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Nordstrand single coil J's - Audere or no?

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by troyus, Sep 7, 2008.

  1. troyus


    Apr 9, 2008
    San Diego, CA.
    I'm building a new bass and I have a set of single coil Nords I slapped in there to see how it sounds before I send the body off for paint. Originally I was going to get a Audere 2 band for it but man, it sounds pretty sweet as is. So now I' m wondering if I should bother will all that fancy pre-amp stuff for this build.

    Well it sound more sweet with the Audere? Have any of you guys/gals had the Audre with some nords and then changed your mind and gone back to a simple passive setup?
  2. Valerus


    Aug 4, 2005
    Austin, Texas
    If you like the sound without it, why upgrade? Save the cash. :p
  3. bhubb3rd

    bhubb3rd Supporting Member

    May 27, 2006
    Bradenton, FL
    I am in this same boat! I installed the Nord hum canceling J's and a Audere 3 band pre. The sound is too harsh for me, clanky if you will. I have a R&S volume / blend / tone setup I am going to put in this week and see how I like it.
  4. troyus


    Apr 9, 2008
    San Diego, CA.
    What's R&S? :)
  5. bhubb3rd

    bhubb3rd Supporting Member

    May 27, 2006
    Bradenton, FL
    Sorry. I even confuse myself sometimes! R&S makes wiring kits, I had Andy Rothstein build the passive setup for me.
  6. phat daddy

    phat daddy

    Jun 16, 2006
    Tampa Bay, FL
    I'm personally all about active basses because of the versatility of having the onboard eq and extra gain from the pre, so I'm gonna have to go with the Audere. Of course here's my disclaimer- I've never owned a passive bass.
  7. renejaime


    May 25, 2005
    man, I was going to post the same question but with NJ4SVs... I already have an audere installed in my nordy and i've been thinking about about going passive...

    reasons to remove:
    1. I really miss having a tone knob (biggest reason)
    2. kinda don't dig the battery replacement process... I have remove the J plate (mainly just being whiney)

    reasons to keep it:
    1. z switch kicks arse
    2. pre is very versatile and easy to dial in several usable tones
    3. battery LED light does let you gauge the battery life

    the Audere is an amazing pre and if you don't mind the battery thing I would highly recommend it...
  8. maurilio

    maurilio Musician - Owner Mo's Shop & MBD - Tech Nordstrand Commercial User

    May 25, 2003
    Redlands, CA
    To go with a Nordstrand pickup, why not a Nordstrand preamp?

  9. 4Mal

    4Mal Supporting Member

    Jun 2, 2002
    Columbia River Gorge
    I was talking with Dave a while back and he outlined a mod - which I did not write down - there are a couple of extra 'eyelet connector's on the board you can add a trim pot and cap there that will effectively be the passive tone control. I'f you wanted to knock down the clank that would be one way to do it.

    The other is to get the cap kit and move the hi-Z point.

    To me the big advantages of the JZ3b are
    - the 'organic' quality - audio wise - the Audere is way out front. Your bass still sounds like your bass, not your bass going through some box.
    - the Active Blend
    - the z-mode of course.
    - that the z-mode is 'tune-able' - being able to dial in how much low & hi is way cool.

    My EQ stayed flat for the majority of the time I had the JZ3. Once in a while I'd knock the hi's down. Mostly I'd rock the blend and move my picking hand position.

    I took my J back to passive though. Standard VVT. I get my Audere fix now in a G&L L2500 ... For some reason I just have to have a passive J & passive P in the stable at all times.

    I would like to try a Nord pre and see how it stacks up. I've had a number of Nord pickups and I've generally been impressed.
  10. Here's what an onboard pre is going to do to that lush passive tone.

    1. Smooth out tone: (no more of that passive slight 'rawness', or IMO slight 'growl' to the tone)
    2. Slight scoop: your going to get exagurated hi's and lows', with the mids not as pressent as with a true passive config
    3. Inherent 'active' signature to treble response: high's aren't going to be as natural, will have an ever so slight 'bright active highlight'
    4. Onboard EQ: how important is this anyhow? I'm personally not making any crazy tone shapping EQ changes through a song, nothing that a tone control cant do. If you need to EQ inbetween songs, take finger to amp, turn knob.
    5. Did I mention smooth out tone? I cannot get over how better a passive signal sounds in the 'raw'/'growly' depratment!
    6. Is it ovbious that I don't like active circuity?: Don't do it.

    I have a Sadowsky, 50% of the time I keep passive, unless I'm slapping, where I boost lows and high's for that Marcus Miller sound.
    To my ear, passive just tickles the ear more in terms of hearing 'character' in any given note.

    I say leave it be! It sounds sweet passive for a reason, cuz passive is sweet!
  11. Isotonic


    Oct 19, 2011
    Round Rock TX
    The Audere will not scoop your tone. The Audere is powerful and subtle. Minor EQ tweaks yield numerous musical tone options. My Audere with Nordstrand NJ4SEs can do raw or refined. It all depends on your attack and your EQ settings.
  12. birminghambass

    birminghambass Supporting Member

    Sep 18, 2002
    Birmingham, AL
    After buying, installing, and selling many different preamp/pickup combinations I agree 100% with this post.
  13. 5StringPocket

    5StringPocket Supporting Member

    Jan 11, 2006
    If you do install an active pre for the extra tone shaping, an active/passive switch with passive tone control is nice to have. That way you get both. I've found this quite useful.

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