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New Lakland 55-02 owner has some questions

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by vernhillbass, Jan 31, 2013.

  1. vernhillbass


    May 11, 2012
    First off, love the bass! Superb construction and playability. It's a 2010 model with the LH-3 pickups/ preamp. I am playing this through a Genz Benz Shuttle 9.0 into an Epifani NYC 4x10. Just wondering if anyone can recommend which position to run the Mid selector in. I have it set at the default setting of 600hz. Looking for a punchy tone with lots of bottom. Just looking for some of your experiences with this bass. Thanks.
  2. kellyrojo


    Feb 16, 2011
    South Carolina
    I have that preamp in my lakland and I can never get around getting it off that stock setting. It just sounds too dam good! --so I guess I have nothing for ya!
  3. Roscoe East

    Roscoe East

    Aug 22, 2011
    I played around with all the various options for a day right after I got mine

    ...and eventually settled back on the default 600Hz, right where I had started.
  4. vernhillbass


    May 11, 2012
    Thanks guys. You can spend hours just chasing your tail on this. I have noticed it is taking some getting used to. My active Fender Jazz just growls and this bass has such a clean tone. Reminds me a bit of my old G&L L2500. Can you share the settings you use the most (pickup selection and blend, bass treble and mids)? I saw a video from Lakland on how this can copy a Jazz, P and Musicman but they don't give any reference points. Just might have to play this all day long...with all the tonal adjustments just on the bass I haven't even considered tweaking on my amp!
  5. sj_bass


    May 23, 2010
    Long Beach, CA
    For me, I leave it at 600hz mainly because I do very little boost/cut on my mids... My settings are mostly:

    Finger: +1 hi, 0 mid, +1 lo, blend +2 to neck, 60's jazz switch
    Pick: +1 hi, 0 mid, +1 lo, 0 blend, MM and 70's jazz switch
  6. When I got my 44-02 I was a little unhappy with the sound, was a little too, thin I guess. I finally cracked it open and found the previous owner had set the switch to 900, I put it back to 600 and now the sound is a lot better IMO. I can still make it thin if I want, but I can get it thicker when I want it easier.

    A few sounds I've enjoyed so far are:
    Both coils on switch, full rear pickup blend no neck, boost mids and lows about 40% boost highs 10% growls like a maniac.

    Switch to upper coil, blend knob almost balanced but turned slightly in favor of the bridge, boost mids and highs about 25%, boost lows 10%, give a nice clean jazz bass kind of sound.

    Switch to lower coil, blend full to bridge pickup, boost highs and mids 50%, lows about 10-20%, give a real funky sound.

    This is all fingerstyle. I haven't played it with a pick because I don't really play with one.

    I haven't found much I've like the neck pickup for on it's own, but I'd imagine it would sound great properly EQ'ed in passive mode to sound like a P bass, haven't messed with it much though.
  7. vernhillbass


    May 11, 2012
    That's great information. I must say that I was unhappy with the initial sound. The Mid selector was in a position that Lakland does not even show so hopefully tonight at practice I can start dialing the sound a bit more. I need to respond to the Lakland video and see if they would post those settings. It would be a good starting point. I'm so used to my Jazz (and it sounds just killer to me) that the newer, more modern sounding basses sometimes leave me wanting more. I'll post tonight and try some of these settings you have given.
  8. vernhillbass


    May 11, 2012
    So I tried it out tonight at practice and can't get the punch I am looking for. We have keys and horns so the mix has a lot in it. Drummer complained he could not hear it enough but I could not find the balance (this NEVER happens). It didn't seem like notes had a strong attack, but seemed to swell. I found the best setting (first time out) was neck pickup only, treble cut to 20%, mids cut to 40% and bass cut to 40%. Seemed to get the best punch there. I really just need to sit down with it and my Jazz and A/B them. Had my amp flat and tube drive flat. It does have a remarkable amount of tone variation,maybe too much.
  9. JazznFunk


    Mar 26, 2000
    Asheville, NC
    Lakland Basses Artist
    Sounds like you may need to mess with pickup height? You shouldn't hear any 'swell' with notes, and those are pretty extreme EQ settings. My 44-02 has nothing but punch, and is quick and clear. The mid selector switch is set to 600Hz. I too experimented with the other settings but couldn't find as much use for them in my applications. 600Hz allows a boost that adds detail without mud, and allows a cut to 'smooth' things out that doesn't take too much voice away. Also, neck pickup only will get you a P-Bass/Jazz Bass neck pickup sound that is sort of grindy and thick. I tend to reduce treble in that setting also.

