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Should I make this bass active?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by jbailes, Aug 4, 2012.


  1. jbailes

    jbailes

    Apr 5, 2012
    Hello all,

    I've got an MIM passive Jazz bass where I recently put in a pair of nordstrand NJ4SEs and a Leo Quan BAII bridge. Sounds incredible. I know making it active would allow for more tonal options, but does anyone think it would improve the overall tone? Thanks.
     
  2. CORBS

    CORBS Supporting Member

    Dec 28, 2010
    Adding a preamp will give you more tonal options. You have really good pickups in there though so be sure to do your homework and get a good preamp as well.

    The ACG Filter preamp would be interesting to see on a jazz bass.
     
  3. If you like it, I'd recommend getting something that has active/passive capability.

    Audere (Z-Mode) makes a nice plate-mounted model that slaps right in. They are pretty darn nice.
     
  4. jbailes

    jbailes

    Apr 5, 2012
    I just got done checking out the John East J-Retro pre-wired stuff, and it looks very impressive, although I haven't read any reviews yet.
     
  5. darkstorm

    darkstorm

    Oct 13, 2009
    Id say yes. Active preamps in my experience expand lows and highs extension even with controls flat. As though the pups full potential is allowed from the impedence change with active. You can have the best of both worlds by simply also adding bypass switch so when you want full passive sound just switch to bypass mode. Actives also better drive effects and mixer inputs in my experience. So again I say yes to add 2 or 3band preamp.
     
  6. Jeff Scott

    Jeff Scott Rickenbacker guru.......... Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2006
    IS active better? :meh:

    In my experience, not necessarily, so.
     
  7. Chico16

    Chico16

    Apr 2, 2012
    Yuma, Az
    I second that Jeff Scott. I've played both passive as well as active basses and there really isn't a BETTER one between the two. The active will just, like OP said, give you more options. I feel the active can go deeper or higher than a passive bass can, but if you already found a tone you enjoy with a passive then there's really no need to change it. No point of fixing something that isn't broken right? IMO
     
  8. jbailes

    jbailes

    Apr 5, 2012
    Well, I'm not refering to fixing anything that's broken, but rather, expanding options.
     
  9. Jeff Scott

    Jeff Scott Rickenbacker guru.......... Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2006
    I have had people ask what kind of preamp is in my fretted Elfin 5 it is so amazing sounding. It is passive with two wonderful Citron pickups in it, no need for a preamp. :bassist:
     
  10. Chico16

    Chico16

    Apr 2, 2012
    Yuma, Az
    Yea I understood what you meant. I was referring to your tone though like trying to change your tone when you already found one you like. But now I take back what I said because not even I follow that. We can blame GAS for that :/
     
  11. jbailes

    jbailes

    Apr 5, 2012
    I hear ya. What makes me kinda sheepish about making this kind of move is the risk of altering the "passive" tone that I currently have. As far as what's out there, I'm pretty much won over by the John East J-Retro pre-wired system. The flexibility that system would provide would be quite awesome. But if it were installed, I would certainly want the bass to sound the way it presently does in passive mode. It's gorgeous.....and the DR nickel plated low riders don't hurt either!
    But, I guess ya never know until you take the plunge and find out for yourself.
     
  12. Woofer

    Woofer

    Sep 24, 2008
    OBX
    Not sure why no one has suggested this, but why not an outboard preamp? Don't have to fuss with your bass or worry about losing the passive tone you like, and when you want the active tone just switch it on. Simple. John East even makes one.
     
  13. Means2nEnd

    Means2nEnd Supporting Member

    Nordy with passive tone knob = flavor of bacon
     
  14. jbailes

    jbailes

    Apr 5, 2012
    ?????????
     

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