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Onboard preamp for my Jazz Bass - DIY

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by norim_13, Oct 21, 2013.

  1. Hi guys!

    I'm planning in making a preamp to put inside my jazz bass. As I don't want to spend a lot of money, I want to build it myself (I already have some experience making effects pedals, don't worry :p)

    Do you guys wanna recommend me some nice schematics? I've searched for the best known preamps, but there is almost nothing about them in the DIY community...

    Thanks in advance ;)

    Best regards

    PS: btw, the Jazz Bass is a semi-Fender, MIM (body only - neck is some cheap branded one), with standard jazz pickups.
  2. Hopkins

    Hopkins Supporting Member Commercial User

    Nov 17, 2010
    Houston Tx
    Owner/Builder @Hopkins Guitars
    Someone on here was selling boards for a two band stingray clone.
  3. I'm thinking that you would spend as much money as buying a decent preamp, unless you have the tools and parts lying around.
  4. I just want the schematics... I want to keep it as low cost as possible, so ordering boards from other continent wouldn't be my best option :p

    As I said, I already have some experience making effects pedals, so yes, I have the tools, and lots of parts laying around ;)

    Thanks for the answers
  5. BassLife77


    Nov 13, 2009
    San Diego
    I put one of those DIY Stingray preamps inside a P/J bass with great results. It has a very warm sound. Its an easy inexpensive build on a perf so you can cut it to size, not much space inside a Jazz cavity. you can put a 250K trimpot instead of the 100K feedback resistor to adjust gain to taste. The build only cost me $12 in parts including the pots. a google search will get you the schematic and layout
  6. You could almost design it yourself!
    What features are you looking for? I could probably help you draw something up :)
  7. MPU


    Sep 21, 2004
    Valkeala Finland
  8. mrbell321


    Mar 26, 2012
    N. Colorado
    Lots of schematics around, so you'd probably want to narrow down what it is you want from a preamp. If you've got op-amp chips, look up the datasheet for it and there will probably be a decent, simple circuit in there. If you want filters and tone shapers, that will take a little more. I'm actually working(sort of stalled lately) on adapting the stingray circuit someone else to use a different chip, better power supply for less noise and a slightly different filter.
    Also, check out youtube for types on how to etch your own circuit boards. It can be done w/ common household chemicals rather than specific etchants. There are even ideas around for building the board stock... the coolest one I saw was a microscope slide, so it was transparent.
  9. mrbell321


    Mar 26, 2012
    N. Colorado
  10. Clark Dark

    Clark Dark

    Mar 3, 2005
  11. mrbell321


    Mar 26, 2012
    N. Colorado
    Some of those are fairly complex for a first time build. The status and, to a slightly lesser extent, the alembic aren't bad. And the stingray is pretty simple. Otherwise, you're looking and pretty high and specific part count.

    I don't have the desire to figure out that mammoth one...

    Also, a TI TLE2426 is a handy item to simplify and replace the rail-splitter/virtual ground portions of the circuit. If you look at the bottom right section of the Status amp(below +9V and to the right of the battery), it would replace all that. It doesn't have the current capability of the schematic, but you shouldn't need it for an onboard preamp.
  12. ex-tension


    Jun 11, 2009
  13. chicago_mike


    Oct 9, 2007
    Chicago - LA - Rome
    Endorsing Artist : Genz Benz
    Hey norim,

    IF you go to FSB theres plenty of bass preamp schematics lying around. Onboard schematics.
  14. Clark Dark

    Clark Dark

    Mar 3, 2005
    I'd like to know when the MeatWad parts especially the boards are available again :D
  15. MikeTranch


    Aug 30, 2016
    I just built a Tillman JFET preamp, and put it in my previously passive P-bass.
    Discrete FET Guitar Preamp
    I added this between the stock volume control wiper and the 1/4" output jack.
    I used a stereo 1/4" jack, and drive the ring with +9V from my pedal board.
    At low to moderate volume setting, this preamp gives clean boost.
    At high volume setting it gives some tube-like compression.
    okabass likes this.

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