My Dilemma concerning Arco/fishman bp100

Discussion in 'Amps, Mics & Pickups [DB]' started by Jake Reber, Jul 23, 2009.

  1. Jake Reber

    Jake Reber

    Apr 2, 2008
    I've been playing Arco a whole lot more and am growing frustrated with my sound when amplified. My amp (gallien-Kruger backline 112) is one thing, it's okay. I have a Shen upright with a fishman bp 100, a clip-on the bridge deal. And I use some carbon fiber bow, but am planning on switching to a real wood deal.

    So now that we're up to date, I am looking for the cheapest way to get my arco to sound better (other than practice...) I believe the biggest problem is the clips that hold the fishman ont here are acting like a mute and effecting the sound drastically. It's not horrible, I just want the brilliance and sensitivity I know my bass can get.

    So I was thinking the Fishman full circle would be the next best choice for what I want (good pizz and Arco sound all the time...don't we all) but the thing is my bridge adjusters are custom to the instrument (the bass came from the bass cellar in Cincinatti, thanks to Andy) so i'd have to get additional work done to fit the Fishman to my bridge.

    So my question is there a better alternative for price/sound than the Full circle? Does someone who knows far more than I know of a good pickup option that isn't clip on or bridge-adjuster in nature that would fit what i want and not be expensive?

    Thanks in advance for any help.

  2. JtheJazzMan


    Apr 10, 2006
    Full circle is a pretty good arco pickup, but ive never had luck with other standard wing/bridge pickups (underwood etc) and arco.

    The other option is to blend with a mic. It doesnt even have to be an expensive one. Ive tried small clip on mics normally used for TV presenters etc and they give a nice flat frequency response if theyre a condenser. It really helps to give a soft warm arco tone.
  3. Ric Vice

    Ric Vice Supporting Member

    Jul 2, 2005
    Olivette, Missouri
    I've had really good luck with a Realist. The only drawback is that it fits under the E foot of your bridge and of course changes the sound a little. On some basses, they last a very long time, the average being about 4 years, so it's not a permanent replacement on some basses. IMHO they sound great at low to medium volumes, but a Full Circle will definitely be cleaner and louder, with more detail and less maintenance. If you switch from arco to pizz a great deal it's a great choice, Realist's are great two provided you're not playing at high volumes.


    Those clips ye olde BP-100 act just like a mute, and alter both the amplified and acoustic sound on a lot of Double Basses.

    P.P.S I was under the impression that their were only two size threads on metal bass adjusters, so unless they make them in house, you might want to talk to your luthier about it. Fishman makes Full Circle Pickups in two different thread sizes.
  4. Jake Reber

    Jake Reber

    Apr 2, 2008
    I'm too tight on cash right now to anything but deal with the gear I've got. But I've got a new idea/question:

    I've wondered lately about putting the BP-100's pickup under the foot/feet of the bridge to have it act as a realist essentially. Has anyone tried this or had any luck with this? How badly would it damage the front of my bass under the foot? Too much to attempt?

    And would it be more advantageous to put both transducers under both bridge feet, or just one (and which side if so...) I'm am willing to put up with one clip if I have to, I practiced on it today and it was much more bearable, I'm just too scared to mess with my bridge at the moment.

    Would this create super distortion problems? I suppose I really should just try it, but wanted to see if anyone else has tried anything like this before.

    Thanks in advance.
  5. kb9wyz


    Sep 8, 2008
    The Backline is designed for bass guitar and may be the biggest part of your problem. You might want to check out a combo amp that has a tweeter in it. That would definitely help get the overtones through better. It is worth noting that BG amps are NOT designed to have a piezo run straight into them. I don't know if the Fishman setup you have also includes an outboard preamp, but if it doesn't, you should get one.

    Also, I have seen magnetic pickups for DB. They clamp on to the underside of the fingerboard at the end. That could help round out your tone as well. Mix it with the transducer for the sound you want.

    Hope this is useful.
  6. hdiddy

    hdiddy Official Forum Flunkee Supporting Member

    Mar 16, 2004
    Richmond, CA
    Yuk! Backline!!! :spit:

    I wouldn't put the BP-100 underneath your bridge feet... you might damage your top, and also the connections with the top won't be as good. It has been suggested to superglue the transducers directly to the bridge. Superglue is brittle so shouldn't be a permanent thing.