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My new double bass

Discussion in 'Amps, Mics & Pickups [DB]' started by JDM, Oct 12, 2005.

  1. JDM


    Oct 12, 2005
    Hi all I'm very new to the double bass and recently aquired a 'Collins' double bass made in Germany. It's got a transducer pickup on the bridge which the previous owner bought of Ebay. It's a great looking bass with pine front and birch back and sides. The only problem is, it sounds very dull and ringy through my Hartke HA350 head with SWR 210 CAB. I expected much more, but as a mainly electric player, I know I can expect some sound challenges while making the leap from electric to accoustic. Can anyone offer any wisdom on the issues of amp/pickup etc....for the double bass,
  2. Adrian Cho

    Adrian Cho Supporting Member

    Sep 17, 2001
    Ottawa, Canada
    What kind of pickup is it - brand and model I mean?
  3. JDM


    Oct 12, 2005
    I'm really not sure, but it's attached to the bridge.
  4. Possibly an impedance mismatch between the pickup and amp.
    Can you try to use a high input impedance preamp as a buffering device?
    A Fishman B-II or the like is enough, at least for testing purposes.
  5. JDM


    Oct 12, 2005
    Thanks for that reply, I have heared of such things, but how will they help? Are there any threads that you know of that address this situation in detail? Your help would be fantastic!
  6. Doing a search under amps and pick-ups should get some results.
  7. Bob Gollihur

    Bob Gollihur GollihurMusic.com

    Mar 22, 2000
    New Joisey Shore
    Big Cheese Emeritus: Gollihur Music
    I've written a blurb on the preamp issue at http://www.urbbob.com/preamptalk.html
  8. JDM


    Oct 12, 2005
    Fantastic, i'll be looking at that right away Bob!!
  9. mje


    Aug 1, 2002
    Southeast Michigan
    The reference to a pickup bought off Ebay makes me suspect it may be one of those homemade units built from a couple of inexpensive piezo disks. If so, try moving it or clamping it more tigthtly. Or buy a better pickup!
  10. bolo


    May 29, 2005
    Apex, NC
    JDM, I don't suppose you could post a picture of your pickup maybe?

    You might want to check out this selection of threads too:


    You can scroll down to the section on pickups. Lots and lots of good info!
  11. JDM


    Oct 12, 2005
    you may be able see the pickup from this?
    any help would be great:
  12. bolo


    May 29, 2005
    Apex, NC
    Oh yeah. I can see it all right.

    I'm thinkin' it's homegrown.
  13. JDM


    Oct 12, 2005
    thanks for the reply, is "home grown" good or bad or whatever?
  14. bolo


    May 29, 2005
    Apex, NC
  15. erik II

    erik II

    Jul 11, 2000
    Oslo, Norway
    Sorry for side-tracking, but: Isn't that bridge positioned way too far up? It's generally supposed to be lined up with the inner notches in the f-holes.

    Have you had a professional look at the set-up of your bass? The bridge position and other factors will affect the sound a lot.
  16. B String

    B String Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2002
    Los Angeles
    Lets see. From the angle of the picture, your bridge looks
    like its in the wrong (very wrong) place. The pickup looks
    like a home made or cheap piece of junk. The Hartke head
    is not one usually used for acoustic instruments, and if the
    pickup is a piezo type, you need a buffer preamp for it.
    Other than that, you're good to go.
  17. JDM


    Oct 12, 2005
    Thanks for the replies, as for the position of the bridge, surely it's a matter of personal choice, plus being a factor in the instruments intonation. It seems to me that the position of the bridge will affect the action too. I'm relatively happy with mine and the intonation is ok on it.
  18. jmain

    jmain Oo, Uhn't uh, Yes! Supporting Member

    Apr 23, 2005
    Alexandria, VA
    I didn't stay at a Holiday Inn express last night,...but not really. I have a feeling that if you get an adjustable bridge to help with the string height and reposition the bridge (and maybe soundpost), that your bass is going to sound and play better than it does now. And if you're happy now, then you'll be stoked later!

    There's info in "Set-up and repair", or from all the luthiers and would-be luthiers/players on how to move the bridge yourself if you don't want to shell out for the adjustable bridge and/or take it to a shop. Don't let the soundpost fall. (It's got me before.) Just a little time and patience. Congrats on the DB!
  19. JDM


    Oct 12, 2005
    Once again, I thank you good American folk for your wisdom on matters concerning double bass; it's a very new animal for me having played exclusively electric for the last 20 years. I'm currently in a contempory jazz quartet playing mostly originals plus some Astral Project stuff, Bill Bruford's Earthworks and others...we play local gigs and festivals in the South Wales region (that's NOT) in England in case you're wondering!!!!
    It's going to be a while before I get up to speed on my new beauty with our current set, but hey, music is a journey?!
    I know I've digressed, but that's a little more about me than 'problems with me pickup'! :)
    ps please keep the wisdom flowin'..!