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Pickups for guts

Discussion in 'Amps, Mics & Pickups [DB]' started by Alvaro Martín Gómez A., Jul 19, 2005.


  1. Alvaro Martín Gómez A.

    Alvaro Martín Gómez A. TalkBass' resident Bongo + cowbell player

    Hi everybody.

    I'm not sure if this is the right forum for posting this question. Maybe some of you remember that I've been interested on learning the slap-rockabilly technique on double bass, but I have the problem that my only DB has steel strings and I play in a symphonic orchestra and a jazz band, so that's why I haven't thought of putting gut strings on my DB (aside from $$$). Today, a friend who is a very good instruments' repairman, offered me a double bass he has. He received the instrument in very bad conditions, but he repaired it and I trust him because he's very good at it and a very honest person who I know since he was a kid. He's selling me the instrument at a very, very low price and the best part is that it have gut strings installed (I think the G is nylon. Not sure). Of course, if I decide to buy it, it would be for practicing (and hopefully playing in the future) rockabilly stuff exclusively. My question is about amplifying it. Currently, I don't have a pickup for my DB and that's my next gear purchase. Is there any pickup specially designed for gut and/or nylon strings? I've heard that strings other than steels don't work well with pickups. So should I look for any specific brand / specs? Thank you in advance for your input.
     
  2. Francois Blais

    Francois Blais Supporting Member

    Dec 11, 1999
    Québec, Canada
    Piezo pickups don't care if the string has a metal component or not.
    Piezos are the most common pickups type.
    Brand examples: Underwood, Fishman, Realist, Shadow, Bass Max, etc.
    If you plan to play something else than slap bass you may want to get a pickup that is not specifically designed for slap though.
    Moreover if you want to be able to transfer the pickup from one bass to the other.
     
  3. Alvaro Martín Gómez A.

    Alvaro Martín Gómez A. TalkBass' resident Bongo + cowbell player

    Thank you for your reply, Francois. Before this opportunity appeared, I was thinking of buying a Fishman Full Circle pickup and preamp plus an adjustable bridge from Mr. Bob Gollihur (Still I'm going to shop at his store since he seems to be a very knowledgeable and honest person to deal with), but if I'm going to have two double basses (possibly), the adjustable bridge won't be necessary and I've read that the FFC isn't easy to install on a non-adjustable bridge. Can you recommend me a good all-around pickup which works good for anything and can be easily put on any bass? Thank you again!
     
  4. Francois Blais

    Francois Blais Supporting Member

    Dec 11, 1999
    Québec, Canada
    The Upton Revolution Solo and K&K Bass Max are two good piezo pickups.
    They both fit in one bridge wing so both basses' bridges will need to be fitted carefully for your pickup.
    Once this is done, you can move it from one bass to the other easily.
    The Revolution output jack is designed to be mounted by removing the G string, but I guess you could use a different method.
    The Bass Max jack has a bracket and goes between two strings, between the bridge and tailpiece.
     
  5. Alvaro Martín Gómez A.

    Alvaro Martín Gómez A. TalkBass' resident Bongo + cowbell player

    Thank you again, Francois. I was already thinking of the Bass Max since it seems to be very popular (I'm a complete newbie on double bass pickups). I think I'll contact Mr. Gollihur soon for one of these.