TI is stopping production of LM4250, what will MusicMan use in the future?

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by av500, Aug 16, 2017.

  1. Jeff Scott

    Jeff Scott Rickenbacker guru..........

    Apr 11, 2006
    Out there!
    Well, I suppose this means that all future Music Man basses will be passive. :hyper:
  2. dlb1001


    Jan 30, 2007
    Probably buy a wafer or two to cover their future needs while they redesign for a new device.
    Atshen and HertzWhenIPlay like this.
  3. It's an opamp. I think we will all survive while their engineers pick a substitute. It's not as if there aren't a billion other opamps on the market.

    It would not surprise me if those opamps become stupidly expensive on the used market, however.
  4. Joe Nerve

    Joe Nerve Supporting Member

    Oct 7, 2000
    New York City
    Endorsing artist: Musicman basses
    I believe this is about as geeky as a bass post can get.


    I meant that with good intent.
  5. BassLife77


    Nov 13, 2009
    San Diego
    There are too many opamps that are better than the LM4250. once I started using them I never went back.
    Passinwind likes this.
  6. Yeah, the LM4250 is a first gen ic from the 70's. Famously used in the original MM 2-band. But do EB still use it? I'd be very surprised. Surely the 3-band used a tl062 or some other 1990's low current dual opamp.

    As others have said these days there are many other good opamps for onboard pres. But having said that, if you are making a 2-band clone and are looking for a modern low noise, low current single opamp in an 8-pin dil package, I'd think your choices would actually be fairly limited. You can still get LF 351s and TL071s I guess, but they aren't exactly modern. You could use a surface mount adapter I guess to increase the options.

    But there's really no need for such low current consumption. 9V battteries have come a long way since the 70's.

    FWIW, if you have an original 2-band or a clone with an LM4250, it's actually "programmable". And if you are doing a lot of recording I'd think the noise floor would be improved by reducing that current-set resistor. Not to mention using metal film resistors, good caps, etc. etc...

    Ha. For sure. I just looked on ebay, and you can buy 10 from china for about 4 bucks (free postage). But when I searched for "music man g&l preamp chip", there's some guy selling them for 12 bucks each (plus shipping!)... A fool and his money....
    Last edited: Aug 17, 2017
    HertzWhenIPlay likes this.
  7. Geri O

    Geri O Endorsing Artist, Mike Lull Guitars and Basses Gold Supporting Member

    Sep 6, 2013
    Florence, MS
    Got me curious now...

    I recently replace the original preamp in a 1979 pre-EB Stingray with a new replacement preamp from Music Man (after they kindly requested I return the old preamp, staying true to their customs....:D). When I get in tonight, I'm going to have a look and see what IC is in the new preamp.

    I can't tell if the replacement preamp is any quieter than the original preamp as the bass was given to me making no sound and to repair or replace the preamp (not a bench guy, but that was going to be an easy one).

    Stay tuned...
    peter-j likes this.
  8. av500


    Apr 2, 2014
    they did in 2009 (for the 2-band): http://myweb.ecomplanet.com/TOWN8019/mycustompage0068.htm

    ...The 3 band uses a TL062 chip rather than the 4250CN used with
    the 2 band preamp....
  9. Wow. There you go. They redesigned the board but stayed with the old 70's electronics.

    The 062 in the 3-band is a dual opamp and the 2-band uses a single. So they aren't interchangable devices. Do they still use the 062? This is a very poor performing audio opamp by modern standards. It's very cheap though. You find them in Behringer stuff a lot. I guess EB get away with it because there's only that one chip. There's a lot of threads here about replacing the 062 opamps in other 90's preamps like warwick and yamaha stuff. But these pres usually have two or three chips...
    peter-j likes this.
  10. av500


    Apr 2, 2014
    I heard they are trying to even build whole guitars like they did in '59 - crazy!
    peter-j likes this.
  11. Ha yeah. With nitro, celluloid, hide glue, ebony, spruce, rosewood, leaded solder, braided wire, and no cnc's, only pin routers allowed!
    Last edited: Aug 17, 2017
    peter-j likes this.
  12. Slade N

    Slade N Supporting Member

    May 28, 2005
    portland, or
    I saw TI and thought strings, I was really confused for a second
    Jeff Scott likes this.
  13. Handyman


    Sep 4, 2007
    Austin, TX
    TI has announced the end of life for this product, but its still in production for now. If MM really wants to stick with the LM4250 they can stockpile enough of them to last until the sun goes nova for a few thousand bucks. These things are less than 40 cents a pop in large quantities.

    Or they can just move on to a different opamp. Its not like the world is short of competing op amps still in production.
    Passinwind likes this.
  14. Unlike vacuum tubes opamps are pretty indistinguishable from one another in decently designed audio circuits. The noise floor is most of what sets them apart at audio frequencies and these days low noise is a slam dunk.
  15. Up the dose

    Up the dose

    Mar 10, 2013
    Is my Stingray now worth more?
    Will bass players be clamoring for the legendary LM4250 versions?
  16. Jeff Scott

    Jeff Scott Rickenbacker guru..........

    Apr 11, 2006
    Out there!
    No, it is worth less, now. If you needed to repair it to original spec you may :poop: out of luck.

    Hope this helps. :D
  17. BassLife77


    Nov 13, 2009
    San Diego
    I wouldn't trust any opamps from China on ebay. they are all harvested re-branded fakes
  18. Geri O

    Geri O Endorsing Artist, Mike Lull Guitars and Basses Gold Supporting Member

    Sep 6, 2013
    Florence, MS
    Okay, here is the pic of the replacement preamp directly from Music Man that was installed in the 1979 Stingray I have here at my house (at least until the owner promises me that it won't be stuck under his bed again for another 9 years...:D). I replaced the original dead preamp around March or April of this year with the unit shown in the picture. FullSizeRender.jpg

    The 4250 number can be plainly seen, but I reassembled the controls back into the bass before I realized that the cap on the right obscured the light on the rest of the chip. I do know that there is no "L" on the chip anywhere, if that means anything.
    peter-j likes this.
  19. Totally. Same for strings. Lots of fakes out there. OTOH, if you went to the trouble of re-branding 8-pin opamps, wouldn't you make them higher-end ones that you could sell for more?.... I was just on ebay to find the $12 guy, really. Digikey, Mouser etc will sell them for a dollar each... I would think if EB run out of lm4250s, they'll go to a surface mount pre. Surely cheaper to produce, and single opamps are much more common as 6-pin soic than dip8... Or they could use a dual opamp and finally put a buffer on the front end of it!.. ;)
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