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Raven Labs Active "P" Bass Retrofit Electronics

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by BassIsFun17, Feb 20, 2006.


  1. BassIsFun17

    BassIsFun17 Supporting Member

    Jan 16, 2006
    Atlanta
    Hey everyone,

    I was just wondering where i could buy one of these Raven Labs Active "P" Bass Retrofit premaps.

    I am very interested in the p bass and the jazz bass preamp that raven labs has made but i have not been able find one online.

    so all help is greatly appreciated.

    Thanks in advance.

    -Rory
     
  2. 62bass

    62bass

    Apr 3, 2005
    Unfortunately, Raven Labs is no longer in business. I have one of the P bass preamps in my Precision and it is great. I've had it for over 5 years. I wish I could find another for a new project but no luck. All the places that used to sell them seem to have sold right out. I got mine at Club Bass in Toronto.

    Too bad as it's a great preamp that doesn't colour the sound of the P. Just seems to make everything better. It even records better than a standard P. I set mine in the flat position all the time. The 2 lithium watch batteries last forever.
     
  3. BassIsFun17

    BassIsFun17 Supporting Member

    Jan 16, 2006
    Atlanta
    ^^Thanks for the information.

    Thats a real disapointment but there are other preamps out there and there is always ebay.
     
  4. 62bass

    62bass

    Apr 3, 2005
    I haven't looked that hard for a Raven used but it's possible you may find one. It really is a very good product. I know I'll never get rid of mine.
     
  5. BassIsFun17

    BassIsFun17 Supporting Member

    Jan 16, 2006
    Atlanta
    ^^so are you saying its probably gonna be hard to find one used?
     
  6. 62bass

    62bass

    Apr 3, 2005
    Yes, I think so. However if someone decides to return their P to stock and decides to sell the Raven that could be one possibility. Or someone may sell their modified P. I've just never heard of one for sale or anyone being unhappy with it once properly installed. I have no idea how many were sold but I'm sure Club Bass sold quite a few. It was a good price too-$110 Canadian.

    You might try contacting Dave at Club Bass and seeing if he has any leads on one.
     
  7. paul n

    paul n

    May 6, 2005
    Arden, NC
    They pop up used from time to time, but I kinda have to recomend against them, not because of sound but becasue they are kinda fragile. The two conection points are too close to the main ciruit paths on the printed board, and its very easy to get solder conecting paths that shouldn't be connected causing a short. If the thing shorts out, forget about it. Also, Steve Rabe (sp?) doesn't do repairs on these any more (he won't even answer e-mails regarding them), so if you get a burnt out used one or acidentaly short it out your self, it's dead.

    Here's my story:

    I bought one used on the Dude Pit but never ended up installing the thing. I decided I liked my basses tone as is so I put it back up for sale; it went quickely. When the guy I sold it to installed it, it didn't work. Aparently what happened was when the first owner removed it a little solder ran and when the new batteries were put in it the thing shorted out. The poor guy did everything he could think of, and even took it to a real pro electronics guy (which cost him and arm and a leg), and it just wouldn't work again. I gave him his money back and the POS is currently some where around here (either that or I threw it out). A few other people I talked to about the thing durring this time all told me it sounded like it was hopeless.

    My advice, find something else from a company that's still around.

    ~Paul :)
     
  8. 62bass

    62bass

    Apr 3, 2005
    Yes, I can see that being a problem although I've had no problems with mine. I did do a careful soldering job. I've never taken it out and probably won't. The main problem I've heard of involved not having a proper ground through the shielding foil on the pickguard and that was easy to fix..

    Too bad. It was a very good sounding (or lack of sounding) preamp at a good price.
     
  9. Kurtmon

    Kurtmon

    Dec 1, 2005
    I recently found one on e-bay, it did not come with a wireing diagram, I have emailed the contact on their website, and I am waiting for a reply, does anyone have a diagram, or can tell me how to wire the thing?
     
  10. 62bass

    62bass

    Apr 3, 2005
    I don't know if I still have mine. I recently moved so not everything is unpacked and accounted for. I'll make a look for it tomorrow and let you know.
     
  11. Kurtmon

    Kurtmon

    Dec 1, 2005
    Thanks:)
     
  12. John East

    John East Commercial User

    Jan 10, 2002
    Oxford UK
    Owner of E-Pro & East UK
    Here's a link to the documents you're looking for, down the page near the bottom:

    http://p096.ezboard.com/fthedudepitfrm54.showMessage?topicID=89.topic

    John
     
  13. John East

    John East Commercial User

    Jan 10, 2002
    Oxford UK
    Owner of E-Pro & East UK
    One thing that's not obvious is that there needs to be an electrical connection between the two pots. This is normally provided by the copper tape you're supposed to stick to the underside of the pickguard. Without this it won't work and does strange things. So if you try to fix it on a bench without that connection, it appears to be faulty even though it may not be.

    The reason I know is that I fell foul of this one myself when I came to install one. I thought I'd quickly check that it worked on the bench before installation. Steve Rabe, I believe, put me right on this point.

    So your PBR may not be broken at all, in fact.

    John
     
  14. Kurtmon

    Kurtmon

    Dec 1, 2005
    Thank You..I will be installing this in a 86 Korean Squire,Badass Brige and SD Hot pickups, I also have a 2004 Mex Jazz that eventually I would like to install a J Retro into . The Squire seems as well built as the Jazz, which I am no expert but seems very well.One Question I have is the Squire serial # is F90250-1 but on the fender site it only list MIJ made instruments not Korean.....also my soldering iron seems to big for this job, do they make smaller irons?..... Kurtis
     
  15. 62bass

    62bass

    Apr 3, 2005
    Kurtmon, it looks like I was too late here. I looked for the instructions yesterday but failed to find them, I'm glad you were helped by John East.

    I recall the warning about the foil tape. The new ones came with foil tape to install to connect the grounds of the pots. My bass already had shieding tape on the underside of the pickguard so I didn't need it.

    The batteries, lithium watch cells, last a long time if you unplug the cord between playing sessions. There's also a lot of gain available. I turn my volume up only to a max of 2/3. It's also very quiet-no noticeable hiss. I always set the tone control in the flat cetre detent position. There's a fair bit of bass boost and treble cut as you turn the contol counter clockwise.

    I had to use a chisel to shave about 1/32" off one part of the control cavity. Some Fenders can be a little tight.

    And off course you may have to adjust pickup height for the best sound.

    I hope it all works out well and you enjoy it. I really am pleased with mine