    Normally I tend to *add* treble and a little bass, and pull just a HAIR (barely past the 'flat' detent) of mids out on the preamp as my 'baseline' sound. I find the LH-3 and my particular 44-02 to be a bit dark when in full humbucking mode (both pickups - no coil splitting). From there I tune at the amp or use an external pre (Aguilar Tone Hammer) to fine-tune things. BUT... the LH-3 is super powerful and is very musical (i.e. not heavy handed like some preamps) so it takes some getting used to. Also... there is a volume control on the preamp board itself. Perhaps a little boost there may help?
  10. vernhillbass


    May 11, 2012

    I set this up just like Carl's videos showed. When I got it I had to relieve the neck a bit to get the .008 gap at the 6th fret. The only thing I set different from the video was I gave the B string a slight height adjustment up (Carl said 6/64-it's slightly over 6). Pickup heights are just like the video (Neck 7/64 treble side/ 9/64 bass and bridge 8/64 treble side and 10 bass). I really should have taken te time to find my tones before I went to practice. It's a great bass and I know it will just take some getting used to. Might look into trading it for a 44-02 as i don't foresee much use below an E.
  11. vernhillbass


    May 11, 2012
    just watched Carl's video again and saw he set's the neck at 9/64 treble side and 11/64 bass side. I'll make that adjustment tomorrow. That might make a big difference.
  12. Roscoe East

    Roscoe East

    Aug 22, 2011
    85-90% of the time I have the Blend at 50/50, bridge pickup switch in the 3rd position (rearmost coil only activated), Bass at just the slightest nudge above the detent, Mid (600Hz) at just the slightest nudge below the detent, and Treble in the detent.

    The other 10-15% of the time it's as above except I rotate the Blend to ~30/70 (favoring the bridge pickup) and move the bridge pickup switch to the middle position (both coils activated).
  13. Jazzdogg

    Jazzdogg Less barking, more wagging!

    Jul 29, 2006
    San Diego, CA
    I had the same problem when I got my fretless 55-02D. I eventually set the mid selector to ~200Hz, which I cut to add definition and reduce bloat. YMMV :)
  14. I left it on default when i had my 55-02.
    Tried different settings but i guess theres a reason why they ship those basses at that setting by default.
  15. vernhillbass


    May 11, 2012
    Well, today I reset my neck pickup height and played around with the preamp input pot. I ended up increasing it about 1/3 turn. This livened up the presence a bit. Still, next to my Jazz I cannot get the same punch and presence, although I am getting closer. Might take it tonight and play it on a couple of tunes. Jazzdogg, I might try the 200Hz setting tomorrow. I find that I can tweak all day on the setting. I have noticed how nicely the fret work is. I like the medium frets and the flatness of the neck.
  16. vernhillbass


    May 11, 2012
    Played with a fairly loud classic rock group last night. I ended up killing it with the Lakland. After my last post I increased the input pot adjustment some more and finally got the punch I was looking for. Most of the night I played with the blend favoring the bridge pickup and the 60's coil (top of the two), mids (600Hz) flat, bass boosted just under half way up and treble boosted about one quarter. Best moment was in Come Together when it hangs on the D and I hit a low D...drummer looked and smiled (don't get that much). After the gig the guys came over and complemented the sound. She's a keeper. I really appreciate this site and all the knowledge you guys share.
  17. Roscoe East

    Roscoe East

    Aug 22, 2011
    Glad it worked out for you! I'll admit, it took me a while to warm up to my 55-02D also; while when it works it works really well, there are just some styles/genres that I've never been able to get it to work sonically. I just chalk it up to Wrong Tool For The Job, grab a different axe for those gigs, and enjoy the Lakland for all the other situations where it does work perfectly.
  18. Eublet


    Jul 28, 2006
    You can certainly experiment with the internal setting if you want. Dropping it all the way to the lowest setting (225hz on the LH3) allows you to really fatten up the bottom end, but that frequency will also muddy the tone and cause a lack of clarity. It's up to you if you dig it.

    FWIW, I prefer to use the EQ settings on an outboard preamplifier or bass head to dial in my tone, keeping the LH3 EQ flat. I also prefer my internal midrange at the default 600hz. This allows me to make small changes on the LH3 as needed without having to touch the head. A little bass boost if I need things thicker for example. Also, the 600hz mid is perfect for adding a little more articulation and note distinction in a mix without changing the character of the bass completely, or you can cut that a little bit to remove some attack.

    In esssence, you the onboard controls for smaller changes during the gig, and not for larger tone sculpting changes.
  19. CElton

    CElton I'm a new note finder...

    I've experimented with the different mid settings but always come back to the default of 600hz. It just sounds the best to me. I did back the gain down a couple of clicks on the internal trim pot. It just seems to make the preamp more useable for me.
  20. Eublet


    Jul 28, 2006
    Same here. The output of the preamp is pretty hot, not overly hot, but in contrast to the passive mode it's too much of a boost. I drop mine down a bit where there is only a modest boost going from passive to active.