Norstrand P'ups with what preamp?

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by 43% burnt, Sep 8, 2005.

  1. 43% burnt

    43% burnt an actor who wants to run the whole show

    May 4, 2004
    Bridgeport, CT
    Hey guys...I'm upgrading my Fender Aerodyne, because the stock pickups aren't very great. I also want to add an on board preamp while I'm at it. I've settled on upgrading the pickups with a Nordstrand NPJ4SE set. Now, I'm looking for recomendations for preamps to go with them.

    I've lately become a big fan of active electronics. But I still like passive at times, so a passive/active switch is a big plus. I'd like it to be a 3 knob configuration, so I don't have to drastically alter the bass.

    The Bartolini 3.3 A/P is looking sweet for this reason. Anyone have any experience with a bart pre & nordstrands together?

    East preamps look freakin' sweet too. The J-retro won't fit on my bass, since it comes mounted on that control plate. However the U-Retro looks like it will. The only problem is I would have to drill 2 holes in the body for the 2 switches. This makes retro-fitting if I wanna sell it later on a problem.

    I think I like the East system better, but I've never tried either. They sure get alot of praise. Any recommendations for other on board preamps that might fit my criteria. Is it a bad idea to add the U-Retro and drill holes in the body...or should I just say screw it. Any thoughts?
  2. godoze


    Oct 21, 2002
    i have used Carey's pickups with Ken Smith's BT preamp and with aggie 2 band . both sounded great but the smith sounded greater !
  3. MJ5150

    MJ5150 Terrific Twister

    Apr 12, 2001
    Lacey, WA
    I'll recommend the U-Retro. My J-Retro is most excellent.

  4. todd 4ta

    todd 4ta

    Apr 3, 2003
    You don't HAVE to drill the holes. I've installed two and left the switches in the control cavity (at least to start out). You just won't have the option to switch it to passive. After you try it out, and decide it's the one for you, you may decide to drill for the switches.
  5. Put in a Sadowsky preamp

    I think Carey uses Aguilar on his basses...I think...

    I use my own homemade $10 gain only preamps with my cheapo Yamaha bass and it sounds most excellent...
  6. Basschair

    Basschair .............. Staff Member Supporting Member

    Feb 5, 2004
    Stockton, Ca
    I'm using an Aguilar obp-3 with NJ5's. Great sound, but the treble is super noisy. Probably my fault with grounding (haha...stoopid pun).
  7. jja412

    jja412 Fine gear enthusiast

    Feb 2, 2004
    St. Louis
    Sadowsky pre works great with my nordies. I also love the U retro with them.
  8. Wilbyman


    Sep 10, 2003
    Parkersburg, WV

    The Bart NTMB3 and Smith BMT are both bitching. Aguilar 2-band is also cool. I'm interested in DZ's rec of the Smith 2-band. The Smith mid range control is, however, very well voiced IMO.

    My next project is going to be something traditional, and I think 2-bands are well suited to those applications.
  9. 43% burnt

    43% burnt an actor who wants to run the whole show

    May 4, 2004
    Bridgeport, CT
    Thanks for the advice guys. I'm leaning towards the U retro. I'm thinking I'll just drill holes for the switches. I like the idea of being able to switch passive/active. It allows more tone flexability which is cool.

    Jay from blueberry hill reccomended a Raven Labs preamp...anyone have any info on these? All I know is they're supposed to be fantastic, and they're discontnued.