying to pull off the volume knob off the pot it was very tightly put on there. It was a pain in the ass to get it off, and I pulled too hard(used pliers and towel technique), which broke the pot's plastic inside connections. I have pulled many guitar knobs but this one was such a struggle. Luckily, since one of the tech knows me and my situation, he took care of the situation.
    He installs a new pot, but instead of the b20k pot that came with the bass, he installs a slightly used b25k since he couldn't find any b20k in stock and I didn't want to wait 1-2 weeks for a ordered one. He installed it, tested it out in their basses worked fine. Get home.

    Same popping and hissing!! Called the tech while he was still there put him on speaker phone, and I turn on the knob so he could hear for himself. I tell him I am playing through an interface and doing recording that way. I get the idea to use their pro audio department set up to see if it will happen with their equipment. they had a scarlett 2i2 the we used on a mac and no problems happened it worked fine. By this time I was very frustrated and still am. Pro audio guy said it might be my program, but he doesn't have much understanding of reaper so he couldn't make a proper diagnosis. So I go home defeated.

    With the same (occasional but frequent) problem. I've tried everything. I have 5 cables (three gold tipped) and they all work fine with my electric guitar so that is eliminated there.

    p.s. I almost The previous owner of this bass added a custom
    2 way frequency boost selector that isn't originally offered in this model, but weirdly enough, when i took it the third time to GC I found out it wasn't even connected. I was fiddiling around with the thing for a week confused on what it does only to find out it wasn't connected. I told the tech I know about this and he got pissed that it wasn't wasn't connected. when I brought it. He says he will connect the switch, the only problem is he couldn't find diagrams for it and Ibanez database only goes to 2008. I was wondering if you guys could help me on that too.

    Also I almost forgot to mention my speakers which are Alesis M1active 520s. and I have a photo album of the components on imgur.

    I know it's long but thank you so much for reading!! I hope someone could solve this mystery! please! Thank you
  2. I also needto mention that when I tilt my guitar when it's connected it starts making popping noise. and when I move the jack a bit it also makes a popping noise.
  3. Michael760


    Sep 3, 2014
    Did you replace your Jack?
  4. honeyiscool


    Jan 28, 2011
    San Diego, CA
    Oh, God. You pulled the volume knob off the pot with pliers? You didn't notice the set screw that has the knob bolted to the potentiometer shaft? Sorry, but that's a sign that you might not know as much as you think you know about bass electronics and that maybe your real issue is that you were plugging in an active bass directly into an interface and maybe you did something else that was stupid, like use a stereo cable or had phantom power enabled on your interface, or have the gain too high on the interface, or any of many things that can go wrong.
    JGbassman and HolmeBass like this.
  5. Crater


    Oct 12, 2011
    Dallas, TX area
    The common element here is your home recording setup. Sounds like you've got a couple of problems that may not be related. Popping sounds are either a worn-out output jack or your guitar cable is going bad. Those barrel-type output jacks are notorious for failing, once it starts flaking out, just replace it, there's no repair possible, just replace it. It's a wear item, like car tires; they may work great for years, but sooner or later it will need replacing. It's a relatively cheap and simple job (for a tech) :) And make sure the tech doesn't mix up the ground and battery connections.

    Hissing (the 'escaping steam sound') is usually caused by noisy transistors or opamps in a preamp. It's made worse by boosting the treble a lot. So it could be the preamp, it could be a lack of shielding, or it could be you're recording in an electrically noisy environment. Or maybe you're boosting your treble too much, remember active preamps boost and cut, so the middle position on the tone knobs is the "neutral" sound. Also since your bass is active, it has a low-impedance output signal. I'm not familiar with your interface, but you should be using the low-impedance "LINE" input and not a high-impedance "instrument" or "guitar" input.
  6. JustForSport


    Nov 17, 2011
    Did you try it out long enough at GC, moving around, etc, like at home,
    to give the same time reference?
    If it works ok for a bit, then the fade and popping/hissing begins,
    it sounds like a poor connection (cold solder joint)- double check all those first,
    or an elec component failing in the preamp.
    But if you played it for the same time frame at GC as it took the symptoms to happen at home,
    it's likely not the bass- could be the signal overloading something in your setup.
    Or, it could be both.
  7. JimmyM


    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    Add me to the list who thinks you've got a recording setup problem.
    HolmeBass likes this.