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The John East preamp club

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by datsaxguy, May 16, 2013.


  1. datsaxguy

    datsaxguy

    Oct 28, 2008
    Maryland
    Well, you might think this is silly but I think these preamps are so good they deserve to have a club.

    I think there should be a J Retro in every jazz bass and a U retro in everything else. (I'm kidding,.........well, maybe not)

    If you love your John East pre chime in. No numbers. Just put a pic of your bass w/ the pre and tell us about your John East preamp pup set up.
     
  2. J.Wolf

    J.Wolf Gear Reviewer - Bass Musician Magazine

    Apr 29, 2003
    Asheville, NC
    I'll play!

    My Wood&Tronics has a custom East SP2 circuit. It has the flatter tone profile that now is apparently available as an option on the Retro series. The SP2 has thumbwheels inside the cavity to adjust the freq point for each of the 3 bands of EQ, although mine has stacked mid knobs (vol/freq) for ease of use. Its a great sounding preamp, I really like it.

    [​IMG]
     
  3. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Total Hyper-Elite Member Gold Supporting Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
    The J-Retro in my Lakland JO5 is fine, but I prefer both the Pope Flex Core and Aguilar OBP-3 over it.
     
  4. Jools4001

    Jools4001 Supporting Member

    Well, I sort of have two East preamps. At least John East designed them although they are in ACG EQ01 or EQ02 guise so I don't think they count.
     
  5. J.Wolf

    J.Wolf Gear Reviewer - Bass Musician Magazine

    Apr 29, 2003
    Asheville, NC
    Munji, how does the east compare to the flexcore?
     
  6. jim777

    jim777 Tarantula Lobbyist

    Aug 7, 2006
    South Jersey
    That bass is jaw dropping! :eek:
     
  7. datsaxguy

    datsaxguy

    Oct 28, 2008
    Maryland
    Lakland DJ5 - John East J retro, Hanson Pups. A killer modern combination as many on the forum can attest to. Having a problem loading pics but found a twin on the forum.

    DJ% 6.
     
  8. datsaxguy

    datsaxguy

    Oct 28, 2008
    Maryland

    All are welcome, we don't discriminate. You're in!
     
  9. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Total Hyper-Elite Member Gold Supporting Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
    The East J-Retro is a little foggier. It has more of a vintage sound (hence the name). I prefer the clean, modern, hi-fi sound of the Pope. I'd say the Pope has less inherent coloration than the East - that what it's designed for. If you're a vintage guy, the East is the one for you.

    I don't mean to make a value judgment between the preamps. It's very subjective, and personal tastes vary greatly. The J-Retro does what it's intended to do very well.
     
  10. jumbodbassman

    jumbodbassman Supporting Member

    Dec 28, 2009
    Stuck in traffic -NY & CT
    Born Again Tubey
    Is the east closer to the sadowski preamp or the pope??
     
  11. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Total Hyper-Elite Member Gold Supporting Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
    Oh - we get to show what bass it's in? Cool. I'm sure you haven't seen this one before.

    PinkJO5web.

    Here it is next to the bass with the Flex Core. Listen to the sustain.

    Magpie-and-Komen-body.
     
  12. jumbodbassman

    jumbodbassman Supporting Member

    Dec 28, 2009
    Stuck in traffic -NY & CT
    Born Again Tubey
    yummy looking basses
     
  13. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Total Hyper-Elite Member Gold Supporting Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
    Well, neither really. If you held me down and threatened to inject air into my vein if I didn't choose, I'd say the Sadowsky. But the Sadowsky has its own sound, probably a little cleaner than the East. However, the East has 3-band EQ with a semi-parametric mid, so it has a wider palette of tones available. Both the East and the Sadowsky can get a very decent J tone.
     
  14. jumbodbassman

    jumbodbassman Supporting Member

    Dec 28, 2009
    Stuck in traffic -NY & CT
    Born Again Tubey
    had an old sadowski out board years ago and loved it. but the flexcore on my YYS is outstanding and i just love the passive tone rolloff. what a brilliant idea to make quick tone tweaking when active... I met mike when he was about 16 at the shop when i used to hang there in the 80's at the beginning. He was an outstanding player back then and very creative ideas about sound back then...
     
  15. Skelf

    Skelf

    Apr 15, 2005
    Moffat D&G Scotland
    Builder AC Guitars.
    Unsurprisingly you can count me in. I have used the SPM02, BTB01, J-Retro,U-Retro,P-Retro and Tone Lifter. Also my own EQ1/2/3 series preamps designed and built by John.
    A nicer guy to deal with you will not meet.
     
    Bob_Ross likes this.
  16. J.Wolf

    J.Wolf Gear Reviewer - Bass Musician Magazine

    Apr 29, 2003
    Asheville, NC
    Interesting, i wouldn't think of east retro as being vintage sounding, but i suppose I get what you mean, it's inherent tone has a definite voicing that is less transparent than other circuits I've used. The flex core has been on my radar since I it came out, Although the east works very well in the particular bass I still have one in. I yanked the east from my main 6 in favor of an 'alien audio' mo west preamp, and i like the result, although the tone of that bass is still not quite where I want it.
     
  17. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Total Hyper-Elite Member Gold Supporting Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
    OK, "less transparent."
     
  18. Jools4001

    Jools4001 Supporting Member

    OK, well here is the bass with the East designed ACG EQ01 in it. This picture was actually taken just after I installed an ACG EQ02 in it - which was the first filter preamp I bought. I was so impressed by the flexibility of the EQ02 that I ordered up the EQ01 that it has now.

    P1020175_zpsd6bef3c5.

    Both the EQ01 and EQ02 are filter based preamps and work differently to a normal two or three band pre. It's a bit long winded to go into their operation here but suffice to say that you can radically change the voicing of your bass to whatever you want with a bit of practise you can go from the bassiest Gibson Mudbucker sound to the clangiest Ric, or from a vintage vibe to hi-fi active.

    It does take a bit of getting used to because quite small tweaks can radically change the sound (and in truth, using the EQ01, I've only just got the hang of how to get a nice bit of top end and edge in my tone without it sounding brittle and harsh) and as with everything in life it is a bit of a double edged sword - the very flexibility that can produce absolutely stunning tones is also capable of making poor ones for the unititiated - for example, since the frequency band of the treble and bass stack can overlap, if you really want to you can apply a double dollop of boost to some really ganky frequencies. On balance though, now I'm more used to the way these pres work I wouldn't be without them.

    The EQ02 is a little easier to work with since it only has the one bass stack, and my EQ02 now lives happily in my fretless (which is the bass it was originally destined for until it got temporarily waylaid into my 6), again the pic is pre-installation of the EQ02.

    P1000151.
     
  19. macribas

    macribas

    Jan 17, 2009
    Austin, TX
    No! That is awesome! Is it a US 55-60?
     
  20. depalm

    depalm Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 22, 2004
    Rio
    3087152978_ea2c339278_o.