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Pre Amp Suggestions

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by TinIndian, Apr 16, 2011.


  1. TinIndian

    TinIndian Supporting Member

    Jan 25, 2011
    Micco Florida
    I have an '86 Peavey Foundation S (P and J config) that I bought new. About a month after I picked it up I bought a Dimarzio active setup, pups and preamp (no idea what model anymore), for it. Played it for a number of years before I "retired". I recently started playing bass again and was using this as my backup. Everything was fine but now the preamp has died.

    My question is, can I just replace the preamp or do I need to replace the Pups too? I know most preamps run on 9 volts but this Dimarzio system runs on a couple of watch batteries at I think 6 volts. If I need to replace the pups too thats alright, Just don't want to put a new preamp in that's not compatable and burn it up and be back at square one.
     
  2. Slowgypsy

    Slowgypsy 4 Fretless Strings

    Dec 12, 2006
    NY & MA
    No reason I can think of that you can't just replace the preamp.
     
  3. TinIndian

    TinIndian Supporting Member

    Jan 25, 2011
    Micco Florida
    How about a Bartolini NTMB 3.4 or NTBT 3.3. Anyone have experience with either of those?
     
  4. Slowgypsy

    Slowgypsy 4 Fretless Strings

    Dec 12, 2006
    NY & MA
    They're very different preamps. You need to figure out if you want 2-band or 3-band. You also need to figure out if you want to be able to run your bass passive.

    I recently got a custom instrument delivered. It has the NTBT 3.3 preamp and Bartolini soapbars. Acoustically this instrument is rather dark sounding, and I'm finding that Bart soapbars have a warm tendency to them, and I'm told Bart preamps have a somewhat warm bias. For me, this all adds up to not what I want this instrument to sound like.

    All that said, I am in the process of changing the pups, and if after that change I still feel the need to change the preamp I'll probably go with something other than Bartolini, and I'll definitely go 3-band.

    I guess your instrument has 3 holes? Other things to consider is how large is the electronics cavity? And how deep is it? Some stack controls can require a deeper cavity than non-stack controls.

    On the other hand, Bartolini makes good stuff... it is a quality preamp.
     
  5. TinIndian

    TinIndian Supporting Member

    Jan 25, 2011
    Micco Florida
    Thanks Slowgypsy, yes it does have 3 holes. The old Dimarzio pre is a 2 band with a push/pull active/passive switch. The controls were 2 volumes and the 2 band EQ. Since my newer bass has a preamp with mid controls I think I am leaning that way, but having the ability to go passive is nice. The control cavity is on the small side but I know I can fit it all in with a 9 volt, though I could add a 9V battery holder fairly easily if needed. Are there better options out there that I should consider. I would favor a good coverage of tones across the board rather than being great at just one frequency. Think versatility.
     
  6. Slowgypsy

    Slowgypsy 4 Fretless Strings

    Dec 12, 2006
    NY & MA
    As a place for reference check out this site: Bass Pickups | Preamps | Bartolini | Aguilar | Leo Quan Badass Bridge II They've got good descriptions of most of the leading brands... might help you narrow down your list for what's out there for a 3-hole setup.

    The thing is... there is no right answer. It's not much of an answer but it's so true. My Stingray fretless has 2-band active with no passive option. That instrument is close to perfection for what it is. This new custom instrument will probably get 3-band, and with 2 pickups I'll probably go with volume, blend as opposed to volume, volume. Passive option is nice to have but not a deal-breaker for me.

    With just 3 holes I'm not sure you can 3-band everything. Check out that site... it'll be a helpful resource.

    And... the preamp that died... just asking... you did change the batteries....
     
  7. TinIndian

    TinIndian Supporting Member

    Jan 25, 2011
    Micco Florida
    What! You mean I can change the batteries! LOL! Yes, as a matter of fact a couple of different sets. I'd try to troubleshoot the thing except it's dip coated with some sort black insulating compound and there is no removing it.

    Thanks again for trying to answer something that I guess in the end is pretty subjective. I'll check out the link you provided.
     
  8. Primary

    Primary TB Assistant

    Here are some related products that TB members are talking about. Clicking on a product will take you to TB’s partner, Primary, where you can find links to TB discussions about these products.

     
    May 9, 2021

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