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Piezos + magnetic pup + electronics

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by teppotyrvainen, Sep 9, 2005.

  1. Hello,

    I have a huge plan to make a neck-through-body 5-string fretless with one magnetic pickup (MM) and piezo pickups. Before I proceed I'd like to get some information. Hope someone can help :)

    My original plan (before getting an idea of piezos) was to have a bridge with the possibility to install the strings through the body (Hipshot "A"). Now I have tried to look at bridges having piezos (at least ABM has one) and I have not found any that can do both. Does anyone know if those exist?

    Or is it possible/easy to use separate piezos with any bridge?

    Next question is about electronics. I have understood that piezos need some sort of pre-amp/buffer and if used with magnetic pickup a "blender". At least Bartolini has those AND pre-amps for active EQ. Are these systems (piezo buffer/blender + active EQ) such that they can be connected directly? I mean, is there a standard way to use these together without additional components?

    Electronics is surely a nice hobby but this bass project has already challenges enough, so I will need ready made mics and electronics.

    Any information is appreciated! Thanks in advance!

  2. 1. If you decide to use standard Fender style brigde, GraphTech is way to go. Here is link.


    If you can drill a few holes to bridge plate, you can have both piezo system and strings through the body design.

    2. I had same trouble like yours. I'd like to have passive piezo + magnetic system without buffer/preamp, but almost all TBers cried against it. Mr. Wendler's Mag-Pi system (http://www.electrocoustic.com/main.html) was not my case. So I abandoned passive system and ordered GraphTech's FAAS Ghost Acoustic-Phonic bass preamp. Their manual (http://www.graphtech.com/downloads/ghost/ghost_applus_manual.pdf) says that I can combine magnetic and piezo passively, but I abandoned this idea due to TBer's responses.

    With GraphTech system, you can have mag vol/tone, piezo vol/tone control. Blending pot for 2 pickup system... I'm discussing it with my luthier.

    Small tip

    You can order directly from GT's online store, but GE is much cheaper. But Ghost Acoustic-Phonic BASS preamp is not listed in their page, so you should contact them. They list only Ghost Acoustic-Phonic GUITAR preamp.

    Hope this help.

    If you have any more questions, PM me.
  3. Hi,

    I am not sure what you mean by "Fender style bridge". Is Hipshot A (possibility to install strings through body) of that kind?

    If I give up of this through-body idea or drill those holes myself, what do you think about ABM piezo bridge (link to Allparts)? Any experience or information?

  4. You can't use GT's piezo saddles if you plan to use Hipshot style A (http://www.hipshotproducts.com/bassbridges.htm).
    Piezo equipped ABM is almost identical design with Hipshot A. Someone in TB had custom made piezo equipped Hipshot A bridge. So if you want Hipshot's string through capability with piezo puickup saddle, I think you should contact Hipshot.

    GT piezo saddles are designed for Fender style bridge system. Hipshot Vintage and style B are Fender style bridge system. Or you can buy original Fender bridge much cheaper than Hipshot bridges. Adding a few string through holes to bridge plate, you can have both string through and GT piezo saddles.

    Piezo equipped ABM bridge... Many TBers had not so great impression about it. But this may be from buffer/preamp origin. You can search pickup/electronics forum using keyword ABM & piezo.

    If ABM appeals to you, I suggest you consider Bartolini piezo buffer system. Connector of GT GHOST preamp is very small and you can't find easily suitable connectors if you don't use their piezo saddle. (So I've read from other source)

    Hope this helps. If you have any more questions, don't hesitate to PM me
  5. A9X


    Dec 27, 2003
    Sinny, Oztraya
    The best place for a peizo equiped bridge would be www.ets-hardware.com . I have one of their bridges (bought cheap off ebay to check them out) and it's very nice. I'm finalising up details on a couple of project builds, and once done, I'm going to order 3.

    Peizos are very high impedance devices and so will need a buffer to work correctly. Not sure which brand to suggest because I'd make my own, however, the output of the buffer could probably be wired to a passive setup as if it were a two pickup bass, eh J bass. Or simply to the input of an onbord preamp the same way. Not really hard.
  6. Those GraphTech saddles are pretty cool. I didn't know they made a bass version.
  7. Monomer


    Jul 22, 2005

  8. Xanaptabil


    Jul 18, 2005
    Tempe, AZ
    Wait, so you need a seperate pre-amp after you run the leads into the buffer? If you just used a buffer would the signal be active or passive?